United Make No Apology for Sorry Villa

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Three days since Sir Alex Ferguson’s midweek remorse, Phil Jones opened his account for Manchester United scoring the only goal in a 1-0 victory at Villa Park, much to the delight of the boss himself.

Ater the shocking display against Palace on wednesday night and with City putting 5 past Norwich earlier in the day, United knew that a positive result was a must against the Villains.

On a ground that has seen United struggling in recent years, only 3 draws in the last 3 seasons, Fergie brought back the big guns, with Rooney and Hernandez up front, Nani and former Villa boy Young on the wings supported by Carrick and Jones in midfield. Evra and Smalling got the nod at fullbacks with Vidic and Ferdinand restored as centre backs. Interestingly Lindegaard was chosen ahead of De Gea between the posts, with the spaniard rested for Wednesday’s crucial game away at Basel in the Champions League.

Hernandez’ game lasted just seven minutes, with the Mexican striker stretchered off after falling injury of an ankle injury. The entity of the injury is still not confirmed, but it looked like a bad one and it couldn’t have a come at a possible moment for United, with Berbatov and Owen already injured.

Valencia replaced the injured striker, with Nani coming inside to support Rooney.
Villa offered very little going forward at the beginning and United soon took control, Chris Smalling forcing a smart block from Dunne after 19 minutes.

United were ahead a minute later when Jones volleyed a Nani’s cross into the back of the net after the Portuguese had been allowed way too much space on the left.

It was Jones’ first goal for United since joining from Blackburn and he would hope to get a few more before the end of the season.

While his best position might be at right back or centre back, he’s skilful enough to fill in as midfielder particularly away from home where United seem to suffer .

Suffer, however, today they did not, as Villa failed to put together a decent period of play and United went close again on the 25th minute with Nani forcing a good save from Given after Valencia had delivered a brilliant ball in the box, following a pass from Rooney.

Valencia was himself closed to score, his shot flying narrowly over the bar.

Villa’s afternoon went from bad to worse as they were forced to replace Given with Guzan.

Boos of discontent rang around Villa Park at the end of the first half, but the second half didn’t offer anything better for the home fans until Heskey scuffed a header wide from a good position following a corner.

United created good chances themselves, with Young dragging a shot wide and Welbeck, who had come on as a sub, scoring only to see his goal correctly disallowed for offside.

In the end it wasn’t, by any means, a classic but, in a moment characterised by such patchy form, United will be pleased with another clean sheet and, most of all, another away win.

It’s 6 so far this season, one more than in the whole of last season. The football might not be swashbuckling but there are some positives.

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91 Comments

  1. nice article πŸ™‚
    we totally dominated this game, but what was scary was when chico came off we had a serious lack of people in the box! are we becoming arsenal???? ROONEY man you are a striker- what tactics is fergie putting on you because two years ago you were an amzing striker scoring all the goals and being a huge presence in the box and on the way to being up there with the best!!! Now you are a shadow that is just wondering around the place- i would describe you lately as a person swimming in the shallow end of the pool and afraid to jump into the deep end. You are not silva or sneidjeir as you are far more powerful and direct and you should be playing to your strengths-WHAT IS GOING ON AT OUR CLUB??

    • Rooney looks very lost. Either he bought into the hype about himself being a playmaker, or Fergie’s tactics, but he is playing in entirely the wrong position. His current performances undermine all arguments from the people who said we shouldn’t sign Sneijder because we have Rooney.

      Rooney’s development has been hindered by Fergie abusing his versatility. He was the best striker in the world in the 09/10 season, and now he has to drop back into the midfield because Fergie has ignored our midfield woes. So in fact, the whole blame should be placed on Fergie.

      Our current formation is ineffective, barely successful. We should have evolved into a 4-2-3-1 formation a LONG time ago, with Rooney as LONE STRIKER, not playing in the hole or whatever. But I have come to accept that we will never play a modern formation with Ferguson (due to his stubbornness to do things his way and the fact that we do not have the players of the quality and calibre to fit into them), so I’ll just pray and hope for the best when we line up with a 4-4-2 against Barca, Real or Bayern.

      • “Rooney’s development has been hindered by Fergie abusing his versatility.”

