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Motm vs Derby?

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Personally, I hope that the team will be

I fear for Derby County's keeper. 0-4 to United with goals coming from Rooney x2, Ronaldo & Carrick. ;)

1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #59 ·
Prem Preview: Derby County - Manchester United

What: Barclays English Premiership
Who: Derby County (20th) vs Manchester United (2nd)
When: 15:00 GMT (16:00 CET), Saturday 15 March 2008
Where: Pride Park, Derby

For fans of Derby County, this season has been a lengthy trial of endurance, worsened on Wednesday by the abject 6-1 thrashing the Rams received at Stamford Bridge.

Paul Jewell, speaking post-match on Wednesday, expressed relief that there was one less game to play and stated that:“Our personnel will be totally different next year.â€

These are not the kind of statements that are designed to motivate the players, on whom he has clearly given up, but rather are aimed at fans whose patience has been tested to breaking point, and are an encouragement to stick with the team and come back next season.

Undoubtedly they will, especially as the club has frozen season ticket prices for next season. Whether many of this current squad will join them is doubtful. On trial for their places next season, most of them seemed to have failed the test.

Speaking at a Fans' Forum on Monday evening at Pride Park, Jewell was questioned about the ‘losing mentality' that grips the club, with Academy and Reserve teams receiving similar treatment to the first team this season. He stated that at reserve level, that isn't necessarily a problem, one or two players might emerge from the ordeal and become top players “because they're strong.†He clearly doesn't believe that many are strong enough in his first team.

Craig Fagan returned to Hull this week on loan, and the move will become permanent in the summer. The ‘big clearout' promised by Jewell and chairman Adam Pearson seems to have begun.

Those players left ought to show more professional pride, if nothing else. They owe the supporters a huge debt.

That debt is highly unlikely to be paid on Saturday, and the trail of endurance looks set to continue.

United We Stand

Alex Ferguson, in contrast, believes that referees should be the ones on trial. The bewildering intensity of his livid diatribe about Martin Atkinson following United's exit of the FA Cup at the hands of Portsmouth showed us one thing at least: Sir Alex, even as he approaches his retirement, still hates losing.

The frustration and anger at losing so unexpectedly clearly had to find an outlet, and referees became the first victims of the united backlash.

United were unfortunate last week. They could play their tie against Portsmouth another hundred times and not lose. A freakish combination of ill luck and bafflingly poor finishing, exacerbated by having to use three goalkeepers (including Rio Ferdinand), left the Red Devils feeling a massive sense of injustice.

Derby can expect to follow referees as the next victims of the backlash. Some of United's old soldiers are set to return and they will want to prove that they still have plenty to offer United's title challenge.

Gary Neville may return to the United line-up for the first time in almost a year following ankle and groin problems, while Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes are also in contention. Giggs, speaking to United's official website, commented this week on the importance of having such senior players in the squad.

Players like Neville, Scholes and himself "who have won leagues and experienced tough times and run-ins before, helped the young lads last year and will help others this time,†he said. If he and Neville return to Saturday's line-up, they will be keen to show that they still have more than enough to offer as the business end of the season approaches.

No hiding place for Derby, then. Having already copped for one FA Cup backlash at Chelsea this week they can expect another at home.

When asked this week if he thought that Derby's one league win this season was a ‘fluke', Paul Jewell replied that with only one win all season it certainly looked like it was. Some would argue that Portsmouth's victory over United last week as also a ‘fluke', and a similar fluke would appear to be Derby's only real chance in this game.

It is difficult to see where on the pitch Derby can compete, and fighting spirit, never present in abundance in this ill-prepared squad, is almost extinguished. A favour from Lady Luck, or maybe from referee Phil Dowd, would seem to be the only hope of leaving Ferguson red-faced and hurting once more.

This is the most vital part of the season for United, the time when urgency and extreme ruthlessness inform everything they do. Derby must expect no mercy.

