Nov 24

Will the real Manchester United please show up?

Tag: Match Reports @ 5:57 pm

Manchester United produced yet another comeback as they defeated QPR 3-1 at Old Trafford, courtesy of goals from Jonny Evans, Darren Fletcher and Javier Hernandez, momentarily regaining top spot on the Premier League table.

If yesterday had been an historic occasion with the unveiling of Sir Alex Ferguson’s statue outside the stand named after him, for the first hour United did their utmost best to dash any remaining trace of the party mood that had surrounded Old Trafford in the last 24 hours, as they conjured one of their worst first half-displays of the season.

While in the end the result rewarded United, their tendency to forget tempo and pressure in the dressing room is a problem that a world class team can’t afford, let alone a team like United whose shortcomings appear with alarming regularity. Fans must be wondering which one is the real United – the shockingly bad one of the first 58 minutes or the blood and thunder one that scored three times in 10 minutes?

With West Ham visiting Old Trafford on Wednesday, Ferguson opted to reshuffle his squad. In came Anders Lindegaard and the returning Jonny Evans and Darren Fletcher, out went David De Gea, Michael Carrick (missing his first league game in 12 months) and Antonio Valencia.

United’s lack of tempo was evident from the early exchanges, with Danny Welbeck familiarly uncomfortable on the wing – the reason why Sir Alex persists to play Welbeck out wide is developing into one of football’s great mysteries – and Scholes, Fletcher and Rooney failing to assert their control on the game, as United repeatedly came unstuck against QPR’s well organised midfield.

The visitors, whose fans repeatedly chanted “We’ve lost the league for you” and “2-1 and we f*****d it up” to remind everybody inside Old Trafford of their wonderful professionalism in the last game of the season against City, were first threatened with 20 minutes gone, as Patrice Evra crossed for Robin Van Persie, but the Dutchman could only hit the side-netting.

United were dragging themselves through the first half with no real purpose but still managed to create three chances in ten minutes. First Ashley Young saw his shot fizzle just wide of Julio Cesar’s post after some neat work from Rooney and Scholes, then the Brazilian keeper repelled two efforts from Rooney within a minute – a close range shot on the end of Danny Welbeck’s cross and a pile-driver from 20 yards out.

QPR had the ball in the back of the net sixty seconds later, but Mackie had his celebration cut short as he was judged to have been offside when he headed Cisse’s cross past Lindegaard.

The QPR striker had his goal seven minutes after the restart though, as United were lethargic to react to a corner, allowing Taarabt to pick out Dyer, whose cross was deflected off Lindegaard onto Mackie’s shin and was then poked into the net by Mackie himself, as new manager Harry Redknapp looked on approvingly from the stands.

United were stunned and the crowd that had so often serenaded heroes of yesteryear throughout the afternoon must have wished some of the legends in the stands were available to come to their side rescue who looked totally bereft of ideas and purpose.

To his credit, Ferguson didn’t waste time and replaced Paul Scholes and the extremely disappointing Ashley Young – hard to quantify what a winger that doesn’t cross and doesn’t beat his man can bring to a football club the stature of United – with Anderson and Javier Hernandez.

Five minutes later, United were level. Rooney’s corner was met by Welbeck, who headed the ball back across goal where Jonny Evans showed admirable anticipation for a centre-back as he nodded the ball past Julio Cesar for the equaliser.

QPR’s appalling defending on set pieces was to be exposed again less than five minutes later. With 68 minutes gone, another corner from Wayne Rooney found Darren Fletcher unmarked in the middle of the box and the Scot, making his first league start since November 19, 2011, powerfully headed past Julio Cesar to put the home side ahead before celebrating in front of the Stretford End.

Fletcher might not be the player he was three seasons ago, but after what he’s been through it’s almost a miracle to see him playing at this level again, and there will hardly be a more emotional goal celebration at Old Trafford this year, as the persistency he showed over the last 12 months was finally rewarded.

Another midfielder was at the heart of United’s third goal less than three minutes later, as Anderson produced the sort of powerful surge that United fans had long been hoping for. The Brazilian shrugged off two players before playing the ball through to Javier Hernandez who made no mistake and slotted the ball past Julio Cesar.

For too long Anderson has been tipped as either a lost cause or a potentially pivotal player for United but today’s performance definitely confirmed the latter hypothesis.