        — Absolutely not true. You could have said that about Rooney when he was sacrificed out left for Ronaldo. In 09/10, he lost form (like he always has done after 2 months of world-class fever). Again this season he was on fire and now he looks nowhere near scoring. It’s Rooney’s fault. He cannot concentrate for more than 6 months and will always slump… unlike Ronaldo, who can keep his ridiculous form going forever it seems…

        Dedication is the difference between Ronaldo and Rooney. Dedication is the reason Rooney will never will Bd’or. Worse yet, it is all for Rooney to improve, but he is 25 or 26 now, and he should know better.

        I say bench him.

        • His loss of form coincided with that terrible ankle injury in Munich (where he took his tally to 34 goals), and was rushed back because Berbatov could not be trusted (rightfully so).

        • Wasn’t it a world cup summer? So the rush back was equally attributed to Fergie and Rooney…

        • Sorry get over it, Ronaldo doesn’t play for United, if you love him so much support Real.. Yes we could bench him and play Diouf?

        • Yes. Bench him and play Berba, Welbeck, Owen, Diouf, Macheda… an out-of-form Rooney is not immune and can be bettered by dozens of strikers in the EPL — Berba definitely is better than out-of form Rooney.

          Ronaldo is a valid comparison because he has maintained his amazing form of 2007/08 until the present whereas Rooney cannot muster 1 full year of form… that’s an issue of dedication, not rotation.

          If you wanna support United go to United.com πŸ˜›

        • Loyal fans like you we really need…Rooney is our best player get over it..Oh Ronaldo plays for his boyhood club, maybe you should support yours

      • Everyone seems to forget Rooney is a confidence player,thats why his form comes in bursts.Atleast thats what i have deduced ever since i seen him play in a Red shirt.If he had CR7’s mentality that would be another story… if wishes were Premier league Dreams.

        • Yeah but we ain’t got time to wait for our main striker to get some confidence mate – soz!

    • What is going on with Wazza should be more to the point – every time things don’t work out for him – he looks round for a player to blame for his shortcomings. I’m sorry Stephen mate – but you gotta admit Wazza is not bringing it considering he is supposed to be one of our main strikers. We need him on top form and bringing it mate – he just seems subdued and despondent – I wonder if his mind is elsewhere as he is not even doing those marvelous sprints at top speed he used to be renowned for. Come on Wazza – we need more from you mate! I’m willing you on πŸ˜€

      • I’ve noticed that Rooney doesn’t enjoy the best of relationships with Nani, who he berates and his passes don’t seem to target him. He needs to put whatever beef he has with Nani to one side, because

        a) Nani is the best player that he has to work with
        b) With Hernandez gone, they need to strike up a good understanding through the middle.

      • Wazza is more interested in spraying cross field passes at the moment after being deployed in midfield. He thinks he is the new Zidane, he just needs to get in the box and get on the end of things mate.

      • 1. We need Rooney on top form because Man utd paid him 250k per week… Right now he’s not deserved the money invested on him.
        2. Nani still thinking that he must be like Ronaldo. His priority is to score rather than supporting the strikers. But the differences are he’s lack of intelligence and his shooting accuracy is too bad.

    • So was Smalling – in fact our whole defence until Rio went off were totally superb – even skinned sausage Evra was bringing it. Come on Ev – lets have more of you on top performance like yesterday! Lindegaard LOVE THE GUY – fire passion fire passion fire passion – same with Jonesy in MF – hope Fergie gives him a good run there – I like!

    • Jones was OK. His passing on multiple occassions was atrocious and caused the death of multiple chances…

      • I don’t think Jones has the discipline and composure to play in a deep two man midfield to be honest. He’s a fantastic talent, but the role just isn’t cut out for him.

        • I can’t agree Moscow mi man – Jones’y is another one who is suffering from Fergie’s rotational positioning – playing different roles almost each game he plays. Like the lad himself said – he hopes that he will eventually be picked in one position and settle down there. I think he was great in MF because he is a ball winner – a superb tackler on the ground, and the more he plays there the better he will get, especially if he gets forwards and adds more goals to his game. Carrick is the one who sprays the ball about mate – so good match him and Jonesy to my mind. It is our strikers who need to improve their performances – they are woeful for some time now. I was noticing yesterday they were in good position to SHOOT but they always for some totally daft reason wanted to take an extra touch and lost themselves all opportunities afforded. Hope the coaching staff look at this!

