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700 not out for Scholesy

Paul Scholes celebrated his 700th game for United by scoring against Wigan, as the Reds blitzed the Latics in the second half at Old Trafford.

Scholes was joined in midfield by Ryan Giggs, who became the first player to reach 600 Premier League appearances, Michael Carrick and Nani.

Rio Ferdinand, celebrating his 400th games for the club, was part of a back four including Rafael, Vidic and new boy Alex Buttner, while Anders Lindegaard was handed another start ahead of David De Gea.

With Van Persie on the bench nursing a minor injury, Hernandez and Danny Welbeck were charged with shouldering the weight of the frontline.

The duo combined after five minutes, as the England striker was clipped by Al-Habsi and earned United a dubious penalty.

Welbeck’s fall was nothing short of dramatic and the visitors were left incensed by the decision.

Wigan’s sense of injustice did not last long as Hernandez planted the penalty to Al-Habsi’s left and saw his effort parried by the Wigan custodian.

United did not have all their own way in the first half as Wigan created chances of their own, with Kone fluffing his shot at the back post after some excellent work from Beausejour.

Nani and Welbeck both went close to open the scoring, the former attempting a chip that drifted wide of the goal, the latter seeing his effort cleared off the line by Maynor Figueroa.

The second half resumes without changes and United were in front barely after the restart as Nani’s cross was parried into Scholes’ path who cooly converted home, scoring his 155th goal for the club.

The goal crucially swung the game United’s way.

Shortly after United had gone 1-0 up, Nani cut back across the goal, only for Welbeck’s overhead kick to drift just wide of the goal.

United finally had their second after 63 minutes as Buttner’s shot was turned past Al-Habsi by Hernandez, as the Mexican poached onto the debutant’s shot to make it 2-0 for the hosts.

Minutes later Buttner completed a remarkable debut as he brushed past Boyce before drilling a shot past Al-Habsi to notch his first goal for the club and put United 3-0 up.

Scholes and Giggs were withdrawn to make room for Powell and Van Persie with 19 minutes left, as the Dutchman looked to add to his remarkable tally of 52 goals in his last 58 Premier League appearances.

The former Arsenal man did indeed go close to his fifth goal in four games for United, but he failed to convert from the six-yard box as Al-Habsi gathered the ball.

United were to have a fourth goal, though, as Powell received the ball from Hernandez before jinxing past Caldwell and drilling the ball home for United’s fourth goal with just eight minutes to go .

Ferguson had called for defensive solidity ahead of the game and today’s performance would have pleased the Scot, particularly because Chelsea and City stumbled to away draws while the Reds picked up three points, but the first half was far from impressive and the performance will have to be addressed.

On a more positive note, Buttner looked the business on his debut, and without getting carried away, he could provide some much needed competition for Evra for the left-back spot.

 The attention now shift to Galatasaray's visit to Old Trafford on Wednseday, with United desperate to avoid the sort of stuttering start that cost them a place in Europe 12 months ago.
 Dan (@MUFC_dan87) 
38 Comments

38 Comments

  1. godzilla

    16 September 2012 at 05:43

    too early to judge on the defensive skills, but looks good going ahead
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=endscreen&v=G2irU5HH_pU

  2. ash is the man

    16 September 2012 at 12:54

    Hi guys just a quick question
    I have been playing football manager and I either play fluid football on the standard or attacking options with largely short passing, and I most of the time put down the option of counter attack with these options ( understand? )
    anyway my question is why is the counter attack option automatically on no for standard and attacking football- would it not make sense to counter aswell during the game
    I know this is not an important taking point, but it is annoying me πŸ™‚

  3. jos

    16 September 2012 at 13:18

    Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho has questioned his side’s commitment just two days before they meet Manchester City in the Champions League.

    The Spanish champions have slipped eight points behind leaders Barcelona after Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Sevilla.

    Mourinho said: “We have only really played well in the Spanish Super Cup. Nowhere else. I am worried that in this moment I don’t have a team.
    “There are very few heads who are committed and concentrated.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/19616693

    It would be interesting to know who are all those non-committed players. And why is he still playing them if they arent committed enough?

