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Sunday, January 4, 1998 Published at 20:45 GMT


United give Chelsea cup blues
image: [ Andy Cole celebrates his second goal at Stamford Bridge ]
Andy Cole celebrates his second goal at Stamford Bridge

FA Cup holders Chelsea crashed out in the third round when they were beaten 5-3 by Manchester United at a rain-lashed Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea v Man Utd match report (45")
In Sunday's tie of the round, the champions raced to a 5-0 lead, with two goals each from David Beckham and Andy Cole, and one from Teddy Sheringham.

But Chelsea ensured a heated end to the game after Graeme Le Saux scored in the 78th minute and Gianluca Vialli added two more.

Despite the Blues' late comeback, Manchester United dominated the game.

Right from the start - when they had a strong wind behind them - they were first to every ball.

Andy Cole's pace and persistence continually worried the Chelsea defence. Ryan Giggs and David Beckham were in their element and Teddy Sheringham seemed to win every header.

Tensions were high and there could have been a couple of sendings off, with Chelsea's skipper for the day, Mark Hughes, adding his own brand of fire to the match against his old club.

But there was still plenty of skill on display.

[ image: David Beckham scored two]
David Beckham scored two
Cole's acceleration laid on Beckham's close range opener, and Beckham got the second from a free-kick - using space created when Sheringham pulled the last defender out of the Chelsea wall.

Cole made it 3-0 just before half-time, after he was sent racing down the exposed left flank by Giggs' ball.

Chelsea improved after the break, but it was Cole who added the fourth after a similar move midway through the second half.

Sheringham looked to have inflicted the heaviest defeat of Ruud Gullit's managerial career at Stamford Bridge when he headed home, before Le Saux and Vialli, who came on a substitute, brought a flattering gloss to the scoreline.

The last few minutes were very heated, but when Roberto Di Matteo narrowly missed adding a fourth for Chelsea, the game was up and Manchester United remained on course for their third double in five seasons.

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