2012/2013 Season Review – August

Hello to all!

I am Pal47 and this is my first post for the rredevils blog. A little info on me, I am turning 21 soon and I am from London, England. I have been a Manchester United fan for 16 years.

It has been an entertaining season, and it’s time for us to remember what happened during the season, what were the turning points for us to stride towards winning the league? Which players hit great form? Which players didn’t hit great form? What were the low points of the season where there is room for improvement?

We will release a monthly review of the 2012/2013 season, with this post starting with August, with the next post reviewing September, then October, etc.

August

August saw the month where the 2011/2012 PFA Player of the year and top goal scorer, Robin Van Persie, make a £24 million move from Arsenal to Man Utd. It was a deal welcomed with mixed feelings. Some said that paying £24 million for an injury prone 29 year old is bad business and highly risky, one journalist even said RVP wouldn’t manage more than 10 league goals for the season. Others said it was a sound purchase by Sir Alex Ferguson, outlining that Manchester United still has the financial muscle to compete with City, having beaten City to the signing of RVP. It was a mouth-watering prospect with Wayne Rooney and RVP up front, SAF was determined to ensure he has a squad capable of scoring goals galore. Alexander Buttner was also bought to provide Patrice Evra competition for the left-back slot. Angelo Henriquez was due to join as well.

Previous transfer activities include the purchase of Nick Powell from Crewe, a young attacking midfielder with high hopes, and Shinji Kagawa for £12 million plus potential add-ons from Bourssia Dortmund. The signing of Kagawa meant added incisiveness going forward, and a lethal potential trio of Rooney, RVP and Kagawa.

There were cries for a holding-midfielder to be purchased from the fans, however SAF resisted and felt his midfield options were adequate enough.

Our first game of the season was an tricky away fixture to Everton. RVP was benched for this game because he was lacking match fitness. It was a patchy line up, with Valencia at RB, Carrick at CB, but a neat looking attack with Kagawa, Rooney, and Welbeck.

Throughout the game, we struggled to put together clear cut chances, there were some signs of intricate passing between Kagawa and Rooney, however we barely threatened Tim Howard. RVP came on and didn’t do much, if my memory is correct we didn’t provide him with enough service. Fellaini scored the important goal on 57 mins and was man of the match, winning practically every header and physical encounter.

Fellaini gets the beating of Carrick to power his header home.

The match ended 1-0 to Everton, a bad start to the season for us. However we needn’t worry, we are usually slow starters, we have new signings and they need time to gel and find their rhythm. Our next game was at home to Fulham, a perfect opportunity for RVP to start.

A bad start to the Fulhum game, after just 3 mins on the clock Damien Duff scores. But after just 10 mins into his home debut, RVP scores a beauty! The delight was all there to see. Shinji Kagawa also scored on his home debut making it 2-1, with Rafael adding a third. A Vidic own goal made it a nervy finish to the game but we registered our first win of the season thanks to goals from the two home debutants RVP and Kagawa and a goal from Rafael.

Van Persie scores a beauty on his home debut.

Those were the two games in August and we finished August in 7th place but still plenty of the season to play. We are usually slow starters and we really kick into gear mid-season. It was evident we had defensive problems. Carrick had to fill in at centre-back for both games, and Everton and Fulham took advantage of that.

Chelsea topped the table after August, as we lied in 7th place.

Chelsea topped the table after August, as we lied in 7th place.

Questions:

  1. When we signed Robin Van Persie for £24 million, what was your reaction? Were you worried he may get injured and only manage a handful of games? Or did you predict he will be a hit and probably our best player of the season.
  2. Did you feel the when the transfer window closed on August 31st, that we had a squad capable of winning the league, plus another trophy e.g. Champions League, FA cup?

That’s it for the August Review, in the coming days we will have the September review. Thanks for reading!

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2 comments on “2012/2013 Season Review – August

  1. Riley Dellinger says:

    When we signed Robin Van Persie for £24 million, what was your reaction?

    To be honest, I was one of the naysayers when Robin signed for us. My friends all told me that RvP was a machine and would make our club unstoppable, and I had not doubt that this was true. However, I believed that there would be defensive frailties and troubles in midfield if we chose to sign RvP, not to mention a potential stunt in progress from Hernandez and Welbeck. I was glad to be proven wrong and he has been class since day one, and with no major injuries to boot! I honestly had no idea that Robin would have the ridiculous season that he did to follow up his last season with arsenal and that maybe ROONEY would be the main man with all the goals. I never thought that he would flop, but I figured that he would need time to mesh with the team and that he would get maybe 15 goals this season.

    Did you feel the when the transfer window closed on August 31st, that we had a squad capable of winning the league, plus another trophy e.g. Champions League, FA cup?

    I think every season we have a squad capable of winning the treble, a opinion that is most likely shared by many. There are probably four other squads in the world that could compete with us on our day (Bayern Munich, Barca, Real and Chelsea/City) but what always sets us apart is our cohesiveness and unity and passion for the club. I have always felt that we need a bit more stability at the back with key injuries to Jones and Smalling as well as uncertainty with Vidic, Ferdinand and Evra. In midfield I feel like we could have used one more player, more of an energetic, short passer with great feet similar to Shinji but maybe with more height and strength to win balls in the air and on the ground. All in all, even without these purchases, the arrivals of Kagawa and RvP proved to be enough to take the title with easy. Our FA cup loss to Chelsea was a difficult one considering the score line and late goals and our Champions league loss speaks for itself. I firmly believe that on another day, Sir Alex would be raising all three trophies before announcing his retirement.

  2. Like the previous comment, I wasn’t sure Van Persie was the right move. I thought after such a fantastic season with Arsenal he was never going to live up to those standards, but he certainly did!

    I also feel the squad United had should have done more in the cup’s, especially the FA Cup where we were 2-0 up at home to Chelsea in the quarter-final and just didn’t finish the game off. That is down to experience though and with such a young, but promising, squad of players, the future looks very healthy!

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