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Corner from the right by-line taken by Nicolas Anelka, Branislav Ivanovic takes a shot. Antonio Valencia gets a block in.
Dimitar Berbatov takes a shot. Blocked by Ashley Cole.
Ashley Cole fouled by Luis Nani, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by John Terry.
Patrice Evra delivers the ball, blocked by Branislav Ivanovic.
Ashley Young decides to take the corner short. Patrice Evra crosses the ball, Petr Cech makes a comfortable save.
Ashley Young crosses the ball, Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Save made by Petr Cech.
Darren Fletcher gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Juan Mata. Darren Fletcher is booked. Free kick crossed by Juan Mata, clearance by Jonathan Evans.
Fernando Torres produces a left-footed shot from close range which goes wide of the left-hand upright.
Luis Nani sends in a cross.
The ball is sent over by Ashley Cole.
Antonio Valencia gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Fernando Torres. Antonio Valencia booked. Free kick crossed left-footed by Juan Mata.
Antonio Valencia gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Juan Mata. Ashley Cole restarts play with the free kick.
Mikel comes on in place of Raul Meireles. Javier Hernandez leaves the field to be replaced by Dimitar Berbatov.
Caution for Ashley Cole.
The ball is crossed by Patrice Evra, Wayne Rooney has an effort at goal from close in that hits the post. Javier Hernandez has an effort at goal from close range which goes wide right of the target.
Unfair challenge on Luis Nani by Juan Mata results in a free kick. Ashley Young restarts play with the free kick.
The ball is delivered by Wayne Rooney.
Long range shot from Branislav Ivanovic misses to the left of the target.
Phil Jones is ruled offside. Free kick taken by Petr Cech.
Corner taken by Ashley Young played to the near post, clearance made by Ramires.
Fernando Torres takes a shot. Save by David De Gea. Shot from inside the area by Fernando Torres clears the bar.
Juan Mata takes the outswinging corner, Header from close in by Branislav Ivanovic misses to the right of the target.
Fernando Torres takes a short corner.
Corner taken by Juan Mata from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance by Phil Jones.
Corner taken left-footed by Juan Mata to the near post, clearance made by Luis Nani.
Daniel Sturridge goes off and Romelu Lukaku comes on.
Raul Meireles produces a cross, clearance made by Michael Carrick.
The ball is swung over by Ashley Young, Header from close range by Phil Jones misses to the right of the target.
Short corner worked by Ashley Young.
Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Blocked by Branislav Ivanovic.
Unfair challenge on Patrice Evra by Branislav Ivanovic results in a free kick. Wayne Rooney produces a strike on goal direct from the free kick.
Chris Smalling concedes a free kick for a foul on Fernando Torres. Chris Smalling leaves the field to be replaced by Antonio Valencia. Michael Carrick joins the action as a substitute, replacing Oliveira Anderson. John Terry takes the direct free kick.
Nicolas Anelka delivers the ball.
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Juan Mata from the right by-line, clearance made by Chris Smalling.
Nicolas Anelka delivers the ball, save made by David De Gea.
The ball is delivered by Patrice Evra, clearance made by Branislav Ivanovic.
Penalty awarded for an unfair challenge on Luis Nani by Jose Bosingwa. John Terry receives a caution for dissent. Penalty taken by Wayne Rooney and missed.
Luis Nani takes a shot.
The ball is swung over by Ramires, Phil Jones manages to make a clearance.
Corner taken short by Juan Mata.
Juan Mata takes a shot. Save by David De Gea.
A cross is delivered by Jose Bosingwa.
A cross is delivered by Luis Nani, comfortable save by Petr Cech.
Nicolas Anelka crosses the ball, Jonathan Evans manages to make a clearance.
Patrice Evra sends in a cross, save by Petr Cech.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Wayne Rooney by Ramires. Ramires is shown a yellow card. Free kick taken by Darren Fletcher.
Wayne Rooney gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Raul Meireles. Branislav Ivanovic takes the direct free kick.
