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United Rubbish Without Ronaldo

…and Carlos Tevez, Owen Hargreaves, Nani, Anderson, Gary Neville, Louis Saha, Ji-Sung Park and Michael Carrick (for 65 minutes). You can imagine those names will be forgotten when the necessity for a striker is reported in tomorrows press, particularly in light of the result at Stamford Bridge.

We weren’t at the races today. As soon as Edwin Van der Sar made the decision to punch the ball rather than collect it, leading to the corner which Newcastle opened the scoring from, you knew we were going to struggle today.

“That’s why we’re Champions” sang the crowd when Darren Fletcher equalised shortly after, although even then, we weren’t entirely convinced. It already looked like it was going to be ‘one of those days’.

Rooney had his mad head on and will be sent off this season if he continues to behave like that. Always mythering the ref and going in with both feet when he was never going to win the ball. This mad head wins us games sometimes and we need him on the field, but whilst our squad is so shallow, Wayne needs to put his thinking cap on and work out that a three match ban for his psycho act is not going to go down well.

Today is a day when I’ll give Match of the Day a miss, even though I’d rather enjoy seeing the bluenoses get stuffed 4-2, because I cannot stand to see our chances that didn’t go in on a day when the rent boys won 4-0. This means though I’ll miss what appeared to be a stonewall penalty when a Newcastle man had his arm on the end of a goal-bound Ryan Giggs freekick. I’ll continue to feel hard done by because we were told when Carlos Tevez was rugby tackled in the box against Portsmouth and nothing was given that we always get the decisions.

This respect the referee business is frustrating, with Riley blocking Wayne Rooney’s ball forward and closing his eyes when the geordies handle in the box. How can we respect them when inconsistencies are already apparent after the first weekend of the season, with Chelsea being awarded a penalty for a Distin handball. I suppose it’s easier to award Chelsea a penalty that will result in their third goal of the game than it is to give one 3 minutes in at Old Trafford?

Essentially though, we weren’t good enough today. There wasn’t the urgency required from enough of our players today to get a result. Panic stations though? Well of course not. When we’ve got our squad back it’ll be Nani, Anderson, Park and Hargreaves coming off the bench to save us from embarrassment, not O’Shea, Possebon and Da Silva. Regardless, we had the players there to get three points today, but we just didn’t have the clinical finish required.

The lacklustre showing from plenty of the players can only be matched by the crowd, who were largely outsung by those barmy Newcastle fans. Seeing them bobbing up and down, waving their shirts around their heads, you understand why those down south call us lot up north ‘monkeys’. We started the day well, singing of our success last season, as well as reminding Kevin Keegan that he was a sad geordie bastard, but bar a chant or two for Nemanja Vidic and Wayne Rooney, it was a poor showing from the home fans.

So, all in all, not entirely how I envisaged the day going. We’re putting a lot of pressure on ourselves considering the tough fixtures we have in the next few months. We cannot afford to be dropping silly points on many more occasions this season. It happened on the opening day last season and that was before drawing with Portsmouth and losing to City. Didn’t stop us winning the league and European Cup. However, we should be finishing with more points this season and should win more games. Starting next Monday.

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. azza says:

    time to get the ‘major signing’ we’ve herd about for weeks!! campbell lookd like he pickd up an injury, sum1 in tevez family died, we have nuthin up front, fletcher cant mark to save his life, leavin martins with a free header, next 3 games r hardest possible, pompey chelsea and scum, FOCK!!!

  2. Drew Vader says:

    None of us on here can or should use the injuries and players missing as any kind of excuse, as that is what we tell the chelski fans who come on here and cry about last season, “losers complain about injuries, winners win anyway.” is what we tell them. So lets not hear any of that please.

    And with that out of the way, allow me to drop this Hot Sports Opinion on you….I 100% believe that if we had Carlos out there instead of Rooney, we would have won today. I’m well aware of the fact that he missed a few weeks due to the sickness,(that sounds again like a bitch excuse, just like using injuries) but Wayne Rooney was absolutely rubbish today. He gave the ball away cheaply and straight back to the opposition almost every other time he had it, it was shocking. But thats not the worst of it, for all of the time he gives it away i dont see the other players getting on him, but if one of his teamMATES dares to have the audacity to make a mistake, Wayne is right there to scream bloody murder at them and hit them with the hairdryer. Its embarassing for the lad, throwing a fit when a Fletcher pass goes astray but then turning around and not doing much of anything productive. He was the only one available out of the so called holy trinity of him carlos and ronaldo, and the team NEEDED him to control the game and work and keep the ball and create etc….but it wasnt anywhere near good enough. I think if, IF, berba were to come, rooney would be forced out of the side and berba and carlos would be the best available partnership to start up front. All in all….very disappointed in the lad.

