Cameroonian 32 year-old striker Samuel Eto’o today fired home a hat-trick to leave Manchester United dead in the water and deliver 3 points to Stamford Bridge.
Manchester United began the match on the front foot, creating a few chances but as soon as Chelsea came to grips with the match, they took control. Samuel Eto’o had a curling effort deflected and there was nothing that goalkeeper David De Gea could do to prevent Chelsea taking the lead in the 17th minute.
Right on the stroke of half time, Gary Cahill fizzed a ball low into the box and Eto’o was in the right place at the right time to power the ball home to put Chelsea 2 goals ahead just before the break. The flamboyant David Luiz was yellow carded in the first half which concerned many Chelsea fans as he is a strong character, however in the second half he was very much disciplined and did not look like being sent off.
Many expected Luiz to be taken off for the second half, possibly in place of the returning man Nemanja Matić but José Mourinho kept his faith in the Brazilian and he played out the 90 minutes. Chelsea began the second half quickly and who else but Samuel Eto’o prodded the ball into the net in the 48th minute to score his first ever hat-trick for Chelsea Football Club.
United did not give up though, and did pull a goal back through substitute Javier Hernandez on 78 minutes which put a spring in their step but Chelsea kept solid and held out for a 3-1 victory. Chelsea are now 2 points off Arsenal in top spot of the league table and defending champions Manchester United lie 6 points off the Champions League places and a staggering 14 points behind leaders Arsenal.
A personal record was completed too by Chelsea manager José Mourinho in his second spell in West London; he recorded his 100th Barclays Premier League victory in charge of Chelsea in just 142 matches, which is the fastest that any manager has reached 100 wins – even faster than the great Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger.