Ramsey the hero as Arsenal derail Man United
Manchester United will lose control of the Premier League title race if they are beaten by Chelsea in a week's time, after Arsenal struck a major blow for their London rivals with a 1-0 victory at Emirates Stadium.
Having enjoyed a nine-point lead at one stage last week, Sir Alex Ferguson's men now hold an increasingly fragile-looking three-point advantage over Chelsea, whom they welcome to Old Trafford on May 8. Arsenal move back within six points as a result of their victory, earned without injured skipper Cesc Fabregas, whose replacement Aaron Ramsey scored the all-important winner.
The first half saw the ball belong almost exclusively to Arsenal, and they were left to rue a poor piece of officiating by the referee's assistant, who failed to spot Nemanja Vidic's blatant handball inside the area. Having been beaten by the cross, Vidic diverted the ball away from Robin van Persie's head, and arguably should have been dismissed for stopping a clear goalscoring chance.
Prior to that moment, Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott both went close as Arsenal started impressively, although United fashioned the best opportunity of the half when Fabio da Silva waltzed into the Arsenal area, before opting to cut the ball back when he really had to shoot from no more than six yards.
United could only improve on their first-half display after the interval, and twice they threatened to find the opener in the second period, denied first by Wojciech Szczesny's save from Wayne Rooney's free-kick, and then by a matter of inches as Javier Hernandez narrowly failed to convert Nani's wicked cross.
Instead it was Arsenal who found a breakthrough just before the hour, with Ramsey benefitting from Van Persie's wizardry inside the area. The Dutchman twisted and turned to create room for the cutback, allowing Ramsey to caress the ball inside Edwin van der Sar's far upright.
Ferguson threw on Dimitar Berbatov and Antonio Valencia in an attempt to find a crucial equaliser, but Szczesny was equal to Nani's best efforts, while Gael Clichy's late foul on Michael Owen saw penalty appeals waved away by Chris Foy.
Re: Ramsey the hero as Arsenal derail Man United