Date: 12th March 2012 at 3:11am
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Football… Bloody hell!

Sir Alex uttered these words after our crazy win against Bayern Munich in the 1999 Champions League final, and they will forever be  a memorial to how crazy this game can be.

After the inquest into how we had performed so poorly against Athletic Bilbao revealed that the gap between us and the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona had widened, United looked to show they were still top dogs at home.

The doom and gloom that surround our apparent ‘crisis’ club was lifted with a dominant win over an impressive West Brom side, a win that could have been a lot heavier had we been a bit less wasteful in front of goal.

As seen against Bilbao, Javier Hernandez is still a tad rusty but looks a threat and will certainly add to the 10 goals he already has before the season’s end. David De Gea continues to grow as our number 1 with another competent display. Reliable when called upon and always ready to start an attack with his brilliant distribution, you have to hope that this spell has ended all arguments as to who should be our first choice keeper.

Here are 5 (or more!) thoughts on today’s game:

Ashley Young

Ashley Young has come in for some serious stick from our fans this season. Having started the season in blistering form, he allowed his performances to seriously dip. This wasn’t helped by the fact that he had a couple of injuries, but it seems that Young is getting back to his best.

Last weekend his 2 goals were vital to beating Tottenham in a tough game, and today he absolutely slaughtered West Brom from out wide. Ryan Giggs was our man to give defenders ‘twisted blood’, but with his transformation it appears that Young is more than happy to do his best Giggs impression. Tamas, Mulumbu and anyone else who dared venture onto the our left side was tied in knots by Young as well as Evra, who Young often linked up with to cause more mayhem.

This was easily one of Young’s best performances, if not his best and it was an important one too.

In a team sans Nani and Valencia it was vital that he made the difference out wide and what a way to do so. If he can continue in this vein of form, Nani can find his form and Valencia returns playing as well as he was before he got injured then it won’t so much be death from above as death from out wide!

Danny Welbeck

You will know that we are very much fans of Danny Welbeck on this blog and performances like today’s reinforce that. For a man so young his energy, invention, application and general attitude are hard not to admire. The little back-heel to Young in the first half was sumptuous and had it lead to a goal it would have been one of the season’s highlight reel moments.

He was often in the thick of things and playing in a wider position than normal this was impressive. He seems to have everything in abundance, but with that said it doesn’t mean he doesn’t have areas to work on.

Today he should have had at least 1 goal, and the game was a microcosm of him as a player. Whilst already an asset to the team,  he needs to work on his composure in front of goal and his finishing. That effort he missed wasn’t the easiest of chances, but he will know himself he should have put it in instead of past Ben Foster’s post.

This isn’t to say he is a poor finisher, but he could do with polishing this part of his game in order to bring it up to the standard of all the other facets of his game. Once he gets it right, he will be a bigger handful than he already is and at just 21, I think he has enough time to do so.

Wayne Rooney

A few weeks ago Wayne Rooney said he feels he has the goals in him to fire United to the title. Although he has been in good goal scoring form this season I assumed this was typical striker talk. But it appears he wasn’t joking. Since saying that at the end of February he has scored 3 in the 2 league games he has played and 5 in total.

Whilst people laud Robin Van Persie for the goals he has scored for Arsenal, Rooney has been silently racking up the goals too and with 27 already on the board he looks set to beat the 34 he scored in 09/10, his best haul so far.

Whilst he may go through spells where he fails to find the back of the net (the longest this season has been 5 games) when he is in form he will get you goals. A fit and in form Rooney was always going to be key to our title hopes and as seen with the two goals he got today, he can be the difference between being champions and runner up.

Jonny Evans

A usually maligned figure in the United team, even the most ardent Evans bashers must now give him the praise he deserves.

Evans has been very good for large parts of this season, but sadly it will go unnoticed as people insist on holding on to his previous poor form. Today he was head and shoulders our best defender and to be honest he has been our best defender this season too. He has cut out the mistakes that once plagued his game due to lapses of concentration, and as an added bonus his ball playing his improved immensely.

He has always been a decent passer of the ball, but now he carries the ball forward from the back with a confidence that makes building attacks a lot easier especially with De Gea’s brilliant distribution.

This season when journos were writing our obituary, one of the things many pointed too was that we were carrying ‘excess weight’, players that were just along for the ride and not good enough to be at United. Evans was one of the primary figures named, I wonder how many will be willing to hold their hands up and admit they were wrong about him?