        • It takes a lot of years even for a midfield prodigy to master the art of playing in a 2 man midfield of any Premier League club, let alone the champions. The only pair I’ve seen in the past 5 years manage to consistently perform was Scholes and Carrick. They kept possession so well, and if Scholesy’s legs hadn’t gone then we would have no problem in the middle.

          Jones should be cautiously integrated into a 3 man midfield. It will take him many years, but only after years of maturing to the tempo of the position can he assume half the responsibility of the entire midfield. His positioning and passing is important, but he needs to channel his aggression and energy. Uncontrolled power, is not power.

          He needs to learn from Carrick, our chief pacemaker. When he learns to dictate the tempo of the game, he will become a formidable midfielder. I hope he doesn’t turn out to be our very own Stevie G. Jonesy is much better than that.

    • let’s put these neighbors back in their cave with a hammering (of them!)

  2. if jones keeps playing in midfield him and clev will be the new keane and scholes, I dont buy into jones being defensive, he is explosive and should be emploeyed as a box to box midfielder

    • I’m starting to come to this conclusion. We have enough good defenders, and it would be mental to keep him out of the team when Cleverley comes back we should start as many games as possible with the following.

      De Gea
      Smalling Ferdinand Vidic Evra
      Jones Carrick Cleverley
      Nani Rooney Young

      4-3-3 is what we should be doing more often. 442 leaves our midfield light too often, and with only one fit real striker we’d be stupid not to give it a go.

      Maybe with a couple of young players around him Carrick will be able to do his thing more efficiently?

      Interesting stat from the twittersphere – in the 373 league minutes Michael Carrick has played this season, United have only conceded once, a dodgy penalty against Newcastle.

      • I’ve been saying this for a year now, we should move on from our 4-4-2 approach. Look at how dangerous we were in 2009-10 with Rooney playing as lone striker up front. Until he got injured we were absolutely unstoppable. Cleverley and Carrick -who’s been impressive recently btw- in midfield, supported by an energetic ball winner, be it Jones or Fletch (if he rediscovers his form), with Nani and Young out wide and Rooney up front. Add to that that we could have Chicha,Valencia and Giggsy coming off the bench. Most teams in Europe play 4-3-2-1 or 4-3-3, as it offers width and pace going forward and better cover when it comes to defend.
        Furthermore, the quality in midfield isn’t good enough to play just 2 in the middle when we face the big teams

  3. Basically we have to pick a position for Jones. Turning him into the next O’Shea isn’t really ideal. Given his tender age, that position should be the one where he has the best chance of getting game time so he can learn the trade. Central defence he doesn’t have a hope as Vidic, Rio, Smalling and even Evans are ahead of him. At right back the twins and Smalling are better. Whereas in defensive midfield there is a desperate need for a tough tackler who can get forward if necessary and as Carrick can also play further up the pitch he should get a good number of games. Agree that he is not good at passing and his positioning is terrible but he can learn all those things and any mistakes he makes will be far less damaging in central midfield than in central defence.

    • I think his best position is in midfield as well. Initially I thought center back – he’s played there the most, that’s where he prefers to play (if I remember his comments correctly), and he could be a rock there for the next dozen or so years.

      But then I watched him against Spain last month, and that changed my mind. Yes, he has things to work on, but if he works on those things, I see him being a far more complete player as a midfielder than a defender.

    • Rio is now looking somewhat older, his legs have gone if not going. For me Jones and Smalling are the next 10 years of United and England defence.

  4. Yeah. The kid is only 19. Whatever he lacks as a midfielder he can easily learn. And we have absolutely no problem identifying and signing center backs. Whereas midfield has eluded us and Ferguson’s reluctance to dip into the market or blood Pogba as well as the injuries to Cleverley and Anderson means there is a perfect opportunity to give Jones a run of games in midfield and see how he equips himself.

