Game on, you’d have thought, yet there never seemed to be any tension brewing in the fixture. After the vibrancy of Leicester on Saturday came the grim realisation of a Chelsea vs Manchester United fixture. This used to be a glamour fixture.
My opinion is that amongst the big games in the Premier League, battles between these two have almost always been underwhelming. Even at the peak of Sir Alex Ferguson and Jose Mourinho’s teams, matches between Manchester United and Chelsea have left a lot to be desired for the neutral. The Champions League final, though tense, was hardly inspiring, while several title deciders between these two have been affairs of grit and physicality rather than finesse and creativity. The two exceptions to this were during André Villas-Boas’ ill-fated reign at Stamford Bridge.
This match was hardly any different from the usual drudgery served up in this rivalry. Each team had phases of ascendancy, but the only players who stood out were the two goalkeepers. This of course is not to suggest that there were a non-stop barrage of shots.
In fact, the only memory of this game is most likely going to be a sad one. Kurt Zouma’s howls of pain after an unfortunate landing were very hard to hear and the replays were sickening to see. At the time of writing, there is no official diagnosis, but it is more than likely that the young Frenchman’s season is over, and along with it a chance to appear at Euro 2016 on home soil. Heart breaking indeed.