Powell replaced Welbeck and there was still time for Rafael to clear Hill’s header over the line, denying QPR a way back into the game as United picked up three points and moved back to the top of the table and will now be interested spectators tomorrow afternoon as Chelsea welcome Manchester City.

Meanwhile, the wait to see the real United side for 90 minutes goes on.

 

Dan (@MUFC_dan87)


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  • The most of that game was DIRE and I mean DIRE from our lot. Something that is dished out all too often – indeed what’s on offer home and away these days is such poor fare for the customer, for a club of United supposed stature, the fans should demand their money back. The thing I detest about our football is the continual stream after stream of BACKPASSING, of which we have two titles – one ‘the Kings of the streaming of the football backpass’ and two the title ‘The team who have lost the map to find the way forward anymore’. We don’t play until the opposition scores these days. We NEVER have any URGENCY in the first half of games all too often, and I believe this has come from Fergie drumming into the heads of our players his continental football keyword – PATIENCE! The other name for Fergie patience by the way is ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ football. I looked at the faces of all our ex great Utd footballers, who were visiting, and they looked depressed, wet, and cold, and looked like they would rather be anywhere, than sitting freezing their arses in the stands, and thinking how far the United brand of fast flowing, cavaliar attacking football of yesteryear was missing. How different though following our subs coming on. Immediately we saw the pace and thrust of our football increased. Anderson has pace and movement and he’s a Brasillion, and brasillions only learn one type of football FORWARD and ball in the net as quickly as possible. You can get shot in Brasil for backpass football. Take note of Rafael and Anderson, they seldom pass back, and often charge forward, they learnt that football from being kids. Fergie used to always say the best kind of defence is to attack – oh how things have changed. Young still can’t beat his man and get decent balls into the box, Welbeck well nuff said, he needs to MAN up and not allow himself to be bullied off the ball. Chicharito – still the man when he has the proper supply of the ball in the area to get the goals. 8 goals now in 8 games and most of them he came on as sub. He gets goals in the big games for us too. Fletcher can also be called upon to get a goal header in the area, and Jonny Evans is chipping in. No matter what you say I don’t feel Rooney and RVP play well together, but I am willing to be persuaded on that one. Oh dear I have rambled on, sorry about that lads. So how was your day then – :wink: :wink: :lol: :lol: :lol:

    • @Craig Mc: I fully agree with that. I see where your coming from with Rooney/RVP don’t play well together; keep in mind Kagawa is injured, so until Fergie plays a CAM such as Kagawa behind Rooney/RVP: we won’t be seeing the chemistry on a regular basis anytime soon. (well, that’s just my opinion anyway).. I think the reason for Rooney withdrawn role now is due to not having a player to work inbetween the line to link up midfield/attackers throughout the whole match. Tbh Rooney’s withdrawn role 1st appeared like 2/3years ago, only now we’re seeing it in black&white due to RVP playing as a proper striker upfront. + At the moment I can’t see Fergie playing RVP/Rooney directly in front of Kagawa.. as he likes using wingers but you never know. But we should let our wing backs provide the width, they should also press high up for support & to prevent counter attacks.

      • @@MartianSun: You have a point regarding our wing backs pushing forward. Rafael to be honest, is far better and more of a danger than Young ever is to opposition fullbacks. I get a thrill watching Rafael charge forward, find space, and receive the ball with trickery and deftness, and his only thought is to get that ball into our box, or into the net if he has a chance to shoot. Rafael’s movement and wing play is what Young can only dream of. Unless Young has something hidden in his locker he hasn’t brought to the table yet. Yeah Rafael is naive sometimes, but at least he does something, or tries to every time he gets forward, that lad wants to win every game so bad, his head never goes down. If Rafael gets the defensive part of his game more solid, he will be a United all time great eventually. Evra gets forward but he is not near as deft of foot, finding space, and getting in the kind of effective crosses Rafael can do at times. Rafael is an exciting player to watch when he is on a roll :-D

      • I agree that RVP and Rooney don’t play that well up front. But they are a good combination.

        RVP and Kagawa are an even better combination.

        I think the only way we can have Rooney, Kagawa and Van Persie on the pitch at the same time is if we play Rooney in midfield.

        I would love to see Nick Powell and Anderson play in midfield for our final Champion’s league game. (With Welbeck and Clevery playing the two attacking roles)

        Fergie has to bench Young now and give Nani a fair run on the left.

