Swansea took the lead with a goal from Ki Sung-Yueng in the 28th minute. The goal was in my opinion against the run of play but United had hardly run Swansea ragged before then. I don’t think Yueng could believe his luck at being left completely alone by Ander Herrera and Darren Fletcher dead centre on the eighteen yard line. He just gently knocked the ball into David de Gea’s far left post in front of a disbelieving Stretford End. Swansea’s winner, scored by Gylfi Sigurdsson on 72 minutes was also against the run of play but despite Swansea catching United on the sucker punch twice, I believe they were good for their win.
In a day when Arsene Wenger celebrated his one thousandth game with a record equalling defeat at Stamford Bridge; in a day where Andre Marriner made a refereeing mistake that will give him indefinite sleepless nights; in a day when Daniel Sturridge bravely shook off the national vilification for his disgraceful antics last week with a goal at Cardiff (waddya mean you’ve heard nowt about it?), Wayne Rooney equalled, then surpassed Jack Rowley’s scoring tally and stole the headlines with a goal from 58 yards at the Boleyn Ground. It’s hard to say which is Rooney’s best ever goal and it can obviously only ever be a matter of opinion anyway, but it’s comfortably the furthest goal he’s ever scored. The goal has been constantly compared to David Beckham’s goal against Wimbledon at Selhurst Park in August 1996. Personally, I think it’s more akin to Nayim’s fantastic goal for Real Zaragoza against Arsenal in the 1995 European Cup Winners Cup Final in Paris (shown below). Like Andre Marriner, West Ham United keeper Adrian will have a few sleepless nights coming up. Even with admiring the brilliance of Rooney’s initiative, a keeper should never be beaten from that distance (unless you’re David Seaman)
The worst thing about the result yesterday is that nobody was really surprised. The front cover of the latest United We Stand fanzine labeled United as the unpredictables. I’m struggling to think of a more accurate cover which that fanzine has had in its near 25 year existence. United had so many crosses during the game as to be comparable as to the amount at Golgotha Calvary. While the deeply religious David Moyes won’t be crucified on any of those crosses just yet by most match-going reds, it’s only a matter of time before the mood changes dramatically, especially after this result. At full time, Moyes understandably had the exasperated demeanour of a man who couldn’t figure out just what had gone wrong. Moyes said on Match of the day that “today was probably as bad as it gets”. I hope for his sake that he’s right as I’ve seen things a lot worse at Old Trafford, albeit many years ago. My memory tells me however, that things could be a lot worse Continue reading As Bad As It Gets – Manchester 10th February 2014
Anybody who remembers the last time Everton won at Old Trafford in August 1992, will remember a smash ‘n’ grab which gave Everton an unfairly emphatic 3-0 result. Tonight was the same, Everton had chances for sure and the longer the match went on, the more confident and assertive they became. For all that, by the time Everton got a grip on the game on 85 minutes with a Kevin Mirallas free kick which hit David De Gea’s right hand post, United should’ve been out of sight. A minute later, to the surprise of absolutely nobody, Continue reading Fasten Your Seatbelts – Manchester 4th of December 2013
Marouane Fellaini has now played ten times for United and he has impressed on precisely none of those appearances. Some players, like Roy Keane, Wayne Rooney and Robin Van Persie make an immediate impact, others, like Gary Pallister, Andy Cole and David De Gea need a so called bedding in period. I really hope that Fellaini is of the latter. The harsh truth is though Fellaini needs to start asserting whatever midfield authority he has on games like the one United played against Cardiff. At the moment, he looks like a rabbit in headlights. It’s one thing being outplayed by Yaya Toure soon after you’ve signed for a new club, another thing altogether to be anonymous in virtually every other match since. The most damning thing about United’s midfield options however is that I would still pick a dazzled and dazed Fellaini over Tom Cleverley and Anderson. Continue reading If He Was Holding An Ace – Manchester, 25th of November 2013