Connect with us

Match Reports

United Let Everton off the Hook

It was built up to be Rooney’s day. It didn’t quite turn out that way. The former Blue was booed as usual, and the baiting worked to an extent, as he got quite worked up in the process. But the more important talking points will be of how United allowed Everton to claw their way back into a game when they were so rampant to begin with.

It is ever so tempting to revisit the Dr Jekyll and Hyde performances that’s been a feature of this United side — something I’ve been mentioning in the past match reports on how the team switches on and off almost suddenly, and inexplicably. Yesterday, we stomped all over Everton in the first half and it’s amazing how we went in at half time with only one goal to show.

Fletcher had a dream first half, Giggs was sublime, Berbatov was very much at the centre of all that was good. But all this was in the first half.

In the second, Everton suddenly sprung back to life and looked more the battlers of the past few seasons than the pedestrian outfit of the season so far and, to their credit, deserved the goal due to the pressure they exerted on the defence.

Rio Ferdinand had a game to forget, and tactics employed by Ferguson were questionable. The only good thing that could come of yesterday’s result would be a draw today when Chelsea and Liverpool clash. That should keep both table toppers at touching distance.

I felt taking off Rooney was a bad decision despite him having an off game. I thought Nani ought to have started instead of Park. If we are to get more out of Tevez, we need him to be playing more often. Clearly we can’t have him influence the game if he’s not starting. And while that’s difficult considering our striker pair’s form, he could have at least started the Celtic game in midweek.

I thought too much was being made of Phil Neville’s challenge on Ronaldo — who, for me, is still struggling. I am also not impressed by his exaggerated rolling and general whining when things don’t go his way.

All that said, it was a game we should have comfortably won — but we didn’t. Regardless of the position we were in, we should have won. I can’t say anything more because I am disappointed with the result. And that’s especially because of the manner in which we somehow threw away a glorious opportunity to come closer to at least one of the league leaders.

Credit to Everton for picking themselves up after a woeful first half. Sadly, the same couldn’t be said of United after an excellent first half. All it is now is just a case of what could have been…