Sir Alex Ferguson still looking for 'defending' solutions
Though Manchester United were victorious over Newcastle United on Boxing Day, Sir Alex is still looking for ‘defending’ solutions as he wants to win the game by a big difference, and to remove the ‘The Comeback Kings’ tag. Let’s take a look at Manchester United’s matches in which they fought back and won, which has made Sir Alex desperate for solutions in defence.
Reading 3-4 Manchester United
It was a dramatic first half, which reflected in the final score. One will not believe that Reading, currently sitting in 20th position, dominated against Manchester United, currently on top of the table. It was Hal Robson-Kanu who scored the opener for Reading in the 8th minute. Then Anderson scored an equaliser for Manchester United in the 13th minute, after which Wayne Rooney scored from the spot in the 16th minute and took the lead 2-1. But their happiness did not last long as Le Fondre headed in an equaliser from the corner in the 19th minute and then Morrison did the same in the 23rd minute to give the lead to Reading 3-2. In the 23rd minute, Rooney clinically finished Patrice Evra’s cross to level it again. Then, with Man United known as ‘The Comeback Kings’, Robin van Persie finished the task in the 34th minute, beating the offside trap and took the lead 4-3.
The second half looked tense as none of the sides were able to score a goal, though Robin van Persie scored a goal, but it was disallowed.
Manchester City 2-3 Manchester United
No one could miss this one! The last Manchester Derby, played at Etihad Stadium, was also a dramatic and nail-biting match. Wayne Rooney scored goals (both in the 15th and the 28th minute) and took the lead 2-0. The match was looking totally in the hands of Sir Alex’s side until, in the second half, Yaya Toure scored in the 60th minute and gave Man City fans some hope, making it 2-1 on the score sheet. Ashley Young too scored after some seconds but it was wrongly disallowed by the ref. Man City made a comeback through Pablo Zabaleta when he levelled the score 2-2 from the corner in the 85th minute. But Robin van Persie made the day for The Red Devils as they made a comeback in the game, when he scored the winning goal from the free kick in injury time (92nd minute). This ended City’s proud run and handed their first league defeat since last April.
Swansea City 1-1 Manchester United
This was an unexpected result against Swansea City. Patrice Evra headed the goal in the 16th minute and gave the lead to his side until Swansea star striker Michu scored the equaliser and his 13th goal of the season in the 29th minute. The second half was not so good for Sir Alex’s side as they created chances but missed all of them. Robin van Persie and Michael Carrick, both took the shot, only to see the ball hit the woodwork.
Manchester United 4-3 Newcastle United
The hosts won the match by their ‘comeback’ tactics on Boxing Day. But it was Newcastle who took the lead 1-0 by the opener scored by James Perch in the 4th minute only. Then Jonny Evans scored the equaliser from close range for The Reds in the 25th minute, but quickly scored an own-goal (28th minute) and gave the lead to the visitors again. It was for the second time when Manchester United came back from behind and leveled the score 2-2 through Patrice Evra’s goal in the 58th minute. Papiss Cisse scored the goal and again gave the lead to Newcastle United to make it 3-2 in the 68th minute. Just after three minutes, in the 71st minute, Robin van Persie scored an equaliser for the third time. The last goal was from Chicharito in the 92nd minute, who received a great pass from Michael Carrick and hit past the goalkeeper Tim Krul.
No doubt Manchester United is on the top of the table, winning matches by coming from behind. But Sir Alex is not happy with this and wants to remove ‘Comeback’ tag. He wants more improvement in the defensive side of his team. He must improve his defending very quickly if he wants to win against Real Madrid in the knockout stage of UEFA Champions League, scheduled to be held on 13th February (first leg) and 5th March (second leg).