Tottenham’s status in the Premier League title race received a significant boost on Sunday, with Manchester United’s 2-0 victory over Chelsea keeping the North London side within reach of the leaders. Spurs are now four points back of the Blues with six matches remaining.
Tottenham Title Hopes Alive After Chelsea Loss at Manchester United
Aiming to keep possession and control the middle of the pitch, the Red Devils’ strategy was aided perfectly by an early goal. Midfielder Ander Herrera sprang forward Marcus Rashford towards goal with a sublime pass, as the English international gave his side the advantage in the seventh minute with a cool finish past Chelsea goalkeeper Asmir Begovic.
United manager Jose Mourinho frustrated his counterpart Antonio Conte with an intelligent approach throughout the first half, enjoying the majority of the ball and the better of the scoring opportunities. The home side doubled their lead in the second half, with a free-kick resulting in Herrera scoring a goal of his own to send the supporters at Old Trafford into hysterics.
Chelsea and their talented front-line were able to create chances late on. But Eden Hazard, Diego Costa and Pedro Rodriguez were ultimately not at their best against a disciplined and organised opposing defence. Manchester United are now fifth in the table, four points behind fourth-place Manchester City. The two clubs will meet on April 27 at the Etihad Stadium.
Championship dreams at White Hart Lane
Tottenham kept up their fine form this weekend to keep the pressure on their London rivals. A 4-0 demolition of AFC Bournemouth sees Spurs unbeaten in their last ten matches across all competitions.
They meet the Blues this coming Saturday at Wembley Stadium in an FA Cup semi-final, as another competition will depend heavily on the results between these two sides.
With difficult fixtures still on the cards against both Arsenal and Manchester United, manager Mauricio Pochettino will need to keep his squad motivated and focused over the next few weeks in gaining ground on Chelsea in the league table.
The Special One strikes
Early advantages certainly can help a manager in earning three points, with Jose Mourinho protecting a 1-0 lead almost an impossible mission for any opposing team. Rashford’s goal gave the Special One exactly what he needed to find an important victory for United.
The Portuguese tactician knows his former club well, and was able to stifle much of Chelsea’s creativity and attack throughout the encounter.
With a quarter-final second leg in the UEFA Europa League and the Manchester derby on the horizon this month, Sunday’s victory was critical for Manchester United moving ahead in the current campaign.