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Manchester United vs Tottenham


Saturday 9th September 2006

Kick Off:
5:15PM

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Welcome back to the Barclays Premiership then, for the 2006/2007 Season. It's been a wonderful start for us hasn't it. We beat Fulham at Old Trafford 5-1 on the opening day, and went top of the table. We then faced Charlton away from home, and we destroyed them 3-0, and we went back to the top.

Meanwhile Chelsea lost to Middlesbrough, which gave us a 3 point edge against them in the overall table. Moving on to West Brom, away from home, we fought well, and won 2-1.

We are proudly top of the table still, but can it last? Visiting Old Trafford this weekend is Tottenham Hotspur. They will be in confident mood when they face us, but hold on a minute, they haven't done too well this season, at this very early stage. If I can remember correctly, they are in the bottom half, with 1 win, and 2 defeats.

Encounters between Manchester United and Tottenham are always entertaining, but it's going to be a very very tough game against them. The last time we beat Tottenham at Old Trafford was in 2004, yes, I'm being honest, we won 3-0 that day, whilst we were having a bad patch. I have a feeling were beat them this time, with Heinze returning, Carrick maybe starting, Rio returning, Gary Neville, Vidic, and Evra too. Bring em on!

PREDICTION: Manchester United 2-1 Tottenham


MATCHDAY ENCOUNTERS (LAST 6 PREMIERSHIP MEETINGS)


2003/2004 Season: Tottenham 1-2 Manchester United
2003/2004 Season: Manchester United 3-0 Tottenham
2004/2005 Season: Tottenham 0-1 Manchester United
2004/2005 Season: Manchester United 0-0 Tottenham
2005/2006 Season: Manchester United 1-1 Tottenham
2005/2006 Season: Tottenham 1-2 Manchester United



MATCHDAY FACT: Manchester United have kept three clean sheets against Tottenham in their last 6 meetings.
 

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Definite non starters from both sides are:

Utd: rooney, scholes, heinze, vidic

tottenham: berbatov, malbranque

gazza and carrick should make the starting eleven acording to latest reports
 

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Smith has also been left out the squad, so barring eleventh hour withdrawals he won't be getting his hoped for spot on the bench. Bit of a mistake in my book as the important/tricky games are coming thick and fast now - and in all probability the injuries will follow in kind - and it will be increasingly hard to find dead minutes to let him get back to match speed. Moreover it would be nice to have a genuine striking option on the bench, even if it is semi-fit at best.
 

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well CL games allow a bench of 7 players so i 'm sure fergie will find space for him there. Wouldn't be suprised if smiths comeback is in the Champions League

Full time Match Result: 1-0 to united with an early giggs header the decider

Match Report from bbc:

Ryan Giggs' eighth-minute header proved enough for Manchester United as the hosts extended their 100% start to four games against a profligate Spurs side.
The Welshman swooped to head in off the bar after Paul Robinson tamely parried Cristiano Ronaldo's swerving free-kick.

Ronaldo was at his magical best at times and was twice denied by Robinson.

However, in truth, Spurs were worthy of a draw and Michael Dawson, Ledley King, Jermain Defoe and Mido all wasted superb chances to seal a deserved draw.

United had Edwin van der Sar to thank for preventing Dawson and King scoring, tipping the former's attempted lob away in the second half before blocking King's follow-up on the floor.

But Defoe had no-one to blame but himself for missing a golden opportunity 20 minutes from time when he contrived to head over the bar from six yards with the goal gaping from Benoit Assou-Ekotto's cross.

And Egyptian Mido, on his return for Tottenham after securing a permanent move from Roma, was equally wasteful when he failed to connect with Reto Ziegler's swirling cross.

A leveller would have been just rewards for the visitors, who reacted well to going behind early.

With Aaron Lennon absent with a knee injury, Spurs' narrow midfield - which included a deep-lying Mido - coped well despite United's abundance of attacking flair and confidence.

Michael Carrick in particular was in impressive form against his former club, dominating the midfield in the early stages and spraying cross-field passes around much as he did for the Londoners last season.

And it was one such Carrick pass that led to United's first chance when Ronaldo drifted in from the right and tested Robinson with a curling left-footed effort.

United always looked dangerous, with Ronaldo at the heart of all their good attacks, tormenting the visiting defence throughout the afternoon, not least when he forced a superb reaction save from Robinson from an angle on the hour mark.

And he set Louis Saha free to almost have the final say of the afternoon when he raced clear of the Spurs defence, held off Assou-Ekotto and blazed at goal only for Robinson to palm away well.

It was representative of an open contest, played out in front of a record Premiership crowd of 75,434.

However, Spurs manager Martin Jol will find it hard to reason how Spurs did not find a goal, with Jermaine Jenas also blazing wide when well-set in the first half.

The Dutchman will have been encouraged, though, by his side's resilience and the performance of new boy Pascal Chimbonda, who hardly put a foot wrong at right back.

But Spurs' missed chances meant United were able to hold on for the win - the first time they have won their first four games of the season in the Premiership - and return to the top of the table.

Tottenham, meanwhile, have now stumbled to their worst start to a season since 1995 with work to be done ahead of their Uefa Cup clash against Slavia Prague on Thursday.



