Morning all. I couldn’t see parts of the game yesterday, thanks to some poor link quality but I did get to watch enough to have some thoughts on the game yesterday.
So I wouldn’t make this a pure match report, per se, but I will give you a bulleted run down of my thoughts on the game, team performances and selected individual performances.
The result: Urawa Reds 2-2 Man United
Before I start I’ll make the obvious confession that it is indeed pleasing to see the team back in action finally and cut the crap that comes with writing speculative articles in the off-season.
So here goes…
- The kit was well, brilliant on the players. The lush grass and the lush red on the players under lights were just simply superb. That’s what I thought. Although, didn’t like those white stripes at the back too much.
- Rooney is losing too much hair. At this rate, by the time he turns 25 he’ll be as bald as Zidane.
- United completely dominated possession in the opening minutes, but they were usually unproductive, sideway passes.
- Ronaldo also had a few tricks that didn’t trouble the Japanese too much
- Edwin van der Sar was awful. Both goals that Urawa Reds scored were goal keeping mistakes Kuszcak is all we have until Foster returns in March. Hopefully we don’t get too many injury problems. And we’ll even excuse EVDS and put that down to jet lag.
- Speaking of which there was some element of lethargy among the players, thanks to the long flight.
- Rooney showed great desire to get the ball and was very impressive. He also went on a slaloming run that should have been a good goal, had he finished. Props to the ‘keeper for saving that shot.
- Fletcher must be appreciated for his efforts today. Not just for the goal, but for his work-rate.
- Danny Simpson was impressive in patches when he came on in the second half.
- Carrick and Scholes were their usual selves, especially in the closing minutes of the first half and early second half.
- Hargreaves and Nani didn’t play. But it is a long tour, full of travelling, so expect a lot of rotation.
- SAF started off with a 4-2-3-1 fomation, with Giggs in the hole behind Rooney. Fletch and Ron in the wings and Scholes-Carrick sitting back.
Now I am sure Fergie wouldn’t read too much into the result, as much as it would be important for the players to get a good run around. But I appreciated the seriousness with which he fielded a full strength side. The game did not descend into a farce, and was reasonably competitive.
Comments welcome. Share your thoughts if you could catch the game yesterday.
Match video can be seen here (Thanks Ahmed.)
And before I sign off, here are some pics from the training session from the previous day. Hope you liked the kit as much as I did.
[Picture Sources: United Rant forums]