  • On a cold wet Saturday afternoon in November, Paul Scholes sat huddled on the bench, wrapped in his bubble coat and looking cold and wet. He also seemed to be pondering how much longer he can do this kind of thing – and if his performance that day was any indication, he must be thinking sooner rather than later.
    Gone are the days when his mere presence put the opposing midfield into a tizzy, and likewise his attacking instinct. Constantly bustled off the ball he seemed a step behind and, of course, a tad too late when he tried the same on them. He was hesitant around the PA, so much so, that shooting seemed to be an option he never once considered.

    When he returned from his semi-retirement, you could almost envision this very moment – the moment when he and we finally realize that the time has indeed come.
    I feel a mixture of sadness and gratitude to one of this games very best, and I’ll try to forget this moment and keep my mind firmly fixed on the wonderful career of one Mr. Paul Scholes.

  • Scholes is not finished but he is not a starter either. He just tends to exarcebate our tendency to be sluggish in the first half while other teams seem to universally start strong and have a go at us before tiring in the second half. It is when opposition teams are TIRED that we should bring on Scholes who if given space and time is still absolutely devastating.

    Anderson can be frustrating but when he is at the top of his game he certainly offers a lot more than players like Cleverley and Giggs. The truth is that when he is given a run of games he usually does OK. The problem in previous seasons is his tendency to burn out quickly and get injured which I suspect is because his natural fitness is poor and he doesn’t recuperate properly.

  • How the hell did West Brom get up to 3rd place??? Did i miss that much???

  • I think we should start building a regular first team around this setup:

    One lead striker: Robin Van Persie

    One central attacking midfielder: Kagawa or Rooney

    A consistent left winger: Nani

    Two deep lying midfielders. One two play a more defensive role one to join the attack: Carrick and Anderson(or Rooney)

    A consistent right winger: Valencia

    Backline: Evra, Vidic, Evans, Rafael (Ferdinand is too slow)

    Chicha should be played as the super sub he is.

    Welbeck needs to get the last Champion’s league game along with the FA Cup games until the semi’s maybe. But he needs to altinate with Van Persie as the lead striker.

    Powell and Clevery should be played in the second string games (Capital One although thats over. Early stages FA Cup. And the last group game against Cluj.)

    Fletcher can be rotated with Carrick to give Carrick a break.

    Scholes can give Anderson a break in the 65th minute of games. But Anderson needs to be first choice alongside Carrick.

    Giggs should retire. I don’t know when we can afford to play him. (Although knowing Ferguson he will find away of playing him and getting a vital contribution out of him)

    When Fergie needs to rotate the squad he should make one or two changes and not wholesale changes so the we can build and maintain a bit of chemistry and understanding amongst the players.

  • With all the chopping and changing one suspects Ferguson doesn’t know who his best team is or what to do with all these players.

    “Oh no he didn’t just say that did he?”

    • @The_Philosopher: although I must admit Ferguson is excellent at sticking with a seemingly lost cause and getting great football out of them eventually.

      Anderson and Evans come to mind…

      Ferguson is brilliant at extracting performances out of people. And knows when to give his players a chance and when to keep them on the fringes while they finish their homework.

  • Lets not get ahead of ourselves. Anderson has not started much this season and it remains to be seen if Ferguson is going to take a leap of faith and give him a run of games. I still think Ferguson prefers Cleverley for reasons best known to himself.

    Evans has developed into a fairly solid defender but I’m not sure he deserves to be a starter. Great to have as back up but I would hope that when Rio retires we will sign a world class defender, especially as Vidic cannot seem to stay fit.

    • @colver: Get ahead of ourselves?

      Lets also not forget that Anderson and Carrick have played together consistently before. And they did very well.

      The last time we won the league I believe Anderson and Carrick were one of our best combinations in midfield.

  • People find it hard to just give players credit for having the ability. Anderson when played correctly,always delivers,not because Ferguson knows how to “extract” performances from mediocre players. I called it before the game. We needed Anderson and Carrick in midfield. So far this season Anderson has been our best midfielder and last season,all our best performances had Anderson playing. The season before that,the combination of him and Carrick was shortlived,but produced our best games. Right now we’re halfway through the season already and Anderson has only started one league game,but has performed better than all the midfielders. But the ever inconsiderate critics just wait for end of season to say,he has been given enough chances. What chances? Giggs and Scholes have had more than enough chances. Cleverly,Anderson,Pogba,Petrucci,Powell will never play ahead of them no matter how well they play. Its so obvious,Scholes should be back up and Giggs should leave last year,because the youngsters are playing better. In any case,Anderson is not a youngster,if he is only good to back up 40 year olds,he should leave.

