Well wouldn't you just know it--after all the yap yap yatta yatta from the Wastelands throughout the week, United embarrassed their neighbours in their own backyard. What a performance. Don't get deceived by the scoreline, it could have been worse for the dippers. United played City well off the park and it just serves to explain how much work City is left with before they can start comparing themselves to a team that currently shelters both the League and the European Crown at OT.
City stepped up the pace in the second-half but that was down to Ronaldo's sending off.
It was nice to see Wayne get his 100th goal as I think it was playing on his mind for quite a bit--now we can see a more relaxed Wayne going for goal. Berbatov for me was the difference upfront. There is something about him that gives us very many options upfront. He held the ball upfront very well and that allowed us more opportunities. He was simply Berbatov! Carrick and Fletcher did well enough for me to neutralise the threat of Wright Phillips and Robinho.
Now, there is this kid called Rafael da Silva. What a performance! To walk into a hyped derby game and play more comfortably than senior players is testament to the ability of this boy. His forward runs were giving us an alternative upfront and he nearly claimed an assist. The more he plays, the more we ignore his defensive frailties. This is a lad who believes that the best form of defense is attack. This time, it might be Wes Brown who will be bitting his finger-nails as Rafael matures The right back slot is in good hands for some time.
I have been quite disappointed at the way we have defended in the past. Last season at this point, we had let in very few goals. This time however, it has been quite different. Vidic and Ferdinand have now kept it tight for 5 games in arow--long may that continue.Benjani has always found a way past Uniteds defence--even when at Pompey so the fact that he was restricted to no goal yesterday was testament to how well we defended.
Ronaldo's red card will rule him out of the Carling Cup but who said we needed him there in the first place? United have now got past the hardest part of their season. It's time to engage gear 5. Oh and Southampton away in the FA Cup is not so bad afterall! Cheers!