2012/2013 Season Review – December and January

Looking at December and January

10 matches were played, combined, on the last month of 2012 and the first month of 2013. Of the 10 matches, we played 5 matches away and 5 at home in total for the 2 months.

Looking at the table, we were sitting pretty at the top. The matches for december were very interesting with the first Manchester Derby. We played Reading, Manchester City, Sunderland, Swansea, Newcastle, WBA, Wigan, Liverpool, Tottenham and Southampton in that order for the whole of two months.

Reading 3-4 Manchester United

A solid thriller with all the goals coming in the first half. Reading started the proceedings with the first goal in the 8th minute by Kanu. Anderson, the guy we love to hate, scored the equalizer in the 13th minute before Rooney put us ahead in the 16th minute. It was made 2-2 promptly by Le Fondre in the 19th minute before Morrison made it 3-2 with his goal in the 23rd minute. The goal scoring was put to rest by van Persie when he scored the winning goal in the 34th minute.

Manchester City 2-3 Manchester United 

You don’t need the text to relive this. Have fun with the video!! I watched it couple of times with a smug smile of satisfaction.

Manchester United 3-1 Sunderland

The lack of clean sheets continued with 3 goals. Robin van Persie, Cleverley and Rooney were the scorers while the sole Sunderland goal was scored by Campbell.

Swansea City 1-1 Manchester United

A draw in a pretty long time. Again, we distinctly lacked the clean sheets with a rare goal from Evra in the 16th minute which was equalised by Michu in the 29th minute. The match ended in a boring draw.

Manchester United 4-3 Newcastle United

Another last-gasp victory for us with Hernandez bailing us to victory with a solid 90th minute goal. The match is series of equalizing goals with us not going into the lead until the 4th goal by which time we won. The goals were scored by Evans (a rare one), Evra, Robin van Persie and Hernandez.

Manchester United 2-0 West Brom

The first clean sheet in a long time for De Gea. The goals came thanks to an own goal from Mcauley in the 9th minute and a Robin van Persie strike in the 90th minute. The last match of 2012 saw us staying at the top spot for the end of 2012 looking ever so likely to be the champions after loaning the cup to the noisy neighbours for keeping it shiny.

January

Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool

A rival match which has lost steam after Liverpool degenerating into a mid-table club. Saw us getting the first two goals with Robin van Persie in the 19th minute and a great goal from Vidic in the 55th minute. Sturridge scored their only goal in the 57th minute.

Hint: Watch the video on mute.

Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Manchester United

Another draw in 5 games saw Dempsey equalising an early goal by van Persie in the 25th minute at the end of normal time. Losing the clean sheet was a little disappointing but it sure as hell beat losing to them.

Manchester United 2-1 Southampton

The final match of January saw us playing Southampton. Rooney was on target with goals in the 8th and 26th minute to cancel and put us in front after Southampton went 0-1 up in the first 2 minutes with a blunder of a goal Rodriguez. It was an important match as it saw us playing without wingers with Kagawa and Rooney in the starting eleven.

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2012/2013 Season Review – November

November

October was a great month. Two important wins against Newcastle and Chelsea and also a win against Stoke at home saw as sitting pretty at the 2nd place. November gave us the opportunity to go top of the table and hold our position with 5 matches.

The month saw us play 5 matches with 3 at home and 2 away. Arsenal, Queens Park Rangers and West Ham were the home matches while the away matches were played against Aston Villa and Norwich City.

Manchester United 2-1 Arsenal 

The first match of November was against Arsenal at Old Trafford. It was a meeting clouded by the return of a certain Dutch man to the Emirates Stadium. It was a great match with goals from Van Persie in the 3rd minute and from Evra in the 67th minute. It was all going well until the 90th minute when Cazorla scored his goal and pulled it back to 2-1.

Things to remember were the missed penalty from Rooney and the fact that Cazorla’s strike denied us our 3rd clean sheet of the season.

