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Manchester United vs. Chelsea, Premier League: Half-time report

Manchester United v Chelsea - Premier League Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

It hasn’t been all drab in the first 45 minutes, as one would expect when facing off against a Jose Mourinho team. Chelsea retained the 3-4-3 shape from the draw against Barcelona, but opted to play an out-and-out striker up front instead of a false nine, with the inclusion of Alvaro Morata and Pedro subsequently missing out. The other change to the XI was Danny Drinkwater making up one half of the 2015/16 title-winning midfield, alongside N’Golo Kante, instead of Cesc Fabregas with Tiemoue Bakayoko out injured. Mourinho deployed his standard 4-3-3 shape, with young Scott McTominay, former Blue Nemanja Matic and controversy’s current favourite son, Paul Pogba making up the midfield.

Chelsea have looked the brighter side so far, saw Morata hitting the crossbar from 5 yards out before Willian, who has carried over his form from the Barcelona game, smashed the ball into the back of the net following a swift counter-attack from a United set-piece. The lead didn’t even last ten minutes, unfortunately, with Romelu Lukaku finding himself un-marked in the box, on the receiving end of a pass from Anthony Martial. It was Lukaku’s first goal against a top 6 side, this season.

United did grow into the game after a slow start, but Chelsea do look more likely to walk away with three points as of now.


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