Date:Monday February 8 2010
Apart from our sudden and unexpected good form, the major talking point of the last few weeks has been Anderson: he got a roasting from Fergie after his ineffectual display at Man City in the Carling Cup semi-final and he subsequently disappeared to Brazil without permission, skipping a training as well.
Unsurprisingly, he found himself out in the wilderness upon his return, with Fergie unwilling to forgive him too quickly. Fortunately, he wasn't let go during the January transfer window despite rumours of interest from French clubs and that means he's in with a chance of redemption.
Fergie left him out against the all-important games against City and Arsenal and his decision was justified as United won both games, playing top quality football. Yet it is certain that Anderson's qualities shall be needed later as it would be suicidal to rely on the 35-year-old Scholes and the 36-year-old Giggs.
Anderson's performed decently this season, much better than last season and there are signs that he's on his way to the heights reached during his first campaign at Old Trafford. But now he needs to do some serious thinking, get his head down and start working really hard, without a complaint if he wants to make it.
The example is there: Nani was demoted after complaining to the media about Fergie's selections and the treatment he's been receiving at United but after a prolonged spell out in the cold he got his opportunity to redeem himself and it seems he grasped it with both hands, turning in excellent performances against Hull, City and Arsenal - he wasn't half bad against Portsmouth, either, despite playing on the left where he is significantly less effective.
The Portuguese winger's reward is a prolonged run in the first team. It's clear that Fergie does not hold grudges once he made his point and Anderson should be encouraged by the example of his colleague who was bought at the same time as he was. Perhaps this little reminder was a timely wake-up call for him, who knows? But if Nani could return from the wilderness, so can Anderson and we'll be considerably stronger for it.
Date:Monday February 8 2010
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