Old Trafford expects its second victory of the season, with West Ham United in town for this afternoon’s late kick off. The Hammers, beaten twice already, conceding six goals in the process, look prime candidates for relegation, with manager Avram Grant admitting his team is suffering from “a lot of psychology problems” early in the season.
United’s principal selection choice surrounds in-form Paul Scholes who could be rested for the tie. Although with the international break coming up, the ginger midfielder can take a well-earned rest after the Hammers’ visit. Ferguson could draft in Michael Carrick or Ryan Giggs to central midfield alongside Darren Fletcher.
Wayne Rooney, now recovered from the stomach bug that kept the striker out of United’s disappointing draw with Fulham last weekend, will partner Dimitar Berbatov in attack, while Nani should return to the starting line-up in place of Ji-Sung Park.
Ferguson, uncharacteristically critical of his team following last Sunday’s draw with Fulham, is seeking an improvement in both performance and fitness, with several key players close to a return.
“Things are looking up here,” the manager told the press on Friday.
“Rio Ferdinand has trained this week, which was a big surprise to me. He’s made fantastic progress. Anderson is training with the first team and he had a bit of a reserve game of course on Tuesday so that’s really good news.
“We’ve got no injuries from last week’s game. Wayne Rooney has trained all week and he’s back.”
“We’ve always had really good games against West Ham and we expect that again. Obviously we were really disappointed with last Sunday, throwing away two points like that.
“Its uncharacteristic but its early season and I do think some of the players needed the game, the second half of the game dropped. We think they’ll be much better tomorrow.”
However, Ferguson is likely concerned about the form of his central defenders, with Jonny Evans given a particularly hard game by Fulham’s Bobby Zamora. The young Irishman found himself the wrong side for Fulham’s first equaliser and was unable to deal with Zamora’s physical game.
Good news then that Ferdinand is perhaps only two weeks from full fitness having trained with the first team squad this week. Although not able to feature against West Ham, the defender’s progress is speedier than anticipated.
“I must admit he hadn’t done anything football wise when we spoke last week,” added Ferguson.
“Maybe when he read what I said it gave him a bit of a kick. He’s come in and trained all week. He’ll train with the reserves today, and won’t be involved tomorrow [against West Ham] but we’ll try and get him a game in the next two weeks.”
Unsurprisingly Ferdinand’s defensive partner Nemanja Vidic is delighted with the England captain’s imminent return, with the pair having played so few games together over the past year. While Ferdinand has suffered with back, groin and knee problems, Vidic spent much of last season on the sidelines with a mystery nerve complaint.
However, the Serbian has no concerns about adapting to the old partnership when Ferdinand returns after the international break.
“We’ve played alongside each other for over four and a half years so it’s easy to play together, even when you’ve been out for a while,” stand-in captain Vidic told ManUtd.com
“We’ve shown over the years that, as a partnership, we have a good relationship, but we obviously need to reach the right form and you need to play every week to get that. Hopefully we can.”
It’s no concern for today’s game of course, although Evans’ performance will be under ever greater scrutiny.
West Ham travel north having made its worst ever start to a Premier League campaign, with captain Scott Parker admitting he is “dreading” the thought of the trip to Old Trafford. The Hammers play Chelsea, Stoke away and Tottenham Hotspur next, facing the very real prospect of beginning the season with six defeats.
Grant travels without injured quartet Jack Collison, Zavon Hines, Peter Kurucz and Thomas Hitzlsperger.
Team – 451 – Green; Reid, Gabbidon, Upson, Ilunga; Faubert, Parker, Noble, Kovac, Dyer; Cole. Subs from – Barrera, Piquionne, Sears, Stech, Tomkins, Boa Morte, McCarthy, Ben Haim, Spector, Da Costa, Stanislas, Daprelà, Obinna, Nouble.