Form Guide

(last five league games)

Derby County

Birmingham City 1-1 Derby County 02/02/2008

Derby County 0-3 Tottenham Hotpsur 09/02/2008

Wigan Athletic 2-0 Derby County 23/02/2008

Derby County 0-0 Sunderland 01/03/2008

Chelsea 6-1- Derby County 12/03/2008

Manchester United

Manchester United 2-0 Portsmouth 30/01/2008

Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Manchester United 02/02/2008

Manchester United 1-2 Manchester City 10/02/2008

Newcastle United 1-5 Manchester United 23/02/2008

Fulham 0-3 Manchester United 01/03/2008

Team News

Derby County

Alan Stubbs strained his calf at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday and is rated doubtful-a major blow as his experience and leadership are vital if Derby are to do anything other than crumble. Winger Craig Fagan has departed for Hull on loan this week. Long term absentees are Claude Davis (knee) and Tyrone Mears (shin). Giles Barnes flew to the USA this week to see a specialist regarding his suspected damaged knee cap and looks likely to miss the rest of the season. Roy Carroll and Robbie Savage, if selected, will face their old club.

Last Match: (versus Chelsea, Stamford Bridge, 12/03/2008, EPL)

Carroll, Edworthy, Stubbs (Lea**** 16), Moore, McEveley, Sterjovski, Ghaly (Earnshaw 52), Savage, Pearson, Lewis (Jones 58), Miller.
Subs Not Used: Price, Villa.

Manchester United

Gary Neville may make his long-anticipated comeback following his successful negotiation of 73 minutes for the Reserves on Wednesday night, but Bolton next Wednesday is perhaps a more realistic target. Ferguson may want to shake things up a bit, and Ryan Giggs is also in line for a possible return. Ben Foster will make his debut in goal due to Edwin Van der Saar's groin strain and Tomas Kuszczak's suspension. Louis Saha is rated doubtful.

Last Match: (versus Portsmouth, 08/03/2008, FA Cup)

Van der Sar (Kuszczak 46), Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo, Scholes, Hargreaves (Carrick 68), Nani, Rooney, Tevez (Anderson 68).
Subs Not Used: O'Shea, Park.

Players To Watch

Derby County

David Jones will want to impress. The young midfielder was signed for Derby from Manchester United last season for £1 million, and performed well in Derby's push for promotion. Handed limited opportunities this season, he has shown a good attitude and managed to score Derby's consolation goal at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday. Possessing a quality left foot, Jones's set piece delivery may prove Derby's best hope of a goal. The experience of playing should do him good anyway.

Manchester United

Ben Foster will make his competitive debut in the Manchester United goal and, although he is unlikely to face much threat from Derby's blunt attack, it is nevertheless a test of temperament for the highly rated England international. He has been out for much of the year and comes into the game with only one reserve game behind him. Playing for such a high-profile club, any mistakes he makes will be highlighted and any debut is always nerve wracking. How he deals with that pressure may be key.


Barring massive intervention from either Lady Luck or Phil Dowd this game can only go one way. Derby must battle for respectability and professional pride: their aim is to keep the score down. United will be hurting and may run riot.

Derby County 0-4 Manchester United

1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #62 ·
Jazz 16 said:
Good points. I think the fact that Alan Stubbs limped out against Chelsea
and will certainly miss our game is a huge bonus for us. He is their best
and most experienced defender and will be a huge loss.
Barnes also is one of their top players so without those 2,
I cant see anything other than 3 points for us.
^Ditto! Without those 2 of their most experienced & technically gifted players, 3 points are in the pocket for United. Now waiting for Le'Arse to drop points against Boro possibly. Provided that the latter play like how they played in the earlier fixture in this season where they emerged victorious 2-1.

And abojodeh, don't ue think that ur signatures' really far too big?? Spare a kind thought on the loading of the page everytime ue post pls ;)

1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #74 ·
Official Confirmed Team

GK: Foster

RB: O'Shea
CB: Brown
CB: Vidic
LB: Evra

RM: Park
CM: Anderson
CM: Scholes
LM: Giggs

CF: Ronaldo
CF: Rooney

Subs: Heaton, Fletcher, Carrick, Hargreaves, Saha

1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #89 ·
Match Review: Ronaldo Rams Home As United Go Top

Derby County 0-1 Manchester United

A Manchester United side lacking killer instinct were put to the test by a resilient yet rock-bottom Derby County, before a late goal from the relentless Cristiano Ronaldo put any potential upset off the cards, and put the Red Devils temporarily top of the table...

