“I have to admit it took me a long while to get over it. A lot has happened since and it’s gone now but it took me a good few weeks, even a couple of months, to get it out of my system. We played so well that day and for them to get such a late, late goal was very difficult for everyone to swallow. So we’d like to get our own back for that. We’ve only lost twice all season, despite everything that has been said and written about us, and that was one of them, in the 99th minute at Old Trafford. I think everyone else, apart from the referee, had stopped their watches by that time. It was well over the time, we know that. But we’re doing OK and we go into this match in good heart. It seems like a long time ago now and we have to look forward. We were gutted with the way it went but we know we have to defend better in those situations on Wednesday night and keep going right until the whistle.”
1. City were shit that day. If not for three defensive errors by United, the score would have been 4-0. We gifted them three goals and they still managed to lose! We had double the amount of shots on target, more than double the amount of shots off target and double the amount of blocked shots. We had 11 corners to their 1, we had a superior passing completion rate (79% to their 72%) and a far superior tackling success rate (86% to their 69%) and finally, we had 60% possession to their 40%. If that was City playing “so well”, I’d hate to see what they looked like on a bad day! They were dreadful. (see Sky Sports for stats).
2. Despite Sir Alex Ferguson constantly getting ripped apart for pointing out when correct injury time hasn’t been played, it appears as though there are no holds barred for City players. Regardless, even without the stupid exaggeration of 99 minutes, Given is wrong to point to the injury time. I can only assume Shay Given wasn’t watching Match of the Day 2 after our victory, otherwise he wouldn’t embarrass himself with such claims, as they broke down, to the second, where the injury time came from.
Craig Bellamy scored on 89 minutes, 54 seconds, with the “minimum of four minutes injury time” being announced as he raced towards the City fans. The City players then went on to celebrate for an incredible 56 seconds before the game could be restarted.
Anderson was then replaced with Carrick, meaning another 30 seconds was added.
MOTD2 worked out that the total time allowed should have been 95 minutes and 26 seconds. The time they allotted did not include Given’s time wasting for a goal kick after Wayne Rooney shot high over the bar. Giggs, as the captain, spoke to the referee about this whilst Given was still messing about. The referee pointed to his watch and then the goalkeeper finally took the goalkick.
Just think, if not for City’s excessive celebrating and if not for Given’s ridiculous time wasting, the final whistle would have blown long before City welcomed Michael Owen in to the box to score the winning goal, which was scored on 95 minutes, 27 seconds.
If you had any doubts before, Given is certainly at the right club. Deluded and bitter, just like the rest of them!