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West Brom 1 United 2

United started the season with an away win but at a price losing both Vidic and Ferdinand to injuries.

Sir Alex selected a young side, average age just 24, for the trip to West Bromwich as Manchester United started the defence of their 19th top flight title.

Team - De Gea, Smalling, Ferdinand, Vidic, Fabio, Anderson, Nani, Young, Cleverley, Rooney, Welbeck

Subs - Lindegaard, Jones, Evans, Giggs, Park, Carrick, Berbatov

First Half - United kicked off and were immediately on the offensive playing some slick, passing football. Some early pressure saw Young playing a prominent part, first winning a corner that Foster flapped at and then picking up a free kick, out wide, that went for a second corner that Foster eventually cleared.

West Brom responded with a long range shot from Scharner that drifted well wide, but it did signal the start of a period of West Brom pressure that saw a shot from Tchoyi blocked and then a respite in the action after a second corner saw the referee award a foul.

Thirteen minutes into the action United took the lead. Rooney fed the ball to Young who played it back to him; Rooney stepped into the area and hit a low shot past Foster, to open his account for the season.

West Brom 0 United 1 (Rooney - 13 mins)

United could have doubled their lead but Rooney drilled a shot wide after a slick and quick United break. Morrison tried to test De Gea from distance but was off target before Nani missed a great chance, from eight yards, to double the lead by firing over the bar.

West Brom started to apply some pressure forcing two corners with De Gea making a decent save from Scharner. But with thirty-seven minutes on the clock West Brom were level. New signing Long tried his luck, after cutting inside the area, and De Gea didn`t exactly cover himself in glory letting the cross-shot slip through his arms.

West Brom 1 United 1 (Long - 37 mins)

As half time approached, Young shot wide and it was honours even.

Half Time - West Brom 1 United 1

Second Half - Despite Vidic appearing t be struggling with an injury, Sir Alex made no changes at half time, although Vidic was to last only seven minutes before being replaced by Jonny Evans.

United didn`t start the half as well as the first taking nine minutes to create a chance with Rooney flicking a header wide from a Young free-kick. Play was flowing that smoothly and any set-pieces being won were thwarted by free kicks being awarded for fouls.

Sir Alex tried to shuffle things introducing Dimitar Berbatov for the fading Welbeck. Young, by far the brightest spark on the pitch saw a dipping cross-cum-shot just evade the far post before a Fabio cross saw Nani divert a header well wide.

Seventy-five minutes into the game United lost a second centre-back when Ferdinand limped off, to be replaced by Jones, with what looked like a hamstring problem.

West Brom, by now, were having slightly the better of things and De Gea looked far form solid when it came to dealing with crosses. But just when you thought a point might be all United would be getting fortune favoured Sir Alex`s side.

Young cut into the area and his low shot took a deflection off of Reid before nestling in the far corner of the net.

West Brom 1 United 2 (Reid og - 81 mins)

West Brom responded to going behind for the second time in the match well. De Gea was forced to save from Brunt low down and with four minutes of stoppage time announced the young keeper positively collected a looping header from Ben Foster who`d come up for a free kick.



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The Journalist

Writer: Red Boy Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday August 14 2011

