Championships aren’t won in the clashes between the big boys; they’re won through consistency against the smaller clubs. Manchester United wanted to win but weren’t good enough. Chelsea and Jose Mourinho came to get a 0-0 draw, and came out as the happier side, even if they’re no longer undefeated.
Wayne Rooney got his first start of the season, and was probably the best player on the pitch for Manchester United. But it wasn’t enough. The rest drowned in the see of midfielders put on by Jose Mourinho, who decided to play without a striker for most of the match, wasting away Andre Schurrle up front and Eden Hazard on the left wing to do some tactical work.
David Moyes? He didn’t take risks. He was the one who needed the win more than others, but didn’t do enough in the second half to try and make the right kind of change to get it. That’s what happens when you come from a club that’s happy with 0-0 at home against Chelsea. He forgot where he’s working, for a little while.
The players who didn’t play for Chelsea were the interesting figures, compared with the tactical boredom and work on the pitch. Juan Mata, Chelsea’s best player, not getting a single minute. Romelu Lukaku, the team’s best striker, not going in to play, and instead watching the ineffectual Fernando Torres do his thing, which is not score and not create a single opportunity.
This result won’t decide the title. But it probably sets the standard and the labeling of who is the better team. Who is the better manager, and who is more pleased with what he’s achieved so far. Jose Mourinho wont that battle.