Sacrificed It All, To Enrich My Life For A Second!
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Hereford, United Kingdom
Re: 2012-13 English Premier League/Cups Thread - Where attempted murder happens
I wasn't here yesterday but I did watch the West Ham/United game. I'll just post my thoughts on how we did and the game overall. First half we played some great football. The one-two's with each other, the energy at trying to win back the ball, the link-up play and the great chances we created, it was some of the best football we've played all season. Especially the fast pace we were playing at. The Cleverley goal also was a fantastic finish and he was one of our star players. Worked his socks off all match but was kind of anonymous in the second half.
Second half we just stopped playing until West Ham scored their second goal. The two goals we conceded was through some terrible defending. Granted Cole delivered two great goals but they should have been avoided but both times Vidic reacted slowly. Speaking of Vidic, I don't think the guy is done. He's hardly played any football for the past 15 months and has just returned from knee surgery. It's going to take him some time getting back into the swing of things. Apparently he was dead in the Swansea game but in the second half of that match he bossed it and handled Michu well. Yesterday against West Ham he was hit and miss. He nearly scored a goal and won a lot of the aerial battles but at times he did get outpaced and was slow to react. Not his best game but he did some decent things. Give him some time.
Smalling didn't have a good night and Buttner was woeful except for one good attack. I'm one of those that would like for him to get a few more chances but he really needs to improve on his defending as every ball mostly came in down his flank. I really miss Fabio.
Evans I thought had a solid game, he defended well and came forward a lot and did pretty well when on the attack. Kagawa had a bad game but he's just returned also. He's not had a good track record in our away games and gets easily outmuscled when on the ball but what let him down yesterday was his first touches. Really poor and he didn't create anything. Give him time though, he showed some good form in the home games and like I said, he's just returned. That and he's not playing in his preferred position.
Scholes was okay, that's all. Delivered some fine long balls but slowed our play down a lot of the time. Chicharito had a quiet game second half but I enjoyed what he contributed first half. He linked up well, made some good runs and set up the Cleverley goal beautifully. Welbeck worked hard but didn't really create anything going forward in the second half (after some good attacks in the first half). He's also on a very long goal drought but that's to be expected when he hasn't featured much and is now our 4th striker.
Rafael, what a beast of a player this season. He had another great game yesterday and as a winger. I'd be intrigued to see him get more chances as a winger as he gives so much more than Valencia at the moment. Rafael did drift in quite a lot (creating some good attacking opportunities) and didn't deliver as many balls into the box but he worked hard. He seemed like a more defensive midfield player at times, tracking back and winning the ball back for us. He charged forward for the attacks when he had to. It wasn't until Valencia came on that Rafael delivered that fantastic cross into the box for Giggs. I definitely want to see Rafael in that position again though.
Valencia was so poor when he came on. He did 3 good things; beat his man once and delivered 2 decent balls into the box with his left foot, which was shocking to see. He's obviously been told to change it up but still, he did nothing for us when he came on except for some dreadful crosses and that god-awful shot at the end. I hope he regains that form eventually.
Van Persie only needed one opportunity and it was a class finish. Van Persie and Chicharito have saved our asses a lot this season. Van Persie's goal though and the first touch to drag it out of the air was magical and to finish it with his right foot... excellent. The set up by Giggs - what a brilliant ball and the way he delivered it was epic. I've criticised Giggs the last 2 seasons because he has been poor, his passes have been wasteful and he dwells on the ball for far too long he ends up allowing 3 players to come in and win it easily off him. However, I haven't been one of those to say he should retire (although I sarcastically said him and others should be shot out back when they were playing poorly I'll admit). I still think he can offer something on the LEFT wing. Not in midfield but on the left, where he's played well recently (since the Swansea game). I'd like to see him and Young/Rafael start on the wings more and see how they do.
Overall, we don't need the extra game but I'd rather us be in the cup that out of it. I'd really like to see United win the FA Cup this season as it has been ages since we lifted it. Hopefully in the replay we play like we did in the first half against West Ham for the entire 90 minutes this time. Second half we just never showed up and played very sloppy and lethargic. Keep up the tempo in the return game.
I also didn't catch the Suarez handball incident (apart from the gif posted on the other page) but it looks like the officials screwed things up... again. How can you miss a handball like that I'll never know.