Sang Tan/Associated Press
I don't think he expected that...
United fans have long bemoaned the absence of quality and quantity in central midfield. However, today's result pivoted on key defensive errors. Phil Jones was turned all ends up by Samuel Eto'o for his first.
Rafael's casual jog back towards his position, whilst the second ball came back in for the second, left a hole big enough for most of Chelsea's back line to stroll through.
For the third, Jonny Evans was unable to stay with his man, leaving a free header for Cahill that led to the goal.
Compounding this, Nemanja Vidic's late challenge may not have warranted a red card, but as the cliché goes, he "gave the referee a decision." Reckless in his unprofessionalism, if not actually dangerous, United's captain has earned himself a three-match ban that United simply cannot afford.
Moments later, Rafael received a yellow card for a two-footed studs-up challenge that absolutely deserved red.
A very poor showing from United's rear guard.