Man United 2 Chelsea 1: We won’t muck it up, declares Sir Alex
Sir Alex Ferguson's men need just a point from their remaining two games to claim a record 19th league title
Goalscorer Nemanja VidiÃ„”¡ was thrilled with Manchester United’s “deserved” win over Chelsea to all but guarantee a 19th league title for Sir Alex Ferguson’s men.
Javier HernÃƒÂ¡ndez gave United the perfect start after just 36 seconds when he coolly slotted home Park Ji-sung’s slide-rule pass following a mistake from David Luiz.
And captain VidiÃ„”¡ doubled the home side’s lead mid-way through the first half as United ran riot, the Serbia international turning in Ryan Giggs’ cross from the left.
Frank Lampard’s poached goal after the break halved United’s lead but Ferguson’s men held firm to seal a win which leaves them needing only a point at Blackburn on Saturday to secure the title.
“We played some good football, especially in the first half and the first 20 minutes,” said VidiÃ„”¡ afterwards. “The goals reflected how we played.
“We knew we had to go for the win today. We defended properly and like a team and I think we deserved this win.”
United boss Ferguson is certain his side will now go on to claim their 19th title and overtake Liverpool’s tally, with the Red Devils now needing a just a draw from their remaining two fixtures to be crowned champions.
“The players won’t muck it up,” said Ferguson. “They’ll get the point. It’s fantastic to say we are the most successful team in the country regarding championships.
“It took time to get the foundations of the club right and after we got the first title we improved, improved and improved.
“We could have scored about six in the second half. You expect a tough game against Chelsea and we got that.”
The United manager added: “We got a great start. It was a good team performance. Credit to the players because they deserved it.”
Veteran midfielder Giggs, meanwhile, was pleased by the attacking prowess shown by his side.
He said: “We know we are capable of playing good football and we knew we had to keep attacking as one goal is not enough against a team like Chelsea.
“It was a great start and it would have been easy for us to take our foot off the pedal but we didn’t.”
The 37-year-old added: “It’s a massive step forward for us. Mathematically we have not won the title but we are nearly there.”
Chelsea boss Ancelotti admitted his side’s poor start effectively cost them the game. “In the first minute we lost the game,” said the Italian. “We started so bad, it was difficult after that to come back and win.
“The second half was better but in general United played better and deserved to win. We took a lot of time to clear our heads [after their first goal] because we didn’t want to start the game by conceding a goal.”
“Today they were better than us and in the season as well. Now they are comfortable to win the title and they deserve it.”