United no doubt dominated proceedings by and large over the 90 minutes, but Derby definitely had opportunities to win the game and looked dominant either side of half time.

The Premier League title holders were proving sluggish in their passing game — veterans Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes being chief offenders — but the likes of Ronaldo and Rooney's non-stop running and pressure ended up being decisive, with the two combining for a winner with about 15 minutes remaining.

Many had expected a goal-fest from Sir Alex Ferguson's men at Pride Park, but Derby gave a good account of themselves while United looked shaky on occasion. Nevertheless, United perhaps deservedly got the result in the end, and are a now a point clear of Arsenal at the top of the table with the two sides having played the same number of fixtures.


As was very much expected, United came out the stronger side and looked to impose themselves on the game.

Cristiano Ronaldo had the first chance of the game, shooting over after a good one-two between Patrice Evra and Wayne Rooney.

As Derby were struggling to keep up with United — and in particular, Ronaldo — the Portuguese struck the post from around 12 yards from a John O'Shea cut-back.

With Rooney running wide to cover for an aging Ryan Giggs, the young fed in the old through the middle but Giggs — who had already spurned one chance minutes earlier — will be disappointed with his effort, having been left with just goalkeeper Roy Carroll to beat.

Derby somewhat stemmed the flow of United attacks around the 20 minute mark but failed to make any inroads of their own to get the home crowd going.

United themselves were beginning to waste the chances that were coming their way, with Ryan Giggs the chief offender, particularly from set-pieces. Ji-Sung Park and Ronaldo both did well to win free-kicks out on the right hand side, but the Welshman's deliveries into the box were disasterously over-hit.

Arguably Man United's best move of the half came on 33 minutes, after Wayne Rooney's palmary perseverence saw him dispossess Marc Edworthy before then cutting inside from the left and feeding it to Ronaldo on the right hand side of the area. The winger — today playing as a forward — did exceptionally well to fashion a chance from the position he was in, guiding the ball into the far corner with the outside of his right foot, only for an astute Roy Carroll to produce a good save to keep it out.

With the half drawing to a close, it was Derby who looked to shock their visitors, who of course today are looking to reclaim top spot, if only for a couple of hours, with Arsenal playing Middlesbrough straight after in the evening game.

American Eddie Lewis did well on the left hand side to best John O'Shea then cut in a well-timed cross for the onrushing Mile Sterjovski, whose snap-shot produced a magnificent save from Man United debutant and England prospect Ben Foster.

Seconds later, Kenny Miller was fed through and forced Nemanja Vidic to go to ground, rounding the Serbian before opening his body up attempting to slot it in the far corner, but Foster was again equal to the effort with another fantastic stop.

This had the crowd in raptures — you'd have thought this point was guaranteeing them Premier League safety such was their enthusiasm — but before the break, United had one more chance to regain their composure and cause a scare.

It began with a delightful through ball over the top from an otherwise disappointing Giggs, Wayne Rooney ran onto it and did brilliantly in a Gascoigne-esque moment to dink the ball over the top of Darren Moore, but his effort from a wide angle clattered into the side-netting, ending any brief optimism travelling fans had of witnessing a wonder-goal.


The second half began with United once again unable to find their stride, with John O'Shea somewhat culpable some stray passing, as well as a poor free-kick from Ronaldo.

Derby were only too willing to capitalise, pushing forward in numbers and showing a real will to win through the likes of Lewis and Earnshaw, but lacking the finesse in the final third to really work Ben Foster as they had at the back-end of the first period.

United soon proceeded to once again dominate their humble hosts. Two Ronaldo free-kicks from a distance either side of a header from the Portuguese had Derby slightly more worried than they'd have liked, with Roy Carroll busy and the defence in a degree of disarray, but they hung in there and kept out the Red Devils.

A double-change was made just after the hour mark, with Sir Alex Ferguson sensing a disastrous upset on the cards, took off the anonymous Paul Scholes and hard-working but ultimately ineffective Ji-Sung Park for Louis Saha and Michael Carrick, allowing Ronaldo to revert to a role on the wing, with Saha going up front alongside Rooney.