City wobbling

This is an extra point but a necessary one.

Last week Sir Alex said it may not even take until April 30th for either United or City to pull clear, and whilst this razor thin lead isn’t exactly us pulling clear, it seems Sir Alex was right.

It appears ‘squeaky bum time’ has started for Man City, and the pressure of leading the pack may have got to them. People always asked how would they deal with the business end of the title chase, giving us the edge as we had been here so many times before whilst they were relatively new to this experience.

After the tough run of games we had in January and February, many said it would be plain sailing for us whilst City had a tough few games before the apparent title decider on April 30th. They have stumbled at the first hurdle and there will be tougher tests to come as well.

The image of that City fan crying after Swansea took the lead today is telling. He appears to have lost faith in his side, realising that his side have let their lead slip and that things may be about to get a lot worse!


6 responses to “5 (+1) Thoughts On The 2-0 Win Over WBA”

  1. Trydent says:

    That bitter is not the only one in tears!The whole pack of twisted bitter win nothings will again blame everyone but the true cause of their teams mediocrity.They are losers-past present and future!A rubbish club supported by more rubbish!

  2. narita utaka says:

    critics came and gone like it never happened.
    Fans these days, no passion,too much hungry, and and can’t patiently wait. They scram players like they did a crime when have bad performance just one game. Praised like they’re a god when the doing good.
    With Bilbao, sound of thousands Bilbao’s supporter overwhelmed UTD’s supporter who has greater numbers likes 30 thousands more. Seriously, what is the meaning of UTD supporter these days. Walk into OTF as attendance or supporter?

  3. N33 says:

    So pumped to see united back on top! Haven’t we waited ? However, the praise you give young is Remenicent of the praise Valencia used to get before he REALLY hit form . Before he was average but everyone gave him so much praise and Then when he really turned it on people were like ‘seems like he’s finally over come the injury’ . Went a bit off track there, my point being, young wasn great last night, he got a lot of the ball but his FINAL ball, that crucial pass that leads to a goal, can and should be much better.

  4. kieran says:


    completely agree about young and his final ball. He always looks to cut on his right and can be predictable. Valencia and Nani clearly ahead in the pecking order.

    If Rooney hits 40 for the season with more chipped in from elsewhere we should be celebrating no.20

  5. karlomu says:

    What about pogba getin a run does this mean he`ll sign for us, would he have played if we were gonna let him go i have a feeling he,s having a change of mind ,if you look at what fergie said about him after the game i have a feeling he,s winning the battle of wits between himself and pogba`s agent.
    i think young was great against wba his final ball does need to be better,he is still feeling his way back after injury and will improve, along with valencia coming back into the side hopefully on the same form he was in before injury and we will have a balanced suply line into rooney welbeck and chicharito.So there is goals in this side and looking at the next four fixtures for utd and city its looking good for the reds…(just need to leave rio out of the athletic club game fuck it lets just concentrate on the getting that 20 th league).

  6. Adam says:

    Manchester United biggest enemy is themselves in the race to win the title. We have a habit of making it difficult for ourselves and I hope that doesn’t happen now. The next 5 games are crucial for Man Utd and we have to win them all. We are still wasteful in front of goal and that has to stop. We should have scored 4-5 goals yesterday.

    I agree though that Welbeck played well and his link up play was excellent. He will improve his finishing as he gets older, but he is doing well for the team. I hope Young continues his form and starts scoring some more goals. He has potential to score a lot of goals in the last 10 games. He gets into good positions and gets chances. He will start putting them away soon.

    We should concentrate on Wolves this Sunday and forget about Bilbao to be honest. I would leave Ferdinand, Rooney, Evra, Carrick, Scholes and Young at home. I would play Lindergaard if he is fit and rest De Gea. I would also play Rafeal, Smalling, Fabio, Cleverley, Pogba, Park, Giggs, Nani and Berbatov. If Valencia is fit then give him 30 min before the Wolves match. We should also take Fryers and Tunnicliffe and put them on the bench for experience.

    I want the title this season and I don’t want the Europa Cup getting in the way. Man City have nearly a weeks break after their game on Thursday. We don’t have that luxury and I don’t believe the game is worth the hassle. We can be 4 points ahead before Man City play Chelsea and that has to be the case. They then have Stoke away before we play again. I stress again that we are our biggest enemy at this stage.