Aston Villa 0:1 Manchester United
Line up: Romero, Darmian, Blind, Smalling, Shaw, Schneiderlin, Carrick, Mata, Januzaj, Memphis, Rooney
UNITED went to Villa Park on the back of a solid if not mouthwateringly impressive opener against Spurs; a keeper who made a few saves, a keeper who sat in the stands and enough positives to keep us going despite the apparent lack of a goal threat in the one goal victory.
The 4-5-1 remained the same, the De Gea situation remained unclear so Romero continued, Ashley Young sat out the return to his former club while Adnan Januzaj returned. Memphis had a few key moments, he sent an early free kick into the Villa box for Scneiderlin but his header never caused any danger for the Villa defence. It was a promising delivery though. Januzaj looked lively, worrying Micah Richards and Guzan early on before his run and pass to Memphis and an eventual through ball from Mata saw the number 11 turning on goal with Richards sliding past him; Adnan finding the net via the post and a defender but they all count.
Defensively there should be praise given to Darmian (getting a bit handsy with Richards at one point) and Chris Smalling, he headed a cross clear when Mata took too long in possession and was robbed for a Villa cross. In the second half Juan Mata had another fuzzy moment when he gave possesion of the football to the Villa attack, kindly; happily for United the shot was well over. If Juan needed to redeem himself he did, having lost possession to Villa he chased and regained it before sliding the ball between two Villa defenders to Memphis in the middle; the first time shot on the angle went wide of the post.
Elsewhere Carrick and Schweinsteiger did the swap again, Carrick played 60 minutes before being replaced, look for this pattern to continue, not that United fans will mind at all. Wayne Rooney apparently played too, but if he made any significant contribution other than moaning a bit on the floor and shaking hands at the end, I did not see it.
Villa manager, Tim Sherwood bemoaned his sides lack of “attacking fret” and believes Aston Villa could have had more from the game, he’s probably right but that is two games down for United, none conceded and two wins under our belts.
“There is still a long way to go, only four weeks preperation and some players only two weeks. You need more matches to come for the form.” – LVG
Let’s all sulk with Villa, they’ve had a lot of new players and they have to get used to English football. I wonder what that’s like, oh wait…