United 1 - 0 CSKA Moscow

Young Smalling Blind Rojo
Schweinsteiger(Herrera) Carrick
Mata(Memphis) Rooney Lingard
Good game from Lingard bagging an assist in the process
We've finally seen United score a goal after three consecutive blanks. Moscow came to Old Trafford to draw and they almost managed to do so. It was frustrating trying to see our players attack only to be outnumbered in the final third. I think CSKA only really troubled our defence once but, if I'm honest, that one chance they created was better than all of ours bar the one we scored. 

On the 77th minute, Doumbia managed to get through on goal with DDG to beat. Our goalie managed to produce an excellent block but the ball fell to Moscow's striker again who only had to shoot the ball over Ashley Young who slipped near United's goal line. However, Smalling managed to produce an amazing recovery as he slid and blocked Doubia's goal-bound shot. What an interception and what a player he's become. I know I keep praising him week in week out but I honestly don't think there's a better centre half in England at the moment. Definitely my man of the match. 

Relief. Rooney scores the winner.
DDG and Smalling's heroics spurred our boys at the front to do more and we managed to take the lead a couple minutes later. Rojo, who had a very good game, tackled Moscow's winger and the ball ended in Carrick's feet. The Englishman delivered an inch perfect cross to Lingard who squared to Rooney as the latter headed home. It was great seeing Roo score because a lot of people thought that he should have been off the pitch instead of Martial when the Frenchman was subbed off. A lot of people were booing LVG's decision when he opted to replace Martial with Fellaini. I got the feeling that the Old Trafford crowd wanted Roo off. It's either that or their booing was purely because a useful midfielder who runs around like a headless chicken was replacing our only ray of hope up front. To be fair with LVG though, Martial was marked out of the game today. There were times when three players were marking him when he had the ball. So I understand his decision to take him off.

Anyway, I haven't seen Rooney celebrate with such emotion as he did today. His goals this season were all following by kissing the heavens. Today he punched frantically the air and ran straight to the fans. Great to see. A minute after he scored, Roo showed his class with a lovely disguised pass to Lingard whose shot was well saved by Akinfeev. 

I though young Lingard did quite well today. He was really involved during the first half but wasn't as effective as he would've liked. However, he was much better during the second half. Schweinsteiger had one of his best games in a United shirt. He fully deserved the standing ovation at the end. Carrick had a mixed game. There were times when he was wasteful and others when his passing was exquisite. Was very unlucky not to score a volley midway through the second half. Mata was quiet. Both Blind and Young did well. Overall it was a good performance by United but nothing extraordinary. The game pretty much summed up our season so far; excellent at the back, brilliant in possession but toothless in front of goal. If LVG manages to improve us up front, we'll be just fine. 

WBA next. They have won three of their five away games this season so we shouldn't take this fixture lightly. Come on United!

LvG: “David de Gea has saved us and after that Michael Smalling has saved us.” - emphasis on MICHAEL. He'll never be Chris again.


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