Sunday 10 March 2013
The big guns of the Barclays Premier League were drawn to face each other in the FA Cup semi-finals after Manchester United and Chelsea fought to a 2-2 draw at Old Trafford.
The draw put together Manchester City, who beat Barnsley 5-0 on Saturday, against United or Chelsea in the semi-finals at Wembley on the weekend of April 13-14, while Wigan Athletic’s reward for beating Everton 3-0 on Saturday is a tie against Millwall or Blackburn Rovers, who drew 0-0 in the earlier match on Sunday.
Chelsea had to fight from two goals down to take their match with United to a replay at a date yet to be confirmed. After Javier Hernandez opened the scoring in the fifth minute with a looped header from Michael Carrick’s pass, Wayne Rooney marked his return to the United starting XI with a goal to put United 2-0 up after 11 minutes. The No 10’s free-kick from the left eluded everyone to creep inside the right-hand post.
The introduction of Hazard and John Obi Mikel in place of Victor Moses and Frank Lampard sparked Chelsea’s revival. Hazard halved the deficit with a curling strike from the left in the 59th minute. Despite the introduction of Robin van Persie, Chelsea levelled in the 68th minute on a counter-attack as Ramires cut inside before stroking the ball into the far corner. Chelsea were now the more threatening and, but for De Gea’s heroics, would have booked a date with Manchester City.
The draw means that one of Wigan, Millwall or Blackburn are likely to qualify for the UEFA Europa League as winner or losing finalist, meaning that only fifth place in the Barclays Premier League will be rewarded with a spot in that competition.
Saturday 10 March
Everton 0-3 Wigan Athletic
Manchester City 5-0 Barnsley
Sunday 10 March
Millwall 0-0 Blackburn Rovers
Manchester United 2-2 Chelsea
Millwall/Blackburn v Wigan
Manchester United/Chelsea v Manchester City
Ties to be played at Wembley on weekend of April 13-14