Referee: Mark Clattenburg
Assistant referees: Adam Watts & Martin Yerby
Fourth official: Michael Jones
United – WWW
West Ham – LL
99 thoughts on “Reds look to hammer OT visitors”
Well, Sir Alex has selected a strong team: VDS, O’Shea (why?), Vidic, Evans, Evra, Nani, Fletcher, Scholes, Giggs, Berbatov, and Rooney. Good strength on the bench as well. We should win this one.
valencia is only a sub
giggs starts along with scholes…class…
I agree Rob… why O’Shea? Why isn’t Raphael getting the nod against this shitty team?
Anyway… Sopcast – 82153… good stream
I know that ultimately, it’s the result that matters, but…
I want to see a real storming performance… no fuckin about, a ruthless attitude, and 3/4 goals at least.
This is a rubbish team on our patch… come on lads… get the cane out, and take ’em to the wood shed.
would be nice to see Rooney score today, i think he will too.
He doesn’t trust the kids
And O’Shea is off the mark… one touch, one misplaced pass… ffs…
Berbatov will do everything he can to set Rooney up to score.
wish he’d try and score himself
Let Rooney take it.
Rooney up for it
We look miles better with his attitude and bollocks
Nani didn’t roll over
Class from Berba, class ball from Scholes originally
Goal is coming.
Cole, meet Vidic
fuckinell what a pass from Scholes… right on to Giggs’ toe nail
Great ball from Scholes again
Finallllyyyy Rooney scores!!!
Fucking class penalty
That’s how I take ’em
Is that another chant of WHO ARE YA by United?
FFS heard it every game so far this season
lets put this game to bed now guys
yup, Rooney looks like a completely different player from the one that went to the WC… lot hungrier
we’ve got a goal we can switch off now
class shot from Fletch
hope OG makes an appearance this afternoon
otherwise we are fooked
Giggs is still ace on the left wing
what a fucking miss…
Nani you utter cunt
Great ball from Giggs from centre midfield though
thats 2 potential goals that twat has cost us
I want more goals.
At least 2
Anyone elses stream playing up?
ace build up and nice finish
about fookin time he scored!!!
come on reds now rape them
Well done Nani
Aye, keeps dying
Class goal from Nani – Ronaldo-esque
Some of the football Rooney and Nani play is top draw
2-0 in first gear
2-0 thats better.
open those cockney cunts up now
stop fannying about and score a sackful
ok well just ease off and let them gain in confidence
Flashing black and grey?
It’s fuckin pissin me off!
Oh no, my stream just keeps cutting out
To be fair, I think we’d be 4 or 5 up if not for some very good defending.
Class goal, took our time, well done Nani
Lovely goal from Berbatov
Giggs or Scholes scoring would be nice
o shea scoring would be a joke
15 mins to get a few more please
why the triple substitution?
come on reds
O’Shea offers nothing.
Seriously… what is he good for?
Why not play Rafa? He’s miles better going forward, and no worse in defense.
even that fat spanish twat over at inter looks a better bet than our o’shea
Have you noticed the scoreline?
We’re a bit shit now Scholes has gone off
And Smalling is still being shit. I hope he comes good like Vidic, who has been a fucking monster today
Smalling needs a LOT of work, fuck me.
Relentless pressing from United
Will take a 3-0
Fuck what Chelsea do, they can score 86431 goals against the riff raff, I’m not arsed. They only won the league by a point
Still not enough ruthlessness if you ask me.
Oh well… 3 more points, 3 more goals.
It’ll do, I suppose.
There’s no way we’re going to go far unless we get our best 11 to start a match and see what happens.Furthermore Rooney is playing like he’d rather be changing nappies. It’s nice to have people going on and on and on and on about Scholes cos we love him but HE’S FUCKING 36!!!! Giggs will turn 37 in November!!!!! Berbatov is class but little substance. Carrick is as entusiastic as a piece of shit. O’Shea is at best a good sub. We’re miles better than West Ham but wouldn’t it be better to try things that will work in the long run? Why didn’t Chicharito play? Give the guy games, let Rooney fight for a place which on recent form he doesn’t deserve. Even Owen looked sharper in 15 minutes. I could go on and on but we ‘re fucked unless we get a proper midfield settled. It was easy but we won without any anger in our performance, pussy footing all match, loosing possession stupidly.It seemed like it was only Nani, Vidic and the great old fuckers who took the match seriously. Gutted.