Aston Villa 2-3 Manchester United 

The first away match of the month was against Aston Villa. The starting eleven saw Carrick and Scholes in the midfield with Rooney and Persie up top. The home team went 2-0 at the end of the first hour with 2 goals from Weimann in the 45th and 50th minute. Hernandez was introduced after the half and scored two goals in the 58th and the 87th minute the first took us 2-1 and the second made it 3-2. The equaliser came from an own goal from Vlaar in the 63rd minute.

Norwich City 1-0 Manchester United

One of the worst matches of the season saw us sink from our 1st spot in the previous 2 games down to 2nd. The only goal of the game came from Pilkington in the 60th minute as we continued our search for the 3rd clean sheet of the season. The match also saw Rooney, Evans and De Gea miss it due to injury. Lindegaard deputised as the goalkeeper.

Manchester United 3-1 Queens Park Rangers

The match again propelled is to the first place. The first goal was scored by Queens Park Rangers in the 52nd minute by Mackie. What followed was typical United with United scoring three goals starting with Evans in the 64th minute followed by goals from Fletcher in the 68th minute and Hernandez in the 71st minute. A great comeback from United and seeing Fletcher come back after a long time to score a goal was excellent to see.

Manchester United 1-0 West Ham United

A boring match in essence with a 1st minute goal from Robin van Persie settling the score for the 90 minutes. The match settled into drabness for the next 89 minutes with no goals from both teams.

After November

December saw us playing 6 games in total with 3 home and 3 away games. The home matches were against Sunderland, Newcastle and West Brom while the away matches were against Reading, Manchester City and Swansea.

2012/2013 Season Review – October

After September

September was a decent month. Good wins at Liverpool and Wigan Athletic were really inspiring. The loss at Tottenham Spurs was extraordinarily irritating. Against spurs, losing in that way was demoralizing and focused the defensive frailties. On the opposite side, Kagawa’s movement and Rooney’s push in the second half was really good to see.

The following month, in October, we had 3 matches. 2 Away matches and 1 home match for us. The first match of October was against Newcastle United who were doing decent themselves followed by the match against Stoke City at Old Trafford. The last match in October was against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Newcastle United 0 – 3 Manchester United (Away)

Robin Van Persie chasing down the ball

It was a completely different match with goals scored by the defenders and a midfielder. Evans and Evra scored the first two goals in the first half of the match at the eighth and fifteenth minute of the match. Cleverley finished of the scoreline at 3-0 with a  sublime shot. Many thanks had to be given to David De Gea for making a superb save in the 50th minute from a Papis Cisse strike.

Manchester United 4-2 Stoke City (Home)

Another good match. This match saw the goals scored by the forwards while goals were also let in on our side. Stoke went ahead with Rooney’s own goal in the 11th minute. It was cancelled by a Rooney strike in the 27th minute. United quickly pulled ahead in the end of the first half with a goal from Robin van Persie in the 44th minute. Welbeck made it 3-1 in the 46th minute before Kightly pulled it back to 3-2 with a 58th minute goal. Rooney then came back to finish Stoke off at the 65th minute making the scoreline read 4-2 at the end of 90 minutes.

Chelsea 2-3 Manchester United (Away)

A nail-biting match with 2 red cards for the Chelsea team. It started with a Luiz own goal in the 4th minute from brilliant play Rooney, Young and Robin van Persie. The dutchman made it 2-0 with another good goal in the 15th minute. Chelsea found a way into the game quickly with blistering pace making it 2-2 with goals Mata and Ramires on the either side of the break. What followed were a straight red to Ivanovic for fouling Young and 2 yellows for Torres making the match 11 vs 9. Hernandez broke the deadlock, proving to be the devil (pun intended) against Hernandez with a 75th minute goal.

Start of November

Looking beyond October, November was a very important with 5 matches coming up and the 3 wins from October put us in the 2nd position in the table. Wins in the next month was surely going to put us into the top spot. The five matches arranged in November were Arsenal, Aston Villa, Norwich City, Queens Park Rangers and West Ham. 3 were home matches while the 2 were played away from Old Trafford.

2012/2013 Season Review – September

After August

August was a bad month that changed into a decent one for United. The first match against Everton went badly with a 1-0 loss at Everton followed by a good win against Fulham with Robin van Persie and Kagawa scoring their first goals at Old Trafford.

September saw four fixtures for United. The two home matches were against Wigan Athletic and Tottenham Hotspur while the away matches were against Southampton and Liverpool.

September

The first match of September was Southampton vs Manchester United.

Southampton vs. Manchester United (2-3)

The match was the second match to go 3-2 for us. It was also a historical day with RvP scoring his first hat trick for us. We let in two goals in the 18th and 55th minute while RvP scored in the 23rd, 87th and the 90th minute pulling us through to a 3-2 win against the Saints.

Manchester United vs. Wigan Athletic (4-0)

The first match to end up as a thrashing of the opposition. It started with a goal from Scholes in the 51st minute followed by Hernandez in the 63rd minute. Buttner scored his first goal in the 66th minute and our favorite midfielder Powell scored his first in the 82nd minute.

Powell's brilliant strike against Wigan. That guy is so good...

Powell’s brilliant strike against Wigan. That guy is so good…

The win pulled us to the 2nd position in the league.

Liverpool vs. Manchester United (1-2)

Liverpool. Ah, how important is that match. As always, Gerrard scored a goal for Liverpool in the 46th minute. Gerrard’s goal was cancelled out by a sensational volley from Rafael in the 51st minute followed by a van Persie penalty in the 81st minute. The penalty was given after Glen Johnson fouled Valencia in the box.

Rafael's stunning equaliser against Liverpool. Boy, that guy can shoot!

Rafael’s stunning equaliser against Liverpool. Boy, that guy can shoot!

Manchester United vs Tottenham Hotspur (2-3)

The second loss of the season and the first home loss of the season was against the Spurs. It was a bad performance from United after failing to show up in the first half of the match. Vertonghen and Bale punished bad defensive positioning in the first half with goals in the 2nd and 32nd minute from the duo. United’s efforts to comeback was rewarded with a goal from Nani in the 51st minute. Dempsey then made things impossible in the 52nd minute. Kagawa tried to salvage the match at the 54th minute  with a well taken goal. In the end, Spurs stood gallant in their defence.

At the end of September

The end of September propelled us to the 3rd place in the league. The only guys ahead of us were Chelsea and Everton. The month of October looked tough with two away matches at Newcastle and Chelsea with one home match against Stoke.

10 places in the table after the month of September.

10 places in the table after the month of September.

Questions

  • What did you think about Chelsea’s strong run early in the first two seasons, 5 wins and 1 draws? Were they the team to beat after that run?
  • Statistically we scored 14 goals and let in 9 goals. What did you think about the leaky defence after the 2 months?
  • Rooney and Kagawa played an important role in Tottenham Spurs match, what was your ‘feeling’ about Kagawa?

Cheers, DirectionalVector.

End of Season Squad Ratings, Part 2

I’m back.

I know I left the subreddit but I’m back and I’m back to stay. I’m DirectionVector by the way since I deleted my older directionalvector account. You can thank messers Rdzzl and HornberryFields for that.

So, you may be waiting to see Powell and some of the players who are on loan. We’ll be getting round to them in another post. As of now, you get this post from me with ratings from rdzzl added as a bonus. Spoiler: we don’t agree with the ratings. So, let me dive into the people who’ll be talking about this part of the post. So, here is the first one:

David De Gea

De Gea

The master of our Goal!

His chant is nice and catchy, innit?

De Gea had a bad starting season thanks to people trashing him all around the place. We stuck by him and he is pure gold and young. The video posted in the subreddit about De Gea’s super saves, his mistakes and sometimes brilliance was mesmerizing to watch. A guy slowly growing into a great goalkeeper.

The save from Coentrao in the Real Madrid game was spectacular. That save has seriously stuck to my brain whenever I think about David De Gea. I see that he has brilliant shot-stopping but he needs to slowly develop a better command of the box. All he needs time and I believe that he is the Goalkeeper who can replace Van Der Sar.

