Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Manchester United - after City defeat

Manchester United still has great respect as an attacking team among the top analysts and managers. Roberto Mancini, once the successful manager of Internazionale, showed them every respect on Tuesday night in the first leg of Carling Cup Semi Final. His defensive policy, for the most part, shows that people are still terrorized by Manchester United’s attacking forces. This policy of containment worked very well and was enough to leave his Manchester City side with a 2-1 lead to take into the second leg.

Giggs goal helped United to take 1-0 lead. They should have scored more goals, but the opposition's goalkeeper, Shay Given, stood between the poles and denied every attempt. All he did was keeping his cool. He was asked simply to be his usual impressive self and had no need to be superhuman. Tevez looked enough for the rest and scored twice for the needful.

No one needs to tell United and Sir Alex about the unreliability of their squad. This was their seventh defeat in all competitions in this season. Seeing the left fixtures one can easily think of this number going into double figures.

Although, it would be no shock if United recover to eliminate City in the second leg. But the question is why United are giving so many unexpected results this season? Defeat against Burnley, Aston Villa (home game) and Fulham were shocking. In fact the way United lost these games was a matter of concern. 3-0 is a great margin for Fulham to prove that they are becoming a great force.

United qualified for the second stage of Champions league by finishing at the top of their group, but they lost their home game against Besiktas. The young guns failed o deliver when needed. It shows the lack of depth in the squad. Now United will face AC Milan in the second round of Champions League. This game will provide great entertainment. Last time when these two teams met was in 2006-07 season. At that time it was Milan who won 3-0 at Milan and qualified for the finals and eventually won the trophy.

Now the question is what will be the future of this team. The team must primarily be concerned about the medium and long-term prospects. Nobody has to tell Ferguson that key men are getting old. On Tuesday, Gary Neville had to confine his provocative ­gesturing to the sidelines, since he was an unused substitute. Paul Scholes, 35, was not introduced until the 88th minute and Ryan Giggs, 36, looked ­ageless in the autumn and may have other sprightly spells to come, but his impact was limited at Eastlands even if he was in ­position to knock home the opener. Edwin van der Sar, 39, had nothing to apologies for, but the veteran understandably does not dominate the goalmouth.

Some additions such as Anderson and Nani have still to convince and show their importance and worth. But, renewing the squad is a thorny topic in this financial climate. Sir Alex badly need to see Rio Ferdinand returning to the line-up, but at the centre-half's age a back condition will probably have to be managed anxiously rather than cured. Amid the various difficulties in the squad, Wayne Rooney can not make up for every deficiency in the team. He can not compensate for others fault every time. Also one must think on this that should Rooney be injured, jaded or disillusioned, United's niggling problems could turn into agonies of despair.

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Manchester United Squad

Manchester United Squad
Manchester United 2009-10