Ivan, did you watch the match?
We dominated for 90 minutes and played some top football
It was never in doubt
Hello Sidney. Watched the whole match and despite winning 3-0 I thought there was enough there to be pissed off. If we don’t get that first goal we struggle.If we didn’t have Scholes to move the ball from one side to the other we’re static. Look, our performance today won’t scare anybody. That’s what bothers me.
Well said that man one reasonable performance doesnt mean that our worries are over.
We arsed about in the first half but we were much much better in the second. In truth we should have won 6-0. It was one of those games where we should have looked to up our goal difference as much as possible. We had some good chances but there were passages where we arsed about.
I’m being overly picky but Chelsea are hammering some of these teams and the league title could well go down to goal difference.
I thought Berbatov had a good game. Rooney is returning back to his normal self. Nani improved as the game went on. Scholes is a master.
I agree about Berbatov, Scoles and Nani but Rooney has been playing at 50% of his potential and it wouldn’t surprise me if Capello left him as sub. If he doesn’t it’s because ther’s no one else. Rooney is a great player but there’s something serioiusly wrong with him.
When you consider the summer he’s had, I thought today represented something of an improvement. He looked livelier – although obviously nowhere near his best form. He just needs more games for us.
Solid performance, will know the true value of this side when we play those fighting out for the top 6 slots…
I think it was an ordinary performance on the whole.
There was some good football, and we could have scored more, and to be honest, I thought Gabbidon had an excellent game… probably the difference between 3-0, and 5/6-0.
But I also thought there was some real dreck out there. Scholes had another decent game, but he’s only having success, cause he’s getting the space and time, which he can’t count on every game. In my opinion, Berbatov has had a good start to the season, but I agree with Ivan, Rooney still doesn’t look right to me. Yeah he scored… a penalty… but he’s just not driving his game the way we expect, he’s still more of a passenger. O’Shea…? fuck sake!
Anyway… I honestly don’t expect much this year… I’m hoping that we hang in there till Christmas, Fergie has the guts to try some young options, we find out whether Chico, Smalling, Cleverly can cut it, and if they can, then they get a real chance to break into the first 11… although from what I’ve seen so far… I think Smalling has a lot to learn,,, A LOT!
I’m looking to the new year… then we’ll see if Fergie actually does have another winning team, or have the Glazers really fucked everything up.
Hi Alfonso, long time. I’m with you on everything but do you seriously think the Glazers have anything to do with this? They owned the club in possibly our most succesful period and only when CR left and Chelsea got the title did we start the anti Glazer stuff. Look, had we beaten Barcelona in Rome who’d have given a shit about the Glazers. They’ve put us in as much debt as Real Madrid have or even Barcelona.Teams in general are in shit but the massive clubs have a way of getting out of it. About SAF having a winning team, remember the 94, 95 and 96 seasons when we were adjusting to firstly Arsenal, then Chelsea winning everything and it wasn’t until we beat Wigan in the Carling Cup final and decided to send RVN packing that things started to change. They did and they will again. I think we stand a chance to win the league and no chance in the CL. Unless we get our midfield in order. It’s the key. The forwrd line will be fine, so will the back four, but our midfield just looks to be holding thanks to Scholes. There’s something missing. How good is Tom Cleverly?
The only reason we have had success during the Glazer regime is down to the marquee signings made pre Glazer i.e. Ferdinand, Rooney, Ronaldo, RVN and the performances of homegrown players like Scholes, Giggs, Neville and Fletcher.
If the Glazers hadn’t put the club in debt we could be buying one player of the calibre of Silva or Villa or Aguero out of club profits each year instead of taking punts on people like Anderson, Bebe and Smalling.
