A hat-trick by Samuel Eto'o ensured Chelsea maintained the pressure on the Premier League pacesetters and surely ended Manchester United's chances of retaining their title.

The veteran striker scored twice in the first half and completed his treble just after the interval to leave Chelsea only two points behind leaders Arsenal and one adrift of Manchester City.

Chelsea deserved Man Utd win - Mourinho

United manager David Moyes cut a dejected figure at the final whistle as he surveyed a 14-point gap to Arsenal at the top of the table - with matters made worse by the late red card for Nemanja Vidic following his needless lunge at Eden Hazard.

Javier Hernandez's goal hardly qualified as consolation and United must now try to overturn a 2-1 deficit against Sunderland in the Capital One Cup semi-final second leg at Old Trafford on Wednesday without their suspended captain, who starts a three-match ban.

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has played down his side's title credentials but there is a real sense of momentum building around Stamford Bridge that will have only increased with this victory, the Portuguese's 100th in the Premier League. His first also came against United, back in 2004.

In Moyes's defence, he was without his injured world-class strike pair of Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie - but even those mitigating circumstances cannot disguise the brutal truth that United's current squad is simply not in shape to mount a title challenge and is inferior to that at Arsenal, let alone Chelsea and Manchester City.

Ton up for Mourinho

  • The win was Jose Mourinho's 100th in the Premier League. His first, in Chelsea's opening game of the 2004-05 season, also came against Manchester United
  • The Portuguese manager became the quickest to reach the century. It took him just 142 games - 20 fewer than Sir Alex Ferguson

The visitors were bound to lack a cutting edge with Rooney and Van Persie out, whereas Mourinho felt confident enough to leave out Fernando Torres, despite his goal in the win at Hull City, and restore Eto'o.

And how Mourinho was rewarded by Eto'o as the Cameroonian provided the finishing touches that Moyes's men were unable to apply to some good work of their own, particularly early on.

United's brisk start pinned the hosts back and Petr Cech had to plunge down sharply to save from Ashley Young in the opening moments, while Adnan Januzaj did much to confirm his rich promise.

But for all the visitors' early impetus, it was Chelsea who took the lead after 18 minutes when a left-foot shot from Eto'o took a vital touch off Michael Carrick's outstretched leg and looped over United keeper David de Gea.

The champions were still showing some ambition and almost equalised when Januzaj's cross evaded the Blues' defence and landed at the feet of Welbeck. He could only shoot straight at Cech, however, appealing in vain for a penalty as Cesar Azpilicueta appeared to catch his leg just as he shot.

Man Utd must improve - Moyes

It was to prove a decisive moment as Eto'o doubled Chelsea's lead seconds before half-time, Cahill squaring for the striker to sweep home a finish that De Gea touched but could not keep out.

United's hopes of getting something from the game took a final blow four minutes after the break when they were let down by dreadful marking at a corner. De Gea scrambled out Gary Cahill's header but the poacher supreme Eto'o pounced to turn home the loose ball.

All the optimism created by a promising opening had long since disappeared and it was simply a question of damage control.

Hernandez put something of a gloss on the scoreline when he turned in from almost on the line after Phil Jones fired a scuffed shot across the face of goal with 14 minutes left.

A familiar fight back

  • United have trailed in 11 Premier League matches this season, one fewer than Hull

The visitors applied some belated pressure but Mourinho was able to shore Chelsea up with the introduction of John Obi Mikel and Nemanja Matic, the £21m signing from Benfica who has returned for a second spell at Stamford Bridge.

And just as United hoped to escape from west London without any further damage, Vidic lunged in on Hazard when there was no danger and received a red card.

United's frustration was now in danger of boiling over and Rafael was fortunate to receive only a yellow card for a flying two-footed challenge on Cahill.

Check out photos from Sunday's Premier League matches at BBC Sport's Facebook page. 

