Date: 23rd September 2012 at 7:25pm
Written by:

After numerous attempts, Manchester United finally secured 3 points against Liverpool at Anfield.

The game was a tough tense affair that saw Liverpool dominate largely, but ultimately miss out on a first league win of the season after Rafael’s curled effort and a Robin Van Persie penalty cancelled out Steven Gerrard’s opener.

Jonjo Shelvey saw red in the first half after he collided with Jonny Evans and the Mike Halsey deemed the 2 footed challenge red card worthy although Evans too could have seen red as he two was off the ground with studs showing as he challenged for the ball.

United will need to improve drastically as the performance left a lot to be desired, but the fact we managed to get 3 points at Anfield for the first time since 2007 and after having played so poorly is a massive bonus.

Here are our ratings for the game:

Lindegaard 7: Stepped in for De Gea after the Spaniard was selected midweek and did well when called upon especially from a low Luis Suarez shot and a Suarez freekick

Rafael 8: For some there are still questions over the Brazilian fullback but I feel he is steadily growing into a quality defender. A bright spark for United in a dreary first, Rafael further improved his performance with a sweetly curled effort that drew United level.

Evra 6: Not his best performance in a United shirt, Evra struggled at points during the game with Raheem Sterling. Some mistimed tackles and misplaced passes put unnecessary pressure on the team but was beyond that was OK.

Ferdinand 8 (STAR MAN): Rumours of the centerback’s demise have been greatly exaggerated as Ferdinand stood up to the task of facing Liverpool and did so with aplomb. There was a moment when Suarez dance around the box as he did in the 10/11 season for Kuyt’s opener, but Ferdinand shoo’ed him away and slammed the door in his face. He did so a number of times during the game too. 

Evans 7: Still finding his feet after injury, but largely performed well beside Ferdinand as he did last term. Could have seen red himself in the incident that saw Shelvey sent off and could have given away a penalty (albeit a soft one) for a challenge on Suarez but was steady throughout.

Giggs 5: Some United fans were worried about his inclusion and he did little to ease their fears. Wayward passing and could have done better with Gerrard for Liverpool’s opener. Improved as the game went on and had a decent chance that went over early in the game.

Carrick 6: Struggled to impose himself on the game beside Giggs but did his defensive duties well. Knowing what he is capable of, you’d expect much more from him.

Nani 4: As a fan of the winger you have to say he was simply dreadful this afternoon. Looked decent midweek despite the penalty miss but was wasteful and disinterested today. Perhaps this whole sale/contract issue is getting to him, but you would expect that he would look to play his way out of the bad books if he is in them as the press claim. Has done nothing of the sort since being recalled to the team.

Valencia 6: Powered into the box to win United’s penalty and tracked back when needed but wasn’t as impressive as he has been against Liverpool previously. Has looked off the boil recently and did so today, but improved second half.

Kagawa 6: Assisted Rafael’s goal with a well cushioned chested pass but wasn’t as influential as you would have hoped against this Liverpool team. Struggled to get into the game with any purpose. 

Van Persie 6: Scored what proved to be the winning goal with a penalty after Valencia was felled in the box, but struggled having been starved of service by the midfield behind him. Tried to force his way into the game dropping deep and going wide to cross the ball.

Subs

Scholes 7: Made a decidedly average performance average when he stepped into the midfield in the second half. Was guilty of giving the ball away and got a yellow for a challenge on Sterling but his passing, intelligence and general use of the ball made us  on the whole a more interesting side.

Hernandez n/a Had a tame shot saved late on.

Welbeck n/a