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Four Talking Points From Man United 1-6 Man City

man united 1 man city 6 Four Talking Points From Man United 1 6 Man City

I almost called it. If you saw my post on Thursday, I stated that Manchester City would play beyond the Carlos Tevez drama and that Mario Balotelli would be a factor. I also stated that the leaky defense would be MUFC’s downfall. Sometimes I hate being right.

Not only did Manchester City live up to their expectations, they dished out the worst loss Manchester United has taken on their home ground in EPL history. It’s the first time MUFC has allowed 5 or more points scored against them at Old Trafford in 81 years. Somewhere out there, Arsenal fans are laughing especially with their win against Stoke City this weekend.

I also stated as the first thing to watch for was payback for the loss of the Community Shield and Manchester City brought it in buckets. Although Manchester United went into the half with a longer time of possession, Manchester City had already struck and no one could have foreseen what was to come in the second half.

1. A Costly Red Card Started the Fall

It was clear that the home side came out frustrated that they couldn’t create and finish a lot of chances in the box. The biggest costly error was Jonny Evans’s red card foul by pulling down Mario Balotelli. It was just plain lazy defending. Even the commentators called it, Evans has one mistake in him constantly and this one pretty much set the match tone for the rest of the game causing the collapse. Mario was already in front of him and it probably would have been better to let Mario finish his run than let the team be short one man for the rest of the match. It makes me wonder if Phil Jones should have started instead. Watch the rest of the season and let’s see if Evans will ever get out of the doghouse for this.

2. Too Many Yellow Cards

After playing a card free match first half , MUFC had four in the second half which clearly is a sign that Man United let Manchester City get inside their heads and take them completely out of their game.

3. Is City a Clear Favorite?

It’s still too early to say right now but this win certainly gave them a much-needed boost. Milner was great on two assists today, Dzeko came off the bench to add to the fire that Balotelli had set (ha!) and even Micah Richards showed some quality today despite his yellow card. It was what I said that Sir Alex did not want to see: they beat their rivals on their own home turf and took home ALL of the marbles; Three points and the top of the board! But the question is whether or not we will still have this conversation in February.

4. Is There Any Regret About Not Acquiring Sneijder?

The biggest transfer rumor this summer was MUFC going after Wesley Sneijder and this went down all the way to the last day of the transfer window. One can only speculate if going forward that by not acquiring him and his talent was a costly mistake by management. It’s always impossible to do ‘what ifs’ but if any questions were to come like this, this would be the one. As far as the season had gone it looked like Man United was doing fine even without the big name splash but will this change come January? Will Sir Alex look to fill in holes come January? Does he still even trust Anderson in the midfield and an aging defense to carry on through to the end of the season?

Manchester United going forward will have a lot of soul searching to do. It’s their first loss and their worst loss. Some may say that the midfield needs shoring up but clearly an aging defense was missing their anchor and a young frustrated Jonny Evans that toppled the home team today. On an offensive side, Manchester United will have to get better at finishing inside the box and not let themselves get frustrated so easily.

Congrats Manchester City, you clearly earned it.

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18 Responses to Four Talking Points From Man United 1-6 Man City

  1. Bishopville Red says:

    You didn’t give Rio enough grief in this piece. I have no doubt that Fergie could easily call it a day on Evans’ MUFC career (at least his PL career – he might get some carling cup runs) but Rio looked terrible today too. His days are definitely numbered, and that number is smaller than most realize.

    The wheels sure came off quickly, which is the most worrying. Despite not really troubling Joe Hart, United did hold the run of play, and even were more menacing after we went down to 10 men. But as soon as goal #2 went in, we turtled. When Fergie talked about it being a shocking result, I think that’s what shocked him the most. Losing happens. Losing to teams you don’t want to lose to happens. But the way in which United capitulated and turned a loss into a humiliation was very un-United-like and clearly unacceptable. While most of use couldn’t burn the tape fast enough, I bet Fergie watches this one a good many times and comes out of it with some hard truths about the future of some players.

    With every passing game, Tom Cleverly’s stock rises. We don’t have a string puller. Anderson has proven yet again that he can’t put it together consistently. Fletcher is proving that he’s still a shadow of the guy who left United supporters asking “what if?’ about the 2009 Champions League final.

    After all that, some credit to City. They were never really bothered by our attack, played a classic Euro away match smash and grab in the first half and took advantage of the chance to rub a load of salt in the wound in the second. If the tables were turned, I’d fully expect – no, DEMAND – my red boys to do the same.

    If it’s any consolation for United fans, 6-1 or 2-1, it’s still only three points. Lots of games left to win and lose for everybody this year.