Time: 6:00PM

Your Comments

A good win. Westbrom looked very good and were very tough opposition. Whilst I enjoyed watching both Cleverley and Anderson play it was evident that we lacked steel and defensive cover which Westbrom, or more accurately Tchoyi, exposed. Tchoyi was playing in the space between the midfield and forwards and I think we really missed Fletcher's presence and defensive capabilities in that part of the pitch. De Gea, despite the last couple of goals that have gone in against him, leaves me feeling at ease. With Foster, Barthez and that Italian fella I've repressed memories of I was always nervy, not with De Gea though. MOTM must surely be Young.
TheFamousNo7
Spurs fan here. Typical United performance. Able to get all 3 points, despite an indifference performance. Basically the sign of a very good team. Very impressed with Cleverley, class player who will only improve. Too early to comment on De Gea, although he should have done better. Looking forward to next week, I'll take a point now. Cheers and good luck.
thenuge
Looking forward to it also thenuge. I do like Tottenham, you're a fun, unpredictable team who can play some of the nicest football in the league. I hope you don't sign a new striker between now and then though, a game against Crouch might do De Gea a world of good! :P Best of luck against Hearts also.
TheFamousNo7
got off lightly just when WBA had you on the rack!
merlin
a good start with so many of our supposed rivals dropping points!
Red Boy
Surprised at how easily West Brom tore you apart at times. Dodgy keeper aside, you looked extremely nervous for large spells of that game.
fifthcolumnblue
What game were you watching? I suppose the boo boys will see what they wants to see. Personally, I thought we done really quite well and carved Westbrom wide open on 3 or 4 occassions and nothing short of a few poor shots prevented us grabbing more than two. Nani's 2 misses, Rooney trying to back heel it and Cleverley not quite getting proper contact with the ball is 4 should've been goals. We dominated possession for large parts of the game and whipped in crosses like there was no tomorrow. The only player we seemed nervous against was Tchoyi but in fairness most players would, the mans a tank!
TheFamousNo7
Good game, the main thing are the three points...I'm not gonna jugde the team's performance..since it's only the 1st match and it's away.. As for De Gea, I don't want to be hard on him....he still young, but he should work on his reflections...I believe he's a bit slow I can't pick MOTM honestly..but I would go with Young since he scored the winning goal!!
Faizah
I tell you what, with that diving ***** Young flopping on the floor, and the favouritism calls from the refs, that is going to ***** me off. Looks like we will be seeing the soles of Young's boots ALOT this season
Rob-EFC
Faizah, Young didn't score mate.
Bluedub
Good game and better than all other boring matches of weekend. One shot on target and win 2-1. Typical united performance. Looking forward to game at OT next week and hopefully no dodgy refs.
luffy#9
Extremely nervous for large parts of the game FCB?? WTF!

Don't think so! Our passing was rather good - and our back 4 did their best to protect our new keeper as mucha s possiblr. Point is we were away from home, with a much changed side - people out with injuries, and we won - thats all that really matters....

De Gea is bound to make mistakes - its his first season in EPL ffs - you show me any keeper who has never made howlers..... bet you can't
niteworlok
Rob, Ashley didn't dive once that game and the ref made the right calls with freekicks and the sorts. The only thing he really got wrong was issuing cards for tackles which weren't yellow card worthy and at the same time not giving yellow cards for tackles which were yellow card worthy. I suppose my next point is down to opinion but I also felt the ref should've gave the keeper more protection, most notably when the Westbrom player backed straight into him as he went to catch the ball and Westbrom got a corner for it.
TheFamousNo7
Welcome back niteworlok - nice to see you're still wearing the red-tinted glasses. Yes, it was a good win for you, but there were times when you looked incredibly nervous, particularly after WBrom scored and got ripped apart - a better team than the Baggies would have destroyed you.
fifthcolumnblue
May I ask again what game you were watching?
TheFamousNo7
I see you remember me then FCB - used to have some really good banter with you :P
Seriously though - a win is a win, and I think it will take David a few weeks to get into the swing of things.......
niteworlok
"got ripped apart" haha, wow Filth, you are getting better and better, if you want to see getting ripped apart, wathc the Charity Shied match again. United was good, not classy in any way, however this was the first game of the season, and it was an away game. We start slow, we always do, however we got 3 points, and had the game under complete control, Nani could have had 1 or 2 goals. De Gea is 20, give the lad time, he will be pure class, he needs at least 6-10 games, Schmeichel the great, had a poor start to his United goalkeeping career as well, and he turned out pretty good in the end.
nordkap
Schmeichel - the huge blond goalkeeping god!
niteworlok
 

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