    • Pogba I understand from press reports has turned down 15 million quid a week at United, and United wont offer him anymore for someone unproven in 1st team football. His agent is saying that he wont sign for anything less than 45million quid a week which is fookin farcical – but the dumbnuts over at Wasteland will offer him anything his agent asks – why? – because once again they want whatever Man Utd have got. Yes they are that obsessed!

      • I think you mean thousand. He’s not that good! If he ends up at wastelands, that’ll be what happens to his career. How many kids they gonna bring through when they can just break the transfer target and pay Β£250k a week to a new superstar or three every season?

        Their elite development squad (lol) serves one purpose. Churning out a volume of half decent kids they can sell on to add to their transfer fund each season in the wake of FFP.

        • And keeping talent from key rivals (utd) πŸ‘Ώ if only footballers were smarter

        • They don’t need to be smart mate they get money for NOWT these days, and they can be thick as shite – doesn’t really matter!

        • Oops yeah – well spotted Trav – I did mean thousand πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† .

        • Look what Rooney did to become United’s 250 thousand quid player, and has he earned his wages – I definately don’t think so. After the fuss he made about United not having ambition, I wonder how his team mates feel about his contribution this season for that outrageous salary he takes home. Like I said money for old rope – and he is not the only one.

        • He has been woeful for months. Should get back to banging slags, that seems to put him in the right mood!

        • πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† – Trav your naughty! Think about his poor Missus! Nah I think Wazza has learned where the slags are concerned – not to go there!

        • πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† – you might not mind mate – but his poor Missus and his son do! Not to mention his inlaws – his Father in law has bought a fookin big shotgun I understand to deal with any more out of house shagging πŸ˜€ .

  5. I think if I were Rooney I would leave, the lack of support for our best player is not short of a disgrace. His form has dropped, but the support for other players like Anderson who has not performed for seasons and Nani who seems to be the Red Rants golden boy regardless of consistency. I love Nani but for many he never makes poor decisions and his form is blamed on Rooney or Fergie. Rooney gets pulled from piller to post, has muliple strike partners but if his form drops he should be benched.

    • Nani red rants/United fans golden boy – πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† -that’s the funniest and most errant joke I have heard for yonks mate! πŸ˜€ Best laugh I have had in ages too – good one Stephen mi man!

    • 😯 – Don’t worry Stephen mate – if United don’t up Wazza’s wages to 350,000 in the summer he will quote lack of ambition again and threaten to move on all on his own – no prompting! You are bitter with what Ronnie did to us, and some of us still feel the same way about Wazza’a questionable behaviour – there’s no difference between the two mate!

      • Er Ronldo got a pay rise then left, Rooney stayed, how is that the same thing? If you said that Rooney did the same as Keane then you would be correct. What Rooney did was a disgrace and he deserved the stick he got, but I have moved on. Lets see if Real or Barca start making their feelings felt towards Nani shall we, I am sure his head will be turned.
        I like Rooney, but I also no his faults. But he is our top goal scorer who has played midfield and as an off striker. The stick he gets from you especially and others on this site is mystifying. All I am doing is standing up for one of our own, yes he has made mistakes but who hasn’t… Oh sorry Nani.

        • If Real or Barca follows up their interest in Nani I am sure that he will move on – but I hope he doesn’t quote it is down to Man Utd lack of ambition, because if he did he would lose his No1 red rants fan and we all know who that is πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜† .

        • You are the Worlds number one Nani fan, you support him as if he were Nani United.

        • Seeing as you do that with Wazza – and other fans do with their favourite player – you should understand. πŸ™‚

        • Mate how many of those 11 were scored in the PL? And how many were from the penalty spot and not from open play – just asking mate? Surprise me πŸ˜€

        • Don’t penalties count now? How many penalties did Ronaldo score?

        • So what does that mean? Those goals don’t count then? If you score one it counts as two from open play, that is a weak point and proves mine mate.

        • You know they count, but you should also know that most fans expect supposedly top strikers to score from penalties, but for me those that score from open play it counts more. Sorry if you don’t like it, but that’s me.

        • I agree, but he has been pulled from pillor to post and offers more than the usual out and out striker.

