Fortunate United survive stiff Welsh test


Cardiff equalizer Nov 13Well, that was coming, wasn’t it? Having held on for large parts of the game United surrendered a late equaliser at Cardiff, a timely reminder that things are not going to come easy this season.

Not only are things not going to come easy for the Reds this season, but United conspired to make their life harder by missing a couple of chances in the second half which, had they been converted, would have put the game to bed.

Danny Welbeck skied a glorious chance after playing a wonderful one-two with Wayne Rooney with 10 minutes to go, but the England striker’s finish ballooned over the bar.

The miss was made to look even worse when, in the first minute of added time, Kim Bo Kyung headed the hosts level, thus depriving United of two precious points.

The Reds, in truth, hadn’t looked brilliant throughout the game, but had managed to get ever so close to what would have been a fourth consecutive league win.

With Robin Van Persie and Michael Carrick out of the side, United fielded the “dynamic” combo of Marouane Fellaini and Tom Cleverley, with neither of them able to get a hold onto to the game.

Having said that, United were 1-0 up within 15 minutes as Wayne Rooney put the Reds in front after Antonio Valencia had pounced on a misplaced pass and fed the England striker.

Rooney booked at Cardiff away Nov 13In truth Rooney was lucky to still be on the pitch by then, as he had petulantly kicked out in frustration to Jordan Mutch with the game just 10 minutes old.

United struggled to keep control of the game and Cardiff pulled level as Gary Medel found Jordan Mutch, who picked out Frazier Campbell before the former United man finished coolly across goal to equalise.

United were 2-1 up just before halftime as Patrice Evra headed Rooney’s corner past David Marshall to give his team a 2-1 lead.

United’s lead looked increasingly in danger in the second half, as the Reds struggled to impose themselves into the game, even though they twice went close to double their advantage.

With 51′ minutes played, Fellaini’s header forced Marshall into a difficult save, before the Cardiff repeated himself on the following corner, as he kept Chris Smalling’s header out.

Two minutes later Cardiff could have equalised but Frazier Campbell’s chip hit the crossbar, much to Tom Cleverley’s relief, given that the United midfielder’s wayward pass had released the Cardiff striker.

Cleverley remains an unsolvable mystery, for while he runs around fill of intent and he’s obviously determined to make things happen, the England international brings nothing to the table.

Danny Welbeck and Ryan Giggs replaced Adnan Januzaj and Javier Hernandez, but this time United were to be punished for sitting back, as Kim’s header flew past David De Gea in the dying minutes.

Still, there was still time for Rooney to squander a glorious chance, as United fell seven points behind Arsenal and today will very much feel like a missed opportunity.




  1. It’s clear this man – David Moyes lacks tactical awareness. How could he bring in Giggs into a game where the opposition consists mainly of youthful and athletic players. I was expecting either of Kagawa or Nani to come in for Januzaj. Giggs introduction killed the game because deprived United their momentum.

      • @Ian: agree,he played the perfect killer pass,i wonder about rooney ,he had so many opportunities to pass the ball in the last games ,and he didnt ,and today when he shouldnt,he pass it …

  2. Hello Ian….

    “United struggled to keep control of the game and Cardiff pulled level as Gary Medel found Jordan Mutch, who picked out Frazier Campbell before the former United man finished coolly across goal to equalise”

    It was a quality piece of stylish football in a game filled with scrappy moments, to last a lifetime.



  3. i was just shocked the prolific welbeck missed a chance….uniteds FUTURE missing a chance he normally buries 30 times a season will send shocks thru the prem…..

  4. By the time the havoc DM is gradually wrecking in United is clear to everyone, it would have been late. MARK MY WORDS.

  5. Wonderfull display by United.Absolutely wonderfull.I hope all the Johnny Evans fans have seen what an absolute gem he is and how he saved us time and time again.What a tosser.He is unable to step up when asked to yet he seems to always get the benefit of the doubt.he was given the run around by campbell,good and proper.for the Love of Manchester,can someone please tell me what cleverley does?I ask this only for the hundredth time,and I’m yet to get an is this guy playing for United and England?perhaps we should send the dossier over to Ripley’s.I’m beggining to run out of patience with Fellaini.He should be dominating games of this great calibre.If you can’t top Cardiffs midfield,u shouldn’t be wearing a United shirt.The players are to blame for this one.Pull up your socks lads!

  6. OH my word, we got scored on late….again. Again.

    I wouldn’t blame the players because Moyes clearly hasn’t got them believing in him. He hasn’t got them to play better than they otherwise would and he has no goddamn clue how to make the team greater than the sum of its parts.

    Can somebody please explain to me the tactical sense in defending a one goal lead when you are the better team?

    I am so unbelievably mad at this because this so directly contrasts with the Man Utd we’ve always known. In 5 months Moyes comes in and changes the most famous thing about the team thats known to ‘always score’ for no other reason that his own shortcomings as a manager. Our team is more or less the same from last year….so why are we suddenly defending leads?!

