Date printed: Saturday 24th October 2020 7:46
Edinson Cavani practically scored along with his first contact for Manchester United as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s males fought out a goalless draw with Chelsea within the pouring rain.
Having misplaced this season’s earlier Premier League residence matches to Crystal Palace and Tottenham in chastening style, the Pink Devils have been trying to make it third time fortunate as their top-four rivals arrived at an empty Previous Trafford.
However neither facet absolutely mastered the difficult circumstances within the north-west, the place substitute Cavani went shut to creating a dream debut impression that may have compounded Chelsea’s exasperation on the lack of video assistant referee intervention.
Blues skipper Cesar Azpilicueta couldn’t consider Harry Maguire acquired away with wrestling him to the bottom within the field in the direction of the top of a primary half wherein Edouard Mendy impressively denied Marcus Rashford and Juan Mata after practically passing into his personal web.
Solskjaer turned to Paul Pogba and deadline-day acquisition Cavani early within the second half, with the latter going near discovering the online seconds after approaching when flicking a Bruno Fernandes cross into the side-netting.
United pushed arduous for a breakthrough however a primary residence victory of the season evaded them, with Mendy denying Rashford a dream finish to a exceptional week within the closing levels.
The 22-year-old’s last-gasp effort secured Tuesday’s very good 2-1 win at Paris St Germain within the Champions League and eyebrows have been raised at Solskjaer’s resolution to maneuver away from that choice and the 3-5-2 system that labored so effectively that evening.
As a substitute it was Chelsea lining up with a three-man backline on a moist night wherein neither facet was in a position to get a foothold on proceedings throughout a gap 20 minutes devoid of any notable objective menace.
Chelsea had United penned again however couldn’t ask any critical questions, with the one potential early flashpoint seemingly missed by on-field officers and the VAR as Fernandes appeared to swipe at Jorginho’s face.
The primary shot heading in the right direction of the night took 28 minutes to happen and David De Gea simply stopped Reece James’ try and catch him out at a free-kick, with Chelsea goalkeeper Mendy inexplicably coming closest for United.
The Blues’ new primary confidently turned and performed a move throughout his objective that was nearer to discovering his personal objective than its supposed goal, with the keeper respiration a sigh of reduction when seeing it roll huge for a nook.
The goalkeepers acquired busier as the primary half wore on, with De Gea making a snug save from Christian Pulisic and Mendy producing an excellent cease along with his ft to forestall Rashford netting on the break within the 35th minute.
Mendy once more produced a fantastic save when Mata took goal from the sting of the field, though his United team-mates have been extra targeted on what they felt was a penalty.
The VAR determined Rashford had not been fouled by N’Golo Kante after checking the incident and Chelsea additionally had penalty claims neglected earlier than half-time as Maguire acquired away with unceremoniously throwing Azpilicueta to the deck when heading away a free-kick.
The second interval began in a equally uneventful style to the primary, with Solskjaer turning to Pogba and Cavani simply 13 minutes after the restart.
The latter was shut to creating a right away impression for his new membership, sending a sensible first-time flick into the side-netting when peeling away to fulfill a Fernandes cross.
Kai Havertz and Pulisic couldn’t fairly get on a whipped cross from spectacular Chelsea right-back James, whose powerful 50-50 with Pogba led to a break in play that took away constructing momentum.
Lampard turned to Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount within the seek for a winner that regarded almost certainly to go the hosts’ method as they probed, with Mason Greenwood thrown into the combo.
United would have snatched victory on the finish had Mendy not produced a unbelievable save to forestall Rashford bending a shot residence from the sting of the field.