    • Why don’t you join Rooney.com is you’re such a fan of him…. πŸ™„ πŸ™„

        • Craig, we both know you have your own agenda with Rooney, you have been open about it. That is up to you, your Nani tinted glasses also cloud you judgement with regards to our winger. When Nani has a poor game the and he gets any from of criticism the toys well and truly get thrown out of the pram with you. Maybe you should show the same sensitivity towards others, but maybe that is simply not your character I don’t know.

        • O right I am the James Bond of Red Rants now guys with an agenda regarding Rooney! If you can get into my psyche and tell me what that agenda is Doctor Steve I would much appreciate it. Yes I have had loads of robust fun and barracking with Rooney fans on the terraces home and away – but as I have stated a zillion times the banter has always finished with most United fans having a bloody good laugh. If I am wrong on anything I always apologise to the person on this blog, down the pub, and on the terraces, but when somebody is paranoid and comes up with things like agenda’s etc – well it is just laughable Stephen. I suggest you go back thru many of my posts lately where to pacify certain parties I have called Rooney Wazza – when I have made truthful comments about his lack of 1st touch or his low performances – I have followed it by saying that HE IS NOT ON HIS OWN in his low performances etc. What more I can do to appease someone like you who although others on this blog are saying the same thing about Wazza’s performances – you always seem to come to the same verdict – ME! Well if it helps your paranoia – so be it. I couldn’t give a fig anymore mate – I will say it as it is, and others can say it as it is regarding my man Nani. If I respond to them and am wrong and see that I always apologise – so end of! Don’t talk to me about Rooney again Stephen and I will return the favour about Nani. I am going to call things as I see them, and several on this particular blog have said things as they see it on Nani – and since the discussion in the last thread with Griff and Rimmers I said I would take the point and I have done. I won’t be getting personal about Nani and I suggest you do the same about Wazza πŸ™„ .

        • Ok Craig not issues from me. I have never attacked Nani, but you always have with Rooney and jump on any bandwagon when others do it. Even Grognard said you were getting stupid with it a while back, it is up to you how you want to spin it, but you don’t like Rooney and everyone knows it.

        • If I don’t like Rooney it is who he is as a person, and not who he is as a player – though we obviously have different opinions on some aspects of his game. Do I like him as a person NO – but do I think he is influential to our team as a player – YES, but not so much of late. I don’t jump on bandwagons – I just agree with those posters who have said that Rooney has not been ALL THAT of late. I would say the same to Groggy if he were still around. Groggy and I have had some humdingers as evenyone knows – but we have been there for each other when it mattered! Anyway I know Grog loves Rooney but he understands why I don’t, and we will never agree probably. But folk need to remember that it is the Rooney as a person I dislike strongly, and not his influence on the team when he is in form – for the half a season he is that is!

        • Truthfully I am a big fan of him as a person, but he is one of the rare World Class players WE still have. If he were sold we would never replace him under the Glazers. People giving him stick for the sake of it is nonsensical. He is the best of what we have, yes he made a monumentus fuck up with what he did last season, but hey footballers are stupid and greedy.

        • But people are not giving him stick for the sake of it Stephen – that’s what you are not understanding mate – they are just critique-ing his poor performances of late! That’s all.

      • No I am a fan of my club and the players who play for it, unlike you mate. I support any player who wears the shirt, especially one who has scored 11 goals this season. Play Owen who is never fit, Berba who is totally out of form and Diouf who lets face it would be suicide, get real.

  6. Lets be honest here fellas, theres no getting around it, like it or not, rooney is our most important player, our talisman, the man everything goes through, and the man who has made the biggest impact overall, over the course of the last 3 years since ronaldos departure.
    I fucking love the lil man too, infact ive gone on record to say i think hes been criminally under rated, sometimes badly treated, by fans and fergie alike, who i feel does the man a dis service by keeping him on such a tight leash in certain games.
    However, if your asking me honestly, who makes this team tick out of the 2, who the most important player in this team is, then i honestly dont see how you can say anyone but wazza.
    Yes hes been stinking up the joint the last 2 months, yes he has these hugely frustrating barren bouts, every bloody year, and yes, he isnt in the same class as ronaldo or messi, but claiming him to be anything other than a truely great player, and the best player in our team in terms of talent and influence, is foolish imo. Sorry craig.
    In any case though, i love the pair of them, always have since the day they arrived, so all this shite about backing your favourites and poo pooing everything the other does, is silly.
    Just appreciate them both for the different things they bring to the table i say. Theyre both top class at the end of the day, and 2 of the few genuinely world class players we have in the squad anymore.

