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Carrick: It Feels Great To Score Important Goals

Michael Carrick was presented with a great first half opportunity to level the score against Wigan tonight, but saw his attempt go just over the bar when under pressure from the defender.

He more than made up for it with an 86th minute winner, after assisting the equalising goal, scored by Carlos Tevez.

Carrick looked pretty damn chuffed with himself as he raced towards our travelling support to celebrate and after the game talked of the great feelings scoring important goals brings about.

“It was worth the wait,” said Carrick. “To score goals as important as that is a great feeling – I had to make up for the miss in the first half, it’s a great feeling. Wigan came at us and caused a few problems. It’s not the first time we have come from behind – we did it the hard way.”

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. DanS says:


    Well done Michael

  2. clj7 says:

    he’s better with his left foot this season!! :D

  3. BlackBabyJesus says:

    been a while since he scored hasnt he? He has been a bit quiet this season.. very nice goal today though. :)

  4. Anant says:

    @clj7 – so very true . and his long range shooting has gone up a couple of notches as well…cheers!

    imho , if cristiano does leave this summer (theres that topic again , SORRY)…i really think wazza n carrick in particular will take the league by storm n form the bedrock of the team . they will finally get the praise they deserve . although , having said that , would hate to see ronnie leave

  5. Ste says:

    the lads did well tonight, i sed it would be a hard game and it was. should have been 2 – 1 up at half time, the foul on vidic was 50/50, som ref’s wud have given in some refs wouldn’t like tonight. from the off it seemed like the pompy game last season so glad how much i was wrong. bring on arsenal!!!!!

  6. Billy Meredith says:


  7. SteRDLK says:

    Can you believe that was his first away goal for us?

    BlackJesus – He scored against Pompey, before the first CL game versus Arsenal, if Im right

    Carrick is one of them players who you rarely notice him having a great game, but you notice when he has an off game (we normally dont win these games)

    He isnt the next Keano, hes the first Michael Carrick

  8. Carrick's Fucking Magic says:

    he’s my idol….i wish everyone played the game like him :D
    i’m soo happy he made headlines…he deserves it.
    what a player !!

  9. jcolas says:

    SAF might not have brought him in to be a scorer, but tonight he scored a beauty!

  10. james f says:

    Great goal, fantastic celebrations afterwards! Rooney on Carrick’s shoulders and then falling down face first is a classic. :-)

  11. wazza says:

    what a strike by Michael.he didn’t smash it but just caressed it where he wanted it to go.but not to forget Sheasy’s important contribution which set up that goal.

  12. dre says:

    carrick has an awesome left foot. i dare even say hes both footed!

  13. Paul the red says:

    the whole place on saturday needs to be buzzing… fans, players, everyone!!!

    would be awesome to win it at home!!!

  14. Stephen says:

    Carrick has been superb this season certainly one of our players of the year, I wonder if his name was Carrickinho or Carricktini would be people be raving about him for his performances this season? Or would people question his transfer fee?

  15. ROJO RED ROT ROUGE says:

    Well done Carrick – A hugely important winner minutes from the whistle. I cannot wait for Saturday, get that Trophy polished and put the champagne on ice for the big party. Arsenal will feel they have to play for their pride on Saturday and would love to delay our party after their schooling in the Champions semis. Put them to the sword men and take no prisoners.

  16. costas says:

    Stephen Carrick and Ballack made their moves at the same time.Look how much the person with the 3 league titles and 1 Ch.league has been critisized,compared to the other.Of course,if Ballack had been at United they would have tore him a new one.Just like they did with Veron.It may be sacrilige to some,but i consider Veron a better player than Ballack,just not the United type.

  17. Stephen says:

    I loved Veron, I remember being at OT when we played Everton and he was superb, I don’t think we utilised him to his best capasity, Fergie played him off the striker and even wide right, but he was class.

  18. King Eric says:

    Stephen – Remember that Everton game, Veron was majestic that day, everything he did just came off. Cannot wait for Old Trafford on Saturday, the atmosphere will surely be electric. Will Rio be back as Evans worried me last night.

  19. Stephen says:

    Evans struggled last night it looked like he was wearing mouldeds! but also Vidic was somewhat shakey which probably didn’t help the young lads confidence, I would imagine that Rio will be back for Saturday then put back into cotton wool until Rome.

  20. costas says:

    SAF wasn’t too optimistic about Rio.Evans should be ok.As long as it doesn’t rain!

