A deflected Juan Mata strike gave Chelsea a victory at a lacklustre Manchester United which lifts the Blues up to third in the Premier League.

Earlier, Oscar's shot for the visitors was palmed on to the post by keeper Anders Lindegaard before United's Robin van Persie glanced a shot just wide.

Analysis

"For Manchester United I think it was a game too many after winning the title. It ended tempestuously. Juan Mata helped give Chelsea the win which was a huge stride towards the Champions League next season and leaves Tottenham and Arsenal worried."

The match appeared to be petering out when Mata's 87th minute shot went in off Phil Jones and the post.

Moments later, United's Rafael was sent off for kicking David Luiz.

The Brazilian defender was seen smiling on the ground after Rafael's crude challenge as the game ended in the kind of fiery intensity the match had largely lacked.

With victory edging Chelsea a point ahead of Arsenal in the race for the Champions League places, Rafael Benitez's men - who have a game in hand over the Gunners - will be more satisfied by the win than the quality of their performance.

The Blues are three points in front of fifth-placed Tottenham, who they play on Wednesday. If Chelsea win that game it should all but guarantee them a top-four place.

Man Utd 0-1 Chelsea: Rafa Benitez delighted with 'massive' win

After both of their London rivals had won on Saturday, the pressure was on Chelsea to follow suit in their 65th match of the season.

In what was also their 12th game in 37 days, the visitors quickly took the initiative and created the first threat on goal, with the teasing Mata crossing for the stretching Demba Ba to head over.

Another Mata cross fell to Ba at the far post and, although the Chelsea forward did well to take the ball down on his chest, he could only strike an air shot before United cleared their lines.

There was a lack of zip and urgency about the home side and they almost paid the price when Oscar ran unchallenged at goal before having a shot palmed onto the post by Lindergaard.

Chelsea failed to provide the cutting edge to capitalise on the Old Trafford side's lack of intensity, with Victor Moses sweeping a shot over as the Blues again squandered a promising opening.

United's disciplined and determined defending was their saving grace before they briefly found some attacking rhythm, with Van Persie twice going close just before the break.

Match facts

  • Manchester United's defeat by Chelsea meant they have failed to score for the first time in 67 successive home league games.
  • Chelsea's win helped them beat Manchester United in the Premier League for the first time in five meetings.

The Dutchman latched onto an incisive pass from Ryan Giggs only to glance a shot just wide before Van Persie headed straight at Blues keeper Petr Cech from a Nemanja Vidic cross.

Chelsea responded by trying to increase the pace of the game after the break, although they struggled to prise a way through the United backline as chances were hard to come by at both ends.

However, there was to be late drama.

Chelsea midfielder Ramires tackled Wayne Rooney on the edge of the Blues box before powering forward and passing to Oscar, who laid the ball off for Mata to send a shot in off Jones and the post.

United were angry the challenge by Ramires was not deemed a foul, while Rafael's frustration boiled over into a cynical challenge on Luiz as he incurred his side's first red card of the season.

Man Utd 0-1 Chelsea: Ferguson - We lacked edge

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson:

"There is always an expectation that we should do better. We expected a better performance. After the goal we had no time to get back in the game.

"It was difficult for players coming in. Chelsea had everything to play for. They [some of our players] haven't played for quite a while. That being said, we should be doing better.

"He [Rafael] retaliates but he [David Luiz] quite clearly elbows him twice then rolls about like a dying swan, and that convinces the referee. He was smiling, it's bad. What kind of professional is that?"

