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Premier League: Chelsea 0-0 Man Utd – More VAR controversy in stalemate


Referee Stuart Attwell did not give Manchester United a first-half penalty after consulting the pitchside monitor

Manchester United lost further ground on Premier League leaders Manchester City after they played out a drab goalless deadlock with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Ole Gunnar Solkjaer’s side remain second but are now 12 points adrift of City while the result left Chelsea outside the top four a point behind West Ham United.

Manchester United – who have lost only one of their last 20 league games – thought they were about to be offered the chance to make a breakthrough in the first half, but a penalty appeal for handball against Callum Hudson-Odoi was dismissed by referee Stuart Attwell after he was instructed to consult a pitchside monitor by the video assistant referee.

Chelsea, who remain unbeaten under new manager Thomas Tuchel, had chances but United keeper David de Gea made a fine second-half save from Hakim Ziyech while opposite number Edouard Mendy saved well from Scott McTominay and Fred was narrowly off target with a long-range effort. Mendy also punched away a late effort from Bruno Fernandes.

In the end, however, this was another game to add to the list of meetings between the so-called top six that ended in stalemate.

Chelsea tough to beat under Tuchel

Chelsea will feel a sense of disappointment at not getting the victory that would have moved them into the top four, but this draw means it is now nine matches without defeat for manager Tuchel since he succeeded sacked Frank Lampard in January.

Tuchel has made Chelsea resilient and tough to beat but they lacked a cutting edge here and moments of discomfort were rare for Manchester United’s defence and they can have no complaints because they did not deserve victory.

It has still been a promising start for Tuchel. He has toughened up Chelsea and with the attacking talent at his disposal they are in a good position to make a serious bid to move into the top four, while they still have high ambitions in the Champions League and FA Cup.

Tuchel is slowly but surely making his mark and Chelsea can feel in upbeat mood about the weeks ahead.

Thomas Tuchel
Thomas Tuchel is just the second coach not to concede a single goal in his four home matches in the Premier League

Manchester United fall short

Manchester United’s title aspirations flickered briefly when then went top after a draw at Liverpool in January – but all logic suggests they have been snuffed out now with the Premier League crown heading back to Manchester City.

United’s statistics are impressive, they are now unbeaten in 20 league matches away from Old Trafford, a sequence that includes 13 wins, but they have never truly showed the belief and ruthless edge of potential champions.

And here, while they certainly deserved their point, United again failed to provide the final flourish that could have turned one into three.

Solskjaer’s side are certainly on an upward curve but this uninspiring encounter was further proof that any title talk was little more than a pipe dream and a serious gulf in quality still exists between Manchester United and Manchester City.

The two meet in the Manchester derby at Etihad Stadium next Sunday – and with the gap between the teams now 12 points City may just view it as the opportunity to kill off any lingering questions about the destiny of the Premier League this season.

United’s top six woes – the stats

  • This fixture has finished goalless in both matches in a league campaign for just the second time, the other occasion coming in 1921-22.
  • Manchester United are now unbeaten in 20 away league matches (W13, D7), a run that started in this exact fixture last season. It is the joint-fifth-longest run without an away defeat in top-flight history, the only longer runs coming from Arsenal (27 and 23), Liverpool (21) and Nottingham Forest (21).
  • Chelsea have drawn 0-0 against an opponent home and away in the Premier League in a single season for the first time since 2008-09 against Everton, while Man Utd last did so against Aston Villa in 1996-97.
  • Manchester United have failed to score a single goal in their last six league meetings with Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City or Spurs – each of their last four such matches have finished goalless.
  • Chelsea manager Tuchel has become just the second coach not to concede a single goal in his four home matches in the Premier League after Brendan Rodgers in 2011-12 with Swansea City. Including his final two such matches in charge of PSG, Tuchel has gone six matches without conceding at home in league competition.

What’s next?

Chelsea travel to Liverpool in the Premier League on Thursday (20:15 GMT), while Manchester United are away to Crystal Palace on Wednesday (20:15 GMT).

Player of the match

MaguireHarry Maguire

Chelsea

  1. Squad number7Player nameKanté

  2. Squad number19Player nameMount

  3. Squad number2Player nameRüdiger

  4. Squad number17Player nameKovacic

  5. Squad number21Player nameChilwell

  6. Squad number18Player nameGiroud

  7. Squad number24Player nameJames

  8. Squad number28Player nameAzpilicueta

  9. Squad number4Player nameChristensen

  10. Squad number16Player nameMendy

  11. Squad number20Player nameHudson-Odoi

  12. Squad number10Player namePulisic

  13. Squad number22Player nameZiyech

  14. Squad number11Player nameWerner

Line-ups

Chelsea

Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 16Mendy
  • 28Azpilicueta
  • 4Christensen
  • 2Rüdiger
  • 20Hudson-OdoiSubstituted forJamesat 45′minutes
  • 7Kanté
  • 17Kovacic
  • 21ChilwellBooked at 62mins
  • 22ZiyechSubstituted forWernerat 78′minutes
  • 19Mount
  • 18GiroudSubstituted forPulisicat 65′minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Arrizabalaga
  • 3Alonso
  • 5Jorginho
  • 10Pulisic
  • 11Werner
  • 15Zouma
  • 24James
  • 29Havertz
  • 33Emerson

Man Utd

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1de Gea
  • 29Wan-Bissaka
  • 2Lindelöf
  • 5MaguireBooked at 79mins
  • 23Shaw
  • 39McTominay
  • 17FredBooked at 50mins
  • 21James
  • 18Bruno Fernandes
  • 10Rashford
  • 11GreenwoodSubstituted forMartialat 79′minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Bailly
  • 9Martial
  • 19Diallo
  • 26Henderson
  • 27Telles
  • 31Matic
  • 33Williams
  • 34van de Beek
  • 38Tuanzebe

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