Monday, April 30, 2012

City 1 - 0 United

De Gea
Jones Smalling Rio Evra
Park Carrick Scholes
Nani Giggs

First things first... I didn't watch the game. I just couldn't handle the pressure and therefore headed to Valletta to watch a sumptuous fireworks festival. Obviously I had United on my mind all along but at least I didn't endure the heart-stopping 90 minutes fellow reds had to go through. I pussied out, I know. 

Somehow, whenever I watched United at Old Trafford, I never felt 10% as excited as I feel at home. I guess I should be watching United at stadiums week in week out before I do more damage to my heart.

I heard that United barely built a decent attack and therefore City deserved their win.  It's the first game in 3 years during which our side didn't muster a single shot on goal. Fair play to City. They're now one step closer towards securing their first title in years and, I guess,  they had to win it sooner rather than later. They bought their way towards the top and that will be their way for the upcoming years and we'll have to live with that.

There's still slight hope though. Should City drop points vs Newcastle, who were humiliated by Wigan last Saturday, then it is still game on. However I have to admit that is highly unlikely. City have come a long way, nearly bottled it a month ago and have fought their way back to the top once again. I don't think they'll bottle it again.

If we lose the league we certainly haven't lost the league today. We haven't lost the league vs Wigan because they deserved their win. We lost the league vs Everton because we simply SHOULD have won that game. 

I expected today's loss, therefore I'm not as gutted as after the game vs Everton but I'm still gutted nonetheless. Lets hope lady luck smiles at us in the upcoming games while City run out of luck. Tomorrow we'll have to wake up and smell the coffee....we handed the league to City. Goodnight! 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

United 4 - 4 Everton

De Gea
Rafael Evans Rio Evra
Valencia(Chicharito) Carrick Scholes(Jones) Nani
Rooney Welbeck

I just can't believe what happened today. We were cruising and still let Everton back in the game. Our defenders had a game from hell but I cannot complain much about our strikers. Nani, Welbeck and Rooney scored some beautifully worked goals but our defenders let us down. The 8 point advantage has now decreased to 3 and I fear we have thrown a seasons hard work away today. Absolutely gutted. 

Welbeck Scored a Beauty
Our players failed to show up during the first 30 minutes but things started to work out later on in the first half. Rooney managed to equalise before half time and I thought that goal would spur us on. We started the second half brightly as our strikers and wingers managed to combine together and work out some excellent goals. At 4-2 I thought it was game over. I cannot recall when a United team threw away a two goal advantage at Old Trafford. God I was wrong.

Every shot by Everton during the second half went in. The goalie cannot be blamed because our defenders left him too exposed. Evans and Rafael really struggled today. I'm writing this 4 hours after the final whistle and I still cannot stomach what happened at OT today. 

Now we need to go to the Etihad and make City drop points. Defeat is not an option. If we had an 8 point, or even 5 point, advantage then we could have afforded to lose at the Etihad but we've put ourselves in a situation were we just cannot lose. If in August I was asked whether I would be happy to be in this current situation I would have definitely said YES however, given that we threw away an 8 point advantage, I'm absolutely livid. I'm pretty disheartened at this point. I believe we've thrown everything away but I'd like to think to myself that we'll be able to win at the Etihad.  I hope our boys have enough character to see through the remaining games. We have enough to win all the remaining games... let's hope our players don't crumble under the pressure. In Fergie we trust. Come on United!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

United 4 - 0 Aston Villa

De Gea
Rafael Evans Rio Evra
Valencia Carrick Scholes(Cleverley) Young(Nani)
Rooney(Berbatov) Welbeck

A brace by Roo and two goals by Welbeck and Nani gave us a deserved victory. Roo paved way to a comfortable victory from the spot after Young,  yet again, was fouled inside the box. Unlike last week, this WAS a penalty but just like last week Young managed to exaggerate the situation. Given yesterday's incident in Italy, dramatizing such situations is a no-no. Anyway, it was an easy Victory and United could have easily won by a wider margin. 

I'm pretty pleased with the outcome of the game but we must admit that we played against an average side. This Villa side is plagued by injuries and, although I was a tad nervous before the game, I had a feeling this was going to be a walk in the park.

Not much to comment about. I liked everybody's contribution today even though some players, including Wayne Rooney, were a bit casual in their passes. After yesterday's result, we desperately needed a win and some goals. City are now 4 goals better than us in their goal difference and they'll probably increase that tally vs a very poor Wolves side. I don't expect them to drop any points until the derby at the Etihad while I expect Everton to give us a tough test at Old Trafford. Thankfully Liverpool might've done us a bit of a favor by winning vs the Toffees because they'll probably be down after that defeat. 

That sour taste I got after the Wigan defeat has finally been eradicated. We needed a win and we got it. Well done lads, bring on Everton! 

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Wigan 1 - 0 United

De Gea
Jones Evans Rio Evra
Valencia Carrick Giggs Young(Cleverley)
Rooney(Nani) Chicharito(Welbeck)

So the 12 game unbeaten run was brought to an abrupt end by a resolute Wigan side. We didn't deserve to draw today let alone win. Wigan scored during the first half but somehow for some reason the refs decided to cancel the goal. We were lucky there. However, things evened themselves out when Wigan were awarded a non-existent corner and from the resulting action Maloney scored. I'm still not 100% sure but I think we could have easily been awarded a pen during the second half. However, nothing could excuse the poor performance our boys put. 

