After winning the league, whilst making the FA Cup and European Cup semi-final, it appeared as though United were just a few players short of a truly World class team.
When Ferguson dipped in to the transfer market, forking out large sums of money for youngsters Nani and Anderson, Carlos Tevez who had kept West Ham up the season before, as well as the more experienced and long time coveted Owen Hargreaves, our mouths were watering.
It was perfect that all of these new signings got to play a role in our success of the 2007/2008, most notably, with all four players scoring in the penalty shoot out in the European Cup final victory over Chelsea.
Which one of these players did the RoM forum vote as the best?
Carlos Tevez was no stranger to United fans, as the last time we’d seen him play was when he scored the winning goal on the final day of the season at Old Trafford to keep the Hammers up. After a slow start, he finished the season as their highest goalscorer, with most fans attributing his performances as the reason behind them avoiding relegation.
A long transfer saga ensued over the summer after ownership issues delayed his arrival. West Ham had been fined £5 million by the FA for a breach of rules, and it was starting to look as though Fergie couldn’t get the player he wanted.
However, on August 10th 2007 the deal finally went through.
Tevez was thrown in to action earlier than the club would have liked, due to the long term injury of Louis Saha, and the lengthy injury Rooney sustained on the opening day of the season. After playing for 45 minutes without a striker on the field lead to an opening day 0-0 against Reading, Fergie knew he’d have to take the risk of throwing Tevez in at the deep end. He’d missed pre-season due to the confusion surrounding his future.
His debut was against Portsmouth away, where he ran himself ragged. However, he looked very slow and nowhere near sharp enough. This didn’t stop him setting up our only goal of the game, our first of the season, which was put away by Scholes from 25 yards out.
In his next game he had the opportunity to make himself a hero, with the ball falling for him to head in to the City goal to salvage a point in the dying moments. Somehow he missed the target and United started a season, filled with so much promise, without a win in the opening three matches.
We were soon back to winning ways though, with Tevez playing in our consecutive wins against Spurs, Sunderland, Everton and Sporting Lisbon.
Then, towards the end of September, came Tevez’s chance to shine. As time almost ran out in the first half against Chelsea at Old Trafford, Tevez dived towards Petr Cech’s goal, putting a Giggs cross in to the back of the net. His form was good, he looked a lot less rusty, and he’d just scored a goal against our title rivals. Welcome home, Carlos Tevez.
“There is no question about his long-term future here,” Ferguson said of Tevez in November. “The fee is in place. I won’t tell you what it is but it is still cheap. He has impressed everyone with his appetite for the game. He’ll get me 15 goals this season and what’s more they will be important goals.”
In the run up to Christmas, Tevez scored another 8 goals for United and with Rooney’s return to fitness, became an even better player. All the talk in the papers of those two being too similar to play successfully with each other was shown to be totally unfounded. It was Rooney’s shot at the Liverpool goal in front of the Kop that Tevez lifted in to the back of the net, giving us a victory over our much hated rivals.
The New Year started brightly for Tevez, scoring 4 goals in the 5 games that came in January, and went on to score another 6 in the remaining months of the season.
Ferguson’s prediction back in November came true, with Tevez scoring crucial, late goals against Spurs, Lyon and Blackburn. However, he outdid Fergie’s estimation by 4 goals, scoring 19 by the end of the season.
His campaign finished with a bang, scoring a brilliant goal against his former club, West Ham, on the last home day of the season, as well as scoring in the European Cup final penalty shoot out.
He had a brilliant debut season for United, and at just 24-years-old, he should have many more seasons ahead of him at the club.
Anderson came in 2nd with 33.7% of the vote, Hargreaves in 3rd with 13.2%, and Nani 4th with 1.2%
Congratulations Carlos Tevez, RoM’s New Signing of the Season, with an impressive 51.8% of the votes.
Do you agree?