Chelsea fight back to level Cup tie

Is Manchester United’s bandwagon hitting the rails? Five days after they surrendered a lead to Real Madrid and exited the Champions league, United lost a two goal advantage over Chelsea in the FA Cup, and were fortunate to escape with a draw and earn a replay.

United seemed to have taken control of the game early in the first half with goals from Javier Hernandez and Wayne Rooney. With the visiting fans singing "We want our Chelsea back", things looked bleak for interim manager Rafael Benitez.

Benitez declined to shrink into his dugout and feel sorry for himself. Instead he sent on Eden Hazard to replace Victor Moses and transformed the game, despite the supporters’ chants of "you don’t know what you’re doing". Hazard’s goal was followed by an equaliser from Ramires, and Chelsea several times went close to grabbing a winner.

Sir Alex Ferguson admitted his team were lucky to still be in the FA Cup and put the second-half performance down to fatigue. "We ran out of legs," he said. "Our two full-backs Rafael and Patrice Evra were just knackered. The two centre midfield players tired badly and we just kept giving the ball away. The emotions and intensity of Tuesday night had taken their toll on one or two of the players, understandably and I have no problems with that part."

Ferguson’s foul mood from the Madrid defeat continues it seems. Benitez claims the Manchester United manager snubbed him when he offered a handshake before the match. "It's his decision," Benitez said. "I was ready and waiting, I have some education. I have education because I know that a lot of people are watching so I know what I have to do." Education in Spanish means manners. Benitez could hardly have been surprised that Ferguson lacked them.

United Kingdom - Excite Network Copyright ©1995 - 2020