That’s the thing – some of you lot think we’re shite because we’re not hammering shit cunts 6-0 like Chelsea
Scoreline doesn’t matter so long as you win. Two 3-0s is great for us this time of year. We’ve scored 8 goals in 3 matches – 11 if you include the Charity Shield
Today we were totally completely dominant apart from a brief moment when we made 3 subs
And that’s my point; the result was never in doubt. Whether it finished 1-0 or 10-0 we were always gonna win because we were totally dominant. We won in first gear.
I’m not saying we’re stronger or weaker than last season – we’re pretty much the same. We can smash the riff raff as ever, but we obviously lack quality, and we’re miles off the double winning standard bearing 2008 team. That ‘int gonna change with the Glazers in charge. But today was a good day for the club and some of yous need to wind your necks in.
Where have I said that we are shite because we didn’t hammer West Ham? Am I saying that today’s result is a bad result?
All I am saying is that, when there’s a realistic possibility that the outcome of the title race could be decided by as fine a margin as goal difference, we should be looking to rack up as many goals as we can against teams like West Ham.
Of course, points in the bag is the number one objective…but once the outcome is beyond doubt, we need to make sure we’re upping the goal difference as much as possible especially when we’re playing shite like West Ham.
Last week against Fulham, we paid the price because in the 2nd half we were happy to sit on our lead. Today we were a bit better in that regard, although I still felt that there were moments when we were sitting back instead of going forward.
3-0 was a fair reflection of our dominance on the game, we played well…but we could and should have scored more goals.
You’re not moaning as much as some to be fair
The tone of some posts is as if United were shit today; that we weren’t enjoyable to watch, average, wank, presumably because we ‘only’ won 3-0
But today was a good day and the usual criticisms don’t apply. We dominated midfield and scored 3 goals. So I’m not sure why people are moaning after a game where for once we controlled the ball from start to finish and looked the bollocks.
That’s not wholly fair Ivan… some of us have been banging the anti-Glazer drum ever since the fucker started making moves to seize the club. And many of us have been following, very closely the financial saga surrounding the Glazers and United. I don’t pretend to understand it all, and I also don’t know just how much Ferguson is hampered by them in the transfer market… but there is a fuck of a lot of spin, lies and hypocrisy coming out of Old Trafford… more than enough to be very cynical.
I’ll support United on the pitch, but they won’t get one red cent out of me till the Glazers are gone.
I think the “moaning” is justified Sid. I think there’s plenty to be worried about. The score itself was OK… I would have taken 3-0 before the game.
But I don’t think Rooney is right… whether he’s not right in the head, or just not match fit yet, I don’t know… but he carried United last year, and we haven’t exactly revamped the squad… we will need a lot more from Rooney, sooner rather than later.
Sid as pointed out by others we did play for the most part well, we did win well with 3 – 0 but it doesn’t alter the facts that others have mentioned which is that there are cracks appearing and that results such as these don’t cover them up.
Like Ed said in the Rantcast thing, Rooney is about 5 games behind most of the others because he didn’t have a pre-season
You don’t want your best players to come into form at the same time. If Rooney hits a run of form in a couple of weeks time it’ll give us a kick up the arse
dROGBHA, lAMPARD, TERRY, cROUCH ETC DONT SEEM TO HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY LACK OF PRE SEASON sID
As I said before, I think Rooney’s getting better. He’ll feel a lot better about himself having scored yesterday and we shouldn’t forget his contribution for the second goal.
He was nowhere near his best yesterday but he’ll be fine after a few matches.
I hope his lack of form is unrelated to this story about England players seeking gagging orders. I just hope he’s not one of those England players who’s been up to no good.
you know what i was going to type something similar the other week when all that came out
10hours without anyone saying anything ffsLKHF
Who gives a fuck
The second half gave me a lot of hope for this season. The passing was reminiscent of days gone and every time we had the ball, we looked dangerous. I think the players (Berba, Nani, and Rooney) are starting to get a better understanding of each other and look a little more cohesive than last season.
I’m optimistic that we will improve with the younger players as they get games. I reckon they can learn a lot from scholes and giggs.
