Much has been made of Manchester United’s ability to cause an upset against Chelsea this afternoon and put themselves right back in the title race – here’s why that’s not going to happen.
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We’ve seen some false dawns from United a couple of times this season, and they went on a very similar winning streak just before another bad patch around the Christmas period. Like it or not, they’re still a team in transition who aren’t good enough to win the title, and they will get found out today against a team that has players at their peak all over the pitch.
Yes, Louis van Gaal’s side have looked better in their last few games than at any other point in the season, but it’s worth remembering that they still played against a very poor Tottenham Hotspur side, a Liverpool team rocked after going down to ten men in crazy style as Steven Gerrard was sent off, and a Manchester City team in crisis – who still managed two goals against the Red Devils’ uncertain defence.
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Today United will be without key players like Michael Carrick, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo and Daley Blind in what will surely prove too much for them to handle as they take on a Chelsea side that knows how to win ugly. The Blues themselves have not been at their best lately, but have scraped through some tough games and now have the title in their sights.
Jose Mourinho knows how to win these games, and he knows how to win titles. Three more points today will end United’s challenge and more than likely put Arsenal out of contention as well. Chelsea have been the best team all season long and that is why they have such a comfortable lead at the top of the table – it’s very hard to see that changing today.
United can be pleased with their recent revival but are where they deserve to be in third – and where they will ultimately finish.