Another costly David de Gea error potentially cost Manchester United a place in the Premier League’s top four as they drew 1-1 with Chelsea at Old Trafford.
United had raced into an early lead when some good work from Romelu Lukaku and Luke Shaw allowed Juan Mata to strike home.
However, in what Ole Gunnar Solskjaer felt was a must-win game for United, disaster struck when De Gea spilt a speculative Antonio Rudiger shot, with Marcos Alonso on hand to slot home the equaliser.
The draw leaves United three points behind Chelsea with just two games remaining, potentially ending their hopes of reaching next season’s Champions League.
Here is how every player rated in the crunch clash.
David de Gea – 3 – Another massive, costly error. Rudiger’s shot from distance looked simple enough to deal with but De Gea spilt it right into the path of Alonso, who slotted home the equaliser. His late save from Higuain did little to gloss over another worrying afternoon. Once lauded the greatest goalkeeper on the planet, De Gea looks broken at the moment.
Ashley Young – 7 – Much improved from Young, who tested Chelsea’s defence with a number of dangerous deliveries and defended well against a very offensive Blues left-hand side.
Eric Bailly – 7 – Had made the joint-highest number of tackles (three) of any player until he was forced off with a nasty looking injury in the second half. A real shame as this was far closer to the kind of performance United would expect from Bailly.
Victor Lindelof – 6 – Secure with the ball as always and wasn’t relatively untested by Gonzalo Higuain. Continuing his growth as Solskjaer’s go-to centre-back.
Luke Shaw – 8 – An excellent first-half performance saw Shaw foraging forward and causing havoc on the left, resulting in an assist for the opening goal. Went quieter during the second half but stayed to his defensive task well.
Ander Herrera – 7 – Felt like a red card waiting to happen at times but, in fairness, added some much-needed grit and energy to the United midfield, which is always needed when you’re coming up against the likes of Kante.
Nemanja Matic – 7 – Notched up an impressive 88% pass completion rate and looked totally composed on the ball. Glided past Chelsea challenges far better than he has done in recent months.
Paul Pogba – 6 – How can one player be so brilliant and so terrible in a matter of seconds? Pogba’s touch and technique are unreal but all too often he hangs onto the ball too much or throws himself to the floor needlessly, as he did all afternoon against Chelsea. Was dispossessed four times – more than any other United player.
Juan Mata – 8 – Had a great first half, linking play and taking up some really dangerous positions. Rewarded with the opening goal but as the game went on, his age and lack of match fitness showed. Eventually subbed for McTominay after 81 minutes.
Romelu Lukaku – 8 – Really looked up for it in the first half, bullying Chelsea defenders all over the pitch and playing a lovely ball behind the Chelsea defence for the opening goal. As United faded, so Lukaku struggled to get into the game, by no fault of his own.
Marcus Rashford – 7 – Full of dangerous running and tested the Chelsea lines with his movement, both forwards and backwards. Was subbed off injured in the second half.
Alexis Sanchez (65 mins, for Rashford) – 5 – Replaced the injured Rashford but continued to look off the pace.
Marcos Rojo (71 mins, for Bailly) – 5 – Lucky not to be sent off for a reckless challenge on Willian but equally unlucky to see his header cleared off the line by Pedro.
Scott McTominay (81 mins, for Mata) – 6 – Replaced Mata late on and added some energy to a tiring United midfield.
Kepa Arrizabalaga – 6 – Could do nothing about the goal and dealt with everything else that came his away easily enough.
Cesar Azpilicueta – 4 – Couldn’t get to grips with United in the first half and was bullied by Lukaku while being outpaced by Rashford. Improved slightly in the second half.
Antonio Rudiger – 5 – Given a torrid time by Lukaku and Rashford for much of the first half but hit the shot that forced De Gea’s mistake for Alonso’s goal. Came off injured in the second half.
David Luiz – 5 – Also struggled early on as United opened the game in rampant fashion. Benefited greatly from Chelsea getting a foothold in the game as the first half wore on and looked far better from that point onward.
Marcos Alonso – 8 – Chelsea’s most solid defender during their rough start early on. Could possibly have done better to block Mata for the United goal but that would be harsh. Either way, he made up for it by anticipating the De Gea mistake for the equaliser.
Jorginho – 7 – Looked like he was getting swept away with the flow of the game in the first half but helped steady the ship with some important challenges and interceptions.
Mateo Kovacic – 5 – Neat and tidy and solid enough in defence, but another anonymous display from Kovacic with the ball. Quite how he got in ahead of Loftus-Cheek is a mystery.
N’Golo Kante – 6 – Had all of the same endeavour and energy when closing United down, even if his influence on the ball wasn’t quite as strong.
Willian – 6 – Was kept quiet by the impressive Shaw, with the England international’s adventurous runs forward pinning him back for large parts of the game.
Eden Hazard – 7 – Hazard was, as always, the man Chelsea looked to when trying to make something happen, completing four dribbles – the joint-highest of any player. Didn’t have his usual telling influence but never looked far away.
Gonzalo Higuain – 4 – Another non-existent display from a player who looks a shadow of his former self. The Higuain that terrorised La Liga and Serie A defences for so long feels like a long way away. Had just 25 touches of the ball, the fewest of any starting outfield player, and hit his one real chance straight at De Gea in stoppage time. Finished the match with more offsides (five) than shots (three).
Gonzalo Higuain was caught offside five times against Man Utd, as many as every other player on the pitch combined.
Even two more than Lukaku… 😱 pic.twitter.com/D7QYwvXypf
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) April 28, 2019
Ruben Loftus-Cheek (75 mins, for Kovacic) – 6 – Replaced the disappointing Kovacic and added more thrust to the Chelsea midfield.
Andreas Christensen (65 mins, for Rudiger) – 6 – Replaced the injured Rudiger and was solid enough.
Pedro (84 mins, for Willian) – 7 – Looked lively for the short time he was on the pitch and made a vital goal-line clearance from Rojo’s header.