Man Utd player ratings vs Chelsea: One scores 9/10 as three earn 8/10 in 4-1 win - gallery
Casemiro, Anthony Martial, Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford were all on target as Manchester United convincingly beat Chelsea.
Manchester United secured a top-four finish in emphatic style as they beat Chelsea 4-1 at Old Trafford on Thursday.
In their penultimate Premier League match of the campaign, the Red Devils enjoyed a superb night as Casemiro, Anthony Martial, Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford found the back of net to ensure Erik ten Hag’s men will play in the Champions League next season.
Chelsea had started brightly with good chances for Carney Chukwuemeka and Mykhailo Mudryk. The latter should have done better from Lewis Hall’s cross, but from just a few yards out he failed to make serious contact with the ball.
That missed chance came back to haunt Chelsea, with Casemiro heading the ball past Kepa Arrizabalaga a few minutes later from a brilliant Christian Eriksen free-kick. United could have doubled their lead on 14 minutes, but Antony’s shot flew wide, not long before Cesar Azpilicueta’s excellent tackle in the box denied Anthony Martial a clear shot on goal after a United breakaway.
Kai Havertz should have equalised in the 32nd minute, but he missed his header from close range, while Connor Gallagher twice shot wide near the end of the half. Again, United made Chelsea pay for their profligacy when they netted in the sixth minute of injury-time.
Casemiro’s impudent no-look pass set Jadon Sancho free inside the box and he coolly knocked the ball across for Martial to tap in at the back post.
It could have been 3-0 straight after the break when United launched a counter-attack, but Fernandes’ shot struck the outside of the post, while Christian Eriksen couldn’t get his feet sorted quick enough to score soon after as the ball flashed across the box, and Casemiro curled wide seconds later.
David de Gea had enjoyed a quiet night up until then, but pulled off two good saves to deny Mudryk attempts and a powerful effort from Lewis Hall.
But when the next goal came it was another for United. A sublime bit of skill saw Fernandes knock the ball through the legs of Wesley Fofana and, as the ex-Leicester City man desperately tried to atone for his error, he accidentally tripped United’s no.8 in the box. A penalty was correctly awarded and Fernandes confidently stroked it past Arrizabalaga.
Chelsea had completely lost control of proceedings as United pounced on a defensive error in the 78th minute, and Sancho won the ball in the opposition box and centred it for Rashford, who, after his initial shot was saved, tapped in for his 30th goal of the season.
Alejandro Garnacho had two good opportunities to make it 5-0 late on but his shots were deflected onto the bar and then saved by Arrizabalaga. Joao Felix did net in the 89th minute when he beat De Gea from distance, which drew ironic chants from the away end of ‘we scored a goal’.
Scott McTominay and Marcus Rashford had good efforts in injury-time but couldn’t add another on a superb night for United. Here’s how we rated the players…