My Rating: 8.5

Rdzzl’s Rating: 8.5

Rafael

Rafae

We seem to have brilliant right-backs in our team. Following Gary Neville, Rafael is just a top-notch player on the attack and on the defense. He has excellent pace on the attack. On the defense, he is strong, great positioning and a hard-worker. More importantly, he is exceptionally consistent across the board. He sticks to the plan most of the time and some times he just creates something so spectacular, you know; you just know that he is Brazilian and he is a United player.

My Rating: 8.75

Rdzzl Rating: 8.5

Smalling

Doesn't he look stoned?

Doesn’t he look stoned?

Chris Smalling. He is a squid in the team. I’m torn up on how he has played for us this season. He has played 10 games for us in the league, 5 for us in the FA Cup and 2 in the EU. That is a total of 17 games. Sadly, I dont’ remember most of the games he has played for us. For me, Smalling is a really really decent player in the defense. But is he more than decent is the question I wrangle with. I don’t see him as a great ball-playing defender that Phil Jones can be. Is he the guy who can play with versatility? That is not sure too. He is not pacey enough but he is a very very decent defender. Maybe next season will make us understand what is excellent with Smalling.

This season, he wasn’t spectacular in any way. He just played and performed to expectation. That makes my rating to: 6 while Rdzzl’s rating of Smalling is 6.5.

Phil Jones

Channeling the classic look...

Channeling the classic look…

Rdzzl was very very caustic towards Jones when we were discussing the ratings yesterday. He told me that Jones was pretty uninspiring and bad. I said that Jones was young and was played out-of-position a lot of times. Even then, its tough to defend Jones. He is a great player for sure but this season wasn’t exactly a great season for him. His positioning was a bit suspect in certain matches and he is a bit sloppy with his passing.

Even then, for me his energy and physicality are superb to have in the midfield and the defense. More in the midfield since we lack a player like him there.

My rating: 7

Rdzzl Rating: 6.5

Tom Cleverley

The Look

The Look

This guy just works. He just plays and I like that about him. But stitching that with his inconsistencies makes him bad. The problem with Cleverley is that he doesn’t have flair. He isn’t exciting or extraordinary. He is a player who is technically brilliant with a decent head on him.

Adding to that is his lack of ability in defense. He does not have a defensive brain. He is best at playing on the attack with shorter and quicker balls. For the better part of the season, we’ve played a slower but direct type of football which really doesn’t suit him. But his positives were very easy to see when he played with Kagawa and Welbz.

My Rating: 6.75

Rdzzl Rating: 7

Danny Welbeck

welbz

Another hard-working, physically strong player who is also technically good. Then again, I absolutely hate his finishing which should be the most important thing on a striker. He cannot play in the wings forever. If I had to rate him as a player, it would be high but I would have to look past his ability to finish. Alas, his whole role is defined by his ability to finish. That brings him done. But, this season, he was wonderful. His best was for sure his great game against Real Madrid.

My Rating: 7

Rdzzl Rating: 7

Johnny Evans

johnnevan

Couple of seasons back, Evans was playing very badly. The last two seasons have been really excellent from him. He has stepped up to take the void left out by Vidic due to his injury. He has grown so much as a player. His positioning over the season has been tremendous and he just dives into blocks and tackles. He has been a top-notch player for us. Playing a good amount of games this season, he has been strong and consistent in his performances. The most brilliant thing is that he has played 29 matches for us and scored a goal too. Next season might end up being his season of starting for us and slowly stepping up to Ferdi’s position.

That makes me give him: 7.5

Rdzzl Rating: 8

———————————-

Questions

1) Any player ratings you disagree with?

2) What do you feel about some players not playing upto their mark?

3) Is this a better layout to the previous one?

PS: We posted these in quick succession and split the work since we thought it had lots of info. That is why. Don’t feel bad about reading another one in quick succession.