  21. Giles Oakley says:

    I think the true comparison for Carrick is not Keane but Paddy Crerand, whose contribution to United’s supremacy c.1963-68 is sometimes underestimated because of the star quality of Best Law & Charlton. It used to be said that when Crerand played well, United played well, which I think is also true with Carrick. He was stockier and more compact than Carrick, but he had the same uncanny ability to find gaps in defences with threaded through balls, or spread the play wide with a disguised change of angle. Crerand was also good at timely interceptions to protect the defence, prior to setting up the next counter-attack, again like Carrick. Both players at their best set the rhythm of the team, slow, slow, quick, quick, goal! Paddy had no acceleration, but didn’t need it because of his reading of the game, always popping up wherever the action was, which included (and here he’s unlike Carrick) sorting out anyone trying to rough up his teamates such as Georgie Best. Paddy had a somewhat craggy, bandy legged, Glasgow no-fucking-about hard-man demeanour, which isn’t Geordie Michael’s style, but it was the similarly wonderful passing, long and short that caught the eye. People used to say he walked as though he had tin-tacks in his boots, but that was part of his deceptiveness as a player, apparently slow, but always one step ahead of everyone else on the pitch. I used to try to copy Paddy’s way of curving the ball with both the inside and outside of the foot, something of a rarity in those days when balls were heavy and rain sodden. He seemed to almost carress the ball as he picked out Denis or Bobby, or dipped one into George. All those players knew exactly how much Paddy gave to the team and contributed to their own personal stardom. I don’t recall Paddy hitting such a wonderful and vital goal as Carrick’s last night, but I bet he was celebrating just as much as if he’d scored himself. Great Reds, both of them.

  22. confoundedbridge says:

    Giles, your posts are a pleasure to read, keep up the anecdotes of United in years gone by.

  23. Primachenko says:

    well done by the lads. wigan looked really dangerous. they are a very athletic and fast team. miles above what city showed last weekend. and why were only our lads sliding all over the place? also, every time it rains, our defense looks shaky. maybe it’s the absence of rio or the nerves. maybe it’s just me. i can’t help but think of THAT game againt milan when it was pouring.

  24. wazza says:

    @Giles : nice to hear players used to make the 2 footed studs showing lunges or tackles in those days ? is the game more violent now ?

  25. Giles Oakley says:

    Thanks Confounded. In answer to Wazza’s question about whether the game used to be more violent, it’s actually quite difficult to say. One big difference is that the tackle from behind has been outlawed (unless the victim is Ronaldo!) which has rightly removed one of the most dangerous elements from the game. Some ex-players like to give the impression that ‘in their day’ everyone was more ‘manly’, before the preening foreigners came and made the whole thing more effete. I wonder though, because I don’t think the game 30 or 40 years ago had anything like the pace and intensity it has now. Yes there were some terrible old brutes, usually playing at full-back or centre half, who would just try to dump players in the cinder track with little attempt to get the ball, and I don’t think their rough-housing would last a minute today. The famous ‘Chopper’ Harris, was well named, and there were others like him, such as Hartle and Banks at Bolton who were just as crude. I remember several tough but fair players, like Dave MacKay at Spurs, who was a true great by any yardstick. I wasn’t crazy about Spurs centre half in their Double year, Maurice Norman. He was skillful all right, but nasty and sly in his tackling. Tommy Smith at Liverpool was immensely strong and a bit scary and I’m sure did things that wouldn’t be tolerated now. Graham Souness was genuinely dirty in my eyes, a brilliant player in so many ways (and not a bad actor in ‘Boys from the Blackstuff’) but he really left the boot in far too often. United fans of a certain age will remember Leeds with a shudder. I genuinely despised them, I thought they were a truly dirty side, yet, like Souness, they were skillful. There seemed to something about Revie as a manager (not as a player for City, funnily enough) that spread a vengeful , nasty, vicious spirit amongst the team, infecting even otherwise good players. One of the worst was ex-Red Johnny Giles, whose departure after helping win the FA Cup in ’63 I thought was one of Busby’s biggest mistakes. I don’t think Busby would have tolerated the dirty tricks Giles got up to at Elland Road, despite critics’ claims that, post-Munich, he could never discipline his ‘boys’ in the same as as before the crash , through guilt at the loss of his Babes. So, were United players ever dirty? Lots of people would say Nobby Stiles was , but I don’t agree. Certainly he mis-timed tackles sometimes, allegedly because he hid the fact he needed glasses until he was saved by contact lenses, but I thought Stiles was magnificent, and not more dirty than any strong defensive mid-fielder. His reading of the game was telepathic at times (eg against Eusebio for Portugal in ’66, and Benfica in ’68) One who I did think pretty dodgy was Maurice Setters, who Busby signed in ’59 to stiffen up the midfield as he desperately tried to re-build the team. He was rough and tough, and sometimes cold-blooded in hacking people down. I remember wincing with shame at one tackle he did on MacKay at White Haert Lane in 1960, when he dropped his arm down to the ground and swung his whole body at the Spurs player, hitting him with both feet across his knees. One couldn’t call it cynical as it was so open. No-one in the ground could have missed it. I thought he shouild have been sent off, but he wasn’t . MacKay just carried on driving his team forward to a deserved 4-1 victory. United had another hard man through the mid-50s to 1970, ‘Popular Bill’ Foulkes, Munich survivor, a full-back converted into a teak-like centre half. He was as tough as Jap Stam, the bedrock of the team for years. He was certainly very ‘uncompromising’, as they used to say, euphemistically. He had a technique of climbing up the back of the legs of opposing centre forwards to get his headers in, unnoticed by refs in the main. It both helped pin the opponent down, and gave him leverage to get up above him. But hard though he was, I don’t recall him leaving studs up like Souness or Giles did, or ever trying to hurt anyone. I think, to conclude, that there are dirty players in all eras, and I don’t believe for one moment that players used to be stronger or more courageous. I saw players pull out of tackles in the past, just as some do now, and I have seen studs-up challenges in all periods. What has changed though is the level of skill, and the speed of execution- including the dirty or mis-timed tackles of today, which can still end careers as they did 50 years ago. Think of good old Wilf McGuiness, career over before it had started from a broken leg in ’59, just when United needed a decent half-back after the loss of Duncan Edwards and Eddie Colman. All footballers are just one bad tackle away from the end of their playing days. It was true then, it’s true now.

