Derby day, the best day of the year!
Last season was a great year for Manchester clubs, with both teams doing the double. United won the Premiership title and the European Cup, whilst City beat United home and away. Hooray!
This season, United are on course to do the double again, scarily enough, but this time City don’t have any consolation in their cup finals against the reds. Losing to the ten men of United at home before losing 2-0 yesterday, with United rarely getting out of second gear, City don’t have a lot to smile about.
Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoring for United with another one of his brilliant freekicks. It’s hard to know whether we should expect a thunder-bolt or a decapitation of the wall these days, with his technique still so hit and miss. But when he gets it right, there aren’t many keepers who can stop them, particularly keepers who decide to step away from the corner the ball is about to fly in to moments before Ronaldo strikes the ball!
Still, 1-0 wasn’t enough to totally calm the nerves, with City desperate to get anything out of their season. Drawing 1-1 at Old Trafford and possibly standing in the way of our title would have been enough for them to celebrate. It wasn’t to be though.
After previously hitting the woodwork with a great strike, Tevez went on to make it 2-0. Darren Fletcher booted the ball up the pitch with Dimitar Berbatov brought down beautifully, it was sublime! He then played in Tevez, giving himself his tenth assist of the season, making him top of the Premiership table, which Carlitos put away perfectly. It was a great finish and that was the game over.
Tevez ran over to the directors and cupped his ears, waiting for the “Fergie, sign him up!” chant. I’d probably have found this more amusing had he not been saying his ‘goodbyes’ to the club in the morning papers! Starting Tevez showed Sir Alex Ferguson’s intentions, although the manager ‘claimed’ he hadn’t read what had been said. I’m sure.
To add insult to City’s injury, Wayne Rooney and Paul Scholes were introducted with an hour played, much to the frustration of Cristiano Ronaldo. Hopefully we don’t have another Ruud/Beckham case on our hands here. The difference seems to be Ferguson wants to keep Ronaldo far more than he did the other two who sulked their way to Madrid, so will maybe react more softly to Cristiano’s behaviour.
Rafael da Silva did a number on Robinho again, whose best chance of the game ended in row z, despite him being just yards out. “Signed for a big club, you should have signed for a big club!” we sang after he was substituted. Two derbys to his name but he’s yet to show up.
The City fans didn’t give a very good account of themselves, with one or two renditions of the campest football anthem ever and a “same old Munichs, always cheating” on one of the many occasion Dimitar ‘told City to fuck off’ Berbatov. It’s derby day, you proper Mancunians you, liven up a bit eh?
The game wasn’t particularly impressive but the lads did continue to limit the mistakes that seemed to riddle our performances not so long ago. We didn’t really have to try for the points on Sunday and City didn’t seem arsed about making our job any more difficult than it needed to be.
Three points clear with a game in hand, which will finally be played this Wednesday against Wigan. With three games in six days it certainly makes sense that Ferguson would want our best player well rested, particularly with a Champions League final to think about. A win and a draw against Wigan and Arsenal will be enough to see us crowned Champions, again. After their old songs about winning the league at Old Trafford, it certainly would be nice to lift the trophy in front of our former title rivals!
Life is good again.