Doubling up on the Devils
Inside Blue Fri 23 Feb 2018
Having beaten Manchester United 1-0 at Stamford Bridge in November, Chelsea will look to complete a Premier League ‘double’ against the Red Devils for the first time in eight years when we travel to Old Trafford this weekend.
The Blues have held a slight upper hand in our league matches against United over the past seven-and-a-half seasons with six wins, five draws and four defeats, but you have to go back to 2009/10 to find the last time we won both league meetings in the same campaign.
That may seem like a long time but United fans have to look back even further to 1987/88 to find their last league double against us in the old First Division.
Chelsea have doubled up on United on four occasions since then and as we look to improve on that record this weekend, here is a recap of those recent campaigns in which we picked up a pair of wins against the Red Devils.
Chelsea’s form in the 1990/91 season was somewhat patchy as we finished in 11th place despite beating all of the top-three teams – Arsenal, Liverpool and Crystal Palace at the Bridge and inflicting a double on sixth-place Manchester United. The first meeting at Old Trafford in late November saw Alex Ferguson’s side come from two goals down to draw level before Dennis Wise converted the winner from the penalty spot 14 minutes from time. The return game at the Bridge in March also finished 3-2 in favour of the Blues as Ken Monkou met Wise’s 85th minute corner with a looping header into the United net.
Having won their first league title in 25 years the previous season, United were in rampant form as they successfully defended their Premier League crown in 1993/94, suffering only four defeats in that campaign. However, two of those losses came against 14th-placed Chelsea with Gavin Peacock proving the scourge of the Red Devils in both games. The striker got the only goal at Stamford Bridge in September when he pounced on a loose ball after Peter Schmeichel had failed to hold Steve Clarke’s half-volley, and he repeated the feat at Old Trafford in March when he was played in by Mark Stein and coolly chipped the ball past an advancing Schmeichel.
After finishing runners-up to Arsenal the previous year, Chelsea set the tone for the 2004/05 campaign with victory against United in our season-opening game at the Bridge in August as Eidur Gudjohnsen netted the only goal of the game after 14 minutes. We had already been crowned champions by the time we met them again in the league the following May but despite falling behind to an early Ruud Van Nistelrooy goal at Old Trafford, the Blues showed their mettle by recovering to take all three points. Tiago equalised with a spectacular long-range effort after 17 minutes before Gudjohnsen and Joe Cole struck in the second half to seal a 3-1 win.
In the tight battle for top spot in the Premier League in 2009/10, our two wins against United proved crucial as we pipped them to the title by a single point. John Terry’s late header secured a 1-0 win at the Bridge in November but the Blues trailed the Red Devils by a single point when we visited Old Trafford in early April. Joe Cole put Chelsea ahead with a clever back-heel after 14 minutes before Didier Drogba came off the bench to fire in our second in the 78th minute to put us in charge. Federico Macheda did pull one back for the hosts with an effort which appeared to go in off his arm but the Blues hung on to win the match and the title.