Despite the double change the next time came to Derby, as United were caught slightly short at the back, but a hesitant Sterjovski took a little too long to capitalise, and in the end his deflected effort was kept out by Ben Foster.

As United continued to be frustrated by their own stray passing, Derby continued to attempt to push forward each time, former United prospect David Jones perhaps coming the closest to creating a genuine opening for the Rams, but a last-minute block denied the midfield a dream goal.

Louis Saha was visibly rusty and slowing down play, much like Ryan Giggs, but despite their overplaying, it was a ball in from Giggs knocked on well by Rooney that found Ronaldo at the far post, who saw another agonising near-miss, as his near-post effort hit the side-netting.

That was to be the last of the winger's misery, as he broke the deadlock soon after following great play from Wayne Rooney. The England international chased down a lost cause on the left hand side and, on his weaker foot, knocked in a great ball into the middle. Ronaldo, running in, showed great composure to adjust his body and poke an effort past Roy Carroll.

There was a hold-up in play soon after, as referee Phil Dowd pulled up with a hamstring problem and was eventually replaced by fourth official Trevor Kettle.

The final minutes saw both sets of fans in good spirits and the game opening up. Ronaldo produced yet another good effort from a free-kick, as well as testing Roy Carroll with a close-range effort, the ex-United man doing brilliantly once again to keep it out.

With a corner kick in the final minutes, Roy Carroll then attempted to rescue a heroic point for his side, coming forward and indeed receiving the ball on the edge of the area, but his effort was blocked off as the final whistle blew moments after.


Derby County (4-4-2): Carroll — Edworthy (Todd, 55), Lea****, Moore, McEveley — Sterjovski (Robert, 83), Savage, Jones, Lewis — Miller, Earnshaw (Villa, 76)

Unused substitutes: Price, Villa, Ghaly

Manchester United (4-4-2): Foster — O'Shea, Brown, Vidic, Evra — Park (Saha, 62), Scholes (Carrick, 62), Anderson (Fletcher, 73), Giggs — Ronaldo, Rooney

Unused substitutes: Heaton, Hargreaves


(Derby) Darren Moore, 6
(Derby) David Jones, 22
(Derby) Robbie Savage, 70
(Man Utd) Michael Carrick, 71
(Derby) James McEvely, 89


0-1 (Man Utd) Ronaldo, 76

Referee: Phil Dowd (Trevor Kettle, 84)

Attendance: 33,092

1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #91 ·
Player Ratings: Derby County 0-1 Manchester United

Manchester United clinched a narrow 1-0 win over strugglers Derby County, thanks to a late goal from Cristiano Ronaldo.'s Joel Morrison rates the players on show at Pride Park on Saturday afternoon...

Derby County

Roy Carroll - 7.5: The former Manchester United keeper performed well against his old club today, denying Cristiano Ronaldo on several occassions today. There was little he could do about Ronaldo's goal in the 76th minute because the Derby defence was sliced opened by Wayne Rooney's pinpoint pass.

Marc Edworthy - 4.5: Edworthy had a nightmare afternoon attempting to stifle veteran player Ryan Giggs. His lack of pace and reading of the match show he lacks Premiership quality. One reckons, at 35, a step down to the lower divisions might be better career move for Edworthy.

Dean Lea**** - 6: Not your most classy centre-back. But, a decent display from the youngster as he did well in defence, blocking shots from Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Darren Moore - 7: A really solid display from the central defender. Moore showed true grit and determination in attempting to close down the likes of Ryan Giggs, Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo. An assured display this afternoon.

James McEverly - 5.5: The Scottish youngster, to be honest, appeared out of depth against Cristiano Ronaldo. Earned only a yellow card for his efforts this afternoon.

Mile Sterjovski - 6.5: The Aussie midfielder showed a couple of neat passes and good ability on the ball. Nearly put Derby ahead with his effort on 38 minutes, where his powerful left-footed shot called Manchester United Ben Foster into action. But, his lack of match fitness showed in the second half.

