Where is the fight?
The Red Devils desperately need players who can lift the team in times of trouble.
Manchester United fans must have been hugely disappointed losing the derby match 1-6 to arch rivals Manchester city last weekend.
to be fair, even roberto Mancini didn’t expect this result. a draw was what the Italian manager was going for. But when opportunities were presented, his team grabbed them.
naturally, he took a wary approach going into a difficult game at Old trafford. Unlike last season, where he was disciplined and careful, he changed his style this year according to his opponents, ranging from being adventurous to prudent.
If winning the Fa cup gave the citizens confidence, beating their rivals at Old trafford made them believe in each other.
this is where the likes of Mario Balotelli, and edin Dzeko, the so called “bad boys” of the team, learn the importance of team work.
It builds confidence and trust within the team. those are traits essential in building a successful squad that has character. While the citizens displayed a new found resilience, I cannot say the same for their Manchester counterparts.
has the management at Old trafford decided to refund tickets to their fans yet?
On a serious note, the jury is out on a bunch of Man United players. I have decided to nickname Jonny evans, “Jittery Jonny”. he definitely did not show the class that is required of a United player. With the sending off, city took the chance to put the nail in the coffin.
even when Manchester United was down to 10 men, it was ridiculous that they didn’t practise caution to keep the score at 1-0 for as long as possible, and try to hit on the counter attack to get a goal.
But we saw United falling apart, desperately looking for the equaliser. Before they knew it, the score was 0-2. I honestly think losing by two goals with 10 men is not a disgrace, but what really agitated me was the lack of leadership!
nobody took charge on the pitch or from the sidelines and they were literally crumbling like a deck of cards. that lapse should never have happened, and it was shocking that sir alex Ferguson just allowed this tragedy to unfold.
In the middle of the park, anderson and Darren Fletcher practically gave the Man city players the keys to Old trafford.
to be honest, I am very critical of rio Ferdinand. Where was his leadership? he was just like any other normal player in the team. he just seems to have lost his motivation, and I think that is a big problem that Fergie has yet to realise.
the backline pairing that looks better to me would be the younger chris smalling and Phil Jones. Jonny evans is a good reserve player, but he is not the one that you can build your defence around.
as for part time captain Patrice evra, I personally don’t think he can handle responsibility. What is the point of putting on the arm band when you can’t lift the team? evra simply isn’t cut out as Man United captain material - he’s hardly in the same league as Bryan robson or roy Keane. For me, I believe that some players have overstayed their welcome. Or are they starting to believe their own hype?
certain areas in the red Devils team have to be strengthened straight away. When the January transfer window comes, there will be no doubt that United have to invest in players. Before the start of the season, United had a lot of interest looking for a creative midfielder, and they were almost there with Wesley sneijder. that is one player I think they sorely missed out on.
I’ve also been asked many times on Monday Night Verdict if Man United have found a player to replace roy Keane, where in fact, the question should have been whether have they found a player like David silva? that kind of player has been absent in the United team for so many years – an intelligent midfielder who can make things happen in both the middle and attacking zones.
how Paul scholes has been missed! at the moment, the young tom cleverley is still a work in progress.
But it may be too early to say that this result at Old trafford determines which is the best team in the BPL.
come next May, however, it might be a different story.
a thrashing like this would have been a wake up for the seniors and added characterbuilding experience for the younger players like Danny Welbeck, smalling and Jones. they wouldn’t want to feel that level of pain and humiliation again.
With a fully changed line-up, the red Devils did recover from their Man city disaster to progress to the carling cup quarterfinals at the expense of League two aldershot earlier this week.
But Goodison Park tomorrow will be a stern test for Man United. an unpredictable everton will always be a tough team to beat (remember the 3-3 comeback heroics from the toffees last season?) but I fully expect the entire Man United team to turn up with a better attitude and produce a positive team performance.
I hope that Fergie will put his arms around one or two players, and try to lift their spirits for the impending game, because that is what managers do. From my experience, you have your say during training, and then you move on to the next game. You can’t let that anger and frustration linger, because that would affect the players’ performances.
a tougher mindset and a quick response from his lads is what Fergie is expecting now. next summer, the weaker ones will be shipped off, and Fergie’s strength is not only about spotting the best players, but also the ones that can give United its unique character.
talking about character, I thought chelsea showed plenty of it (for nine men) in the match they lost against QPR.
the penalty decision in my opinion was too harsh, although the two red cards were warranted. Quite honestly, I thought that the referee forgot that this was a derby, and a big game in that part of London.
When derbies are concerned, you get 1020% more aggression, more fights and tougher tackles. as the referee, chris Foy should have gone into the game with that mentality. he clamped down on every little thing, made inconsistent calls and pretty much lost control of the game.
now that Man city is at the top of the league, the pressure will be on chelsea, United and the rest to catch up, and meanwhile, certain teams can learn to get their character back in the game as well. n Catch Shebby Singh on Monday Night Verdict every Monday at 8pm on ESPN, and his insight and views during ESPN’S live match presentation of the Barclays Premier League