United 2 - 0 Arsenal
Brown Smalling Vidic Evra(Scholes)
Rafael(Giggs) O'Shea Gibson Fabio(Valencia)
|Fabio did well but ran out of steam after 45 minutes|
I'm not going to lie, the line up raised both of my eyebrows. I thought that Fergie was sacrificing this game for Tuesday's crunch match vs Marseille. I also thought that Fergie had just admitted that we were close to being down to the bare bones. But I never learn to never ever in a million billion years question Sir Alex. Tomorrow I'm printing a placard with the words 'never doubt Fergie' and I'm going to glue it to my forehead. He never sends out a team that is not capable of winning the game.
|Hands up if you think Fabio will score|
The visitors started brightly but our players showed enough grit to overcome a nearly full strength Arsenal side. Fabio and Rafael ran their socks off with the former scoring the opening goal. At the back, Smalling and Vidic were exceptional. I've almost grown tired of saying, over and over again, that Vidic is a phenomenal defender but the rapid progress Smalling is showing is surprising me every time he plays. He didn't have a very good game last week, true, but with that game aside, he has barely put a foot wrong in his recent outings. I also thought that Brown had a good game. I'm not really confident in Brown when he plays as a centre back but when he plays as a full back he's a very good player. He's been getting a decent amount of game time recently and I'd love it if he stays with us. I like Brown and I also really like his chant! It's being sung a lot at the games and if you spend 2 hours with me you'll probably hear me sing it!
Gibson and O'Shea, our central midfielders, did what they had to do. They contained Arsenal with the help of the excellent Wayne Rooney. He scored one and had a say in the other. His play today was brilliant. Chicharito had a decent game and could have scored a goal late in the game. At the other end VDS pulled off two stunning saves that really made me ask 'Why on earth is he retiring??' He could easily play for another two years!
|It's good to see Valencia back. Very good comeback as well.|
I obviously have to say a word about Valencia. His play today was simply a teaser of what we have missed during the past 6 months. Power, agility, crossing, you name it, he's got it (except for a good left foot that is). We missed him dearly and his return will be a massive boost for us. He played for 45 minutes and played extremely well. Welcome back Antonio!!!
Arsenal's supporters were blabbering about winning the quadruple a mere two weeks ago. Fast forward to Saturday 12th March and they have only one competition to play for. They laughed at us when we lost vs Liverpool and Chelsea but maybe it's our time to laugh at them for failing to beat us with O'Shea, Gibson, Rafael & Fabio playing in the middle. No wonder they couldn't muster one shot at goal vs the likes of Xavi and Iniesta.