  3. Drew Vader says:

    And oh yeah….compaints about the ref are even worse that complaining about injuries. Yes, it looked like an intentional save from Milner on Gigg’s freekick, but Vidic did the same exact thing to one of their lads that Distin did to Ronaldo in the facup that all of us on here came on and screamed and yelled about, but again no call was given. It goes both ways.

    And i agree 100% with Scott about the crowd….i didnt even hear one “Stand up for the champions” and the “attack attack attack” shit at the end when they had been silent for the first 40 mins of the second half was embarrassing. And please God lets not start a habit of the “thats why we’re champions” shit….i fucking hated that more than life itself when chelski used to sing it, so please, lets be a bit better and classier than those bastards. Thanks.

  4. Drew Vader says:

    One last thing….

    What a game from Giggsy!!!!! Shame about the hamstring because he had some sublime touches in the start of the second half, not to mention his first assist of the season. That was incredible!!!

  5. Tom F says:

    Scott – you are spot on mate,

    It will be so funny reading the head lines tomorrow!

    All too familiar to when Cech and Terry were injured early in the year a couple of seasons back and that was everyone’s excuse for their poor performances, unlike when United had up to 7 first team players out including our decimated side against AC Milan in the semi’s.

    Ah, that just reminded me.. we WON

  6. Tom F says:


  7. Gary says:

    Giggs……….Giggs has torn his hamstring again………… Giggs…….Giggs has torn his hamstring again……..Have’nt sang that one for a while!

  8. The GUN says:

    Manu is crap without Ronaldo.
    if manu does not win the amounts of debts that the club has will damage the club’s future. over 700 million pounds in debt?. no wonder fergusen never spent, if he spends again he will detroy the club

  9. Scott the Red says:

    Drew – were you there? If you were, I dunno how you escaped hearing stand up for the Champions. It was sung about 5 or 6 times today.

  10. Mag says:

    you looked ordinary man. Piss poor.

    We contained you with relative ease, not something you’d expect from NUFC.

  11. Gary says:

    Drew Vader: As Scott stated above, stand up for the champions was sang at least 4 times during the first half mainly coming from the stretford end 2nd tier as usuall.

    Did you see his cross with the outside of his foot for Campbell’s header? Rooney started the game looking really sharp and ran after lost causes all day and got frustrated and faded in the second half like the whole team did.

    The atmosphere today was dissapointing thats nothing new. The amount of twats that turn up there and sit there in silence and then stand up when we sing stand up for the champions, whats the fucking point! Why dont these twats start singing for the champions! The club only has themselfs to blame for the lack of atmosphere. The genuine fans are scattered round the ground and the corporate twats get decent seats when they shouldnt fucking be there in the first place and at worst they should be stuck up in the north stand 3rd tier out the fucking way rather then getting the front section of the quadrants.

  12. Drew Vader says:

    Scott, sorry. I guess i just didnt hear it or see any large amount of fans stand in unision to indicate thats what the chant was. I apologize.

    And my observations on Rooney have been echoed my many over at Red Rant….

  13. Kevin says:

    Drew is spot on about how Rooney played. One good play in the first half doesn’t fix the fact he found it impossible to make any impact in the second half. It doesn’t make me confident that Campbell out played him in the second half and I hate to watch him whine about every call made during the game. He argued about every single call that went against United and he finally got yellow carded in the second half. With that said Rooney had little to work with during the game as no one played well, besides Giggs who did have a good game. Losing Carrick really hurt our midfield and at this moment we have only one top quality central midfielder. Fergie was counting on Carrick and Scholes in the middle until Hargreaves, Anderson, and the other youngsters get more time with the team.

    Drew I don’t agree completely with your comment about the injuries. All though not an excuse for the loss it is an explanation. I think that can’t be overlooked. If we would have had a true replacement for Carrick when he got injured the result, for me, would have been different. O’Shea was really disappointing and was a non-factor for the majority of the game. It doesn’t explain why the players didn’t reach there full potential on the day, it does effect why certain players got on the pitch.

    Gary I thought the atmosphere was right on the mark for the performance given on the pitch. I think all United fans expected to much going into the game, I know I was hoping for a 3-1, 2-0 win.

