Premier League
ChelseaChelsea1Man UtdManchester United0

Chelsea 1-0 Manchester United

By Phil McNultyChief football writer
Eden Hazard
Chelsea are unbeaten in their last five league matches against Manchester United, conceding just two goals
  • Chelsea 10 points clear at top of league
  • United stay in third place
  • Blues unbeaten at home in league in a year
  • United had 70.3% possession

Chelsea moved to within two wins of reclaiming the Premier League title after Eden Hazard's goal gave them a narrow victory over Manchester United at Stamford Bridge.

Hazard's first-half finish gave Jose Mourinho's side three points and means that victory in forthcoming games at Arsenal and Leicester City will return the title to Stamford Bridge for the first time since 2010.

Chelsea were pushed all the way by a resurgent United, hunting a seventh successive Premier League victory.

Wayne Rooney and the recalled Radamel Falcao came closest for United but once again they fell victim to the resilience and defensive strength that is Chelsea's trademark under Mourinho, assisted by the brilliance of Hazard, and ended frustrated.

The reaction of Chelsea's players as referee Mike Dean sounded the final whistle, celebrating wildly in front of their supporters, suggested they believed this was the victory that has pushed them to the brink of glory, as they moved 10 points ahead of second-placed Arsenal.

Top four's run-in
ChelseaArsenalManchester UnitedManchester City
76 pts, +39 GD66 pts, +31 GD65 pts, +28 GD61 pts, +31 GD
Arsenal (a)Chelsea (h)Everton (a)West Ham (h)
Leicester (a)Hull (a)West Brom (h)Aston Villa (h)
Crystal Palace (h)Swansea (h)Crystal Palace (a)Tottenham (a)
Liverpool (h)Man Utd (a)Arsenal (h)QPR (h)
West Brom (a)Sunderland (h)Hull (h)Swansea (a)
Sunderland (h)West Brom (h)Southampton (h)

And now, even if they do not wrap it up in these next two games, surely nothing can stop Mourinho winning the title in his second season after coming back to Stamford Bridge.

As for United, this defeat may have ended their recent winning streak but they once again produced compelling evidence that they are now a very different proposition from the side that struggled, even though they were grinding out results, earlier this season.

Manager Louis van Gaal, as expected, had to reshuffle his side after ruling out Michael Carrick, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo and Daley Blind through injury.

Ander Herrera was utilised in the anchor role vacated by Carrick and Rooney was pushed into midfield - but United were still able to make the more impressive start and should have taken an early lead.

Van Gaal gives prickly post-match interview

Rooney looked a certain scorer when he raced on to Luke Shaw's cross but placed his finish inches wide, so close that goalkeeper David de Gea joined United's fans in celebrating a goal until they realised after several seconds that the effort was off target.

Herrera was prominent as United looked the better side but, as ever, Chelsea were rock solid and resilient and took the first chance that came their way seven minutes before the break.

Falcao, given a rare start, was easily bundled off the ball by John Terry and when Oscar played in Hazard with a clever backheel he applied a cool finish between De Gea's legs. Van Gaal protested furiously to fourth official Craig Pawson that Falcao had been fouled but to no avail.

Chelsea almost doubled their lead early in the second half when Didier Drogba's shot was deflected over De Gea but Hazard could only turn the loose ball against the upright from an angle as he tried to complete the job at the far post.

United's recent improvement was underlined as they continued to take the game to Chelsea, keeper Thibaut Courtois blocking Paddy McNair's 20-yard shot and Oscar deflecting Rooney's precise effort inches wide.

Van Gaal introduced Angel Di Maria and Adnan Januzaj for Juan Mata and Ashley Young as they continued to carry the fight to Chelsea, who seemed content to protect their lead and hit on the break.

Falcao had worked hard but it had been another fruitless game and his frustration continued with 12 minutes left when he escaped from Kurt Zouma to collect Shaw's pass only to strike the outside of the post from a tight angle.

