* Fourth-placed Chelsea hold United 1-1 at Old Trafford
* Chelsea still three points clear of United who stay sixth
* United’s Mata opened scoring on his birthday against old club
* Keeper De Gea gifted Chelsea’s Marcos Alonso the equaliser
* United have won two of their last 10 games in all competitions
* Sarri’s Chelsea have also stuttered in battle for top four
* United visit Huddersfield Town next, Chelsea host Watford
MANCHESTER, England, April 28 (Reuters) - Chelsea bolstered their top-four hopes with a 1-1 draw at Manchester United after the home side’s Spanish goalkeeper David de Gea gifted the Londoners an equaliser in the Premier league on Sunday.
United led through Juan Mata’s 11th minute strike but just before halftime the visitors were level when De Gea weakly parried an Antonio Rudiger shot into the path of Marcos Alonso.
With two games remaining in the season, the result put fourth-placed Chelsea on 68 points, two clear of Arsenal who are fifth and still three ahead of sixth-placed United in the race to earn a Champions League berth for next season.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United have run out of steam, having won just two out of their last 10 games in all competitions.
The hosts dominated the first half, fully deserving to take the lead when marauding left back Luke Shaw latched onto a chip into the area from Romelu Lukaku and passed across the goal for Mata to score against his old club on his 31st birthday.
But De Gea, whose form has dipped in recent weeks with a string of uncharacteristic errors, failed to deal with Rudiger’s shot and Alonso pounced to bring Chelsea level in the 43rd. (Reporting by Andrew Cawthorne; editing by Ken Ferris)