    • @Jay wire: Very well said.

      I don’t think Anderson should leave though.

      He should just be given his deserved first choice place in the squad.

    • @Jay wire: I think as Ferguson gets older he is starting to rely on Scholes and Giggs as if they are the only ones who know how to play football.

      I think Ferguson is affraid of trusting the youngsters to win the big games.

      He is getting old and sentimental.

    • @Jay wire: Ferguson chose rather to bring Scholes back from retirement than buy a new quality midfielder.

      He simply doesn’t trust anyone else.

      What is that but sentimentality?

  • […] asked the question—Will the real Manchester United please show up?—for Red Rants, as United put in an awful first half and a dynamic ten minutes during the second […]

  • First and foremost, i’m thoroughly disgusted at people calling for Sir Alex’s head, questioning whether it time for him to retire. Some even suggesting that naming stands and unveiling statues in his honor are ill timed and inappropriate right now! Talk about being ungrateful, we have become so spoilt and we show fickle tendencies when things don’t go our way. This man that some of us have labelled “past his best”, Senile, Deluded has more trophies than any one in football, has competed with and beaten almost everyone in football, from FIFA presidents to UEFA presidents, from Managerial Legends to up and coming legends. He has conquered every form of a hurdle /obstacle put in front of him/us. He toppled Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and is working on Man City.

    Now question his tactics, question some of his decisions but do not question his drive and determination to make us the best team in the world. Its disrespectful to label him Senile or past his best or deluded. We lost the league on goal difference to a Man City who have invested 500,000,000 pounds in the squad in 4-5yrs, i mean put things into perspective!

    After all he has achieved and how far we have grown since he’s been at the helm. He has even earned the right to relegate us!

    Look at Arsenal- a fantastic club but they haven’t won anything for 8 years, look at how much we have won in the last 8 years! Now had football not gone mad in the last decade, Arsenal would have won something and we would have won a lot more (IF THATS POSSIBLE). Chelsea came in with stupid money, then City, then Malaga, then PSG, Real Madrid spend 80 million on a player ( at the same time Newcastle were trying to be flogged at the same price (80 million), football has gone nuts, and fergie in the midst of all this madness has not only kept us relevant but has kept us winning!
    We loose to Norwich and people are looking forward to a new manager. We are going through a bad spell. We are conceding far too many goals, we are playing poorly, our midfield is dire yet we are top of the league. CRICIS!!!!!

    Sir Alex- I am grateful, i appreciate you, i will stand by you even if you didn’t win us anything for 8years. You have been consistent and i trust you have given your best and i trust you will continue to do so. Apparently no man is bigger that the club (even you have said so), however you have made this club the biggest in the world, and without you God know where we would be!

  • Now that i have gotten all that off my chest, here are my thoughts on the QPR game and what were missing-

    1. We shouldn’t start Scholes, Giggs and Hernandez. Scholes and Chicharito are great impact players Scholes football brain is head and shoulders above every midfielder in the world, the issue is his legs arent, so bring him on when this opponents are tired, then they will be on the same fitness levels. At the beginning of the game, he will be at slower, weaker than his opponents… it baffles me why he is starting games. Now Chicharito A.K.A Ole Gunnar II. This boy is dynamite. Bring him on when the defenders are used to the movement of Van Persie, Wazzza and Wellbeck and their legs also start to tire. At this point, their concentration levels would have dropped because of fatigue, their legs would have also become weaker, he faster off the mark that RVP and Wazza and his movement and instincts are sharper anyway, its why he is so effective off the bench and ineffective from the start. As for Giggs, he should just retire, he should have been in the stands with those legends, considering he played with all of them

    2. Anderson, one of fergies biggest crimes, as i have stated its like buying Ronaldinho and asking him to play wing back, or converting Kagawa to a defensive midfielder. He was a very good attacking midfielder for Gremio and Porto and the gaffer converts him to a defensive midfielder. Against Chelsea when he had the freedom to go forward, he had three assists. Over the weekend, the same thing, he got an assist- he is very forward thinking. These are the results of playing players in their rightful position. He showed strength, speed, forward thinking, drive. I just believe he might also be a fantastic impact player for us as well. I don’t know, what i do know he, he is to be kept and played in his preferred position . That also means he is likely to clash with Kagawa and now Rooney!