The race for the Champions League

Tuesday 7 May: Man City v West Brom

Wednesday 8 May: Chelsea v Tottenham

Saturday 11 May: Aston Villa v Chelsea

Sunday 12 May: Stoke v Tottenham

Tuesday 14 May: Arsenal v Wigan; Reading v Man City

Sunday 19 May: Chelsea v Everton; Man City v Norwich; Newcastle v Arsenal; Tottenham v Sunderland

Lineup, Bookings (4) & Substitutions (5)

Man Utd

  • 13 Lindegaard
  • 02 Rafael Dismissed
  • 03 Evra
  • 04 Jones Booked
  • 06 Evans
  • 15 Vidic Booked
  • 07 Valencia (Hernandez - 90' )
  • 08 Anderson (Rooney - 69' )
  • 11 Giggs
  • 23 Cleverley (Buttner - 68' )
  • 20 Van Persie

Substitutes

  • 01 De Gea
  • 05 Ferdinand
  • 28 Buttner
  • 22 Scholes
  • 26 Kagawa
  • 10 Rooney
  • 14 Hernandez

Chelsea

  • 01 Cech
  • 02 Ivanovic
  • 03 Cole
  • 04 Luiz Booked
  • 28 Azpilicueta
  • 07 Ramires
  • 08 Lampard
  • 10 Mata (Ake - 90' )
  • 11 Oscar
  • 13 Moses (Torres - 76' )
  • 29 Ba

Substitutes

  • 22 Turnbull
  • 19 Ferreira
  • 24 Cahill
  • 26 Terry
  • 30 Benayoun
  • 57 Ake
  • 09 Torres
Ref: H Webb
Att: 75,500

Match Stats

Shots

10 16

On target

4 8

Corners

2 7

Fouls

14 9

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +5:08 Full time

Full Time The referee blows for the end of the match.

90:00 +3:28

Shot by Nascimento Ramires (Chelsea) right-footed from left channel (25 yards), missed right. Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

90:00 +2:52

Foul by Fernando Torres (Chelsea) on Phil Jones (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) from right channel, resulting in open play.

90:00 +2:24

Foul by Frank Lampard (Chelsea) on Javier Hernandez (Man Utd). Free kick taken left-footed by Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) from right wing, resulting in open play.

90:00 +2:00

Attacking throw-in by Emboaba Oscar (Chelsea).

90:00 +1:25

Foul by Fernando Torres (Chelsea) on Phil Jones (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Phil Jones (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

90:00 +1:09

Javier Hernandez (Man Utd) caught offside. Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

89:50

Free kick taken right-footed by Petr Cech (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

89:50 Substitution

Substitution Chelsea substitution: Juan Mata replaced by Nathan Ake (tactical).

89:25 Substitution

Substitution Man Utd substitution: Antonio Valencia replaced by Javier Hernandez (tactical).

88:38 Dismissal

Dismissal Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd) dismissed for violent conduct.

88:35

Foul by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd) on David Luiz (Chelsea).

86:10

Assist on the goal came from Juan Mata.

86:10

Assist (pass) by Emboaba Oscar (Chelsea) from right channel.

86:10 Goal scored

Goal! - Juan Mata - Man Utd 0 - 1 Chelsea Goal by Juan Mata (Chelsea) left-footed (bottom-right of goal) from left side of penalty area (12 yards).Man Utd 0-1 Chelsea.

85:32

Defending throw-in by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd).

85:01 Booking

Booking David Luiz (Chelsea) booked for dissent.

84:35

Attacking throw-in by Antonio Valencia (Man Utd).

83:56

Shot by Juan Mata (Chelsea) right-footed from left channel (20 yards), blocked by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd).

83:42

Robin van Persie (Man Utd) caught offside. Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

82:02

Foul by Patrice Evra (Man Utd) on Juan Mata (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from left channel (25 yards), over the bar. Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

80:58

Attacking throw-in by Ashley Cole (Chelsea).

80:15

Free kick taken right-footed by Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

80:15 Booking

Booking Phil Jones (Man Utd) booked for unsporting behaviour.

80:11

Foul by Phil Jones (Man Utd) on Nascimento Ramires (Chelsea).

79:32

Inswinging corner from right by-line taken left-footed by Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) to centre, clearance by Fernando Torres (Chelsea).

