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Early goals from Javier Hernandez (inside the first minute) and Nemanja Vidic set Sir Alex Ferguson's side on the way to a famous win. Despite Frank Lampard's second-half effort, the Reds thoroughly deserved the three points that leaves the club only one point away from further glory.
The Reds took just 37 seconds to lift the roof off Old Trafford with incisive passes by Ryan Giggs and Ji-sung Park seeing Hernandez through on goal as a stretching David Luiz failed to intercept the Korean's through-ball. Chicharito nervelessly slipped his finish wide of Petr Cech to hand United the perfect start.
In a whirlwind opening spell, Wayne Rooney let fly from another Park pass to bring the best out of the diving Cech and Hernandez was unable to reach a teasing Park centre that evaded the shaky Luiz.
Another fine move at blistering speed saw Rooney collect a return ball from Antonio Valencia, only to pull his finish just wide. Chelsea finally mustered a couple of chances of their own, with Edwin van der Sar worked by Florent Malouda after fisting away a Didider Drogba header before Salomon Kalou hit a tame effort straight at the Dutch keeper.
But Sir Alex's men doubled their lead in the 23rd minute when Park's wicked drive from an angle forced a corner from Cech's save. From the flag-kick, Giggs teased Kalou and centred invitingly for an outnumbered Vidic to plunder a downward header into the net. Cue incredible celebrations.