    Sorry to post this here but I am really sick of all the Real/Mourinho love here. I see them as adversaries and have zero respect for them.

    • Owen

      16 September 2012 at 13:42

      @jos: It seems this will be a special season for Special One πŸ˜†

    • Moscow

      16 September 2012 at 14:05

      @jos: The Special One is playing mind games, luring everyone into a false sense of security πŸ˜† Don’t worry mate you’ll be cheering them on when they spank Citeh on Tuesday πŸ˜€

      • jos

        16 September 2012 at 17:40

        @Moscow: for me both are equally evil. best would if both do not progress from their group πŸ™‚ i would prefer a goalless draw.

    • Craig Mc

      16 September 2012 at 16:26

      @jos: Adversaries or not, I hope they kick the Wastelanders arses in the CL games. I would like to see Ronnie get some goals against them too. πŸ‘Ώ

  4. Owen

    16 September 2012 at 13:46

    Watching Gerrard’s performance these days makes me think how lucky we are that we have Scholes and how better he is than Gerrard.

    Gerrard is getting games just on his name and he is 4-5 years younger than Scholsey.

    • ash is the man

      16 September 2012 at 14:35

      @Owen: have you actually watched his england performances?

      • Owen

        16 September 2012 at 15:02

        @ash is the man: I have few better things to do than watching England…Even watching Stoke is a better option. πŸ˜†

      • Moscow

        16 September 2012 at 16:07

        @ash is the man: I have. He is shit.

        • Craig Mc

          16 September 2012 at 16:55

          @Moscow: Not as shit as Welbeck. I keep waiting for Welbeck to improve his all round game, to play ONE TOUCH football and keep the ball moving, because Welly you are total shite at dribbling. Van Persie was on right edge of box, screaming to gazelle Welbeck to pass the ball to him, and RVP would have scored, but instead Welbeck waited until 4 wigan players surrounded him, and then did his usual fall flat on his face, and pretend he is hurt. He is a selfish GIT a lot of the time. Why he doesn’t toughen up and stay on his feet instead of falling on his arse all the time, I can’t fathom it. Chicharito missed a pen, but a pat on the back for the lad, because he has obviously worked on keeping himself onside now. His onside was called into question 3 times yesterday, but he was onside every time, he’s just so quick off the mark from standing position. Chicho should play before Welbeck, when Wazza comes back, because Chicho will get more goals for us than Welly. RVP has got so much more than goalscoring alone to his name, his all round game is brilliant. Buttner rough around the edges, but he gets stuck in, and seems afraid of no one. Superb goal by Powell, but didn’t play long enough to assess what his all round game is like. Mi man Nani needs to stop taking potshots on goal, and concentrate on his very dangerous putting of balls into the box. We got the winning goal at Saints because RVP received a pinpoint cross from Nani, and we got the 1st very important breakthrough goal yesterday off an inswinging ball from Nani that scholesy converted. Sorry guys that I go on about Welbeck, but he really gets on my wick falling down all the time, and missing all the chances he gets to convert.

        • jos

          16 September 2012 at 17:38

          @Craig Mc: he has to be saf’s one of those sons! No other explaination. I cant belive he kept berbatov on the bench!!! And that he is preferred over chicha now – grow some balls fergie and drop him till he learns to stay up and can hit the barn.

          Eng are so doomed they have welbeck as one of the strikers now! The clumsy striker that never scores!!!

        • ash is the man

          16 September 2012 at 19:22

          @Moscow: What do the england players and the team itself have to do to gain support from the fans? Since Hogdson has taken over the england team, steven gerrard has been very influential in the deep playmaker role- his range of passing is incredible.
          England were also highly unlucky not to beat ukraine and honestly it was the first time I have seen an england team actually pass the ball around positively

        • Owen

          16 September 2012 at 19:58

          @ash is the man: Why you talk about England for judging a player ? They play most of the games against likes of Moldova . Even Cleverley is claimed to be next Fabregas.