    The overall performance wasn’t that poor, and Newcastle played well and made things difficult. I had hoped are big stars would have stepped up more but the fact we brought on Possebon and Da Silva when looking for the win I think shows the issue of injury we are suffering from. Possebon played ok and Da Silva showed some promise. I was upset about the loss, but it is still early. Things need to change quickly cause United can’t afford to fall behind Chelsea, Arsenal, or Liverpool. The entire EPL has improved a lot and winning the league might be its most difficult.

  14. Drew Vader says:

    Scott—Sorry for behaving like a child earlier and forcing you to be an editor. I shouldnt have responded like that.

  15. John Tring says:

    The point is clear: SAF should come down from his high horse. His idio-snycracy, bordering on senility will cost dearly. He knew CR was out, Anderson unavailable, Saha is plain dead as far as playing is concerned. But SAF did nothing but boast. Chelsea has shown what everybody assumed: they are THE Team this season. SAF should have signed at least 2 good players in due course in summer. 2 points already lost, how many more? Sorry but sometimes success may get to your head. Remember 2000??
    De Ja Vu?? Let’s play for 2nd, shall we?

  16. Drew Vader says:

    John…..its one fucking game man, with half the side out. Last year turned out alright me thinks…. Besides, Chelski got one penalty, one was a fluke deflection (imagine that) that Anelka capitalized on andthe fourth goal was a terrible error from James. They were lucky, so please relax. The sky is not falling.

  17. John Tring says:

    Dear Vader, Don’t be stupid to use vulgarity. Yes, it’s one game but if you can remember, the difference last season was 2 points!!! What is obvious is that we should not lose cheap points: home game against NewC should be a banker. If we had a decent striker upfront in place of Campbell, we would have won. Chelski getting a pen and we not getting, injuries, absentees etc et…these are just moaning and groaning. A manager is paid millions to plan for all these, not finding excuses. I any case, what we say or think is immaterial, SAF doesn’t even pbbly read all these but it’s just the opinion of supporters.

  18. NorwegianDevil says:

    @John Tring

    Yes the difference last season was 2 points despite the fact that we only had two points from our first three games last season.

    If we win our next two games we will collect 5 more points after 3 games than we did after 3 games last season.

    Relax. As was pointed our earlier. It’s only one game. There is 37 left. the rent boys, dippers and le arse will loose points as well.

    And we are not in desperate need of a striker. We have played the last two years with no more strikers than we have today and done well. There is nothing to suggest that we can’t do well this season as well. Having said that. A striker would a good addition to our squad.

  19. Tom F says:

    I remember last season the way everyone wrote us off early on and we won the two big titles that we wanted most. I cannot see myself losing sleep over a 1-1 draw against New’astle, it was 0-0 against Reading last year so at least we got a Darren Fletcher tap in :)

    In all seriousness, there is no denying Chelsea are going to be a big big threat to us this year, their start reminded me of us against Fulham 2 years ago but of course there’s a long way to go yet!

    We’ve lost quite a few important players early on, but I am excited about the prospect of having Da Silva’s and Possebon coming into the team and I think Campbell did pretty well yesterday. They had a lot of luck / their keeper had a great game and we conceded a goal we really shouldn’t have. It’s why we love football.

    This is life and everythings alright.

  20. denton davey says:

    C’mon; UTD were THAT bad yesterday. It was one of “those games” that UTD dominate but cannot put away. It happens. What was more upsetting than the draw was the way that the team ran out of steam in the last quarter-hour. Too many long balls hoofed forward without much hope or chance of connection.

    I-TOLD-YOU-SO, but it was another situation calling for a change in tactics/strategy/personnel. When Newcastle’s defence collapsed into the box, there was no alternative but to continue playing the ball on the ground – and it didn’t work. Lacking that “alternative” among the squad’s current personnel, why not put Vidic/Ferdinand/O’Shea into the centre-forward position ?

    One of the few attractive aspects of Jose Mourinho’s management was his willingness to make radical changes in tactics/strategy/personnel when things weren’t working – and he often got results from these radical changes. I just hate criticizing SAF but this is one (frequently repeated) scenario when he was inflexible in the face of a brick wall. One of the old footie knight’s great strengths has been his resoluteness but sometimes he might consider “an alternative”. Yesterday was another text-book example of why UTD need a big, man-monster – Jan Koller anyone ? – who could create consterantion in the opponent’s penalty area so that there might be some scraps for the others to feed off.

    On the bright side, Frazier Campbell, looked the business to me – that “save” by Given was incredibly unlucky for the kid; and he forced Given into another very, very athletic save, too. Besides those two moments, Campbell was bright, athletic, fast, and sseems to know where the goal is. I was chuffed with his performance.

    Despite the scoreline, UTD “won the game” on chances. Too bad that footie isn’t scored like boxing !


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