    • I have always supported Nani as he is a cracking player, all I have done is defend Rooney. People have been barracking for ages which for me is totally unacceptable. Yes he held the club to ransom, which was a disgrace, but so did Keane. People still keep going on about Ronaldo who referred to himself a slave for being told he could n’t leave for his “boyhood ” club, but in turn berate Rooney. Rooney has not played to the levels he can, but he has played centre midfield and with Chicharito, Berba and Welbeck who are all very different. Saying bench him is laughable, really who for?

      • I suppose though stephen, with him being pretty much universally viewed upon as being our most important/best player, his bad performances are always going to be under the microscope a lot more than say nani, young, hernandez etc etc whenever they have a bad game, not that thats right.
        I do agree though, he has been treated pretty harshly on here for quite a while, not that his form doesnt deserve it (no goals in 3 months) but then i suppose apart from vidic, no one else has exactly been anything special either, so a bit unfair to be throwing it all just at wayne.

        • Yeah but nobody else is being quoted as being a WORLD CLASS player as frequently as Rooney! That’s the whole point.

        • Thats true mate, but then rooney cant help what the press, fans say about him. Hes been bigged up as this countrys golden boy since the age of 18, and in my opinion for the most part, he has delievered pure quality over the course of the last 7 odd years. Thats what makes him world class for me anyway, the fact that hes kept up this consistency over such a long period of time, getting 20+ goals most years and a shit load of assists, and MOTM awards an all.
          All this whilst hes been moved around all over the place, rarely in a settled position.
          Dont get me wrong, hes not in the class of ronnie and messi, but then they are in a class of their own really arent they.

    • What you on about Tony – you show me where I said Rooney wasn’t the best player in our team – post Ronaldo, and you won’t find it. I also never said he wasn’t our most influential player – you show me where I did. Jeez – this is getting ridiculous. I said he isn’t a WORLD CLASS PLAYER in MY opinion, MY opinion – if he is in yours fair enough. Is he in the sight of the rest of the world – certainly not in Pele’s opinion, but then neither is Messi in Pele’s opinion, because he believe the same as I do that they have not proved it on the world stage. If you think something different then good for you. Each to his own opinion I say. Before you start calling me foolish for THINGS I NEVER EVEN SAID – GET IT RIGHT WON’T YOU? The arguement has never been about Nani versus Rooney either – not as far as I am concerned regarding their influence on the team, I have never said that. People want to bring it down to that, but it is just not TRUE. What most of us red ranters have been discussing in this thread is the Rooney lack of performances to date, and that together with the lack of the performances of the team. So read back thru the blog before you start screaming about foolishness mate, because you are way off in your assumptions. Notice I am not cussing anywhere, because it is not after game where I have had a few jars with my mates, but get your facts right Tony. I don’t begrudge you your high opinion of Rooney, and I am not going to allow you or anybody to try and tell me what I should thing of Rooney either. He has not played well for ages – and the whole football world is saying it. Yes because everybody raves about how great he is as a player – the world is watching and they are not very impressed with his contributions for our club of late and on the world stage in games he has played. You have your right to comment on things as you see them and I have the same right. I have not just said about Rooney’s performance alone – I have said about the whole teams performances – so don’t be going off and making this an issue about Rooney/Nani – read back thru the posts and see what red ranters are saying – it is not about what you are trying to claim it is about – Kapiche?

      • Fair enough craig, i must admit i didnt read through properly, just glanced over, saw this had descended into a nani/rooney debate, and presumed it was a case of “such and such is better than ….” My apologies.
        I stand by what i said though, that rooney is a world class player, and his goals and overall performances for united the last 3/4 years proove this, but then i also happen to think nani is world class too so there you go.
        Both players startling lack of form these last few months is concerning, and both deserve criticism for this at this time, but i think at the end of the day we all realise both are bloody good players, who when on form, are amongst the worlds best in their respective positions. Im sure both will turn it around sooner or later.
        Anyway sorry again for getting the wrong end of the stick.