My only worry is Smalling who looked shaky. His pace is a plus though so fingers crossed he makes the mental leap to Man United levels and becomes a rock like Vida.
clearly you do
I expect him to make mistakes. It’s a huge step up from non league football to United (albeit via Fulham). He has to get used to the way we play and that will take time. By all accounts, he was excellent against City reserves the other night.
Even Rio was culpable for a lot of silly mistakes early in his career but he learned to iron them out. Hopefully, Smalling can do the same.
Lampard is SHIT.
Missed penalty, no goals in four games – his hernia is fucked, now that his bum chum Ballack has gone he has no one to cover his deficiencies although Malouda and Mikel are doing that together with big Essien.
At utter fraud of a player who does not even have the technical capacity to deliver a cross-field pass.
smalling is a fast cunt much faster than evans and defo vida. needs to learn – is raw as fuck but is an amazing athelete. he will come good after a few more calamaties
these type of comments baffle me, he is clearly not shit…slightly overrated i agree, but still class
ok, not shit but overrated – not class but this is where we disagree.
the slow death of Lumptard and Gerard is going to be interesting. This is how you will see the gulf in class between Scholes and Keane. Viera too to a certain extent siomply had to move to a slower league to maintain the same impact.
Lampard’s game is a about general running aboutuness, driving the ball and ghosting in boxs. Lumpard’s engine is going and he has no technique or brains to either carry on like Scholes or reinvent himself like Keane did into a holding midfielder.
The reason for this is Lumptard’s technical (he is woefully bad) and mental limitations (he lacks the mental capactiy to reinvent himself, like Keane did and Ronaldo did by moving from wing to central, or Scholes by moving from front attacking midfielder to much deeper, “controller” role).
Robson famously told Keane that in order to be considered a complete midfielder Keane has to learn to dominate from the controller position and after Keane’s injuries he pretty much stayed back.
Lumpard can’t do this because he lacks the football brains to play in that role, he lacks vision, positional sense and Mikel and Essien are simply better than him.
Gezza is something else. A really special player but his engine is winding down too – you can see that with the frequency of his injuries. Whilst arguably more talented than Keane in his overal attacking play again his problem is that he is a tool.
Midfield monsters as they age move deeper, Scholes, Viera, Keane, Robson – accept that this cunt is moving forward behing Tozza. In the short term this is the right position for Shtipool but in the long term he is fucked. The driving runs will simply not work as the size and speed of defenders increase and his power decreases – however, he will not have learned the art of the controller roll, but like a relic Shitpool will park him on the side of midfield or just tolerate him in the squad.
Lump works for the Chelsea machine, but as a footballer overrated to shit and contributed nothing (other than slick penalty technique) to the development of English midfield on any count in the past few generations.
You only have to look at the EPL “elite” central midfield and no way in hell does Lumpard stack up to this.
Robson, Ince, Keane, Scholes, Viera, Petite, Fabregas, Gerrard, Essien, Ballack
I would has go as far to say that Rio Ferdinand would be a better midfielder than Lumpard were he not such a genius defender and groomed to go in that direction.
Rio has played a few games in midfield for United because he is so comfortable on the ball. Lumps first decision is to side shuffle / pop shot – but rarely can he create or control. His limitations were grossly exposed in the WC where apart from one (very good pop shot that yes, shld have been allowed), he was a passenger. His shitness was only eclipsed by Rooney’s.
You’re the one who brought them up
What the others do means nowt to us. Rooney is be fine and will come good soon
well when they are hammering sides and have a far better goal difference than us, as well as topping the table…and are our our main competition for the title then clearly it does affect us
The red tinted optimism brings tears to my eyes Sid.
You’re just finding something to moan about
Goal wise this is our best start to a season since 2006/07 – 8 goals in 3 games – two 3-0s
Moan about the midfield FFS, not the goals scored
I have a functioning sense of perspective
Goals aren’t a problem (check the statistics), the midfield is, and the defence is
But typical Rant we’re misguided and banging on about the wrong thing