Chelsea holds United, Bergkamp breaks drought


LONDON, Reuters

Claudio Ranieri enjoyed a great start as Chelsea coach on Saturday when his new team battled back to earn a 3-3 draw at champions Manchester United in the English premier league.

Chelsea trailed 3-1 to the league leaders before two goals by Norwegian Tore Andre Flo secured a morale-boosting point for the London side who sacked Gianluca Vialli 11 days ago.

The result means United, with 15 points, have only a one-point lead at the top of the table. Second-placed Leicester City have the chance to go top when they host Everton on Sunday.

Arsenal stay third on 12 points after Dutch striker Dennis Bergkamp ended a 14-game drought with an 84th minute goal to earn a 1-1 draw at Ipswich.

West Ham United moved off the bottom with their first win of the season, a 3-0 victory at Coventry City.

Chelsea fightback

Italian Ranieri saw his captain for the day, Graeme Le Saux, inspire Chelsea at Old Trafford.

The England left-back had a hand in all three of the visitors’ goals and also produced an amazing goal line clearance from Andy Cole when the score was 3-2 to United.

A Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink rocket gave Chelsea a shock eighth-minute lead but Paul Scholes drove in a fine effort of his own to level six minutes later.

Goals by Teddy Sheringham (37) and David Beckham (39) put United in control before Flo made it 3-2 on the stroke of half-time with a header that United goalkeeper Raimond Van der Gouw should have kept out.

The beanpole striker then sidefooted the equalizer after 70 minutes to clinch a draw.

“It was a great game, a very intense game. I complimented the team because they played with great spirit,” said Ranieri.

“We were a bit off color,” admitted Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson. Bergkamp ends goal drought

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger fielded both Sylvain Wiltord and Bergkamp — upset at being left on the bench in recent games — in attack but Ipswich looked the better side at Portman Road.

They went ahead when Marcus Stewart used a combination of head and shoulder to divert a cross home four minutes into the second half. Richard Naylor missed two clear chances to bury Arsenal and Ipswich paid the penalty after 84 minutes when goalkeeper Richard Wright’s block fell to Bergkamp who gratefully sidefooted into the net.