    3. Our Midfield – Where do is start? we need guile, we need speed, we need passing ability, we need dribbling ability , we need height, we need goals, we need YAYA TOURE. Basically we need a new midfield Lol! i do not believe we want nor need Fellaini. He is strong and provides ariel ability. but Is he really a good player, i’m not so sure. Being good for “Everton and Standard Liege” doesn’t mean he will be good for us. He cant pass, he is not fast, he can head the ball FULL STOP. Would have much preferred Dembele but hes gone now, i haven’t watched much of Strootman or Lars Bender but i did watch Gunogan against Ajax, and he reminds me of Khedira, seems slightly better in fact. Another person i would be interested in playing in our midfield is Kevin Prince Boateng. He ticks all the right boxes and with right manager can get even better. Think Yaya Toure and think of someone who had the physical attributes too stand up to him. But our midfield is dire and it does need upgrading!

    4. Our most improved player is Rafael, Do i like him as our full back, No! he is actually a very good attacking full back but his lack of concentration makes him a liability in defense. i would sacrifice his attacking prowess if it meant he would concentrate a lot more and defend better, and i don’t see him improving defensively. This doesn’t mean he should be sold, it means he should be on the bench and selected for specific games, i fancy Phil jones as a right back and let Smalling and Jones be partnered in the center Long term. Evans is scoring crucial goals for us and with games comes experience and consistency.
    i like the Dortmund right back too # just saying

    5. The Winger Conundrum, Horses for courses i say! i am not of the opinion that Ashley Young is poor, i do believe he has suffered with confidence and injuries. He has unfairly been labelled a diver. I don’t know one player who has not dived ! Further more i know world class players who dive regularly. Why Ashley young is being lambasted as a diver i do not know, he had two incidents last year. Wayne Rooney, Steven Gerrard, Cristiano Ronaldo, Didier Drogba, Suarez, Henry, Balotelli to name a few. last season Ashely Young scored several crucial goals for us and assisted many as well. I’m puzzled where the notion of in effective and useless comes from. he has been injured and also had a poor Euros, right now he is not exactly high on confidence. The poor euros is as a result of the whole of England being bad NOT just Ash and to topple that…. people were on his back for the QPR penalty awarded last season. Fast forward to this season against Chelsea he had Ivanovic sent off, that gave us the advantage, against Arsenal he won as a penalty and against Norwich once he was played on the right he put in better balls that Valencia did all game. Now i am not saying he is our best Winger (NANI!!!!!! lol) but he offers us something and because of the squads that Man city has, Chelsea are building, even Arsenal, we need numbers!!!! in Nani, Young and Valencia we have three of the best wingers in the world. For the sake of roles, Ashley might be our most important, He can play Wide left, wide right, behind the striker, even center midfield.
    As i said with our wingers, it a case of horse for courses. All three are useful.
    I really don’t know what is happening with the Nani affair, in my opinion he is our best winger, certainly our most skillful and most unpredictable. sometimes instead of criticizing, arm round a player, a little bit of petting and encouraging can do wonders. We need to keep him, he is tried and tested in the premiership and can deliver 12 assists minimum and as many goals.

    Once we sort our midfield out i’m very sure we will be dominating teams for years to come.

    • @One United: By sort out midfield you mean buy 3 world class midfielders and play the right tactics? Wake me up when that happens mate. Fergie is finished.

      • @Moscow: how on earth do you work out that fergie is finished?

        • @One United: I haven’t worked it out, I just have a really firm feeling that his time is now up. Busby’s time was up once too? Clough also had an end. All of them were legendary managers, but everything has an end. Anyway, we’ll see what unfolds this season.

    • @One United: You lost me when you said Young is a world class winger – he is not even a Man Utd class winger. You gained points again though when you talked sense about Nani, but then as everyone knows I am a tad Nani biased. Yes lads I did say A TAD biased, you are not hearing things, and no I am not delusional :wink: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

  • did anyone noticed that united got 6 corners rvp took the first 4 which didnt produce anything. and rooney just took 2 and both of them resulted in goals. and arsenal never produced anything from corners when rvp was there. not saying anything to rvp he is a great player. best left foot in the league. just think we need someone else on the corner duty from the right side.

