Sir Alex 11-Rafa 0: Manchester United Kings of England
With the 0-0 draw against Arsenal at home, Sir Alex Ferguson has now achieved his 11th Premier League title, and 18 leagues titles in all, shutting out challengers Liverpool, who can only settle for second, with whom the Red Devils are now levelled in the trophy collection race.
For Ferguson, this achievement is his paying back the United fans and the club for their faith in him, when it seemed as if he would have been shown the door early on in his United career.
Rafa Benitez claimed that if Gerrard and Torres had been fit all season, Liverpool would have undoubtedly been the position to claim the title, or push United to the very end of the season.
Although it was only a point gained, Manchester United was happy to celebrate their victory at home, something they have done only once in the history of the league. And the point was hard to gain.
The Arsenal team they outclassed away at the Emirates to knock them out of the Champions League semifinals came to Old Trafford to play for pride, as well as delaying the celebrations.
From the outset, it looked as if United would have had the upper hand, when Ronaldo, in the first few seconds of the match passed on an opportunity to shoot for goal, a decision which probably influenced the course of his game.
United would control the match in the early stages, but Arsenal took control of the game and completed most of their passes, getting shots on goal.
Arshavin caused some problems for United's back line; and Cesc Fabregas' shot on goal certainly sent United nerves into panic, but they were calmed when the Spaniard's shot his the post.
Even nineteen year-old Kieran Gibbs, whose slip to the ground in the Champions League match gave way for United's first goal, seemed to have gotten over his bad display in that game as he played with confidence this afternoon, even attempting to put his name on the scoreboard.
With the substitution of Park for Tevez, whose leaving the field was greeted with cheers by supporters, United was able to put one away into the net, when Ronaldo passed the ball to him to finish it, but Park was ruled offside.
In the 80th minute, Ronaldo's free kick whiskered just wide of Fabianski's goal.
The defending champions had to continue defending into extra time when van Persie won a corner, but it was cleared. And with little time left, there was nothing either team could do to find the back of their opponents' nets.
At the 93rd minute, the whistle was blown and with just one point gained, Ferguson was made a happy man, while Benitez had to settle for second; and Arsene Wenger could return to London knowing that his team fought hard.
And the sign of summer we've seen for the past three seasons, Ferguson holding the cup.
United's final game against Hull next week, although meaningless, will not be one that Ferguson thinks irrelevant, for he will want to win it outright; yet he can rest his first squad for the Champions League in Rome.
Hull might take consolation in that fact, but the other team struggling with relegation will not, for they would have wished otherwise. However, it remains to be seen if a first team Hull can defeat a second team United which has shown themselves to be quite strong.
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