          Have you really watched Stevie G for Pools in last couple of seasons?He has been nothing short of shit.

        • ash is the man

          16 September 2012 at 20:02

          @Owen: Well firstly I talked about england because you said you have better things to do……
          I am defendimg gerrard because he is playing well for england in the deep playmaker role

        • Owen

          16 September 2012 at 20:35

          @ash is the man: I guess it is better to judge any players on his performance for the club.

          Even if you talk about country,i saw him against Italy . Their midfield made him look like a League player.

        • Stephen

          17 September 2012 at 17:38

          @ash is the man: Gerrard has always had great ability. His main issue is he has been over indulged. He is very difficult to fit a system around due to the fact he runs after the ball like a 5 year old. The Fat Spanish Waiter wanted to sell him because of this, he is reckless in challenges and wants to hurt players. For me the failure of the Lampard and Gerrard combo, is down to him. He can player deeper and hold, he simply doesn’t want to. Personally he needed a stronger manager, Liverpool have been in decline since he broke through, his Hollywood passing style is ineffectual and all for show. He is yesterdays man, Wiltshere if he ever gets fit is the future of England, oh and Nick Powell! πŸ˜†

  5. colver

    16 September 2012 at 19:37

    Yeah Hernandez has a bit of star quality even if he is still very raw and inconsistent. But I struggle to figure out what Ferguson sees in Welbeck.

    • Moscow

      16 September 2012 at 20:46

      @colver: He is a striker with no goals and 2 official dives. I struggle to see a place for him in the starting XI when Rooney and RvP are restored to full fitness, even the super-sub role is designated to Hernandez. If Fergie plays him on the wing ahead of Nani/Valencia/Young then I will start researching whether they’re blood relations.

      When people say he needs to improve on his finishing and he’ll be a top player I’m lost for words. Isn’t he supposed to be the guy leading the line? We should sell him while he’s still relatively young, his English nationality should grab us a premium fee.

      • Stephen

        17 September 2012 at 17:43

        @Moscow: He is also very cocky, 18 goals in the past 72 games is not United quality. He needs to leave and I would be happy to take him where ever he wanted to go…..

        • Moscow

          17 September 2012 at 22:07

          @Stephen: I know mate, he pouts like a superstar, like he’s made it?! πŸ‘Ώ

    • Craig Mc

      16 September 2012 at 22:06

      @colver: Mate Chicharito is a consistent goalscorer, and Welbeck isn’t – so should be no contest as far as 1st team choice goes – it must be chicho supporting Wazza or RVP rather than Welbeck. A striker leading the line who doesn’t score bur rarely like Welbeck, don’t know what SAF is thinking picking him πŸ™„ At least chicarito is always in the right place in the box, even if he doesn’t always score, he gets into the box and blindsides the opposition defence – HE IS THE GHOST, they can’t see him until its too late, best avoider in PL when he ghosts in πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜†

  6. Craig Mc

    16 September 2012 at 22:11

    Berba – so pleased for him getting two goals for Fulham yesterday, and one of them was a cracker. He seemed to really be enjoying his football again, and maybe he suits more being the big fish in a small pool, than getting drowned out in United’s game. He choice Man Utd, wanted to really play for us, and was faithful, didn’t pout or cause trouble, so I wish him the best. As somebody said, how Welbeck got in the team before Berba – fookin insulting that was!

    • RMJ

      17 September 2012 at 15:04

      @Craig Mc: @Craig Mc: I think the only reason I can think of why Fergie prefers Welbeck is that he is a more physically direct striker. While Berbatov ballet dances across the turf, Welbeck is very direct and can push the back line back especially against teams that don’t like their central defenders playing too close to strikers. The downside being he gives away possession cheaply but good squad player to have when you are facing a tight defensive game. We have a variety of strikers in our squad, all who offers a different weapon and playing style to consider especially when these days no two premier league teams are alike like in the old days.