Lineup, Bookings (5) & Substitutions (5)

Chelsea

  • 01 Cech
  • 02 Ivanovic
  • 28 Azpilicueta
  • 04 David Luiz Booked
  • 24 Cahill
  • 26 Terry
  • 22 Willian (Matic - 86' )
  • 07 Ramires
  • 29 Eto'o (Torres - 79' )
  • 11 Oscar (Mikel - 68' )
  • 17 Hazard

Substitutes

  • 03 Cole
  • 08 Lampard
  • 09 Torres
  • 10 Mata
  • 12 Mikel
  • 21 Matic
  • 23 Schwarzer

Manchester United

  • 01 de Gea
  • 02 Rafael Booked
  • 03 Evra (Smalling - 51' )
  • 16 Carrick
  • 15 Vidic Dismissed
  • 06 Evans
  • 25 Antonio Valencia Booked
  • 04 Jones
  • 19 Welbeck
  • 44 Januzaj
  • 18 Young Booked (Hernández - 56' )

Substitutes

  • 11 Giggs
  • 12 Smalling
  • 13 Lindegaard
  • 14 Hernández
  • 23 Cleverley
  • 24 Fletcher
  • 26 Kagawa
Ref: Phil Dowd
Att: 41,615

Match Stats

Shots

13 10

On target

6 4

Corners

5 4

Fouls

15 21

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Chelsea 3, Manchester United 1.

90:00 +5:06 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Chelsea 3, Manchester United 1.

90:00 +4:15 Booking

Booking Rafael (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

90:00 +4:04

Foul by Rafael (Manchester United).

90:00 +4:04

Gary Cahill (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +2:50

Foul by Rafael (Manchester United).

90:00 +2:50

Ramires (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +0:58 Dismissal

Dismissal Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United) is shown the red card.

90:00 +0:52

Foul by Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United).

90:00 +0:52

Eden Hazard (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

89:16

Attempt saved. Javier Hernández (Manchester United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Chris Smalling with a headed pass.

88:59

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

88:25

Delay in match Fernando Torres (Chelsea) because of an injury.

88:11

Rafael (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

88:11

Foul by John Obi Mikel (Chelsea).

85:18 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Chelsea. Nemanja Matic replaces Willian.

84:48

Foul by Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United).

84:48

Eden Hazard (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

83:07

Foul by Phil Jones (Manchester United).

83:07

David Luiz (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

82:13

Foul by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

82:13

Ramires (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

81:17

Michael Carrick (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

81:17

Foul by Willian (Chelsea).

80:02

Foul by Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United).

80:02

César Azpilicueta (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

78:53

Offside, Chelsea. John Terry tries a through ball, but Fernando Torres is caught offside.

78:23 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Chelsea. Fernando Torres replaces Samuel Eto'o.

77:24 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Chelsea 3, Manchester United 1. Javier Hernández (Manchester United) left footed shot from very close range to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Phil Jones.

77:23

Attempt missed. Phil Jones (Manchester United) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Danny Welbeck.

74:32

Foul by Javier Hernández (Manchester United).

74:32

Eden Hazard (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

72:41

Foul by Phil Jones (Manchester United).

72:41

John Obi Mikel (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

71:41

Foul by Rafael (Manchester United).

71:41

Ramires (Chelsea) wins a free kick on the right wing.

68:43

Attempt missed. Danny Welbeck (Manchester United) header from very close range misses to the right. Assisted by Adnan Januzaj with a cross following a corner.

68:24

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Petr Cech.

67:55 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Chelsea. John Obi Mikel replaces Oscar.

63:57

Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Michael Carrick.

63:56

Attempt blocked. Eden Hazard (Chelsea) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Oscar.

63:13

Javier Hernández (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

63:13

Foul by David Luiz (Chelsea).

62:11

Attempt saved. Willian (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Ramires.

61:13

Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

61:13

Foul by Oscar (Chelsea).

60:35

Attempt blocked. Rafael (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Adnan Januzaj.

59:01

Attempt missed. Ramires (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Samuel Eto'o.

58:18

Foul by Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United).

