Tottenham 0 - 0 United
Jones McNair(Shaw) Evans(Smalling)
Valencia(Rafael) Carrick Mata Rooney Young
Falcao van Persie
|After an excellent first half, Roo ran out of steam during the second|
We should have won this one. We were excellent during the first half but our forwards spurned a couple of decent chances and their goalie was really good when we tested him. We managed to beat Hugo Lloris twice but found the linesman flagging for offside on one occasion and the post denied us on the other.
|RVP should have finished this chance|
I expected van Persie to do better when one-on-one with their keeper after a sublime pass from Carrick. He has looked sharp lately so I was surprised he fluffed his chance. Falcao should have scored one but his shots looked quite frail. Both our strikers were out of the game during the second half and cut out frustrated figures. I don't think we tested Lloris during the second period.
What changed during the second half was that Tottenham pressed more and our players, especially the defenders, struggled when under pressure. Rooney and Mata were both excellent during the first half but seemed to have tired out during the second. That's why there seemed to be no connection between our defence and the attacking department. We did create two chances during the second half but Mata shot over the bar when placing the ball would have been an easier, more sensible, option while RVP saw his effort go wide. At this level you cannot miss this many chances and, to be honest, by the final whistle we were lucky we got a point.
Am I disappointed? Yes, of course. I knew it was going to be a difficult game today and I would have taken a draw before the match BUT what I saw during the first half was probably our best football we've played away from home. We should have had Tottenham dead and buried by the break. Young, Mata and Rooney were brilliant. Valencia wasn't half bad either so I can't see why Rafael replaced him. The latter looked uneasy playing there and was found wandering on a couple occasions.
Evans and McNair were a bit shaky but I thought Jones did quite well today. De Gea kept a clean-sheet but wasn't called to do any outstanding saves.
It's another two points dropped and slowly the teams trailing us are getting closer. Challenging for the league is a lost cause, getting that European spot should be our main goal. I don't like the fact that Arsenal are only a couple of wins away from us because they've become experts in securing Champions League football so you'd expect them to get in the top 4. We have Stoke coming up next. Another tough game. We've only won twice on the road this year let's hope we make it three. It will be another tough game but we've got the players to beat any team in the PL and van Gaal will soon have a full squad to choose from. Come on United!