Belfast Telegraph

United down nine-man Blues

Roberto Di Matteo and Sir Alex Ferguson had to be separated as Manchester United secured a controversial 3-2 victory over Chelsea to end their 10-year wait for a Barclays Premier League win at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues finished with nine men and were beaten by an offside winner as United made up for all the bad luck they perceived they had suffered in previous contests. Ref Mark Clattenburg wrongly sent off Fernando Torres after Chelsea had fought back from a David Luiz own goal and Robin van Persie's ninth of the season to equalise through Juan Mata and Ramires.

Branislav Ivanovic did rightly see red five minutes before Torres, whose second yellow card for diving prompted furious exchanges between the rival managers, and that was before Javier Hernandez's winner.

It took less than four minutes for United to grab the lead, the Blues losing possession and Van Persie crashing a shot against the post, the ball rebounding in off the luckless Luiz. Ivanovic was fortunate to escape a booking for clattering into Ashley Young before United struck again, Rio Ferdinand this time the architect.

The defender was predictably booed as he ambled out of defence and found Rafael, who fed Antonio Valencia, with the winger's low cross instantly swept home by Van Persie.

Torres was struggling but his failure to react to a corner missed by everyone else was forgivable and his header was only kept out by a brilliant David De Gea save. However the goalkeeper could do nothing when Wayne Rooney needlessly upended Eden Hazard and Mata stepped up to curl a sumptuous free-kick into the corner.

Mata would have equalised moments later had De Gea not made amends for a horrendous clearance before Torres earned his first booking for a foul on Tom Cleverley. But Chelsea needed only seven minutes of the second half to deservedly level as Mata took the game by the scruff of the neck.

After scuffing a right-foot shot, he showed sublime control to keep Oscar's ball in play, allowing the Brazilian to cross again for Ramires to head home. United were then given a golden opportunity to snatch all three points as disaster struck for Chelsea when Ivanovic and Torres were both sent off in the space of five minutes.

Ivanovic could have no complaints, the right-back seeing red for bringing down Young, who had been played clean through by Van Persie. Torres joined Ivanovic in the dressing room when he was controversially shown a second yellow for diving when replays showed he had been caught by Evans.

Chelsea faced an impossible task with nine men and Hernandez snatched what proved the winner 15 minutes from time. Petr Cech brilliantly tipped Van Persie's shot onto the post but Rafael followed up and Hernandez turned the ball home.

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