United and Liverpool’s rivalry is a fiery one and today’s game didn’t lack any of the passion you would expect but two big decisions will be grabbing the headlines so here is my take.
The penalty: On first look, it looked a clear penalty, Daniel Agger clearly made contact with Dimitar Berbatov and my brother who happens to be of the enemy said the same, but upon watching the replay I think it was a soft touch.
Webb was a fair distance away from the the actual incident and he may or may not have seen it so it will be called a bad decision but as I said watching it at full speed without a reply I thought it was a penalty and that’s with a better view.
There has been talk of it being a dive but there was definitely contact and whilst it wasn’t the kind of contact that should merit a penalty there was contact nevertheless. Agger’s defending wasn’t the smartest and was made to pay. The Scousers are in uproar about the decision talking about Berbatov going down to easily but a Scouser will confirm that during yesterday’s coverage of the FA Youth Cup game between Liverpool and Crystal Palace, John Aldridge implored a young player to go to ground and chided him for being too honest. Live by the sword die by the sword eh?
The Red Card: I don’t understand why this is such a hotly disputed topic. For me this is a certain red card and had he done more damage to Carrick I would be even more livid than I am. ITV made a point of highlighting the incident prior where Raul Meireles appeared to bottle a 50-50 with Rafael. Gerrard being the great leader that he is had to lead from the front and show how its done and flew in on Carrick.
He had left the ground and had studs showing, offences that would and should see you red carded at any level of football. Perhaps because of the nature of the penalty Webb had given at the start of the match, such a big thing is being made of the decision to send Gerrard off but the fact he didn’t even show remorse and was mouthing off takes away an sympathy the most bias of spectators may have had.
The game came to life in the second half and we could and I think should have been awarded a penalty after a foul on Giggs but we won the game ad the decision to award the first may have prevented Webb from pointing to the spot again.
Despite this the most important fact of the day is that we won and that we are through to the next stage of the competition.