Robbie Savage - 7.5: Derby fans are likely to vote the midfield hard-man as their man-of-the-match. Made several crucial tackles to foil United's attacking moves. A real steel in midfield for the Rams today.

David Jones - 5: The ex-United trainee showed plenty motivation to do well against his former employers. But was largely anonymous throughout the match, which gives us a clear indication why he was not retained at Old Trafford.

Eddie Lewis - 5.5: The American winger delivered a couple of dangerous corners and crosses. That was pretty much his contribution for the afternoon.

Kenny Miller - 5.5: Except for his effort in the first half which saw United custodian Ben Foster deny him, Miller was largely ineffective upfront.

Robert Earnshaw - 4: Where was Earnshaw? Derby paid a premium for his services. Sadly for the Rams, another lackluster display for the former Cardiff striker.


55th min - Andy Todd - 5: An ageing defender replacing another ageing player. Need we say more?

77th min - Emanuel Villa - 5: Signed for his South American flair. But Villa has done little to show it against the Red Devils.

83rd min - Laurent Robert - 4.5: Appears disinterested for the couple minutes of action he saw. Robert delivered two decent corners, and that's about it for the Frenchman.

Manchester United

Ben Foster - 8: Handed his Manchester United start by Sir Alex Ferguson. And, Foster did extremely well to show why the United boss should keep faith with him. The former Watford player made several good saves to deny Derby. A great start for the youngster.

John O'Shea - 6.5: O'Shea contributed with several runs down the right channel and combined well with Park Ji-sung.

Wes Brown - 5: Brown appeared shaky in the first half, as he was caught out twice by Derby players Mile Sterjovski and Kenny Miller. Appeared equally disinterested in the second half, certainly a disturbing sight for Sir Alex Ferguson.

Nemanja Vidic - 5.5: An atypical average performance from the Serbian defender. Together with Brown, the duo were responsible for Derby's spell of dominance in attack late in the first half.

Patrice Evra - 6: The Frenchman displayed a couple of good touches on the ball and tried to launch an attacking move on the left. Not the best performance from Evra though.

Paul Scholes - 5: The former England international had little to contribute in the United midfield today, except for the odd pass and tackle. Sir Alex realised his ineffectiveness and replaced him with Michael Carrick.

Anderson - 6.5: Performed better than Scholes. The Brazilian youngster, however, will do well to stamp his authority with more accurate passing than fading out later in the match.

Ryan Giggs - 6.5: Giggs showed United fans why he's still one of their best players on the pitch with a solid showing on the left wing. He had a bright start in the first half, threatening the Derby defence with his efforts at goal. Despite failing to find the net, it was assured performance from the United skipper. However, there were also some hints that age is catching up.

Cristiano Ronaldo - 8: The Portuguese international was repeatedly frustrated by a stubborn Derby defence that tried to mark him out of the game. Rams keeper Roy Carroll successfully thwarted all his efforts until the 76th minute. But you can just look at the relief and joy on his face when he scored the winning goal for United.

Park Ji-sung - 6.5: Park had a decent display in the first half, where he made several good runs down the right. Was a key figure in United's early spell of dominance in the opening 35 minutes.

Wayne Rooney - 7: A solid performance from Rooney, even though he didn't score a goal. He had several chances to put the ball into back of the net. But, like Ronaldo, he was frustrated by a determined Derby defence. However, his pinpoint pass led to Ronaldo's goal.


62nd min - Michael Carrick - 6: Had little to do in the centre of midfield as much of the play was concentrated on the wings.

62nd min - Louis Saha - 5: Saha did not make much impact in the game except for a couple of touches on the ball.

73rd min - Darren Fletcher - 6 A late introduction into the match but it was Ronaldo's late 76th min goal that stole the headlines. The Scotland international had little contribute after that.

1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #93 ·
We Kept Fighting - Queiroz

Manchester United assistant manager Carlos Queiroz was happy with his side's perseverence following their narrow victory over rock-bottom Derby County...

The win takes the Red Devils to the top of the table, a point ahead of Arsenal with an equal amount of games played.

Arsenal then play Middlesbrough, and a win would see them regain their lead, but United would, crucially, have a game in hand.