78:30

Foul by Wayne Rooney (Man Utd) on Ashley Cole (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

77:59

Foul by Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea) on Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

76:50

Inswinging corner from left by-line taken right-footed by Frank Lampard (Chelsea) to far post, clearance by Phil Jones (Man Utd). Inswinging corner from right by-line taken left-footed by Juan Mata (Chelsea) to centre, clearance by Jonny Evans (Man Utd). Inswinging corner from right by-line taken left-footed by Juan Mata (Chelsea) to near post, resulting in open play.

76:06

Attacking throw-in by Patrice Evra (Man Utd).

75:33 Substitution

Substitution Chelsea substitution: Victor Moses replaced by Fernando Torres (tactical).

74:09

Foul by Victor Moses (Chelsea) on Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Phil Jones (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

73:26

Cross by Alexander Buttner (Man Utd), clearance by David Luiz (Chelsea).

72:22

Cross by Antonio Valencia (Man Utd), header by Wayne Rooney (Man Utd) from left side of penalty area (12 yards), missed left. Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

71:32

Cross by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd), clearance by Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea). Inswinging corner from right by-line taken left-footed by Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) to centre, save (punched) by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

69:56

Foul by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea) on Alexander Buttner (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

69:06

Foul by Robin van Persie (Man Utd) on Ashley Cole (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from own half, passed.

68:03 Substitution

Substitution Man Utd substitution: Oliveira Anderson replaced by Wayne Rooney (tactical).

67:46 Substitution

Substitution Man Utd substitution: Tom Cleverley replaced by Alexander Buttner (tactical).

67:29

Cross by Emboaba Oscar (Chelsea), resulting in open play. Demba Ba (Chelsea) caught offside. Free kick taken right-footed by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

67:14

Attacking throw-in by Emboaba Oscar (Chelsea).

66:31

Foul by Patrice Evra (Man Utd) on David Luiz (Chelsea). Free kick taken left-footed by Juan Mata (Chelsea) from right channel (25 yards), hit wall.

65:23

Attacking throw-in by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

64:32

Defending throw-in by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd).

64:12

Attacking throw-in by Ashley Cole (Chelsea).

63:53

Attacking throw-in by Ashley Cole (Chelsea).

63:22

Cross by Antonio Valencia (Man Utd), save (caught) by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

61:54

Attacking throw-in by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd).

61:24

Attacking throw-in by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd).

60:48

Defending throw-in by Patrice Evra (Man Utd).

60:12

Foul by Robin van Persie (Man Utd) on David Luiz (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from own half, passed.

59:27

Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

57:49

Defending throw-in by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

56:31

Foul by Juan Mata (Chelsea) on Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Jonny Evans (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

55:18

Shot by Frank Lampard (Chelsea) right-footed from right side of penalty area (12 yards), over the bar. Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

54:55

Attacking throw-in by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

52:56

Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

52:09

Foul by Antonio Valencia (Man Utd) on Ashley Cole (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from left channel, resulting in open play.

51:37

Free kick taken right-footed by Nascimento Ramires (Chelsea) from right channel, resulting in open play.

51:37 Booking

Booking Nemanja Vidic (Man Utd) booked for unsporting behaviour.

51:34

Foul by Nemanja Vidic (Man Utd) on Demba Ba (Chelsea).

51:14

Goal kick taken short by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

50:47

Attacking throw-in by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

49:36

Inswinging corner from right by-line taken left-footed by Juan Mata (Chelsea) to far post, clearance by Nemanja Vidic (Man Utd).

48:50

Defending throw-in by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd).

47:47

Robin van Persie (Man Utd) caught offside. Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

46:57

Foul by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd) on Frank Lampard (Chelsea). Free kick taken left-footed by Juan Mata (Chelsea) from left channel, resulting in open play.

46:07

Attacking throw-in by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

45:51

Defending throw-in by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

45:01

The match restarts for the second half.

45:00 +0:18 Half time

Half Time The half-time whistle blows.

44:47

Header by Robin van Persie (Man Utd) from left side of penalty area (12 yards), save (caught) by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

43:28

Shot by Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) left-footed from left side of penalty area (18 yards), over the bar. Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

42:55

Shot by Emboaba Oscar (Chelsea) right-footed from right channel (20 yards), missed left. Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

42:00

Shot by Robin van Persie (Man Utd) right-footed from centre of penalty area (18 yards), missed left. Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

41:04

Shot by David Luiz (Chelsea) right-footed from left channel (30 yards), missed left. Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

39:10

Handball by Victor Moses (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd) from own half, passed.

