Thoughts of a Manchester United season ticket holder
Sunday, 18 October 2009
United edge past plucky Bolton boys
The day started marvellously
We all stood downstairs by the televisions before the game. This was because the game from Villa Park was being shown live. A bit of pre match entertainment we all thought. The game was exciting. Every heroic tackle by Villa's defenders was greeted with a cheer as if it were Rio or Vida. We felt the anticipation as Freidel made important saves. Surely it couldn't be? They were not going to lose AGAIN?
The final whistle led to joyous clapping and cheering, and a brief scream in the name of Martin ONeill. I wondered if one day we would be cheering ONeill as our manager. Who knows. We all skipped up the stairs to our seats. We were ready for a mauling.
United played some excellent stuff in the game. The passing was crisp and accurate. Giggs and Valencia owned the wing positions. It was the first time that Valencia truly showed what he MAY have to give to United. Strong, powerful and quick. Always willing to take his man on. Super un-nani-like. It was no surprise when we took the lead after Michael Owen cleverly deflected his header of Zat Knight. We were ready for a mauling.
Valencia's goal was excellent. Some good link play by Owen set the Ecuadorian off. He played a neat one-two with our skipper Nev (making a rare start) and the boy finished with aplomb. At 2-0, we were ready for a massive massive mauling!
But it never came.
Some of our passing was golden. Carrick and Anderson generally dominated the middle with the ball at their feet. However, it was a crude combination of a lazy Anderson tackle and a weak clearance from Nev which gifted Wanderers a way back into the game. Fitness has never been an issue at United, but it seems to be at the moment. The Brazilian midfielder in particular seemed to go from all action in the first hour, to totally on a different planet for the last half hour. I vented my spleen at him as he half hearted put a leg out to stop the Bolton player as he drove forward in the play that ended with a goal. It is not acceptable. Yes Neville made a mistake with his clearance, but Anderson just let him go...it reminded me so much of the Champions League final, as Iniesta skipped past him. He needs to sort that out, or he will be playing second fiddle to Owen Hargreaves very very soon.
We had to batten down the hatches as Bolton did their best 'Crazy Gang' Wimbledon stylee impression and sent high balls into the box. Thankfully it didn't work...just! A win is a win, and we all clapped the two teams off the pitch. Then..the scores came up on the board
Sunderland 1 Liverpool 0
The place went mad for 5 seconds. We then all skipped down the stairs to ground level, talking about what a great couple of hours it had been!
In the end Bolton will feel they could have had a point, but probably didn't deserve it as Megson admitted after the match (very big of him) It was promising to see the team playing some good football. All we need is a few additional goals now and we will be flying. Whether we will be entirely ready for a war at Anfield next week is still yet to be seen. The Scouse will be licking their wounds after 'Beachballgate' and they always play better against the big teams. Plus I'm sure they will unwrap Gerrard and Torres from the huge balls of cotton wool they are currently wrapped in to try and grab the points.
We know that United V City is the real Manchester derby, but Us V Liverpool is the true grudge match...the Super Classico of English football. And it is only a week a way.
Manchester United fan since the age of 9 when he saw Norman Whiteside curl the ball into a Wembley goal in the dying minutes.
He is an Old Trafford season ticket holder in the North Stand Tier 3...and cried tears of joy, on his knees with the many in Moscow.
Rob is a contributing author/editor at Man Utd blogzine 'The Faithful'