Manchester United - Nev: Injuries Destroyed The Defence
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Nev: Injuries Destroyed The Defence

Lack of a settled back four cost United dearly, according to club captain Gary Neville. Gary believes that the injuries and suspensions seriously weakened our defence which has been brilliant over the last three campaigns.

'We are interchanging the defence too regularly at the moment because of injuries and it has caused us a problem,' he said.

'We had to change our keeper for the opening two months of the season, then Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic have been injured. Before that it was Wes Brown.'

'It means more changes than the manager would like. He wants a consistent back four, which is what we have had for two or three seasons.'

'We definitely want to improve defensively and once we settle into our stride I am sure we will become better.'

Hopefully but injuries alone cannot explain the alarming loss of form in the case of Rio Ferdinand, for example. Although it's true that Gary's point is reinforced by the performance of Patrice Evra who's been the only mainstay of the defence this season and he performed brilliantly. The others, chopped and changed around, did not reach last season's heights.

Edwin's absence hardly helped of course but it would be time to regain our invincibility at the back which was the basis of last season's success. Alarm bells have been ringing since August but perhaps prematurely: remember, last season's great run did not start until November and we looked very vulnerable at the back in the defeat at Arsenal which was almost exactly a year ago.

As I said, Ferdinand's form is a worry and cannot be fully explained by injuries - but the major worry is still his fitness. If he'll never be able to shake off the injury problems he'll never recapture his true form. If he returns to full fitness he might become the world-class defender he usually is, if his head is sorted out as well.

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

The Journalist

Writer: Zae Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday November 5 2009

Time: 7:14PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
So what the Neviller is basically saying is that your back-up defenders are crap. Ever the master of diplomacy that man
Report Abuse
05/11/2009 20:27:00

What he really is saying is that constant changes at the back will result in little or no understanding among the defenders and the goalkeeper plus the defenders like brown and even rafael who will back soon are coming back after long layoffs,so it does take time to get used to the pace of the game plus once again establishing an understanding.So the last thing we should do is tinker with the defence or even the midfield,or the strike department for that matter.
Antriksh (abmtd)
Report Abuse
06/11/2009 08:29:00

I'm not really happy with our back-up defenders in general they can play well but more oftenly are quiet dodgy if you will. Brown, one season he's amazing the next it's back to the routine silly, shakey defending, Evans is young but I prefer him other Brown and O'Shea and O'Shea i just don't think is good enough if, touch wood, Evra ever did get a long injury, Rafael & Fabio are still young and can be a bit shakey at times as well.
One United 92
Report Abuse
07/11/2009 19:42:00


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