Today's win was therefore essential — and thought to be routine — but proved to be anything but, as Derby hassled a slightly lackadaiscal United and indeed had a few chances of their own either side of half time that could have well and truly stunned the visitors.

However, with the Rams spurning their few chances — and Ronaldo having several near-misses for United — fifth time lucky he had a shot hit the back of the net, following great work from Wayne Rooney down the left hand side.


Speaking after the game, Queiroz commended Derby's spirit to recover from their disastrous 6-1 hammering at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea midweek, and admitted he hadn't expected such a performance from the midlands minnows.

Ultimately, the Portuguese assistant hailed his side's non-stop pressure that eventually yielded the result everybody had predicted, but it was nowhere near as comfortable as they would have liked.

"It was very difficult after we missed so many chances at the beginning" Queiroz told BBC Sport. "We didn't score and step by step, Derby started to believe.

"But we kept fighting in the second half and got the result we expected."

"To tell you the truth, with their two chances, I believe Ben [Foster] deserves a lot of credit because he kept our team in the game."

Big Decisions

To that end, Queiroz addressed the selection headache that may now face Sir Alex Ferguson and himself between the sticks at Old Trafford.

Edwin van der Sar is of course first choice despite getting on in years, while Tomasz Kuszczak has been his deputy over the past couple of seasons, with Foster being United's heir-apparent in goal, but very much third choice and loan candidate in recent years.

With injuries forcing Foster to the fore, there will now be debate as to where he stands in the pecking order amongst three quality goalkeepers.

"Yeah big decisions," said Queiroz of the keeper dilemma. "But it is good for us because it means that we have a lot of good players. When they make the job hard for us that means the team can become stronger.

We Deserved It

The Manchester United assistant held firm his belief that his side were good value for the victory, though he had many kind words to say for Derby's resilience and as well as their spirit, as the rock-bottom Rams weren't afraid to attack themselves and try and win the game.

"After their 6-1 defeat against Chelsea they regrouped very well," Queiroz said. "To tell the truth we didn't expect they could be so strong.

"At the end of the day we probably deserve [the victory] because we created more chances than Derby.

"The goal came at the right moment for us, because it's always difficult to play in the last five or ten minutes."

Our Best Scorer

There was also — as there often is — room for praise of Cristiano Ronaldo's incredible form in front of goal, with this being his 31st goal in all competitions this season.

"At the moment he is the player who is our best scorer, and we hope that from now until the end of the season he can keep going," hailed Queiroz.

Nothing Easy

The Portuguese also admitted the psychological advantage of going top of the leage prior to Arsenal's clash with Middlesbrough was crucial going into the game.

"It is very important," he insisted. "The last few weeks have shownb there is nothing easy in front of us.

"We need to fight in these games as if they were a cup final. From now until the end there is no room for mistakes."

Manchester United now top the table, with 67 points from 29 games.

1,544 Posts
Discussion Starter · #98 ·
The Way We Lost Is Acceptable - Jewell

Derby County boss Paul Jewell took defeat well after his side's resilient showing against Manchester United, declaring his side produced an exceptional performance and did everything they could to grind out a result, despite eventually losing 1-0...

The relegation-bound Rams fought all the way against United, capitalising on as many stray balls as they could to cause a few problems and give the vociferous home support a result to remember from this year's campaign.

They couldn't quite manage it, as Cristiano Ronaldo — who had been United's only genuine threat all afternoon, though mis-firing — eventually found the back of the net, combining well with Wayne Rooney with just a quarter of an hour remaining.

Jewell was honest in his assessment of the game. He insisted that should his side play like this more often — as opposed to how they capitulated midweek in their 6-1 loss to Chelsea — their fortunes could well turn around in terms of results, even if it is too little too late at this stage in this season.

"No one likes losing games but the way we lost is acceptable," Jewell told BBC Sport. "I want that sort of performance to be the norm rather than the exception.

"I'm pleased the players put in a shift for the supporters.

"We were never going to be able to out-football them but we matched them for workrate and endeavour."

Derby are rock-bottom of the Premier League, with a dismal 10 points from 30 games.
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