  7. Haruna

    17 September 2012 at 00:26

    Have you ever thought about this style of tactic?
    Any thoughts on this? Cause I think we can score so many goals with this one.

    ————-De Gea————
    RAF — RIO —- VIDA —- EVRA
    —CLEV — CARR —ANDO
    —————SHINJI—————–
    ———–ROO ———–RVP————

    • Haruna

      17 September 2012 at 00:29

      @Haruna:

      I know of course that we are playing WIDE this year. I mean, we use the ball very often attacking the flanks. But, could this be an alternative if we would like to cause problems against 4-4-2 teams?

    • Swapnil

      18 September 2012 at 13:55

      @Haruna: how do you expect us to score many goals with this formation when you are not even starting with VALENCIA,player responsible for probably half the chances we create and who for me is the most consistent and most disciplined player in our team????????

  8. Stephen

    17 September 2012 at 11:49

    Giggsy is a legend but now should never start.
    Why didn’t Giggs or Nani take the penalty?
    Welbeck has scored over the past 3 seasons 18 in 72 games.
    United DID NOT sing any songs relating to Hillsborough.
    Buttner looks promising.
    What is happening with our goalkeepers? Can we just start with one, rotating them is lunacy.
    Lets all laugh at Jose πŸ˜† πŸ˜†

  9. Jay wire

    17 September 2012 at 20:19

    Laughing at Jose is good. I know he has so many supporters here, but personally I’d rather have Harry Redknapp or Benitez before Mourinho. Just a personal bias. It’s sad that it’s looking very likely that he’s gonna be our next manager.

    More to the point. Scholes is a legend. I’m gonna bother and talk much about him. I’m a massive fan of the technical players. Thinking players. Xavi, Iniesta, Pirlo, Zidane, Alonso,Seerdorf. When they talk football, it’s very far from the way a Wayne Rooney or a Steven Gerrard would talk. It’s all philosophy and ideologies. Techniques,the subtleties of the game and systems. Quite honestly, these are the only players I bother listening to because they don’t just “twit” their mouths about rubbish, but talk football. So why is Scholes a legend? Xavi DISCUSSES him with Xabi Alonso. Iniesta vowed to get his shirt before the Final. Zidane, called him the best player he’s faced. Zinedine Zidane for crying out loud. Football continues to change every season, but there has to be some constant. Paul Scholes is a football constant. I mean it. Every professional player, coach and esteemed analyst has one constant. Paul Scholes. They even teach him at Barca. For freak’s sake, that’s legendary.

    “At La Masia (Barca’s Academy), they mentioned him a lot. He’s a teacher.”- Lionel Messi.

    Edgar Davids, at his peak was a monstrous player. Playing alongside Zidane in what was the number one team in the world at that time, he said “all of us(midfielders) are trying to get to his level.” Everyone admires, Messi, everyone loved Zidane,people are amazed by Xavi but they all wanted to be like Scholes. Amazing. I’m not apologetic about what I’m about to say. If you feel Scholes is boring and plays sideways passes and is a hindrance, you know an aggregate of zero about football. Also, there are many mysteries in the world, like, what are dreams,or the “football reasons” Roy Hodgson was talking about. But one of the biggest, is how clueless could the so called inventors of football have been, in not making it a point to build their team for 15 years around Paul Scholes? Who the heck is Steven Gerrard? That’s all for today.

    • Owen

      17 September 2012 at 20:52

      @Jay wire: Even Pele wished to have Scholes in his team.

    • Moscow

      17 September 2012 at 22:02

      @Jay wire: “Why isn’t he playing for England? It is crazy. Only in England. Scholes is a great, great player. So experienced and still, for me, one of the best in the world in midfield. Manchester United are lucky to have him.”

      Jose Mourinho

      • Owen

        17 September 2012 at 22:10

        @Moscow: It really hurts when i think that this England has respected Heskey more than Scholsey.

  10. Moscow

    17 September 2012 at 22:04

    Guardiola before the CL Final 2011.

