A Fan's View: Albion 1 Man United 2
By Site Editor
Updated Monday, 15th August 2011
Boinger219 gives his verdict on Albion's defeat
And so it begins. Another season that will have everything and else in between. But it’s all worth it after the usual twiddling of thumbs we get when the season is over. It all started for me at 2:20pm when I finally got told by my mom I had another season ticket.
Two minutes later I was on my way to the Shrine and looking forward to another season, and also looking forward to giving the champions a good match at the least. It was great meeting CBB and BBG, I’ll say a proper hello against Stoke though at half time. The pitch looks great and the electronic boards around the outside look even better. With more adverts on them now and on both sides of the boards we must be getting more money for the adverts! A quick well done to the club and West Midlands Police for putting up pictures of all involved in the riots on a massive screen for all to see as you walk down towards the Halfords lane stand! I hope this helps bring them to justice!
The line-ups looked good but great for us. We were missing Thomas (dead leg), Odemwingie (ankle) and McCauley (virus). It was good to see Mulumbu had shaken off a knock in time to play, so our starting 11 didn’t look that bad with Foster and Long making league debuts and Tamas and Tchyoi getting the chance to start. I had hopes we could pull something off with Man Utd missing Hernandez as he is a big miss for them. But when they can put Berbatov on the bench, you know they are a good side, considering our striker on the bench was Fortune!
Tchyoi, surprisingly to some, partnered Long up front. The first few minutes we needed to calm down a bit, Long was running a lot and that was good to see his energy, this in a way helped him become an instant crowd favourite. Despite all this, Man Utd were having more of the ball and constantly getting the ball out wide to Young, whose pace caused Reid a problem all day long. Nothing was coming of this though until the 13th minute when Rooney had the ball on the edge of the box, turned and hit it the ball went through Tamas’ legs and out of the reach of Ben Foster and into the bottom corner. The third time Rooney has scored against us in three games!
The Man Utd fans who were standing in the gangways when they shouldn’t went mental as usual! But the crowd of 25,360 fans got back on the Baggies’ side straight away and lifted the team. Unfortunately we still couldn’t get the ball with Rooney making Olsson back pedal and unleashing a strike wide of the target from 20 yards. Then Rooney and Welbeck linked up with a great chance for Nani who could only fire over the bar from close range.
Foster got everyone to calm down and we got going, fighting in midfield with Scharner and Mulumbu, Morrison was getting a lot of space in the midfield at times but was just not spotting the runs of Long and Tchyoi. Still though, Man Utd were getting a lot of corners that sometimes weren’t even corners!
We battled on though and we created our first great chance when Scharner pounced on a loose ball and hit it with power but at a nice height for David De Gea – a keeper that looked very nervy throughout the game and also he couldn’t catch the ball when it came in because of pressure!
This got us up with a corner and a few minutes later Long found himself wide with the ball. After a bit of nice footwork he found space to shoot. His effort went through De Gea and into the bottom corner. I remember thinking he’s going to stand one up but then he hit it. I only saw the net bulge so I started boing-boinging with delight.
We then took the game to them and Tchyoi had a cross turn into a shot on 44 minutes. When he hit it wrong De Gea had to pull off a finger tip save, Da Silva denying Long from getting his second of the game. As the half time whistle blew, I think Roy would be happier as we worked hard and got going once we had settled in after a difficult start.
We came out with confidence. We believed we could get at least a point, and rightly so. We came out and shared the ball with Man Utd, but they were still the ones creating chances with them running more and more at a helpless Reid. Olsson and Tamas had to use their height to get the ball away on a few occasions. We often forced the ball back to the keeper with Long chasing him down and we got a few corners and free kicks with Olsson’s goal bound header blocked en route to goal with followed by a mad scramble, but again no goal. As time went on we had hope and we really saw our chances and thought this could be our day, especially with Ferdinand and Vidic both going off injured.
We felt we could really use Tchyoi’s height as an advantage. The only problem was they wanted the win, taking Welbeck off for Berbatov showed their intent. Still we looked comfy with our back line creating very few suicidal moments despite the odd pass to a player near Rooney, we dealt with it well.
Then the moment that broke our hearts: Young’s pace again lead him into the box with a chance to cross, he was attempting a low fizzing pass to Rooney, but the ball took one deflection and then another off Reid which unfortunately sent the ball into the bottom corner with nothing that Foster could do about it.
From the Brummie all I saw was a rolling ball and the net move. I never actually saw a deflection, so it was a bit worse as everyone was shouting about him being from a fish market. We fought on and used Tchyoi as a target man. Reid and Long went off, who had pulled up with an injury just before Cox came on. Tychoi had a couple of chances, most notable when he turned Jonny Evans and could have hit it but decided to cut inside to the melee of Man Utd defenders waited. They eventually cleared the ball away and the chance had gone.
The chorus of “Oh Albion We Love You” rang around The Hawthorns as referee Mike Jones blew the whistle to end the game with proud Baggies on our feet clapping our side off because of all the hard work we had put in.
Yes it should have been a point, but that’s football. It was great to see a strong defensive performance, just the pace of Young that did us really. I think it is credit to Super Roy looking at the defensive when he came and how it was yesterday. Long and Foster both looked good with Long being my MOTM and Foster always talking to his defence. It’s shame he is only here for a season.
We worked hard and deserved a point but if we play like that against Chelsea and Stoke I think we could have 4 points on the table which wouldn’t look to bad. I hope Odemwingie and Long get the chance to show themselves as the strikers they are together as I think they could be a very dangerous pairing for any defence to face. Both are runners with pace who find space and having players like Brunt and Dorrans to pick out those runs is even better!
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