There was one last alarm for Chelsea when Herrera was cautioned for tumbling under Gary Cahill's challenge in the penalty area - and the scenes at the conclusion of an enthralling contest reflected the importance of this win.

Manchester United
Manchester United have 65 points so far this season, one more than they collected in the whole of 2013-14
Eden Hazard
Eden Hazard has had a hand in 15 goals (eight goals, seven assists) in his last 17 Premier League appearances
Manchester United
Chelsea have failed to score in only one league match all season - away at Sunderland in November
David de Gea
Chelsea's last home defeat in the Premier League came almost exactly a year ago, against Sunderland on 19 April
Eden Hazard
Eden Hazard's goal was Chelsea's 101st of the season in 48 matches across all competitions

Line-ups

Chelsea

  • 13Courtois
  • 2IvanovicBooked at 57mins
  • 24Cahill
  • 26Terry
  • 28Azpilicueta
  • 5Zouma
  • 21Matic
  • 8OscarBooked at 63minsSubstituted forSantos do Nascimentoat 67'minutes
  • 4FàbregasSubstituted forMikelat 90+2'minutes
  • 10E HazardSubstituted forWillianat 90+4'minutes
  • 11DrogbaBooked at 54mins

Substitutes

  • 1Cech
  • 3Filipe Luís
  • 7Santos do Nascimento
  • 12Mikel
  • 22Willian
  • 23Ju Cuadrado
  • 35Solanke

Man Utd

  • 1de Gea
  • 25A Valencia
  • 12Smalling
  • 33McNair
  • 3ShawSubstituted forBlackettat 80'minutes
  • 21HerreraBooked at 90mins
  • 8MataSubstituted forJanuzajat 70'minutes
  • 10Rooney
  • 31Fellaini
  • 18YoungSubstituted forDi Maríaat 70'minutes
  • 9Falcao

Substitutes

  • 2da Silva
  • 7Di María
  • 11Januzaj
  • 20van Persie
  • 32Valdés
  • 42Blackett
  • 44Pereira
Referee:
Mike Dean
Attendance:
41,422

Match Stats

Home TeamChelseaAway TeamMan Utd
Possession
Home30%
Away70%
Shots
Home7
Away15
Shots on Target
Home2
Away2
Corners
Home3
Away7
Fouls
Home13
Away11

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Chelsea 1, Manchester United 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Chelsea 1, Manchester United 0.

  3. Booking

    Ander Herrera (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card.

  4. Post update

    Ander Herrera (Manchester United) has gone down, but that's a dive.

  5. Post update

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

  6. Post update

    Foul by César Azpilicueta (Chelsea).

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, Chelsea. Willian replaces Eden Hazard.

  8. Substitution

    Substitution, Chelsea. John Obi Mikel replaces Cesc Fàbregas.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Tyler Blackett (Manchester United).

  10. Post update

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

  11. Post update

    Foul by Chris Smalling (Manchester United).

  12. Post update

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

  13. Post update

    Tyler Blackett (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Ramires (Chelsea).

  15. Post update

    Foul by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

  16. Post update

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

  17. Post update

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

  18. Post update

    Foul by Tyler Blackett (Manchester United).

  19. Post update

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

  20. Post update

    Offside, Manchester United. Ángel Di María tries a through ball, but Falcao is caught offside.

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Chelsea32237265263976
2Arsenal32206663323166
3Man Utd33198659312865
4Man City32187765343161
5Liverpool32176947361157
6Southampton331751145242156
7Tottenham32166105046454
8Swansea33138123842-447
9Stoke33137133841-346
10West Ham321110114240243
11Crystal Palace33119134245-342
12Everton331011124143-241
13West Brom3399153246-1436
14Newcastle3298153351-1835
15Aston Villa3388172445-2132
16Sunderland32514132548-2329
17Hull32610162945-1628
18Leicester3277183451-1728
19QPR3375213859-2126
20Burnley33511172651-2526
View full Premier League table

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