Sunday, 24 April 2016

Manchester United vs Everton Match Analysis

Manchester United met Everton at Wembley for one of the most interesting semi finals of the FA cup, after taking an early lead, Manchester United's hopes for reaching the final were at an all time high but the second half seemed to change things as Everton put their foot on the gas, David De Gea saved a penalty but Chris Smalling was responsible for an own goal. It was 1-1 at 90 minutes and both managers felt that the match would carry on to Extra Time if not to penalties, (like it did the last time they met) but then came the moment of magic as Manchester United's Anthony Martial struck for goal in the iconic Fergie Time to seal their 5th consecutive win.

Analysis
Manchester United were at the top of their game during the first half, making quick attacks, passing the ball around well and having that thirst for an early goal that several fans wanted to see, the second half, however, wasn't all that good for them as they crumbled under the pressure (credit given to Everton as well to just turn the tables on them) and returned to the old, boring, philosophical play, they picked up the pace during the final 10 minutes of the game which led to the late goal by Martial

The players performed well again, David De Gea did not have much to do in the first half and in the second as well, but he did more than his part by saving that penalty and a Ross Barkley free kick after that. Chris Smalling was responsible for the own goal, but he did seem to be in the wrong position at the wrong time, other than that, he had a good game. Daley Blind was in top form as he was constantly moving up and down the field and made some important tackles to keep the 1-0 lead. Tim Fosu Mensah started as well but seemed to have a bad day as he gave away a penalty after a controversial tackle and was outclassed by Romelu Lukaku on several occasions. Last in the defensive lineup was Marcos Rojo who played fairly well, but unlike Fellaini, hasn't gained the confidence of the fans yet.

Michael Carrick was again, fine, not too good, not too bad, he seems to have come of age when it comes to defending and clearing the ball wherein he still makes several mistakes, the attacking and passing however, was great from him, hopefully he does find a little help defensively or he would not be able to compete against the all time favourite Schmidfield. Marouanne Fellaini was perhaps the best player on the pitch for Manchester United, the guy was glowing, he understood the situation well, headed the ball well, made very few mistakes, if any and finally, scored an opening goal against his former club, not the best of finishes but it ended up in the right place and that's what matters, he was close to scoring another but Phil Jagielka's hand stopped the ball, no penalty was given.

Man in the middle, Wayne Rooney seems to have booked a place in the Euro squad as he continued his top form by making several great passes and setting up the attack pretty well. Anthony Martial was the man who did it all, after assisting Fellaini for the opener and coming really close to scoring one, I did seem to have a positive outlook of him and that just boosted when he scored the late winner, just a magnificent performance overall, way better than the last one, still room for improvement but he can conquer it all. The other man on the wing was Jesse Lingard, another controversial character, he was a spark of creativity and was lively throughout, but all that went down the drain as he could not finish, and this has been carrying on for quite some time now. Therefore, starting him above Memphis seems to have no logic for me but only the future and Louis Van Gaal shall tell us what happens of this.

Finally, Marcus Rashford, the boy wonder, had a good game, could've scored on a few occasions, and seems to have a great partnership with Martial, they could go a long way if they decide to stay a few years

Overall, not the lineup the fans wanted but it worked for Van Gaal, he is just 90 minutes away from winning the FA cup, question is, can he do it?

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