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Young United Outclass Boro

Young United Outclass Boro

A fine 3-1 win over Middlesbrough in the Carling Cup is overshadowed by what could be a serious injury to Rodrigo Possebon.

Fergie sent out a very competent team but there was no place in the squad for Hargreaves, Scholes, Ferdinand, Evra, Gary Neville, Rooney and Berbatov. Still, we seized the initiative at once, with Anderson and Possebon dominating the midfield and Welbeck looking to do plenty of damage.

Our passing was crisp and precise and though we missed the early chances you could sense a goal was coming. It came too from a most predictable source: Cristiano Ronaldo, making his first start of the season, headed home Ryan Giggs' corner.

United pulled back a little after the goal, allowing Boro to spend some time in our half but there was precious little danger in the opposition's attacks. Indeed, it was United's counterattacks which looked threatening as Anderson, Nani, Giggs and Welbeck were all lively - though it was the relatively quiet Ronaldo who came closest to adding another goal.

But Boro reached the break on level terms and they dominated the closing minutes though doing very little with the ball.

Secind half started in similar vein: Boro tried to press while United were swift on the counter. Welbeck missed a great chance to increase our lead but fired straigth at Jones who had a great game.

Not long before the hour mark, Boro unexpectedly levelled the game. A poor cross was headed out by Vidic but right to Adam Johnson who rifled it in from 20 yards: the ball got a deflection off Wes Brown, totally deceiving Amos who had no chance to keep it out.

It was unexpected and the youngsters struggled to really come to terms with the blow. On 60 minutes Fergie brought off the tiring Ronaldo and brought on Tevez but before the Argentinian could have made any serious impact came the defining moment of the game.

Possebon, quietly excellent up to that point, went for a 50-50 ball with Pogatetz and was cruelly hacked down by the Austrian who quite rightly got a straight red card. Why were they complaining, only Boro players can tell us.

Possebon was in shock, it took as many as 8 minutes to get him on a stretcher and take him off. Darron Gibson replaced him and immediately he had two shots, both going wide but they were at least efforts nonetheless.

Unsurprisingly, United's superiority became absolute, Boro were hardly let out of their own half but we were profligate again and only a big mistake from Riggott helped us breaking the deadlock: the defender slipped while trying to control Gibson's long ball and thus allowed Giggs to break clear and calmly slot the ball past Jones with ten minutes to go.

It was game over really and United started to run riot. Fergie brought on Manucho - it was a debut for the Angolan forward and a minute later he had a great chance after Anderson put him through but he fired wide - as well and we really should have added more goals but Welbeck, Nani, Giggs and Tevez all missed good chances. Then Boro totally imploded and this time they contributed to their own downfall by a poor backpass that Nani latched onto, he rounded the keeper and scored.

All in all, a highly satisfying evening against one of our bogey teams. The youngsters all excelled, especially Danny Welbeck who has only one lesson to learn: when in front of the goal, shoot, do not wait for an even better opportunity. The only negative is Rodrigo Possebon's injury: hopefully he'll not be out for long as he's clearly a great talent. All the best for him!

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Date:Tuesday September 23 2008
Time: 10:50PM


if your team with four veterans (giggs,vidic,brown,ronaldo) is termed young what bout arsenal's with an average age of 19?
23/09/2008 23:12:00
the thing these ass-licking media peopel dont undersntad is that Arsene Wenger has spent ALL his time with youth, to the deficit of his senior players. As a result, they are bound to have the best youth team. The true quality comes in getting a balance and with the likes of Amos, Rafael, Possebon, Anderson, Nani, Ronaldo, Welbeck, Gibson and Tevez, I think our team was very youthful. But of course, we will get no credit for it as it is Arsenal who must always have the best youth policy. Im not bitter, its just a little boring now, the same old routine.
24/09/2008 00:03:00
Their youngsters are so good yet havent won their Reserve league for God knows how long! And to be honest the only reason we had Ronaldo, Giggs and co play was the fact that, Fergie wanted to give them some minutes since they missed the Chelsea match.
24/09/2008 00:17:00
And Ronaldo needs to play to get match fit
24/09/2008 00:18:00
FU, your results-oriented view of youth development - where it's performance, not winning, that's important to the kids', well, development - is exactly why some clubs aren't having through many young players and why some people are whinging about England's prospects.
24/09/2008 15:06:00
typo: -havng +bringing
24/09/2008 15:07:00
Its the fact that Arsenal fans are so arrogant in their views of their youngsters. You act as if you are the onyl team that gives oppurtunities to the youth. The poor lad that nearly had his leg hacked off was just 19, never plaed for his brazilain clusb first team. Arsenals youth is the best, dont get me wrong in that. But the fact that Wenger has spent ALL hsi time on youth is naive, as it has obviosly affected the performances and achievments of the senior team. You have to face facts GoonerLou, i mean when you were winnign thinghs under Wenger you didnt have a very young squad.
24/09/2008 17:36:00
U4L, we're proud of the kids and, without sounding conceited, rightly so. It's incredibly hard for a teenager to just go out and face 60,000 people, let alone perform to their potential. So I honestly think most of us are just proud and, as far as I've seen, I'm not sure where the perception of "arrogance" comes from. I'm sure there're a few gooners gloating here and there. But don't fall for the media's headlines saying we've got the best kids. I honestly don't even know who the Utd kids, the Chelsea kids, the Liverpool kids are and we just can't compare at all simply bcos it's difficult for any fans to follow the youth level of other teams right? On your point about Wenger spending "all" his time on youth: how much of it is his "obsession" (he admits he enjoys that part of his job), how much of it is forced by the financial need of doing so (the stadium debt obviously), we don't know. So I can't agree that it's a "naive" strategy. And I don't follow your logic at all: we won things with established players under Wenger before -> so he necessarily couldn't win things with kids? It's the Hansen thing all over again it seems, and Hansen was proven wrong not long after his quote became famous wasn't he? I'm not saying we will win things with this bunch of kids, but Wenger believes this is the best crop of kids he's had so far (granted, he's never had kids as young as these before, so these are bound to be the "best" in the same age group). If he therefore logically thinks this is the best chance he's got of winning something with kids, we'll just wait and see. I have no problem with this bunch of kids losing out on the CC/FAC to be honest, but the education they get there will be invaluable. That's the bottomline for us really, so I'm not sure if that's an "arrogant" view. Hehe sorry for being so long-winded. My previous post wasn't meant to sound arrogant. It's just my observations in England versus other European countries that have formed my view that when other kids are encouraged to develop skills, I hear coaches and parents screaming on the touchline hoping their kids would win a game in a local kickabout. I didn't mean to say the Arsenal Academy's superior cos like I said I don't know how the other clubs are doing with their kids, I only know ours. Anyway, I'm glad and relieved - a lot of us are too actually - that your boy didn't have his leg broken. Wish him a speedy recovery and hope it wouldn't affect him psychologically.
24/09/2008 23:04:00
Fair point GoonerLou, cant argue with that.
25/09/2008 00:50:00
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