Frank Lampard challenges Wayne Rooney unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Oliveira Anderson.
A goal is scored by Fernando Torres from inside the six-yard box high into the middle of the goal. Man Utd 3-1 Chelsea.The assist for the goal came from Nicolas Anelka.
Nicolas Anelka joins the action as a substitute, replacing Frank Lampard.
Wayne Rooney gets on the score sheet with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Man Utd 3-0 Chelsea.Assist by Luis Nani.
Ramires gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Darren Fletcher. Direct free kick taken by Jonathan Evans.
Effort on goal by Ramires from just inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.
Ashley Cole takes a shot from long range which goes wide of the right-hand post.
The ball is sent over by Ashley Young, Petr Cech makes a comfortable save.
A goal is scored by Luis Nani from just outside the area to the top left corner of the goal. Man Utd 2-0 Chelsea.The assist for the goal came from Jonathan Evans.
Ashley Young delivers the ball, blocked by Jose Bosingwa.
Wayne Rooney produces a right-footed shot from just outside the box that goes wide right of the goal.
Daniel Sturridge takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Comfortable save by David De Gea.
Daniel Sturridge crosses the ball, Fernando Torres produces a left-footed shot from the edge of the area and misses to the left of the goal.
Chris Smalling challenges Ashley Cole unfairly and gives away a free kick. Juan Mata restarts play with the free kick.
Jose Bosingwa concedes a free kick for a foul on Ashley Young. David De Gea takes the free kick.
Foul by Patrice Evra on Daniel Sturridge, free kick awarded. Raul Meireles restarts play with the free kick.
Javier Hernandez is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Petr Cech restarts play with the free kick.
Juan Mata takes the inswinging corner, save by David De Gea.
The ball is crossed by Fernando Torres, Shot by Ramires. David De Gea makes a brilliant save.
Luis Nani delivers the ball, Raul Meireles makes a clearance.
Luis Nani crosses the ball, Petr Cech makes a comfortable save.
Fernando Torres concedes a free kick for a foul on Phil Jones. Free kick taken by David De Gea.
Frank Lampard produces a drilled right-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
Daniel Sturridge produces a left-footed shot from just outside the box that goes wide right of the target.
The ball is crossed by Jose Bosingwa, Chris Smalling makes a clearance.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Daniel Sturridge by Wayne Rooney. Direct free kick taken by Jose Bosingwa.
A cross is delivered by Luis Nani.
Ashley Cole gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Luis Nani. Direct free kick taken by Wayne Rooney.
Corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young from the left by-line, comfortable save by Petr Cech.
Unfair challenge on Daniel Sturridge by Patrice Evra results in a free kick. Jose Bosingwa takes the direct free kick.
Patrice Evra crosses the ball, Raul Meireles gets a block in.
Corner taken by Juan Mata from the left by-line, Branislav Ivanovic takes a shot. Comfortable save by David De Gea.
Frank Lampard takes the chance to get an effort at goal. Blocked by Jonathan Evans.
Luis Nani produces a cross, blocked by John Terry.
Effort from deep inside the area by Fernando Torres misses to the left of the goal.
The ball is delivered by Jose Bosingwa.
The ball is crossed by Juan Mata, save made by David De Gea.
Juan Mata decides to take the corner short.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Chris Smalling on Juan Mata. Direct free kick taken by Ashley Cole.
Ashley Young fouled by Jose Bosingwa, the ref awards a free kick. The ball is crossed by Ashley Young, Chris Smalling finds the back of the net with a headed goal from close range. Man Utd 1-0 Chelsea.The assist for the goal came from Ashley Young.
Shot from outside the penalty box by Daniel Sturridge goes wide right of the goal.
Unfair challenge on Chris Smalling by Ashley Cole results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Phil Jones.
Foul by Branislav Ivanovic on Javier Hernandez, free kick awarded. Oliveira Anderson takes the direct free kick.
