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Man United Wins Community Shield 3-1 On Penalties: Your Thoughts


So, Manchester United has picked up another piece of silverware after beating Portsmouth 3-1 on penalties in the annual curtain raiser to the new season.

The game, which ended 0-0 in regular time, was a bit of a sleeper at times with Man United controlling large portions of the match but unable to score. A main reason for that was Portsmouth’s goalkeeper David James who was stellar between the goalposts for Pompey making several crucial saves. In comparison, Edwin van der Sar was rarely challenged.

Carlos Tevez deservedly was awarded the man of the match award after producing a spirited display on the pitch at Wembley. He was quite the troublemaker in attack for United having one shot brilliantly saved by James, being pulled down in the box — which should have been a penalty, and battling and winning many balls in midfield.

Portsmouth showed glimmers of skill now and again especially in midfield and in defense, but they rarely were able to get the ball to Jermain Defoe and Peter Crouch. Pompey’s attack seemed very one dimensional with balls floated in to Crouch, but rarely did the ball reach Crouch and instead was defended well by United’s back four.

The difference between United and Pompey rang true during the penalty kicks. United was calm, cool and collected as they knocked in each of their penalty kicks. In contrast, Portsmouth’s Lassana Diarra, Arnold Mvuemba and Glen Johnson missed all of theirs. If Pompey wants to compete against the big boys, they’ve got a lot of work to do.

What are your thoughts regarding the final? Do you think that United looks beatable this season? Will Manchester United be able to play as well as they did last season without Wayne Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo and Owen Hargreaves for the early part of the season. Share your feedback below by clicking the comments link.

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  1. ahmedunitedfan

    August 11, 2008 at 9:36 pm

    man united need a striker and berbatov wants to play for man united too.

  2. JLay

    August 11, 2008 at 12:42 pm

    James played out of his skin – it amazes me that the guy has reflexes like that at 38.

    Otherwise, Pompey looked horrible – 3/4of the game had to have taken place in their half.

    You’re spot on about the long balls to Crouchie, everyone seems to assume that he’s strong in the air because he’s so tall, but the guy weighs nothing – it’s all too easy to knock him off of the ball – while it’s in the air or after he settles it.

    United started the last season off terribly, and I hope that we don’t see a repeat this year. Chelsea are legitimately stronger, and we can’t afford to spot them any points in August.

    With Rooney and Ronaldo out, United are in desparate need of a target man. Pay whatever Tottenham asks – just get Berba in here fast!

    Nani was a pleasant surprise – he seems to have matured a bit, was making better decisions with the ball, and looks quite capable of stepping into CR’s shoes next year or the year after. Neville looked OK too, which surprised me – but neityher he or Wes Brown are the long term answer.

    I want a striker and a right back – make it happen, Ferg!

  3. AtlantaPompey

    August 11, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    I agree Kartik. Long passes to Defoe and Crouch won’t work against the better teams. Defoe or Crouch have to get the ball upfield themselves, or Niko needs to be involved in the game more.

    Redknapp showed his big game inexperience when he kept substituting and ended up with several players on the pitch for penalty kicks that had no business taking them. When your kick is so far off that the goalie doesn’t even flinch but simply throws his hands up in celebration, you shouldn’t have taken the kick.

    In all honesty, the defense was great at times, and not at others. ManU missed two easy goals because of defensive mistakes and David James made spectacular saves. Tevez was pulled down in the box which should have been a penalty.

    It will be interesting to see how Redknapp handles this setback.

  4. Karthik Balasubramanian

    August 11, 2008 at 11:14 am

    Though Portsmouth were outplayed, I have to say their defense looked impressive. The back 4 maintained shape well and Distin was especially impressive. On another day if Ronaldo and Rooney had played the result might have been very different.

    That said, Portsmouth have some serious problems with creativity. They seem to rely too much on Kranjcar for creativity a more creative replacement for Muntari seems to be a priority. There was a time when Defoe actually dropped down to midfield and collected a pass and made quite a run. If Pompey cant find an attacking mid who can supply the Crouch-Defoe partnership it might deny them the serious chance they seem to have to kick the big ones off the ladder.

  5. Phil McThomas

    August 11, 2008 at 8:21 am

    I didn’t watch the game – my FIOS still doesn’t seem to carry Setanta – so I feel I dodged a bullet.

    Whoever decided that the Community Shield should be decided on penalties is nuts.

  6. AtlantaPompey

    August 10, 2008 at 9:53 pm

    We were outplayed. If our strategy this year is to send in long crosses to Crouchie, who isn’t that good with his head, or to Defoe, who is 5’7″, then we’re in for a long season. We didn’t win many midfield battles, and weren’t able to advance the ball on the ground against ManU. We can beat the lesser teams in the league, but we won’t do that well in the UEFA Cup, nor can we aspire to finish higher than 8th if this is how our offense tries to move the ball up the field. I was disappointed, even though they were essentially doing this two weeks ago in Nigeria.

    SWP: Were you watching? We need you in the midfield. Not just for depth, but to push some of the current players to do better than they are doing now.

    In order to end Chelsea’s home points streak, we’ll have to do better than this.

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