    • @united: Mate RVP has put in some very good corners for us, but I believe he should be in the box receiving corners not putting them in. As needing somebody on the right who can put in some good crosses etc, we have Rafael who does a good job attacking and getting the ball into the area from the right. Please notice Rafael, Chicharito, and Anderson, sexy football, and all south american, and samba-dancers, who love to attack, attack, attack, to the tune of the same chant, by those beloved Stretty Ender fans of ours. Where these players come from in latin america, they think BACK passing the football brings a curse on you, and a torrent of abuse from the attack minded football loving latin fans – lets all do the samba, lets all do the samba, aye aye aye aye, aye aye aye aye :-D

  • The title of this post suggests that there is another United that might turn up, unexpected, and make all our nightmares turn into sweet dreams.
    Boy, wouldn’t that be nice, I could use a good nights sleep!
    Truth is, this is the “real” United, and I know that reality is a rare commodity in this game, but lets face it, we’re not that good and will remain not that good for the foreseeable future.
    We are in a “transition mode”, which is really Footy-speak for; we have more bad players than good players and that it might change when the bad players become good ones. The thought that Ferguson can tactically manage this motley bunch into a worthy effort every Saturday is another strange “reality”.
    I know one mans Ford Focus maybe another mans C-Class Mercedes, but seriously, Welbeck is no Defoe just as Evans is no Cahill. The potential for these players is plain to see – they are long shots at best.
    I’d like to interject the thought that we all seem to have forgotten, and that is United is on a budget. When you’re on a budget you tend to want the Ford and not the Mercedes. We did put a really nice ornament on the bonnet and a few expensive toys on the rear shelf, but this is still a Ford and even in overdrive, we’ll have a hard time competing.

    So it’s plain to see that we need to come to terms with our lot. The real United is what we have and generally speaking, it needs to be traded in for a better model.

  • We have one of Europe’s best attacks. Both Rooney and RVP are Golden Boot contenders. No other team in football has 2 30-40 goal forwards unless David Villa turns a corner. Nani is still one of the worlds best widemen,with figures on par or bettering the likes of Ribery,Di Maria,Robben,Nasri despite his perceived inconsistencies. Kagawa was the stand out player in a league with Mario Gomez,Ribery,Lewandoski etc. At the very least our best attack picks itself. Anderson has been our best midfielder this season and Carrick seems the other logical selection. The midfield picks itself. Evans and Rafael have been two of our most improved players and they should be guaranteed places. DDG has done well when given a good run leaving only two spots in the squad for debate.LB and another CB.Clearly this is our best team but we never have even 6 of them playing in the same team. There are many formations possible my best being 4-2-2-2.Carrick-Anderson in CM,Kagawa-Nani playing narrow and free behind Rooney and RVP

    • @Jay wire: Nice idea but you need some width though.

      Nani needs to learn to go out wide and just bomb down the flank to get a cross in without a thought given to beating his man with wizardry. He should simply run past his man (like Valencia does) every now and then. He’s got the pace for it.

      I even think he should be given quotas like “In the first half you will make 5 crosses.(whether their good or bad just get the ball into the box from a wide position)” Then after he’s done with his quota he can play as he wishes.

      I like the way Van Persie gets wide every now and then. Rooney too.

      You need to stretch defenses to give players like Kagawa some room to work with.

      They can’t all play in the middle.

    • @Jay wire: Also. I think the only way you’re gonna get Rooney, Kagawa and Van Persie on the same pitch is if you play Rooney as a midfielder with Kagawa playing behind Van Persie.

      Rooney should play the same role Ramirez plays at Chelsea.

      He’s much better than Giggs and some of the others we have in midfield.

      His drive and determination won’t hurt our midfield efforts.

  • Ive got a few questions. Is it predictable that Ando’s critics will go mental if he has an off day tomorrow?If he does have a good game,are they likely to say lets not get carried away?Does the principle also not apply if he plays bad?How many good performances have we seen from Rooney,Valencia,Carrick and Young this season?Are they somehow immune from the Ferguson Doghouse that Nani always finds himself in?How high are the bars that Cleverly and Anderson must surpass in order to get into the midfield?Are the same bars being set by Scholes,Giggs and Carrick in their performances?Would it be beneficial to have a consistent line up based on player performances,natural roles and optimal system?Or unpredictability based on ever rotating players,different systems every game to keep opponents,fans,players guessing?If United buy Fellaini,Sneijder and Eriksen,how many expect them to be played correctly?Would it improve our already high scoring attack or stop the leaking of goals?

