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Martin Keown on Chelsea v Manchester United: You're a silly boy, Nemanja Vidic!
Published : 02 Mar 2011 00:26:30
Sportsmail columnist Martin Keown applies his expert eye to the key players in Chelsea's dramatic victory over Premier League leaders Manchester United at Stamford Bridge. You're silly , Vidic Nemanja Vidic is a silly boy. He has been Manchester United's bestplayer this season but the Serb lost his head. He had shoved DidierDrogba a few seconds before he unnecessarily pulled Ramires' shirt toget his second yellow card. The most stupid part of it all is that he will now miss the gamewith Liverpool at a time when Rio Ferdinand is also out. United willmiss him a lot. Seeing red: referee Martin Atkinson (centre) sends Nemanja Vidic (right) off Free as a bird Sir Alex Ferguson normally plays 4-5-1 against the big teams but he saw Chelsea played 4-4- 2 against Copenhagen and opted to also play an attacking formation. It worked well in the first half as United won all the key battles but Chelsea played with more freedom and took risks after the break, with Ramires and Michael Essien outrunning United. Essien a machine When Frank Lampard went forward, Michael Essien was left alone in central midfield at times and had to protect the back four, especially with Wayne Rooney dropping off. That was especially important as, since changing to 4-4-2, Chelsea have no holding midfielder. He was immense and his energy drove Chelsea on. Powerhouse: Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien (centre) was in fine form Lethal on the left Manchester United were sensational down the left, with Patrice Evra playing like a winger and linking brilliantly with Nani. The Portuguese winger kept cutting inside, Evra bombed on and they exploited Chelsea time, particularly before the break. Branislav Ivanovic rarely got tight enough to Nani and Ramires failed to track back to cover Evra. Perfect technique: David Luiz David is dynamite I have watched David Luiz a few times since his move and he has impressed me so much. You will not see a player with better technique. His passing is so silky and when he took his shot for the goal, you could see he knew he was going to score. He will have to be more careful with his challenges though, as he probably should have seen red. Harsh on Smalling ChrisSmalling may have given away a penalty in unlucky circumstances but hedefended very well in the absence of Rio Ferdinand. Itwould be easy not to notice his contribution because he goes about hiswork without much fuss but he was very effective and very efficient inhis defending. He couldn't get out the way of Yuri Zhirkov for the penalty. Fantastic Fletcher He may have been on the losing team, but Darren Fletcher was an unsung hero - the amount of ground he covered was incredible. As well as tucking in to help out in central midfield, the Scot had the job of stopping Ashley Cole have too much influence on the game and regularly closed him down brilliantly. It was a fine example of exactly what Ramires was unable to do to Patrice Evra in the first half. Chelsea 2 Manchester United 1: Fergie calls for justice! Referee is target for outrage after Lampard penalty winnerLIVE: Chelsea 2 Manchester United 1 and Everton 0 Reading 1 - the action as it happenedGRAHAM POLL: Referee Atkinson got the big calls wrong and that cost United Wayne's pain as Ashley has the last laugh in the clash of football's bad boys Explore more:People: Alex Ferguson, Darren Fletcher, Michael Essien, Nemanja Vidic, Martin Keown, Ashley Cole, Wayne Rooney, Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra, Frank Lampard, Yuri Zhirkov, Nani Places: Copenhagen, Liverpool