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The BBC's Mike Ingham
"Vialli is himself accepting the blame"
 real 28k

Gianluca Vialli
"We've got to be much quicker and more effective "
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Sir Alex Ferguson on Van Nistelrooy
"He's the best of his age"
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Monday, 24 April, 2000, 13:31 GMT 14:31 UK
Yorke double damages Blues

Solskjaer shoots for United's second goal
Man Utd 3-2 Chelsea

Manchester United's next record signing Ruud Van Nistelrooy watched predecessor Dwight Yorke destroy the visitors' realistic hopes of a return to the Champions League.

The 18m capture from PSV Eindhoven was amongst an Old Trafford crowd gathered to celebrate United's sixth title win in eight years.

As speculation develops about the rested Andy Cole's future, Yorke showed that he certainly intends to keep his place as one of United's top strikers.

Key moments
10 mins: De Goey offers Yorke an Easter gift
22: Petrescu slams home
36: Zola volleys in as Berg slips
39: Solksjaer equaliser from edge of box
69: Beckham helps Yorke get the winner
The man who cost United 12.6m two years ago accepted an early gift from Chelsea keeper Ed De Goey, and then slotted home the winner midway through the second half.

In between, Dan Petrescu and Gianfranco Zola briefly gave the visitors the lead after a first half comeback before Ole Gunnar Solskjaer restored equality at half-time.

Both sides arrived having lost Champions League quarter-finals last week but at least United can look forward to competing in the competition next season.

The game meant a lot more to the visitors, who needed three points, and at least one, to have a realistic chance of returning to Europe's top competition.

We scored good goals, but should have done better, and if we play like that then we don't deserve a place in the Champions League

Gianluca Vialli

Chelsea arrived without Gustavo Poyet, who was on international duty, while Marcel Desailly was rested - as was United's Jaap Stam.

The absence of the two sides' best defenders showed in a first half marked by errors at both ends.

The Chelsea keeper was horribly at fault for the opening goal.

The backpass from Emerson Thome was onto his weaker left foot.

Early gift: United celebrate Yorke's first goal

As the keeper tried to control the ball Yorke charged in to block the clearance straight into the net.

Then, a straightforward ball to the far post should have been easy for United to clear.

But Petrescu won possession as he jumped with Phil Neville, and the Romanian smashed home to restore parity.

United's security at the back was not helped as Gary Neville was replaced by Henning Berg after half an hour.

The substitute was to blame as Chelsea took the lead. Flo knocked the ball back to Petrescu, whose cross was met by Zola on the volley.

Berg slipped in front of the Italian, whose acrobatic effort bounced once before looping over Raimond van der Gouw and into the net.

Van Nistelrooy: Enjoyed what he saw
Solksjaer was immediately booked for a vicious challenge on Emerson Thome, an incident which followed Yorke escaping for a worse challenge on Frank Leboeuf.

But two minutes later Solksjaer was celebrating a goal which came after he received the ball just outside the box on United's left.

The Norwegian striker cut inside Petrescu and slammed home to beat De Goey inside the keeper's near post.

This afternoon was a bit of an anti-climax for me. The players have worked so hard throughout the season and they relaxed a bit too much today

Sir Alex Ferguson

The second period saw a subdued Roy Keane replaced by Paul Scholes, while Didier Deschamps made way for Jon Harley.

Chelsea dominated early second half possession and their best chance fell to Dennis Wise, who smashed his volley over the bar after Zola and Flo helped open up the United defence.

But United remained dangerous on the break, and having weathered what storm there was, Yorke scored the winner.

David Beckham was allowed far too much space on the right hand side of the box as United attacked.

Lambourde denies Solskjaer
His cross/shot was palmed out by De Goey to Yorke, who had only Lebouef to easily beat on the line.

Flo was denied an equaliser - and even a corner - after his effort was headed by Berg onto the United bar.

But United also had chances on the break as Chelsea's Champions League hopes all but died in the lunchtime sunshine.


Man Utd: Van Der Gouw, G. Neville, Johnsen, Silvestre, P. Neville, Beckham, Butt, Keane, Giggs, Yorke, Solskjaer. Subs: Cruyff, Berg, Sheringham, Fortune, Scholes.

Chelsea: De Goey, Lambourde, Leboeuf, Thome, Melchiot, Petrescu, Wise, Deschamps, Ambrosetti, Flo, Zola. Subs: Hogh, Sutton, Morris, Cudicini, Harley.

Referee: S Dunn (Bristol)

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See also:

23 Apr 00 | FA Carling Premiership
Sir Alex: 'Best Man Utd side ever'
22 Apr 00 | FA Carling Premiership
Man Utd win title in style
22 Apr 00 | FA Carling Premiership
Chelsea stumble in Euro bid
22 Apr 00 | FA Carling Premiership
Phillips double shatters Owls
22 Apr 00 | FA Carling Premiership
Old Trafford's domestic dominance
21 Apr 00 | FA Carling Premiership
Bradford in eight-goal thriller
24 Apr 00 | FA Carling Premiership
Cole not for sale - Ferguson
Links to other FA Carling Premiership stories are at the foot of the page.