58:18

Eden Hazard (Chelsea) wins a free kick on the left wing.

56:26

Rafael (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

56:26

Foul by Eden Hazard (Chelsea).

55:54 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Manchester United. Javier Hernández replaces Ashley Young.

54:51 Booking

Booking Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

54:34

Foul by Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United).

54:34

César Azpilicueta (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

52:55

Hand ball by Ashley Young (Manchester United).

51:49

Ashley Young (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

51:49

Foul by Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea).

50:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Manchester United. Chris Smalling replaces Patrice Evra because of an injury.

49:42

Rafael (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

49:42

Foul by César Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

48:20 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Chelsea 3, Manchester United 0. Samuel Eto'o (Chelsea) right footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal following a corner.

48:19

Attempt saved. Gary Cahill (Chelsea) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Willian with a cross.

47:57

Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Nemanja Vidic.

46:57

Offside, Manchester United. David de Gea tries a through ball, but Patrice Evra is caught offside.

46:22

Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

46:22

Foul by Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea).

45:00

Second Half begins Chelsea 2, Manchester United 0.

45:00 +2:56 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Chelsea 2, Manchester United 0.

45:00 +2:01

Michael Carrick (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

45:00 +2:01

Foul by Oscar (Chelsea).

44:44 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Chelsea 2, Manchester United 0. Samuel Eto'o (Chelsea) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Gary Cahill with a cross following a corner.

44:12

Attempt blocked. David Luiz (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

44:11

Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Luis Antonio Valencia.

42:56

Foul by Phil Jones (Manchester United).

42:56

Willian (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

42:00

Foul by Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United).

42:00

Willian (Chelsea) wins a free kick on the left wing.

41:27

Attempt missed. Oscar (Chelsea) right footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left.

41:24

Attempt blocked. Samuel Eto'o (Chelsea) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard.

41:03

Attempt blocked. Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Danny Welbeck.

39:05

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

38:40

Delay in match David Luiz (Chelsea) because of an injury.

37:10

Attempt saved. Danny Welbeck (Manchester United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

34:42 Booking

Booking Ashley Young (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

34:25

Foul by Ashley Young (Manchester United).

34:25

Ramires (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

32:44

Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

32:44

Foul by Eden Hazard (Chelsea).

29:25

Attempt missed. Oscar (Chelsea) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Branislav Ivanovic.

27:07

Attempt missed. Patrice Evra (Manchester United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the left.

23:00

Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

23:00

Foul by John Terry (Chelsea).

22:15

Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Patrice Evra.

21:18

Corner, Chelsea. Conceded by Jonny Evans.

19:51

Foul by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

19:51

David Luiz (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:06

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Branislav Ivanovic.

18:38 Booking

Booking David Luiz (Chelsea) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

18:10

Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

18:10

Foul by David Luiz (Chelsea).

16:22 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Chelsea 1, Manchester United 0. Samuel Eto'o (Chelsea) left footed shot from outside the box to the bottom left corner.

15:33

Foul by Danny Welbeck (Manchester United).

15:33

David Luiz (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

15:12

Offside, Chelsea. César Azpilicueta tries a through ball, but Samuel Eto'o is caught offside.

14:07

Foul by Ashley Young (Manchester United).

14:07

Oscar (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

12:26

Hand ball by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

11:47

Attempt blocked. Willian (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard.

10:35

Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

10:35

Foul by Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea).

10:09

Attempt saved. Ramires (Chelsea) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

8:55

Foul by Phil Jones (Manchester United).

8:55

Eden Hazard (Chelsea) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

8:22

Attempt blocked. Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Rafael.

7:23

Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

7:23

Foul by Ramires (Chelsea).

5:05

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Ramires.

3:57

Phil Jones (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

3:57

Foul by Ramires (Chelsea).

2:55

Offside, Manchester United. Adnan Januzaj tries a through ball, but Ashley Young is caught offside.

2:21

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Gary Cahill.

1:52

Attempt saved. Ashley Young (Manchester United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Danny Welbeck.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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