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Fickle Fans, Old Legs and Injuries

Some shite tabloid went with the headline ‘Manchester United fans want Giggs axed’ and when I read it, it pissed me off. It’s the fkn business end of the season, do we really need knee-jerk reactions and idiots who hit the panic button when they can’t find where they put their keys to represent us?

Axing Giggs is NOT the answer. When he plays well, everyone harps on about how his critics are wrong. When he plays poorly, the critics have a ball. No one’s getting to the real problem – our own ridiculous expectations.

Ryan Giggs of today will not give you a mindblowing season like that of Ronaldo’s. Heck, he won’t even give you a vintage Giggsy season now. What he will do though, is create chances, play intelligently on the pitch and make up the numbers when we have injuries. He’s played 34 games this season and done well, considering his age and the pace of the game (especially United’s) these days. You could just as easily argue that Scholes has lost that pace and verve of before, but then what do you expect?

Both Giggs and Scholes have done well to adapt to their limitations and have evolved as players. They can’t be pure match-winners in the sense that Rooney and Ronaldo are but they are still valuable to the team and I’d rather have those two starting than Park and Fletcher, at least this season.

United made a terrible start to the season – factor that in and you’ll see why we are only 3 points ahead instead of 6 or 8 or 10. One draw won’t end the season – in fact it might just force this side to give a little bit extra against Arsenal on the weekend (too bad Fletch is out) and I’d still back United to beat Roma, Arsenal, Blackburn and Chelsea in this month.

Just take it one game at a time, and we’ll be fine. Vida will probably be back after the Arsenal game (I don’t see why he should be rushed) but Rio is reportedly doing better than expected as well. You’d think that Fergie would rush one of them back for the Arsenal game but I hope he doesn’t and that he let’s those two get fit for the CL semi-finals (assuming we qualify tomorrow) and the Chelsea and Blackburn away games, which will be tougher to win than the Arsenal game at home.

It will be interesting to see if Neville gets a start tomorrow. I think that sooner or later Evra will be given a breather, and that would probably mean O’Shea on the left or Pique slotting in if Rio / Vida are back, although there’s Silvestre to consider as well. A lot of people are clamoring for Owen Hargreaves to play at right-back considering his hard tackling and crossing skills, but he’s a bit like Essien in that spot, albeit less marauding. Overall I’d be more comfortable with Hargo starting central than right-back, but if that’s what it takes to have him on the pitch to swing in those crosses, then why not?

We can’t afford an injury to another defender at this point, so Fergie has some interesting choices to make tomorrow. The fickle fans will barrack him if his team doesn’t win and bask in the glory if they do.

As for Giggs and Scholes – unless Nani is fit and unless Anderson can impose himself in Europe instead of running around like a headless chicken, those two are quite good in their positions. You might have Fergie resting Scholes against Roma for a shot at Arsenal, but whoever he plays in midfield and defence are good enough to win the title this season.