Manchester United Vs Tottenham Match Report

Posted by Saim Sunday, September 13, 2009
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Manchester United outpass Spurs sending a warning to the rest of the Premiership

Ryan Giggs curls in a spectacular freekickborder
The enduring image of the day was when Patrice Evra bounded down the left flank, took on opposing defenders and drilled in a shot which hit the side netting. Nothing spectacular, on the face of it. Yet the magnificence of that run is not highlighted by the end result. It is the state of the match when this run was made which tells the real story. Manchester United, at that point in the match, were a man down, away from home, in front of a boisterous crowd and according to footballing principles should have been looking to defend their lead. Yet, such is the attitude of this side that even in those circumstances they never left off their attacking nature and even with a man down gave a passing lesson to Tottenham. Talk of playing "anti-football"

The game started in dream fashion for the home side as Jermaine Defoe curled his body to fire in a spectacular bicycle kick, giving Spurs the lead within a minute of the start. This was a goal of a striker in red hot form and with sky high confidence. It seemed at that moment that Spurs were actually the real deal. They may yet be but yesterday they were just against a much better team in Manchester United.

Taking that blow to the chin, United moved into the gears quickly, passing the ball with ease and dictating the tempo of the game. Scholes was at the heart of everything, spraying the ball to his atackers with pin point accuracy and was ably supported by Anderson. Fletcher and Rooney both went close and so did Crouch on the other end. Wilson Palacios then clumsily brought down Berbatov on the edge of the area and Manchester United fans started to miss Cristiano Ronaldo again. But behold, there is a record to be maintained and Ryan Giggs did just that. Curling in a sweet free kick in the top corner, he brought the champions back on level terms and maintained his individual record of scoring in all the Premier League seasons.

With the goal, United started dictating terms and Berbatov went close on three occasions and was brilliantly denied by Cudicini once. And then from an uncleared corner, Scholes fired in a shot which fell to Anderson, who drilled the ball in the goal, ending his barren run from open play. The celebrations were visibly toned down and one hopes this is a sign of a mature player, who is on the verge of fulfilling his potential.

Second half and things were going pretty much to plan when the referee decided he needed a mention in the match report. Scholes, already booked before, went in in typical Scholesy fashion for a 50-50 ball against Huddlestone and in the momentum caught the player. It was certainly not a yellow card offense, more so when the player is already booked, But the referee pulled the card out nonetheless and Scholes was off. Spurs sensed this was their way back in the game and the fans got behind the home team. Krancjar was introduced as Harry Redknapp looked to press the man advantage.

However, Fergie immediately replaced Berbatov with Carrick and along side Giggs, Fletcher and Anderson the midfield quartet showed Spurs how to keep ther ball. Vidic and Rio, restored back together, were immense and Evra was simply spectacular as he reined in Aaron Lennon with surprising ease and on many occasions was the support upfront for Rooney. With 12 minutes to go, Fletcher floated in a good ball for Rooney to chase and Wayne, bringing down the ball with immaculate skill, rounded off two defenders and slotted in between Cudicini's legs to seal the match.

If the earlier Defoe goal was one of a forward in superb form, this was pure masterclass. Wayne Rooney, in the central position is playing like a dream, and is finally showing glimpses of fulfilling that potential he once showed. There can be little doubt that this is a player who is relishing the challenge and perhaps even winning the battle.

4 games into the season and Manchester United finally gave a performance befitting of champions. A performance which not only smothered doubts raised by doom philosophers but also gave the rest of the league a glimpse of the permanent class of this club. They may not yet win the title but there is no doubt that they will be in a fight to the finish.

What should be the 1st choice midfield combo for United?