38:38

Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

37:53

Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

36:24

Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) caught offside. Free kick taken right-footed by Petr Cech (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

35:49

Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

35:24

Shot by Juan Mata (Chelsea) right-footed from right channel (20 yards), blocked by Nemanja Vidic (Man Utd).

34:14

Foul by Tom Cleverley (Man Utd) on Juan Mata (Chelsea). Free kick taken left-footed by Ashley Cole (Chelsea) from own half, passed.

33:28

Shot by Tom Cleverley (Man Utd) right-footed from left channel (20 yards), over the bar. Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

32:19

Shot by Robin van Persie (Man Utd) right-footed from left side of penalty area (18 yards), blocked by Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea).

30:37

Foul by Demba Ba (Chelsea) on Jonny Evans (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

29:38

Shot by Demba Ba (Chelsea) right-footed from left side of penalty area (18 yards), missed right. Goal kick taken short by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

27:38

Shot by Frank Lampard (Chelsea) right-footed from right channel (25 yards), save (caught) by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

27:06

Corner from right by-line taken short right-footed by Juan Mata (Chelsea).

25:50

Attacking throw-in by Ashley Cole (Chelsea).

23:19

Attacking throw-in by Ashley Cole (Chelsea).

22:43

Defending throw-in by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

20:15

Inswinging corner from left by-line taken right-footed by Frank Lampard (Chelsea) to centre, save (punched) by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

19:38

Inswinging corner from right by-line taken left-footed by Juan Mata (Chelsea) to far post, resulting in open play.

19:07

Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

18:37

Shot by Tom Cleverley (Man Utd) left-footed from left side of penalty area (18 yards),

17:47

Shot by Robin van Persie (Man Utd) left-footed from right side of penalty area (18 yards), missed left. Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

15:59

Shot by Victor Moses (Chelsea) right-footed from centre of penalty area (18 yards), over the bar. Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

15:00

Shot by Ryan Giggs (Man Utd) left-footed from left channel (20 yards), comfortable save (caught) by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

14:30

Foul by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea) on Ryan Giggs (Man Utd). Free kick taken right-footed by Tom Cleverley (Man Utd) from own half, resulting in open play.

13:56

Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

13:09

Shot by Emboaba Oscar (Chelsea) right-footed from right side of penalty area (18 yards), save (parried) by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

12:12

Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

10:12

Cross by Antonio Valencia (Man Utd), resulting in ball out of play. Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

9:18

Defending throw-in by Rafael Da Silva (Man Utd).

8:40

Shot by Tom Cleverley (Man Utd) right-footed from right side of penalty area (18 yards), missed right. Goal kick taken long by Petr Cech (Chelsea).

6:19

Shot by Nascimento Ramires (Chelsea) right-footed from left channel (25 yards), missed left. Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

6:02

Demba Ba takes a shot. Patrice Evra gets a block in.

5:49

Shot by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea) left-footed from right side of penalty area (18 yards),

5:11

Foul by Robin van Persie (Man Utd) on David Luiz (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by Frank Lampard (Chelsea) from own half, resulting in open play.

4:11

Defending throw-in by David Luiz (Chelsea).

2:59

Attacking throw-in by Ashley Cole (Chelsea). Foul by Jonny Evans (Man Utd) on Demba Ba (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by David Luiz (Chelsea) from own half, passed.

2:48

Goal kick taken long by Anders Lindegaard (Man Utd).

1:38

Defending throw-in by Ashley Cole (Chelsea).

0:54

Foul by Patrice Evra (Man Utd) on Victor Moses (Chelsea). Free kick taken right-footed by Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea) from right wing, resulting in open play.

0:43

Cross by Antonio Valencia (Man Utd), clearance by Frank Lampard (Chelsea).

0:00

The game gets underway.

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