    • @Jay wire: One answer here.
      Anderson has not earned his chops mate. Not his chops nor a scrap of hamburger nor a a piece of lint hanging on Paul Scholes’ coattails.
      When he puts in a consistent performance and then does it for a few times in a row, then we mere mortals can grasp a tangible understanding of what he might be capable of. Of course, there are those out there that, with the help of Xray vision or Footy superpowers, or something like that, can make a definitive call on what might be anything but his problem. Then concoct a way forward that would leave all his peers and a manager or two, scattered like dead leaves on the roadside. Sorry, as much as I try, the concept escapes me completely.

      Mind you, with the dire state of things in CMF, perhaps we’ll all get a chance to evaluate the man with more than a crystal ball and a ultra-superior sense of the game. :wink:

  • With the rumor mill abuzz about the possible departures of our very own Nani and the Gonners unhappy Walcott, is there a small chance that Ferguson is lining up a move for the extremely speedy southerner?

    I somehow doubt it because Le Arse is unlikely to gift us the title with another of their best players, but the idea of Walcott on our flank, and perhaps (as he wishes) running at the heart of a defense, does seem kind of alluring.
    I’m not a huge Theo fan, because his final pass/cross/shot can be a long way short from what most teams need, but that speed,,, whoo,,, wow,, gimme some of that bro.

    Just saying!!

    • @Redrich: Walcott is fast yes. But he lacks real quality.

      We would have to sell him as soon as he gets older and loses his pace.

      Thats all he can do is run real fast.

      He would make a better striker than winger in my opinion. And do we really need another striker?

      Maybe if we get rid of Welbeck we can take him on. Otherwise its a no go for me.

  • Take it easy man. Just questions.You say Anderson has not earned anything and you seem to be taking a dig at me for apparent superior knowledge.Firstly,you are in the extreme minority that believes Anderson shouldnt be in the starting line up ahead of Scholes.So Im very much in line with public opinion.How do you figure he doesnt qualify given the performances he has put in because everyone else thinks otherwise?Maybe you have the superior vision.I know you are far from being an Ando fan,but maybe its honorable to give credit where its due.He has played well whenever given the chance including this season.He does offer urgency,energy and drive in midfield.His pass rate is high.In his limited appearances this season,he has scored one and assisted 3.Is he not due a run of games like the underwhelming Rooney and poor You?This seems obvious to everyone else.Its almost like some of us hate to see him perform well.If he is given a run,and fails then he is not worth it.

    • @Jay wire: Did he play well against Galatasaray, he ran out of steam against Chelsea.
      You like many have been on an Anderson crusade for years, ignoring his poor performances, his weight gains, sleeping with hookers, crashing cars and then blaming Fergie for misusing him.
      He does though deserve a chance, really down the sad situation with our midfield. For me if Fletch could convince us on his fitness he should start, Cleverley is a decent player but very in and out at the moment. Ideally I would sell him and but Strootman.

      • @Stephen: Anderson did play well up until he ran out of steam, however. Lets not forget.

        If he can get in shape then I would say he is good to start.

        He is a great player though. DOn’t write him off.

        The only thing holding him back now is his fitness.

        If you can’t run for 90 full minutes then can you be called a pro-footballer? Just another question.

        • @The_Philosopher: Mate he isn’t a “great” player. He cost £20m and hasn’t delivered,these are the facts.
          He has been at the club coming on 6 years and has played a handful of good games, I hope he now delivers as he owes it to the manager.

  • Stephen. Sometimes the facts speak for themselves. What about Galatasaray?It’s funny that you probably think Rooney and RvP should play more together to start gelling. That’s correct. But you probably won’t be agreeable when it comes to other players. The team that played in Turkey, was a bunch of underutilised kids who have never played together and you expect 5 star performances. Let’s be real. My problem is exactly that. Extreme bias. Rooney has been average at best, this season but you don’t call for his head. Anderson has played well whenever called upon and all you can say is it points to just how rubbish we are. I’m not sure Newcastle, Chelsea and Qpr agree. He has been playing well period. Last season he played well before his injury. Credit where it’s due. Rooney has been rubbish trying to play the attacking link but he gets a free pass. That’s what’s irritating. Your blessed Strootman is a PSV player who has no chance of playing for United this year. So let’s look at the players we have. Assess who deserves to be in the starting line up. Give everyone the time to settle and a fair run of games. On that note I believe it’s time we give wide play the boot. It’s not working. Maybe 3 in midfield is not such a bad idea. We need Kagawa back yesterday because we have no real attacking link.

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