        • Appreciate that Tony – and I appreciate that you are a Rooney fan and I wouldn’t want to detract from that mate. I think that we agree that our team has not been firing on all cylinders – which is what we are all interested in after all is said and done. We are United thru and thru and not individual players – we are teamists – right? I want the team to do well, always have done = regardless of my personal feelings towards players – on the terraces like all United fans I roar for everyone in the red shirt. Well when the crowd is roaring that is – some of our crowds have been roar-less of late in some very poor games – but still you know what I mean mate. Everybody has their favourite players – that is just human mate – and we are not always going to agree. The things is we should all be able to say what we think about players and performances and it not get personal against each other. I am not talking about personal views on players, but on people getting uppity with others because of comments they make on our favourite players. This has been a big learning curve for me mate – and when I am post game and lager brain dead I can upset a few folk as I am guilty myself of wrong response, but I apologise when I realise I offended someone while under the influence. As the only time I drink is when I am out with mates post game – once or twice a week – usually people like Rimmers, Griff, Grog and others have laughed it off when they have realised the situation. It is good for me that they have eh? Anyway you know what I mean – we all have such different viewpoints Tony, and we all have liberty to express them. I know we agree on most things mate – so I am not worried. Viva Man Utd and all things RED!

        • No need to explain mate, we all know your a passionate fella and red to the core.
          We just all see things differently at the end of the day, we all have our favourites who we defend to death, others we like not so much, but that only makes things more interesting imo.

  7. Its said we should support all our players but in this rooney, nani debate i have to take sides. It’s clear to anyone with eyes that the relationship between the two isn’t as good as we’d like from our two best attacking talents.
    The primary antagonist of this being wayne rooney. Even though he shouts and remostrates with all players he seems to do it alot with nani. Everytime nani has the ball and he doesn’t produce a perfect pass or cross to rooney then it’s shouting n arms in the air or a punch into empty space from wazza to show how disappointed he is with nani. Funnily no one questions rooney when he looses the ball or isn’t in the box to meet all the crosses our wingers send to the box.
    Personally i’ll side with nani, he has never held the club for ransom and usually gets crucified for the smallest mistake while rooney’s inconsistency gets overlooked.
    Nani however doesnt have the personality to be the lead figure at the club and we cannot build a squad around him, rooney however was built for this. He seems perfect for this. Nani is the better player technically and tactically, rooney is however more important for the team as he provides leadership and can easily take all the focus.

    • I can’t see why people think they don’t get on? I would never take as side as it is pointless. Cole and Sheringham didn’t speak but played well together, this Nani/Rooney issue is a falacy.

  8. This whole fookin debate has never been about Nani’Rooney – it was red ranters saying that Rooney has been playing below expected levels for him and certain parties have made it an issue to turn it around and make it about Rooney/Nani to detract from the real issue Rooney’s poor performances of late whether he has played MF or striker. Some United fans may be in denial, but from the posts on here a lot of Red Ranters are not. That’s the issue not Rooney or Nani.

    • I have never made it into that debate, Rooney is out of form but our best player. In fairness Nani has had better spells, but I won’t go there…..

    • There may be difference in opinion if Rooney is world class or not but he is definitely paid as a world class player and like it or not the expectations for him are set at the level of Messis and Ronaldos of the footballing world. And there is one “small” thing: that remarkable season that elevated Rooney to the top was truly a team effort. All team tactics were centered around Rooney and his goal scoring abilities. Many players took personal sacrifices in order for it to happen. Rooney owes it big to the United club and to his teammates. To me he hasn’t paid it in full yet.