    Six years on the man’s contract. Plenty of time to take Man Utd and turn them into Everton. He’s using his Everton coaches, tactics & training methods, mid-table motivations & ambitions……sigh.

    The problem is ….a lot of people are giving the man plenty of breathing space because oh-its-always-going-to-be-tough-replacing-Ferguson.

    Was it really?

    He left a champion team which just needed one or two midfielders to be complete and ready for the next season. We have world-class players, hugely promising youngsters, great training and fitness regimes, world-class coaches, world-class medical staff etc. Moyes had 11 years of PL experience. Then Ferguson was always at hand to help Moyes bed in. So what exactly is so tough? Why is Moyes raising mountains where there are none?
    Instead of whining and groaning about how tough it is, why can’t Moyes see this as his best opportunity ever to win his first PL? Why can’t he challenge himself to do it in his first season? What does he really need time for?????

    • Not sure the manager can be blamed for conceding late goals, it’s the players’ fault for switching off defensively/not picking up their men. Fergie might have won the league last season, but this is far from a championship winning team, given that we lack quality all over the park, except perhaps for the front two. It just goes to show how crucial Fergie was, given he performed miracles with these players.

      • @Dan: I think Ferguson was an intelligent manager.

        Moyes has no where near the intellectual capacity Ferguson had.

      • @Dan:

        Late goals, more often that not, are the result of a teams’ or players’ mentality. With Fergie, we scored late goals because we had this never-give-up mentality and self belief. When the same team starts conceding late goals, it is also a mentality issue.

        When you are 2-1 up against a team like Cardiff, Moyes should be egging the players to score another and then keep it neat & tidy. He should be asking them to keep possession, take the pressure off defence and push higher up.
        Moyes has this workmanlike attitude of safety and caution and this shows in the players when his tactics invite pressure, let the opposition attack, force the team deeper, making everything more nervy and on-the-edge than they need to be.

        We do not lack quality all over the park. GK world-class, DC – quality veterans, quality youngsters and Evans to fill the gap, DL/DR – quality full backs in rafael/evra, decent youngsters in fabio/buttner/jones/smalling, MID – all crap but for carrick, Wingers – good (Nani), does the job (valencia), youngsters (janu, zaha) and crap (young), Strikers – we have more quality here than any of the top 4 teams in the PL. We have a LOT of quality except in one or maybe two glaring areas.

        The most important thing Fergie did in making those miracles happen is that, no matter how crap the squad was, or how depleted by injuries etc etc…he made every player believe they could still win and they had to do it. Macheda against Villa, Welbeck against Madrid, our young un’s against City in the community shield etc..these are all great examples of self-belief…being a winner before you step onto the pitch.

        You dont necessarily need to be Fergie to do that.

      • @Dan: When you shape up to invite the opposition to come and attack you, this kind of defensive lapse in almost bound to happen.
        It’s either, the players don’t believe in what Moyes is asking them to do, so it get’s done half hearetdly or the players do get what Moyes is saying and are playing just how he wants, except what he wants is essentially shit football that’s piss easy to play against.
        If we can’t play for a win at a team like Cardiff, what hope have we in real matches, against quality opponents?
        Moyes is instilling a negative vibe around the place. What he’s asking people to do is retarded for a team like United. This team, under Moyes, can’t string more than a couple of passes together, can’t muster more than a couple of decent chances from open play. I’ve said it before, what you do during the week on the training ground is what you get on matchday. I can’t even begin to imagine the play school training that Moyes must have them going through to keep putting in performances and results like this.
        Never mind going for the jugular, i bet Moyes doesn’t even know where it is.

        The buck stops at the man in charge. He’s calling the shots and making the decisions. It’s his responsibility to get the best out of this group of *champions*.

    • @RedAF: You’re absolutely right. That’s what I’ve been saying since the day he was appointed. Just because he inherited the throne by nationality, doesn’t mean he is the right man for the job. He’s going to be given time but mark my words, he’s not going to do any better than he’s doing now.

  7. fortunate united? really?! how was the game a stiff test. every player and staff associted with the team should be ashamed of that performance, i am. playing sucky football is becoming a habit for this team. i would not complain if there are any signs of improvement but honestly there are none. by the way mr fellaini, grow a pair.

    • @Shadie: That’s all you can expect from Davey Moyes my friend. The man is seriously average. And once Mourinho and Pellegrini find their feet (looks like they’re getting there), and Arsenal get a striker, United are going be left in the dust.

  8. Playing devil’s advocate for a moment – would a result like yesterday’s have been impossible under SAF? Did we not ever question the latter’s tactics and substitutions?

    • @Julian: Doubt Ferguson would countenance such a crap performance.

      And then go all negative towards the end.

      • @The_Philosopher: You’re right,he wouldn’t have countenanced it but that would have been after the event not before it. Who’s to know what DM told the team afterwards. There were probably stern words even without the hairdryer and flying boots. For all the perceived negativity towards tne end, Utd could and should have won it had Welbeck and Rooney taken their chjances after some incisive attacking play. This devil’s advocate business is quite fun!!

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