UK time is: 22:25:35
Vital Login
Social Login

Choose your club

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Inter Weren't Special Enough Against The Holders

Manchester United have done it. We have not been buried in that graveyard of holders, the last 16 of the Champions League. There were a few nervous moments all right but the European champions deserved to go through and deserved their 2-0 win tonight.

Fergie sprang a little surprise by starting with Paul Scholes alongside Michael Carrick but it looked like his gamble would pay off as United took the game to the Italian champions right from the start. Two corners in quick succession showed that the holders mean business - and they went ahead due to Nemanja Vidic's simple but brilliant header.

It was baffling to see Vida being left alone in acres of space but I suppose Patrick Vieira had to answer some unpleasant questions about it - he never came back to the pitch after half-time. But before the break United had to endure nervous moments despite their domination in the first 20 minutes. Inter, throwing caution to the wind, started to play quick, expansive football which rattled our somewhat complacent troops.

Many reports claim that in this period we played too slowly: I disagree, I think that our players too often went for the spectacular, quick pass rather than opting for the patient approach which served us so well at the San Siro - even though I agree with Fergie's assessment that when we played quickly and precisely Inter could not live with us. United still had the more possession but we gave the ball away too often too unnecessarily.

Ibrahimovic had too much space to spread the ball around with his back to the goal and he almost scored his first ever goal in the Champions League knockout stages when he headed the ball against the bar following Maicon's free-kick.

Stankovic also had a real chance, firing above the bar after Evra totally failed to mark him at the far post - the Frenchman looks a bit tired mentally, the one week rest after the Liverpool game will come at the best possible time for him. After Stankovic's chance Ibrahimovic fired wide from the right and that spelled the end of Inter's attempts to fight.

In between these efforts, United could have dealt a severe blow when Rooney's brilliant pass found O'Shea clear, unmarked 10 yards from goal. But it's O'Shea we're talking about and he simply fired the ball into Julio César.

Scholes was anonymous in midfield - his defensive work was non-existent and he either A) played square 5 yard passes or B) launched the ball forward to no man's land. Most fans around me agreed that a change would be necessary, that Fletcher could make life much more uncomfortable for Inter's midfielders but Fergie disagreed.

It might have been our downfall but the players quickly demonstrated that they did not have the intention of going out here. They started the second half in similar fashion as the first one and the excellent, evergreen Ryan Giggs created space for himself on the edge of the box, found Scholes who quickly passed the ball to Rooney. He hesitated a little then sent an inch-perfect cross into the box which was met by the unmarked Ronaldo who got there before Julio César and headed it into the empty net.

Old Trafford erupted and you could sense that it knocked the stuffing out of Inter. Especially as minutes after the goal Adriano hit the post from Cambiasso's cross - this another piece of misfortune clearly drained the remnants of the visitors' confidence and United cruised through the rest of the game.

Scholes was substituted in the 70th minute and got a standing ovation which his personality deserves every time but his football didn't tonight. His replacement, Anderson didn't have a tough assignment: Inter were deflated and it was increasingly obvious how easy it was for Ryan Giggs to run rings around them. Berbatov could have added the third while the excellent Rooney and the somewhat quiet Ronaldo had powerful shots saved by Julio César but these hardly mattered.

There weren't two goals between the teams tonight. But United won 2-0, deserved to win and deserved to go through as we were the better team for 150 minutes of the tie. Half an hour of good football is simply not enough against the reigning European champions. Not special enough, Jose.




Use your social login to comment on front page articles. Login using you Facebook, Twitter, Google or LinkedIn accounts and have your say!



For the very latest Premier League odds

Free £15 bet when you spend £5 on The New Football Pools

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Zae Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday March 12 2009

Time: 12:19AM

Your Comments

Congrats. I like the last line... "Not special enough, Jose". Well done!
gunnerkid107
Congrats. I like the last line... "Not special enough, Jose". Well done!
gunnerkid107
Sorry to see you win .... you need a lesson in humility ... and it is coming..............................
Doody
Sorry to see you win .... you need a lesson in humility ... and it is coming..............................
Doody
seriously the last line was classy,keep it up mate.
abmutd
seriously the last line was classy,keep it up mate.
abmutd
Doody - Well, we're not unbeatable so we're ready to tussle with any team who are ready to humiliate us!
ForeverUnited
Doody - Well, we're not unbeatable so we're ready to tussle with any team who are ready to humiliate us!
ForeverUnited
Well only three teams can stop you in UCL-Barca,Liverpool and Chelsea.In FA CUP Everton or Arsenal/Chelsea.EPL,World Cup and Carling is in you bag already.So within a month your dream of Quintuple can be a treble
Saimon_blues
Well only three teams can stop you in UCL-Barca,Liverpool and Chelsea.In FA CUP Everton or Arsenal/Chelsea.EPL,World Cup and Carling is in you bag already.So within a month your dream of Quintuple can be a treble
Saimon_blues
still it wouldn't be that bad would it saimon_blues?
abmutd
still it wouldn't be that bad would it saimon_blues?
abmutd
Well lads the bandwagon roll on.
Thaibluefan
Well lads the bandwagon roll on.
Thaibluefan
 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Manchester United Articles

Punching Above Their Weight! (Thursday July 24 2014)

Seven-Up for United! (Thursday July 24 2014)

Nani Could be Heading Where? (Wednesday July 23 2014)

Hummels deal Dead in the Water? (Wednesday July 23 2014)

Spending Big? (Wednesday July 23 2014)

Hummels Coming? (Tuesday July 22 2014)

Evra Says Thanks! (Tuesday July 22 2014)

Vermaelen Update! (Tuesday July 22 2014)

Evra Signs for Juventus! (Monday July 21 2014)

Defender Signing Imminent! (Monday July 21 2014)

Archived Manchester United Articles

List All Vital United Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

Vital Members League (view all)

1. TheFamousNo7 100
2. Kanchelskis 53
3. MotorMad 23
4. nordkap 4

League Results (view all)

Latest Results

League Table (view table)

Team P W D L GD Pts
8. Leicester City 0 0 0 0 0 0
9. Liverpool 0 0 0 0 0 0
10. Man City 0 0 0 0 0 0
11. Man Utd 0 0 0 0 0 0
12. Newcastle 0 0 0 0 0 0
13. Q.P.R. 0 0 0 0 0 0
14. Southampton 0 0 0 0 0 0

Breaking League News

The Black Cats looking at Patrick van Aanholt!
» Chelsea : 24/07/2014 21:39:00
How Swansea City's Squad Is Shaping Up
» Swansea : 24/07/2014 21:23:00
Pozuelo Joins Rayo Vallecano
» Swansea : 24/07/2014 21:02:00
A HOMETOWN TEAM: AFC IN NYC
» Arsenal : 24/07/2014 16:37:00
Piazon Goes to Germany
» Chelsea : 24/07/2014 16:34:00

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

With Holland Out, Who Will Win the World Cup?
Suggested By:  Red Boy
Argentina! 18%
Germany! 82%