Carrick was unusually quiet today
With the exception of Welbeck, who really did his best when he came on, I cannot really think of anybody who had a decent game. Rooney, Giggs, Chicharito, Jones, Carrick and Valencia, yes, the mighty Valencia, were abysmal at best. Obviously I'm just disappointed with the performance because I know all our players could do much better and I expect them to do better during this stage of the season. However, credit must be given to the Wigan players. They won the midfield battle and their strikers, especially that dreaded Moses, gave our defenders a torrid time. Their defence kept our striker Chicharito out of the game and managed to frustrate Rooney up to a point that he couldn't even deliver one decent cross-ball. I hate to say it but Chicharito is becoming a bit of an annoyance up there. He can't dribble, he can't control the ball and he barely knows how to pass. He's a great finisher though and that is what's keeping him in our side. 

So what went wrong? Sometimes a brilliant player could carry a team on his back but we lacked that player today because everyone underperformed. Also it is highly possible our team missed Paul Scholes. That fella knows how to control a game without the tippy tappy football. His replacement, Giggs, tried to be too cheeky on a couple of occasions and that's simply a no-no in such games. Still, I don't think a club of this stature should be relying on a 37 year old.

Anyhow we are 5 points clear so this defeat doesn't really mean the end of the world. City will play Norwich this weekend and, just like we found Wigan a tough nut to crack, City will probably find it difficult to break the Canaries in their back yard. The title is ours to lose, let's hope the 3 points dropped today aren't the first steps towards a collapse of biblical proportions. Sir Alex knows how to handle the team after this defeat and I'm more than optimistic we'll be able to bounce back vs Aston Villa on Sunday. Come on UNITED!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

United 2 - 0 QPR

Rafael(Jones) Evans Rio Evra
Valencia Carrick Scholes(Cleverley) Young(Giggs)
Rooney Welbeck

The league is ours to lose. Our boys performed very well today while Arsenal did us a huge huge favor. A team managed by Sir Alex won't surrender an 8 point advantage. 

Roo kept his cool to slot home
The ref gifted our team a penalty today. Young was in an offside position and that should have nullified Derry's challenge. So NO that wasn't a penalty, but it was given and all the ABU's should get over it. I watched City's game and Balotelli should have been sent off during the first half but he wasn't and I didn't hear anybody whining about that. The sending off did affect the game, obviously. We had 70% of the possession and that is highly because of the red card. However, when Derry was sent off, QPR parked a double decker in front of their keeper Kenny and this made life difficult for our players. Finding a gap in that defence was very difficult and that is the reason why our players started to shoot from outside the penalty area during the second half. So a lot of credit has to go to our players. Most pundits chose to overlook our players' contribution and credit the ref for our win today.

Scholesy is doing better than he did last year
Rooney opened the score from the spot and Scholes scored a scorcher. Both Rafael and Carrick rattled the post during the second half, so United could have easily won by a wider margin today. All players did well and I guess Scholes was my man of the match. He scored a crucial goal, his third of the season, and sprayed passes for fun throughout the game. His return left me flabbergasted but I guess it was one of Fergie's best decisions to persuade Scholes back into the game. Legend. 

I'm delighted. We are now on the verge of winning our 20th league title. Winning it at Eastlands is now a huge possibility and that would be sweet. Wigan away next. Let's hope our players aren't complacent. If they concentrate they should brush Wigan aside. COME ON UNITED! :) 

United - QPR

I will update this blog after the Arsenal vs City game, since I will be watching that game.

Fingers Crossed!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Blackburn 0 - 2 United

De Gea
Rafael Evans Rio Evra
Valencia Carrick Scholes(Young) Jones(Giggs)
Chicharito(Welbeck) Rooney

Rio made a stunning goal saving tackle that kept us in with a shout
United's 20th league title is now truly within touching distance. City have cracked under the pressure while our boys kept delivering the goods week in week out. Eleven premier league matches ago, just after that Newcastle game, I tried to convince myself that United were still going to win the league. We were completely brushed aside by an impressive Newcastle side. Fast forward to this present day and, bar a slip of biblical proportions, I just feel tonight's win has won us the league. I know that there's a certain phrase involving counting and chickens but I have that feeling that tonight's win was indeed a massive one.

Two goals scored in the final 10 mins put us 5 points ahead of City. Both of the goals were fit to win any football game. Valencia opened the score with a scorching thunderbolt while Young secured the win by scoring another impressive placed goal. Brilliant goals. 

Vital Win
United were much better than Blackburn but Kean's side was quite resolute. Their defence was as stubborn as an angry Balotelli wanting to take a freekick. However, the constant possession we had might have taken its toll on Blackburn's energy levels and in fact they simply gave up after our first goal. Our defence was solid, bar the odd sloppy pass. Rio made one brilliant intervention that denied Yakubu a certain goal. In midfield, Valencia was impressive once again while Scholes, Carrick and Jones weren't as effective as Fergie would've wished.... in my opinion. In fact we looked better when Fergie brought on Giggsy and Young. At the front Rooney was all over the place delivering mouth watering cross field passes while Chicharito endured another miserable night. Our Mexican never re-captured last year's form.

In our goal, De Gea was brilliant. He made a couple of stunning saves and those saves must've made up for his mistakes vs Blackburn at Old Trafford. All is forgiven David!

I'm delighted. This was a massive win, make no mistake about that. Valencia's celebrations suggest that anyway. He rarely celebrates after a goal but he went crazy after today's stunning effort. QPR at home on Sunday while City face Arsenal. Well done to every player, the manager and of course the Red Army who sang their hearts out. I've got a feeling we could be 8 points clear by Sunday night. Let's hope so...