      Finally to put things into perspective. People compare Rooney and Ronaldo quite often but they rarely discuss one fundamental difference. What made Ronaldo’s success at United truly exceptional is that he is not English. He played in a foreign country and in a very hostile environment where to many Ronaldo was dirty cheating mercenary with each his step closely scrutinized. Just remember how much stick Ronaldo received after that infamous incident during England vs Portugal game. And what was Ronaldo’s response? He answered it with three seasons of performance to be remembered for ages. Rooney on the other hand plays in his native country with media and fans willing to forgive him any missteps for just for one single flash of brilliance. I don’t think Rooney has the personality and the character to succeed in the hostile environment the way Ronaldo did. I doubt that he would be as successful if he left United to play for Real or Barca. For starters it would require Rooney to master at least basics of Spanish language – a feat that is well beyond his non-footballing abilities.

      • Andrei, My issues with your post are when Ronaldo graced us all with his presence the entire side was built around him. You could say rightly so because he delivered, but Rooney himself was pushed wide left to allow Ronaldo to do his magic. Ronaldo did not have any defensive responsibilities that even Nani has be liable for. Rooney when he played as a striker he opens play up, tracks back and creates. The simple answer Ronaldo is a better player than Rooney, we all know that and should be never refuted, but the big difference with all of Rooney’s diabolical behaviour he is still a United player, unlike the Portuguese. Also the snobbish attitude that Rooney doesn’t have the ability to learn another language is borderline pathetic mate, Tevez doesn’t speak a word of English, like Suarez ant they have done quite well in the English league haven’t they?

        • Well Suarez is doing reasonably well at the moment but he gets in all sorts of a troubles on and off the field. I’m not sure for how long he will last if it goes like this. And I don’t even know where to begin with Tevez. Both are extremely talented footballers but hindered by their backgrounds and struggling to adjust when taken out of their native environments. I’d say Tevez story is probably the most relevant to the Rooney discussion. I’m pretty sure that Rooney would end exactly where Tevez is now if Rooney were to leave United to play for City with all protection and nurturing bestowed upon him by SAF all of a sudden gone. And Rooney’s challenges would only magnify if he played for Real or Barca.

          We all agree that Ronaldo is better player than Rooney but my point is that the difference is less in footballing abilities but more in personality and character. No doubt Ronaldo had a lot of support at United but he faced quite a bit of adversity and uphill battles as well and he was always able to come on the top. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same about Rooney.

  9. If you think you haven’t made it that Stephen I suggest you read back thru your posts with an open and honest mind.

    Ok Rimmers in case you are reading all this with amusement – I am going to leave this war zone before it gets any worse. Read thru the posts and see who made it a Rooney/Nani petty arguement – it wasn’t me! πŸ˜€

    • I have never said anything anti about Nani, I like him, or compared them. All I have said you never see faults in Nani but clearly see Rooney’s, Spec savers for you mate.

    • I’ve not seen anything untoward tbf, just respectful disagreement and healthy discussion…..

      ….as you were…..

        • Eddie what you going on about mate? And where the hell have you been eh?

        • Have had internet problems lately, but my tactical analysis of the Villa game will be up shortly… I think.

          I’ve faced some issues lately, get on Twitter for more info!! πŸ˜†

      • Fook me Rimmers you should be prime minister – you are such a fookin great diplomat mate! A gentleman equivelant to our belated great Redranter himself. No greater accolade could be afforded you mate!

  10. We have only managed a single goal in our last seven league games. That has not happened for a very long time.

    Part of that is because we have lost Anderson and Cleverley who were able to link midfield and attack.

    But also it has coincided with an emphasis on defence that was a natural reaction to the mauling by City.

    The good thing about Rooney is that even when he isn’t scoring he is still doing a lot for the team. Perhaps too much as he has been dropping way too deep lately rather than conserving his energy and getting into the right positions having faith that we will find him.

    Rooney is poor for England because England’s midfield sucks. Now ours isn’t great but it is usually a lot more creative than it currently is. Once our midfield starts doing its job properly I have no doubt that Rooney will start scoring again and we’ll be glad when he does.

    Personally given how slow our midfield is at the moment I think there is a lot to be said for playing Berbatov in the hole with Rooney upfront and give explicit instructions to Carrick and Jones to get the ball to Berbatov so he can use his magical skills to find Rooney in dangerous positions.

    The arguments against using Berbatov fly outside the window when our central midfield is Jones and Carrick. While Berbatov is one of the most creative players we have and that is what we are desperately missing at the moment.

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