By Martyn Herman
Antonio Conte got the better of Jose Mourinho for the second time this season as Chelsea beat 10-man Manchester United 1-0 at Stamford Bridge to reach the FA Cup semi-finals on Monday.
N’Golo Kante’s 51st minute goal was enough for Conte’s double-chasing side to break United’s resistance after the visitors had Ander Herrera sent off after 35 minutes for a second yellow card — both for crude fouls on Eden Hazard.
United, who face a Europa League last 16 tie on Thursday against Russian club Rostov, were missing the suspended Zlatan Ibrahimovic and injured Wayne Rooney and offered little threat once Kante had beaten David de Gea with a precise low shot.
While Mourinho was spared the humiliation of the 4-0 thrashing his old club dished out in October’s Premier League meeting — his first return to Stamford Bridge since being sacked last season — he was again found wanting as Chelsea’s fans delighted in chanting the name of his successor Conte.
Mourinho’s frustration boiled over at times and the Portuguese and Italian Conte had to be separated after an angry exchange shortly after Herrera’s sending off left United facing a mammoth task.
Chelsea could have won by more, although holders United did have their moments and came close to an equaliser in the second half when Marcus Rashford was foiled by keeper Thibaut Courtois.
Chelsea joined fellow London sides Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal plus Manchester City in the semi-finals.