Man Utd vs Chelsea: A tale of two halves

Man Utd was ascendant the first half. But it was Chelsea all the way in the second. If there was a storyline, it would be Ricardo Carvalho giveth the game away, and then taketh back for the Blues. Carvalho’s atrocious defending led to Saha slotting the ball past Cudicini in the first half as Man Utd went up 1-0. In the second half Carvalho climbed over the defense and headed the ball past Van Der Saar to restore parity.
Mourinho’s decision to substitute Geremi for Robben opened up Essien to roam on the right and cause all kinds of problems for Man Utd. Rooney disappeared in the second half, mostly trying to defend Essien. The problem with Rooney is that he is great against the lesser clubs scoring goals a plenty but against the tougher clubs he has been found lacking.
Michael Ballack and Andrei Shevchenko still haven’t found their rhythm, especially Ballack whose awry passing in the first half led to a number of wasted opportunities for Chelsea. As much as I hate to say it, Ashley Cole played Ronaldo superbly. For Man Utd, Gabriel Heinze proved to be upto the task after months of an injury layoff.
Although the scoreline reads a draw, I have a sneaking suspicion that Man Utd was glad that it ended that way. They are still in first place.

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