  2. Jason says:

    I really enjoyed this episode of Six and the City. Wow! it just goes to show that City while spending millions did buy well. Silva has been playing well for a year now but people are only noticing his genius now. The City squad is full of experienced and technically good players which is what you need to be successful. While I would not count United off just yet I have to admit that that City look like they might just have what it takes to win the title this season. If they concentrate on the league and not the CL they will win the title. I think this humbling experience will force Ferguson to concentarte on the title and not go all out to win the CL.

    Teams like Liverpool that have spent big should take notice that buying technically good players is the way to go rather than over-hyped British players who just play hard but have little technical qualities.

    • Bishopville Red says:

      I think a lot of us have notice David Silva, but he’s on another level now because his game is one that depends on the players around him to be on his wavelength. Balotelli has gotten there. Kun Aguero was there from the off. Silva looks that much more the player as a result.

      Since he’s been in the Premiership, Silva has carried the designation of “player on another EPL team I’d definitely want on mine”.

  3. BBC says:

    “I almost called it’ = “My prediction: a 2-2 draw with the Red Devils striking first”

  4. SoccerLimey says:

    I’m not sure that the red card really does City justice today. No doubt that it was a game changer but I think the problems with United’s performances today rest firmly at Sir Alex’s feet. His attempt to re-introduce the veterans back into the starting line-up has had disastrous consequences as the momentum they had at the start of the season has completely dissipated.

    Changes now need to be made with Evra, Evans, Anderson and Fletcher no longer much more than stop gap players. I’m sure Ferguson will be active in January but this is a hammer blow to the Old Trafford faithful. His central midfield is being handled by his two weakest players and in this League, this year, that just won’t cut it.

    http://www.soccerlimeyinamerica.com/?p=3005

  5. Ardwickian says:

    The old scottish genius after little thought has got to the bottom of this nightmare in stretford by declaring,IT WAS THE SHIRTS AND WE WILL NEVER WEAR RED AGAIN.

  6. MG says:

    “It’s the first time MUFC has allowed 5 or more points scored against them”

    Hate to be nitpicky, but you meant ‘goals’, not ‘points’ in our American sense of the sport term. Points makes me think of points in the table. Good article by the way.

  7. BuckNasty says:

    Anyone remember Matthew Duncan’s pre-season predictions on this site? Here’s some choice comments he received after picking City to win the league title:

    Chucky – The Red: “Bollocks on whose going to take the league… Not a chance… Top Four Yes… maybe but winner??? hehehehehe Joke of the day.”

    henrywalker56: “I’m getting sick of reading articles written by amatures on this website, please find someone who knows what thayre talking about.”

    ESPN24: “I’m sorry but to claim that Manchester City, a team who has only won the FA cup in the last 35 years can all of a sudden come out and win the title is just idiotic, please do some research next time.”

    Winsor Dobbin: “You appear to be suffering from some kind of mental disease that makes you think you know something about football. Manchester City will struggle to finish top five…”

    Any of you Reds ready to apologize yet?

    • Tony says:

      This 100% sums up the problems City will face. It’s not even November and they think they have it won. Please travel in the time machine and let Chelsea know that last year.

  8. Brad in SoCal says:

    I watched it, but it was hard to believe. MUFC looked decidedly ordinary, with very little initiative going forward. Maybe that was City’s defending? A. Young had a few forays, but Nani was nonexistent. Rooney couldn’t get a touch unless he came back to the center line. Surprising!

    Silva was extraordinary, so was Milner. Micah Richards also rampaged forward, and had the pace to get back when needed. And the strikers struck, clinically. As others have noted, the United defending was sub-par across the back.

    The stoppage time goals were amazing. 3-1 would have stung, but 6-1 is historic.

  9. eltricolor2014 says:

    Should have been only 1-3, but the Reds kept pushing forward leaving only Evra and Rio back and they got burned twice. Couple of things: 1.) the Reds have been in a funk for awhile now, ever since they had to claw back against Basel for 3-3 draw. 2.) while last year’s defense was solid with Vidic and Van der Sar playing nearly every game, this year’s version is clearly not playing as well. Jones and Smalling are good young players but as a whole they have lacked organization. Against L’pool, the defense played well but against City at Old Trafford, they should have been played without error and I don’t think you can pin this on Sir Alex. Evans’ red card was a costly mistake, but you play with one man down and shore up the defense. United needs to play better defense. 1-0 games may not be exciting but they count for 3 points just like 8-2 games.

