Fergie out-thinks hapless Harry

September 13, 2009 Tags: , Matches 11 comments

Sir Alex Ferguson will leave London tomorrow morning for United’s Champions League fixture at Besiktas, fresh from his side’s best performance of the season to date. The visitors beat a resurgent Spurs at a canter after Sir Alex out thought and his team out passed White Hart Lane’s pretenders to the top four. Following victory over Arsenal last time out, United’s machine is now moving through the gears.

Some pundits had felt the home side started favourites, after four Premier League wins in a row.

Indeed, those pundits were proven right but only for the 47 seconds it took for Jermain Defoe to put the home side ahead with a high quality overhead. Momentarily Tottenham’s fans forgot about that penalty in United’s 5 – 2 win last season. United hadn’t read the same script as the experts though and despite going down to the early strike, dominated possession during an entertaining first half.

If Ryan Giggs has turned back the clock over the past year, then he also reminded any fans who had forgotten about his dead ball skills in the 25th minute. The departed Cristiano Ronaldo may have taken 90% of free kicks over the past few years but there’s now a new kid in town now. Giggs buried a wonderful strike into the top corner of Carlo Cudicini’s goal.

Anderson’s first competitive goal of his 78-game United career came just 15 minutes later following Paul Scholes’ wayward shot. Sir Alex talked in pre-season of Anderson’s new goalscoring responsibilities. That’s one of at least 10 required for the campaign. Aside from the goal the Brazilian also put in his best performance of the season, using the ball wisely and offering protection to the back four. A welcome return to form.

Then came Scholes’ controversial red card. The ginger midfielder had pulled the strings all day, teaching Wilson Palacios and Tom Huddlestone in the Spurs midfield a lesson in the art. But Scholes just can’t resist a tackle, as is his habit of the last 15 years. If the midfielder’s first yellow was fully deserved after yet another rash challenge, then the second was unfortunate. Sliding into a genuine 50/50 challenge, Scholes and Huddlestone came together at largely the same moment. The Spurs man grabbed his face, Andre Mariner fell for it, and the result was Scholes’ ninth red card of his United career.

From there Spurs should have posed far more of a threat but United were outstanding on the day. With the excellent Dimitar Berbatov sacrificed for the cause, Wayne Rooney ran his socks off alone up front and Michael Carrick dictated the tempo in the middle of the park. United’s third was almost inevitable given the visitors’ continued dominance.

It was a victory born not only in the  excellence of United’s players at White Hart Lane but a system that was as right for the opponents as the toothless 4-5-1 was wrong against Arsenal. Deploying Rooney on the shoulders of the Spurs central defence and Berbatov ‘in-the-hole’, United were able to gain both possession and territorial advantage. Such was Berbatov’s excellence for 60 minutes that his substitution was particularly unfair on the Bulgarian. Rooney meanwhile was truly magnificent.

Tottenham on the other hand were a tactical mess, with Robbie Keane pushed wide left and the celebrated attacking football of Harry Redknapp’s teams reduced to aimless balls pumped long at Peter Crounch. Meat and drink for Nemanja Vidic and the returning Rio Ferdinand. Top of the league? You’re having a laugh sang the away support. How right they were.

On this form, United has nothing to worry about in Turkey.


Stoney - September 13, 2009 Reply

The only thing ferguson did to out fox harry was to have the ref in his back pocket. Disgraceful display from the w*nker in the black. At least dick Turpin wore a mask when he robbed people.

Ed - September 13, 2009 Reply

Ha ha ha. Oh dear Spurs fans really are small minded and desperate. Yep, the ref scored all five against you last season and three yesterday.

Packet - September 13, 2009 Reply

‘Sir Alex will leave London’ Why is he leaving London? I would have thought Manchester Airport would be more convenient for a team situated in that part of England.

Ed - September 13, 2009 Reply

United are going straight from London to Turkey today

Red Simmo - September 13, 2009 Reply

Well put!

A superb all round performance which was well backed from the ever great United away support.

One area of criticism – and this winds me up every time I see it – Why oh why is a £30M International defender allowed to turn his back on a shot rather than trying to get any part of his body to block and protect the goal?

This isnt the first time a goal could have potentially been prevented and girly Ferdinand is not the only culprit – remember Vidic at Wastelands 2 years ago?

Toughen up lads!!!

adam - September 13, 2009 Reply

im a spurs fan, but you outplayed us yesterday. no the ref wasnt very good, i felt crouch wasnt allowed to jump at times, but i cant really whinge cos he sent scholes off. rooney was fantastic. fair play. we mispassed way too much and a team like utd will punish those mistakes….still a bloody dive tho, admit it lol.

Yid Army - September 13, 2009 Reply

I certainly don’t think Fergie out thought Redknapp yesterday, he didn’t really need to. We had too many players out there who looked tired, other than the first minute, we never really got going. We really missed Palacios’s bite in midfield, which left your boys far too much space to pass around us in midfield.

Fair play to your lot though, the better team definitely won.

JimB - September 13, 2009 Reply

Great performance by Utd. Terrible performance by Spurs.

But in response to Red Simmo, I thought the away support was poor. Usually one of the best travelling supports in the league but was quiet yesterday. Didn’t make any real noise until after Utd’s third goal.

Also, only 2,000 or so yesterday – all in the lower tier? Why was that? A restriction because of previous bad behaviour?

Ed - September 13, 2009 Reply

Not sure where you were, but I heard plenty of noise

JimB - September 13, 2009 Reply

There really wasn’t much noise until after the third goal. Utd’s away support is usually much better than that. Any idea why Utd had a reduced allocation?

Ed - September 13, 2009 Reply

No idea but it’s not unusual. Normally some crap excuse about standing. Don’t suppose Spurs will cut the away allocation when Wolves arrive in town

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