  11. AndyCR7

    18 September 2012 at 10:27

    YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY! My team ranked 1st in RedRants fantasy league πŸ˜›

  12. Jay wire

    18 September 2012 at 10:39

    RMJ- I don’t want to start a Berbatov debate as to why Ferguson decided he was surplus to requirements. What I won’t agree with is the logic of preferring Welbeck to him. You talking of his physical directness over the “ballet” dancing of Berbatov is a matter of style preference. The most important thing however is ability. Heskey and Kenwyne Jones are more physical and direct. Not very relevant. Obafemi Martins was apparently faster than Ronaldo. The important ingredient here is ability. There’s a very huge gap between Berbatov and Welbeck. Even in team play. The most logical reason must be Ferguson estimating that Welbeck would reach and possibly surpass Berbatov in years to come. Not in the short term.

    But I wouldn’t go as far as saying Welbeck is not good enough. I see people pointing to his goal record. That’s shortsighted in my humble opinion. He’s only had one full season and he’s very far from first team. He’s been played as a wide forward which I think hinders him. There are so many factors to consider. He’s still very much unrefined. He’s very wasteful and selfish and actually does slow down attacks with his total disregard for “pass and move” football. Those are his greatest weaknesses. It’s a problem that nothing is being done to fix this. This is the job for the coaches, so either they haven’t picked it up or they’re actually encouraging him to dribble and hold on to the ball in danger areas. It will only work if he stops falling over all the time and can build some serious muscle. Then he can become a Drogba. Otherwise I’ve seen a lot of encouraging things in his game.

    First and most important, is he believes in himself. He’s very confident and is not willing to play secondary roles. He’s looking to make a name for himself. He’s looking to score and he does have some ability in holding on to the ball and keeping possession. His attempted volley on Sat is typical of his willingness to try the audacious and it’s a good attitude if he can refine his techniques. He just needs to learn the idea of efficiency, particularly in and around the box. That’s the difference between him and the world class goalscoring phenomenons. That’s why whenever Rvp gets the ball close to goal, we all hold our breaths. It’s most likely he’ll score. If Messi starts running towards the keeper, the broadcasters are already preparing to change the score display. With Ronaldo on the pitch, you’ll be sincerely suprised if goes off without at least one goal. Efficiency. They all know when to shoot, when to feign a shot, ride a tackle,stand still. The also know which shot to take, the power, angle and direction. Decisions made in split seconds. If Welbeck consciously decides to learn that,he’ll become a phenomenon. Right now he’s competent and that’s a good starting point.

    A little aside, but I think Nani could also benefit from the idea of efficiency. The best place to start, is passing. He can dribble no doubt, but his passing is poor. Just like Welbeck,he has ability to hold on to the ball and keep possession in defensive areas. Around the centre, he is one of the best at making sure we keep the ball. But as soon as he goes upfield,he loses it somewhat. Is it a lack of composure? A lack of options? Well if he wants to be a creator, he has to literally create. There are no options in creation. If there’s no space, create it. If there’s no movement, create it by moving suggestively. I do feel however, that both Kagawa and Rvp will make it easier for Nani, because they understand how to move and create space. All I’m asking for, is give these 3 a reasonable chance. 5 consecutive games together would be minimal but it’s far better than the chopping and changing every game.

    • Craig Mc

      18 September 2012 at 15:50

      @Jay wire: I agree with almost all that you have said about Welbeck, and I have already made all those points in previous posts, but maybe not as eloquently as you mate. Nevertheless I have said all that you have stated here. The only thing I disagree with you is, the comment about Welbeck believing in himself. For me he lacks big time in self believe, and especially in and around the box, where he would rather fall down with every opposition tackle, than stay on his feet, and settle in his head, this ball is going in the fookin net. He lacks that killer mentality, that you get from all utterly top class strikers. If as you say Welbeck ever turns out to be a DROGBA type prolific goalscorer, then I will be totally freakin amazed mate, but I wouldn’t put my money on it, it will of course be nice for United if he does. At the moment, Welbeck is like Bambi on ice in the areas where it truly matters!

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