  10. Jay says:

    Disgrace … unbelievable that these over paid d**k heads can’t string simple passes together in a build up, always going for the difficult one. I have been noticing the last few games that the midfield is always stuck to the ground, the players don’t move at all, its simple, you move, make space and pass around and when the run is made the guy with the ball doesn’t notice and the pass goes backwards … annoying annoying

    Why was Phil Jones and Vidic not played??? Johnny Calamity Evans always is a reckless liability to the team, no positional sense and slow … get rid off him ..

    They say it was best start to the campaign by MU, but I say it was all lucky to be where we are, against Chelsea lucky, stoke lucky, Norwich big time lucky, Liverpool lucky and MC gave us a good kick on the backside… no wonder we got our asses kicked by Barca because we are so one dimensional, our game is made by the wingers only, there is no creativity in the center of the field.

    finally hate it but have to give city the credit, I think they are on level with Barca in terms on playing style …

  11. broom_wagon says:

    City are certainly up there but whether we can expect that in the Champions League is a very very open question but I did indeed pick a City win (okay, just me as MnWyldeFan on the CBS sports boards here http://www.cbssports.com/mcc/messages/chrono/32819590 to win 3-1 ) and it really was as simple as saying they’ve had top scorers all season and anyone who does that as CFC and MUFC have done in the past look destined to win games. Arguero and Dzeko have been in the top 3 scorers all season ( http://www.soccerway.com/national/england/premier-league/2011-2012/regular-season/ ) and of course, Balotelli as well has had a number rounding that # out, I followed this more because of the problem with Tevez and seeing that they were doing fine without his goals. Not what it meant to the league in general. I don’t know if City will stay on top for a long season and over at Soccerway.com I did head to head on Ajax and Feyernoord, one season, Ajax wallopped them 4-0 in one game and the next game was a draw so anything can happen though of course, this is a bad loss and I’m no Red Devils fan and Manchester City deserve full kudos for this win. Again, when the strain of chasing the FA Cup, the Champions League and the PL title are all at stake, let’s see how well City do at the end of the year.

  12. eltricolor2014 says:

    Jay, you may be feeling too bad on yourself. But Chelsea, Stoke and L’pool are no aberrations – they were tough games played as well as they could under the circumstances. In the City game, you saw the players throw caution to the wind and continually pushing forward leaving the defence exposed. At a certain point, the players should have played for a 1-3 loss.

    The big question is how fast can Sir Alex rebuild the defence. As of now, in a big game, and if Vidic is healthy, I’d go with De Gea/Lingaard – Smalling/Fabio – Jones – Vidic and Evra. Or you can have the Rio – Vidic partnership with Jones as a defensive midfielder. This way you give your defence more stability and confidence.

    • Jay says:

      I think so but wake up at 6AM to watch the games the last few weekends and you get absolute garbage. I don’t mind losing but play with some technique and skill, don’t make it kick and run game. I agree that the defense was way too often exposed, everyone was running towards the ball but leaving so much space, reminds me my high school footie.
      have to go with tony on questioning the team selection … Welbeck leading the line in anfield and no hernandez against city … these guys are professionals, the first 11 should be able to handle 2 – 3 games a week with impact subs, no excuses.

  13. tonyspeed says:

    Fergie’s team selection is beginning to mind boggle me. He used to play a safe game with big derbies like this one. Now he is starting Welbeck and Evans? All being said and done, the absence of Cleverley is eye-opening as to United’s need for a revamped mid-field. As much as I appreciate Fletcher and Carrick, maybe it is time to part ways and jump on the Barcelona boat. We have been struggling for far too long with no class in the central mid-field. I hope this forces Sir Alex to jump into the transfer market come January and stop putting the important issues on the back burner.

  14. Kevin says:

    1. Even if Evans had not received the red card I still think City would have won. City were growing in confidence after scoring that first goal. The score may not have been 6-1 but City would have won anyway.

    2. All those yellow cards was because United couldn’t keep up with City’s movement of the ball and all around technical superiority. It had nothing to do with City getting inside the United’s players’ heads. It was pure frustration of being made to look so ordinary.

    3. At present City have to be favorites as they lead the league table by being 5 points ahead of their nearest rival. I would not make them clear favorites as they haven’t won the title before and don’t really know what it takes to win it. They will find out exactly what’s involved in winning it as they will be in the thick of it till the end. It will get easier next year should they win it this year and if they are in the same position then, that’s when they would become clear favorites. A team like United can make up 5 points easily with all the games left to play. They know what it takes to win the title Of course it won’t be easy if they play like yesterday.

    4. I think United do regret not getting Sneijder or Nasri or Modric, all of whom were linked with United. It would have made United a better team but I’m still not certain if it would have saved them yesterday. We’ll never know of course.

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