Re: 2012-13 English Premier League/Cups Thread - Now feat. FACHTS & car window interv
I just finished watching the extended highlights of the United/West Ham game on Football First. I thought we did okay but we looked very nervous at the end, allowing West Ham to get more possession and to strive forward without adding any real pressure on them. Also, Evra tried to screw us over with that pathetic attempt at a back pass to Anders. Yet when Evra makes these awful mistakes, the pundits look over that and pick out Rafael as apparently being our worst defender or according to Garth Crooks "his consistency is inconsistent".
These people need to properly watch a United match and see that Rafael has been our stand out player this season and has saved us numerous times with some of his BRAVE sliding blocks. The guy has come on leaps and bounds this season. Definitely making the right back spot his own and is by far the best right back in the league along with Zabaleta, although I'd edge it towards Rafael at the moment.
IrishJet, United07 and myself always raved about Rafael and how he was going to become great eventually. He had that raw talent but he would always get injured when he was developing. Thank god we're seeing a fit and healthy Rafael, whose getting a lot of games under his belt and he's showing that talent that we all saw in him. He's really matured in the right back role. The way he intercepted the passes by always reading the game, making the blocks, the perfect tackles, adding pressure to anyone on the ball and outjumping Carroll (again) was a real highlight. Rafael had Jarvis in his pocket all night that it would lead to Jarvis having to move to the other wing and make a go at Evra. Fantastic performance.
I should also mention Anderson, who once again proved why he's by far our best midfielder this season. The drive and determination he shows on the pitch mixed in with his creativity is a joy to watch. I'd love to see him link up with Kagawa, I can see both forming a strong partnership together. Why Ferguson keeps persisting with Carrick, Scholes or Giggs when they have all been average to bad this season is beyond me. We need energy in that midfield and Anderson gives us that. A solid performance on his part and I hope he can have a long season without sustaining an unfortunate injury, which is what usually tends to happen. From his interviews at the beginning of the season, he knows he has a lot to prove and this might be the season we see him make a name for himself. I hope he gets a long run in the team and is picked in the starting XI for the Reading match.
Smalling and Evans also played well and were rock solid at the back. Cleverley wasn't that great from what I read but I don't think he was awful. Rooney needs to pick things up as he'll have a few brilliant games and then a real stinker in a couple of games after that. It's sad to see Rooney has appeared to have lost his pace, the guy just never surges forward anymore or dribbles past the midfield/defenders as much if at all. The last time he did that was in the 3-3 draw at Stamford Bridge earlier in the year. Just seems to use his footballing brain now. I do miss the days when he would sprint forward on a counter attack whereas now, he simply plays the ball from deep on the counter. Take the Newcastle game (the one where we won 3-0) for example.
Van Persie did alright and Hernandez popped up here and there with some good moments (although pretty much anonymous). Carrick was average, Lindegaard saved us at the end and Young was bad when he came on. I feel sorry for Young though, the guy was great at the start of last season and then got injured. Came back, took a while but started to regain that form and now he's completely lost it this season after getting injured once again. The fans are getting on his back but I think we should just wait. He's obviously lost his confidence and needs time to get that form back. I'm sure we'll see it again.
Good to get the 3 points and cleansheet but our performance needs to improve a lot. I hope that happens on Saturday.