  26. Trevor says:

    I was made to eat my words quite quickly!

    I have watched carrick shot and shot and shot never at the goal! He had a febal dragged shot earlier in that half and i blurted out If i was fergie i would tell carrick never to shoot again! Whats the point!

    And then that happens!

  27. olusanjo says:

    giles, really nice to have people like you around to roll back the years with some history classes. i am really impressed to have someone like you around. at least i can say i know someone who remained a united fan through the years of trophy drought. i am really proud of you.

  28. Giles Oakley says:

    Many thanks, olusanjo, much appreciated. I suppose it’s knowing how bad it feels to go for years without winning anything that makes today’s triumphs so very special. It also makes you realise that nothing lasts, today’s trophy-winner is tomorrow’s failing giant burdened by history. Things can change incredibly fast, one way or the other, and supporters have a vital part to play all the time, as I keep saying. Just before a football giant tumbles, you see the signs beforehand, the assumption that success is always there, that dominance is some sort of entitlement, not something to be fought for over and over again. Then you get the scorn and derision directed at opponents .I don’t mean entertaining banter, which I love, but the aggressive, bombastic, macho posturing by all too many Red fans of the kind I have to say I was so shocked by at Wembley for the FA Cup semi. It was embarrassing to see the over-confidence and arrogance, the belittling of ordinary Everton fans out with their kids for maybe the biggest day in their supporting lives . I thought well before kick off, this is going to be pride-before-a-fall time for United fans, who were out-shouted from beginning to end. The eternally modest Ryan Giggs understands these things better than anyone, which is why his pre-match comments are always so thoughtful, never triumphalist or bragging. Supporters should take a cue from him in the build ups to big matches, and see perhaps why he’s won so many more medals than anyone else. In fairness, I think in the last few weeks United supporters have been brilliant, and if, and I mean if, we win something, they will have been a vital part of it. History tells us that crowds can embody the best and worst of humanity, and that includes football crowds. So come on United, it’s all to play for!

  29. King Eric says:

    Excellent stuff per usual Giles, I aren’t old enough to remember the likes of Smith, Dave MacKay, Hunter etc but certainly heard alot of stories. However I do remember Souness and he was a dirty player, albeit a bloody good one.

  30. wazza says:

    really nice to get the knowledge from you Giles bout the must be enjoying the game nowadays with more pace, intensity and end to end stuff compared to those days right ?

  31. Giles Oakley says:

    Yes wazza, I think the football today is brilliant and I can’t get over how lucky I have been to see so many great United players over such a long period. The quality now is the best ever, although individual players stand out from all eras. Denis Law for instance, he’d be just as great now if he was playing, plus he’d have the benefit of decent medical help. It’s often forgotten that his career was blighted by knee problems from around ’67, causing him not only to miss the European Cup Final in ’68, but affecting him off & on till the end in ’74.


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