Match Report: Man City 4-1 Manchester United

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By Lee Savery.

Manchester United produced a dismal display as they were outclassed by Manchester City in the derby.

Sergio Aguero scored twice with Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri adding one each in what was an easy win for the blue half of Manchester. A late consolation goal from Wayne Rooney put the away side on the scoresheet.

Manchester City started with an eagerness to control and win while United, without the injured Robin van Persie, could not handle them. The first goal came on 16 minutes when Kolarov got away from Valencia before putting in a superb cross that was volleyed in at close range by Sergio Aguero.

United mustered one effort at goal in the first half, from Valencia, which went harmlessly wide. Right on half time, City won a corner. Alvaro Negredo’s header was going wide but Yaya Toure lost Ferdinand and bundled the ball into the net.

Changes were needed for the away side and David Moyes made none. This decision was punished with two goals in the first five minutes of the second half. Firstly, Negredo was played into the box by Kolarov who then crossed to an unmarked Aguero who forced home his close range effort that went through David de Gea. The second came three minutes later with a cross from the right side from Jesus Navas who found Nasri all alone at the back post. He applied a decisive side footed finish.

The game was over and the manager responded with Tom Cleverley, who came on for Ashley Young, to sure up the midfield that had been outclassed. With three in midfield, United finally got hold of possession and began to create chances. There were chances for Rooney, Welbeck and Evra, with the latter hitting the post with a header.

The consolation from Rooney was a beauty and would have been celebrated if it had meant anything. From 25 yards out, Rooney found the top right corner of the goal leaving Joe Hart with no chance. With that, United’s No. 10 is now the highest goalscorer in Manchester derbies with 11 goals.

The naivety of the tactics was obvious with the United two man midfield of Fellaini & Carrick failed to deal with Fernandinho & Yaya Toure. Only when United had three in midfield did they have any possession. The wings lacked in creativity too with Valencia & Young too ineffective. However, defensively was one big disappointment. Captain Vidic gave his usual display but his partner Rio Ferdinand was certainly at fault for the middle two goals that finished the match.

In the positives, Rooney gave a display of someone eager to change the fortunes but he had a lack of service until after City’s fourth goal. Some will question why the likes of Nani, Shinji Kagawa and Javier Hernandez sat on the bench for the whole game.

This is another big match loss for United which has also seen them lose at Liverpool and draw against Chelsea with just seven points from the first five league games. It’s a poor start but there is a lot of football to be played. Improvement, however, is needed.

Manchester United Starting XI: De Gea; Smalling, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra; Valencia, Carrick, Fellaini, Young (Cleverley 52′); Rooney, Welbeck.

Unused substitutes: Amos, Evans, Buttner, Nani, Kagawa, Hernandez.

United goal: Rooney 87′.

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6 Comments

  1. Rooney got plenty of service early but kept (understandably) losing battles with Kompany. That’s what lead to his caution, if you recall, for persistent infringement.

    Rio was certainly *not* at fault for the middle two goals. Fellaini failed to track runners on all four goals. On each of the first three, the runner he failed to track was the player to score. It was troubling that he was also the first to throw his hands up after the third goal. Ironically, the player he was looking around for could have easily been found in a mirror. Now, I _may_ give you Rio at fault for not properly switching on the second goal because the way United appeared to be handling overlap defense was for the support defender to pick up ball while the pressuring defender peels off to take runner (and you can see how utterly useless they were at its execution since it led to multiple goals) but then that puts the blame for the first goal on Smalling and the blame for the fourth goal on Fellaini for 80 yards of poor defense (failing the pressure the ball immediately, allowing a pass out of the back, failure to take the runner instead of chasing the ball, after choosing to chase the ball, never taking an angle that would ever slow the ball, let alone stop it, and ultimately slowing down when it was obvious a service was coming instead of working harder to see if he could deflect it for a corner). His shirt was on the field for 90 mins but there was nothing inside it.

    Fellaini should have come off first, right after the third goal. He was horrible. That should have been followed by two other moves if for no other reason than to get fresh legs out there in an attempt to finish with a little emotion. Given, I have no idea what the injury, illness, or fitness situation is like but holding onto two subs for no apparent reason just boggles the mind.

  2. The problem again for me, was the team selection. Rio was never at the races, Young has been a constant inconsistency and Welbeck hasn’t been exactly prolific.

    I said it after Wednesday already, Smalling should play next to Vidic. Yes he is a little foolish, but he has a go at everything. That would have made a difference with the Aguero semi-volley. He is also faster than Rio, which would have helped on the counter.

    Fabio should have played at right back. He is relentless and runs the entire game. He also gives us pace going forward, Smalling just doesn’t switch into attack mode quick enough and against big teams that kills attacking opportunities. Fabio also links up with his winger a lot better.

    Chicharito should have started in place of Welbeck. Rooney was never going to win anything through the air against Kompany and I just feel that with a Hernandez, Rooney would have had a partner up front, who would not have thought twice about running at a scoring chance. Which is what United lacked.

    Young…well on this matter, all I have to say is, how does he get chosen for such a big game after his season so far? Nani, Shinji, Adnan? Really?

    Also, Why was Clevs a better subtitution at 4-0 down?

    I’m not mad that we lost and I have full faith in our manager. I just think that he needs to decide on whether investing this precious game time in players he “WANTS” to improve is worth pushing better quality players out of the team?

    Moyes will get the right mix going…he just needs to start picking his team on merit and not on hope or faith.

  3. Shocking performance. I’m really hurting today.

    Ashley Young is not good enough for Manchester United. He was atrocious yesterday.

  4. I’ve been saying it for years: Rio is not up to it and hasn’t been for at least 6 years. I honestly cannot see what the fuss about that lanky streak of pee is. Along with Roy Carroll, he began giving goals away willy nilly and I’ve taken an interest since then. Evans and Vidic are a far better pairing and, seriously, whenever I see Ferdinand’s name on the sheet, I fear for us.

  5. For the record, I don’t think any team could have lived with Citeh when they played like that. Credit where it’s due, they were very, very good. We helped them, yes, but they played some great football. Yep, that hurt!

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