Centre by Ashley Cole, Ramires has a drilled shot. Save by David De Gea.
Carrick: City are not the only threat
Michael Carrick has dismissed the notion that the Premier League is already a two-horse race.
With the two Manchester clubs both recording 100% starts from their opening four games, scoring 33 goals between them in the process, some pundits have already written off the chasing pack.
Ahead of Sunday's Old Trafford showdown with Chelsea, Carrick does not believe that is the smartest move.
Under new coach Andre Villas-Boas, the Blues are only two points behind, recording three straight wins since drawing their opening match at Stoke.
And Carrick feels it would be folly to dismiss the Stamford Bridge outfit.
"I don't think it is a two-horse race by any means," the 30-year-old said.
"We can't get carried away with it just being us and City.
"If you remember the start Chelsea had last season, everyone said they were going to win it. Obviously that didn't happen.
"We are playing well and we are top of the league. But we still respect the other teams for the threat they pose to us."
Chelsea are not lacking in motivation.
They had tended to have the better of their meetings with United, including scoring a controversial victory over their old rivals at Stamford Bridge in March after which Sir Alex Ferguson ended up with a five-match touchline ban for criticising the performance of referee Martin Atkinson.
With none of his injured stars ready to return other than Rio Ferdinand, who was rested for the midweek draw with Benfica, Ferguson will give careful consideration to his starting line-up.
With Chris Smalling seemingly certain to start at right-back, Jonny Evans and Phil Jones are scrapping it out for the right to partner Ferdinand.
Anderson will return in central midfield, where he will be paired with either Carrick, Darren Fletcher or this week's goalscoring hero Ryan Giggs, who tends not to play two games in a row but was instrumental in those previous Chelsea triumphs.
Park Ji-sung is another big-game player, although it is hard to see how Nani or Ashley Young could be excluded and Ferguson revealed yesterday that Javier Hernandez will be named in attack alongside Wayne Rooney.
Andre Villas-Boas has insisted Chelsea are as determined to blood youngsters as Manchester United but admitted his Blues Babes would have to wait to take on the latest batch of Fergie Fledglings.
Villas-Boas takes his side to Old Trafford tomorrow to face a United team that has made a record-breaking start to the Barclays Premier League.
Their achievement is all the more remarkable considering most of their starting XI are in their early 20s, with manager Sir Alex Ferguson once again putting his faith in the next generation.
Last year saw Chelsea attempt to do the same but their decision to jettison a raft of experienced players ultimately backfired when injuries struck.
The summer departure of several youngsters suggested that experiment might have been abandoned but most of the signings made by new boss Villas-Boas have been teenagers, even if they have been used sparingly.
"They will come eventually," said the Portuguese, who has given minutes to Romelu Lukaku and Oriol Romeu this season but not yet Josh McEachran.
"Josh will find a place in a competitive midfield eventually, and Josh understands that.
"Oriol played well for 10 minutes against Sunderland, Lukaku against Norwich.
"I don't think it's harder for them. It's just the way our squad is built at the moment."
Villas-Boas, who has repeatedly been forced to defend players at the opposite end of the age spectrum, added: "I have no problem, and I cannot have problems, with age. Because it's just competence that I'm looking for."
The one Chelsea youngster who really has made the breakthrough this season is Daniel Sturridge.
After missing the Blues' first three games through suspension, the 22-year-old has been hugely impressive in back-to-back starts and looks certain to keep his place tomorrow.
Villas-Boas said: "He's been doing tremendously well, scoring and assisting people.
"He's a player who is able to express himself freely in the game, and exploit the full potential that he has.
"If you asked him, he'd feel more comfortable as a striker, but I think he has potential playing in a wide position.
"That's what we're trying to find in him the freedom to play in the channels."
Juan Mata, who is only 23, has been just as impressive on the opposite flank.
Villas-Boas said of the #23million signing from Valencia: "When you find a player who comes from such a different league as Spain to this one - this one is more frenetic and faster - and see him express his talent, as well as he did in the Spanish league, it's something surprising."