Was a poor performance but we got the points and with scholes and rooney back in the side, we will surely get better for the arrival of celtic and arsenal
 

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Its a good sign cause we didnt deserve all three points in this one but we managed to get all three.

Impressed with Carrick, he was great for us today and we did see glimpses of his passing ability.

Van der Sar proved vital for us today, he made some superb saves. Giggs again was class, played on well after the nosebleed but it did seem to affect his game. Ronaldo was decent, could have been better but his game has certainly improved and he is much more consustent than last season.

Well the team is doing well, wining 4 from 4 which I believe is our best start since 21 years. Makes it even more impressive since we got Rooney, Scholes, Heinze and Vidic to come into the team.
 

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IMHO, Saha looked a bit jaded.
Ryan Giggs, Ryan Giggs running down the wing
Ryan Giggs, Ryan Giggs running down the wing

Feared by the blues, loved by the reds....

Ryan Giggs, Ryan Giggs
What a guy. Scores the winner. Gets busted with blood coming form his nose and still he plays on... Easily and deservedly, MoM for me.
 

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The whole team was poor and giggs was pretty invisible after the goal. I would give MOM to VDS as he kept our lead intact. Can't help but think if berbatov and lennon played we would have lost. I know we were missing key men as wellbut our defense and rio in particular need to step it up. If rio keeps playing like this i wonder if fergie will have the courage to drop him and replace him with vidic. Probably not
 

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KingSingh said:
The whole team was poor and giggs was pretty invisible after the goal. I would give MOM to VDS as he kept our lead intact. Can't help but think if berbatov and lennon played we would have lost. I know we were missing key men as wellbut our defense and rio in particular need to step it up. If rio keeps playing like this i wonder if fergie will have the courage to drop him and replace him with vidic. Probably not
Like the Yanks say - IF my aunt had balls she'd be my uncle.

By that same token, would anyone be brave enough to wager that we'd have lost if Scholes and Rooney were part of the starting 11?

Talking about our defence, Wes Brown played much better than he usually does. I hope he keeps upping his game. We have a much smaller squad now, but the competition for places is no less than that of players in Liverpool or Chelsea.

A far sterner test now awaits in the form of two consecutive BIG games. Ordinarily I'd feel extremely confident of our performance against Celtic, but this being the first European match in quite a while, we ought to be straining at the leash so's we can exorcise last year's demons as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, I have no doubt that the best we can do against Arsenal will be a draw.
 

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Well my fears are being realised. Right now if I had to stake my life one way or t’other I’d readily put it on us ending this season without a meaningful pot yet again.

We’ve got away with it thus far, but we’ve been displaying the exact same chronic flaws that have crippled us in recent times. there is no way you can get through an entire EPL campaign like this without getting burned, and the total lack of a margin of error in cup football means we’ll require an inordinate amount of luck/profligate finishing from our opponents.

Manuxtreme said:
Its a good sign cause we didnt deserve all three points in this one but we managed to get all three.
That truism is only applicable when talking about the inevitable bad days in the office teams will have every now and then. It doesn’t apply to problems caused by long term chronic flaws in the team. It isn’t a good thing to be winning despite them because inevitably you will fail enough to get away with it enough times to render such successes meaningless. Relief is the only appropriate emotion; the only good time will be when we finally rectify the issue.

Manuxtreme said:
Makes it even more impressive since we got Rooney, Scholes, Heinze and Vidic to come into the team.
Not much of a bonus when they’ve all been part of the problem. They haven't solved it over the past two years so why should they now? Okay, Vidic is fresh enough to potentially make a difference, but his game creates new problems in our unbalanced squad. I see little changing in the near future unless someone on the backroom staff finally gets some basic concepts through Fergie's thick skull.

Manuxtreme said:
Well the team is doing well, wining 4 from 4 which I believe is our best start since 21 years.
Yep, and remember what happened after going through the first quarter of the season 100%? We crashed big time as injuries took their toll and Hughes fell apart while sitting on the knowledge of his sale to Barcelona. We always knew our run was papering over the cracks and once our traditional injury crisis bit we’d be stuffed. Read the same with this run. We are getting points, but performances are lamentable and I can guarantee that if things don’t change we’ll be ending the season watching others celebrate.

On the bright side that great run was followed twelve months later with the removal of the manager. Back then it was an horrendous decision, but a repeat of the pattern this time around would be most welcome :)
 

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Chelsea won the title last season because they won games they shouldnt have. All Champions do that. The team is playing well and you expect them to falter every now and again as its been a run of a few games already and some of them are feeling tired.

We need to keep winning games as we cant afford to start slow and pick up in January. We did that last season and it wasnt enough as Chelsea were too far away. If it had been like old times we would have easily won the title.

With Chelsea it hasnt been the case and we have to raise the bar higher.
 

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Do remember also, that a large part of our late season resurgence was also due in part to the fact that we had fewer matches to play - we were out of the Champions League so early on in the season that there were rumours of Fergie's dismissal by the Glazers. Also being tossed out of the FA cup (and that too by the Scousers) hurt our pride but not the match fitness of the team.
 

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chelsea won the title cause they consistently got the results they needed, if we do thatthis season then i see no reason we won't become champions again.
 
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