Where was the speed? I saw one good counter-attack from us during all game. I saw a number of slow attacks where we lost the ball down in midfield when most of our players already was up there, close or into their box. "Faster, faster, faster" I shouted to the telly. I did not help. I did not help with a midfield with Kovac, Noble, Behrami. It did not help to see our main forces Diamanti and Cole weakened by nervousness. It did not help to see ManU play beautiful on their fast counterattacks.
This is not a game that we expected anything from, but in the end it didn't help our cause. As we - in the end and despite some good football - looked like boys againt men. I counted to three (Diamantis with Foster's clumpsy save, Cole's "non header" and Upson's "look-I'm-not-a-natural-goal-scorer-miss) good chances for us in 90 minutes...
ManU have Valencia and Rooney. That's enough, that is efficiency!
Green 6,5 - Some good saves, some unsecure handling of the ball out in his box. Still one of our best performers.
Faubert 6 - Another decent display from our Frenchman. Fought hard, but all those crosses he tried and succeded with against Hull were not addressed well tonight, mainly just "cracks".
Tomkins 7 - Lost Rooney at their second, otherwise a reliable hardworked effort. Our MOTM.
Upson 5 - Left Rooney at their first which I didn't like even if the goal in itself were close to unstopable. The third (Owen) was not Upson's fault either, but he could still have delt with it much better. A bit pointless today.
Spector 5,5 - Few FB's has easy games against Valencia. Spector certainly did not. Still he tried and made some good moves and even had some crosses today. I mean, I do not like to see the rightfooted Spector as our best alternative at LB. But it's not his fault that he has to play there when Ilunga is out. And even if Valencia did what he wanted, Spector needs more help. Decent game after his premisses.
Behrami 5 - Not a game to remember for the Swiss. Fought, but after a good start at the right where he and Faubert had some decent passing down the corner flag he later on made no difference as he hardly delivered in attack at all.
Kovac 6,5 - Reading on some other sites, many of them can't see the use of Kovac. Me myself thought he was our best man in midfield. He seems finally - together with Zola - to have found how to play in this holding defensive midfield role. Slow yes, but also pretty composure. Stopped pretty much of ManU's play in the middle.
Noble 5,5 - In for Parker (not because of risking a tenth yellow, according to reports, but as he had tight muscles) and tried. Works like a captain on the field as he pushes on. But lacked confidence and was not as his best. Do I need to spell the word "slow"?
Diamanti 4,5 - Nope, not today. At all. When he plays that free spiritual play, he must have some help by the rest of the team playing much more disciplined. Today, when the team had few ideas, and the rest of the guys hardly moved, and he came up against much better opposition, he did not seem to have a clue how to do it. I can understand him.
Franco 4,5 - Wanted to do much, wanted to take responsibility and play like the experienced pro he is. But he did not succeed, and mainly had some bickering with opponents and the referee.
Cole 5 - Looked nervous. I remember last year when he won everything against Ferdinand/Vidic. Today Vidic alone had no problems to stop him. Or Wes Brown. Wanted so much to impress, againt he Champs, against Rooney's team, but had one of his least impressive games this season.
Mido 4 - On for Franco. Hardly showed anything.
Dyer 4,5 - Happy to see him back, but had his happiest moment when the referee blew his whistle for the final time as he looked to have escaped any injury!
Collison 5 - Sorry to say; Looks weak! Far away form his earlier form.
Hm, reading my own text, I seem a lot whinier than I want to, as we hardly played a nightmare. Just not good enough. So count that in, please.
At least we started well, but as soon as we conceded we did not look like we were able to fight back like we did when Ferdinand/Upson turned the game in Dec. 2007. Why do we seem to play worse against the best nowadays? What's the difference?
Anyway: Some rest and then Bolton next....