United win thrilling clash
Manchester United claimed a record-equalling 18th successive home win to march two points clear at the Premier League summit with a 3-1 victory at Old Trafford.
First-half goals from Chris Smalling, Nani and Wayne Rooney - his ninth of the season - proved enough for the hosts.
However, Rooney also had a 'Moscow moment' missing a second-half penalty, slipping as he went to strike it, Fernando Torres scored only his second Chelsea goal, then unbelievably fired wide of a completely empty net after rounding David de Gea.
De Gea had already repelled a marginally less glaring chance for Ramires and in stoppage time, Dimitar Berbatov was denied by Cole, whose earlier poor challenge on Javier Hernandez had led the Mexican to hobble off in considerable pain.
It all ended with United matching an achievement from the 1904/05 season, when they were a Second Division club.
Correctly, Ferguson observed this was United's toughest test to date.
The same could also be said of Villas-Boas' Chelsea though. And they came up short.
Chelsea did carve out a succession of opportunities that at one stage turned the game into a personal contest between the Blues and De Gea.
The save that prevented Ramires prodding into an open goal was the best, drawing applause from Peter Schmeichel in the directors' box, and he knows a thing or two about the pressure of keeping net at Old Trafford.
In truth, Chelsea should have scored that one. Torres did his bit, rolling the ball across the box. A better placed Daniel Sturridge could not believe Ramires had nipped in ahead of him as the goal gaped.
That was the trouble though. Chelsea needed Torres to convert those chances, not create them. He eventually did. And then contributed to one of those bloopers videos that will haunt him for the remainder of his career.
As Chelsea pressed, United created nothing. Their opener already converted after slack marking that angered John Terry and must have alarmed Villas-Boas.
There was nothing special about Ashley Young's eighth minute free-kick, which was floated to the far post.
But Terry found himself the only one defending as United shirts piled in, Smalling the man to make a connection to turn home his first league goal.
Having escaped unscathed from Chelsea's pummelling, United went to the other end and doubled their lead thanks to a piece of brilliance from Nani.
Questions should be asked about the ease with which Juan Mata was brushed aside but once the midfielder was out of the way, Nani advanced with confidence and drove a 20-yard effort into the top corner.
By half-time, United had a third as Terry's attempted clearance bounced off Nani and into the path of Rooney, who tapped home his ninth of the season.
The credit went to Phil Jones, although the aura surrounding the summer arrival from Blackburn was punctured by the ease with which Torres got behind him to slot home Nicolas Anelka's through ball 30 seconds after the re-start.
It was only Torres' second goal since arriving from Liverpool and justified Villas-Boas' decision to introduce Anelka for Lampard at half-time.
Having already threatened on numerous occasions, Chelsea's confidence grew immediately.
United nerves would have been eased had they converted the penalty Jose Bosingwa gifted them when he tripped Nani after initially remaining static to allow the Portugal winger to seize on the loose ball after his own deflected shot had crashed against the bar.
Neither side will forget how Terry slipped as he went to slot home what would have been the decisive spot-kick in the shoot-out to decide the 2008 Champions League final.
Rooney emulated him, his standing foot giving way, the ball bouncing harmlessly wide after the striker had fired it into his own body.
United might easily have had another spot-kick when Cole flew into Hernandez after Rooney had pushed a glorious chance against the post.
The tackle was not great and resulted in Hernandez hobbling down the tunnel in obvious pain as he was replaced by Berbatov but, having fired into the side netting, Dowd felt the incident was worthy of a yellow card and no more.
Having scored once in front of the Stretford End, Torres suffered utter humiliation seven minutes from time as he raced on to Ramires' through ball, rounded De Gea and then somehow fired wide of a completely empty net.
Berbatov missed a golden opportunity himself in stoppage time, as Cole cleared off the line after Rooney had set the Bulgarian up with an admittedly misdirected pass.
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