Footie fans should earmark the upcoming Manchester United – Arsenal clash because Sir Alex Ferguson has declared that it is their “biggest game of the season.”
While the Red Devils secured a finals slot in the Carling Cup last Wednesday against Manchester City, back at the PRemier League, Chelsea was able to wrest the top position from the Reds and with still another match slated. This means that Manchester United sees the Arsenal clash as a must-win at this point. Especially since Sir Alex sees Arsenal as a big obstacle in getting a record fourth consecutive title.
A win is important since with two matches, Chelsea could potentially get four points ahead of the Red Devils, and Sir Alex doesn’t want to play catch up with a relatively big margin. And with Arsenal potentially in the running as well, they will do all they can to thwart ManU — the ingredients of an epic battle.
Edwin van der Sar may not be having a very stellar season right now but Sir Alex Ferguson still has a lot of confidence in him and has gone so far as to declare Van der Sar as the best goalkeeper in the Premier League.
Van der Sar has been going through a rough patch this year because of different woes. For example, he broke two fingers during a pre season game against Bayern Munich. The injury forced him to the sidelines for two long months. He then suffered another injury when he collided with Tim Cahill of Everton last November, which put him out of action for five weeks. He was already nearing his eventual return from injury but his wife suffered a stroke, which has forced him to go on indefinite leave from the team.
Van der Sar finally made a return last January 16 in the match against Burnley, and proving how good of a goalkeeper he is Manchester United has yet to concede a goal and he has been instrumental in the Reds getting throug the Carling Cup Final.
Sir Alex said that it’s a combination of his talent, his composure under pressure and his adeptness with the football. With that kind of warm praise from Sir Alex, I’m pretty sure that Edwin van der Sar is feeling quite invincible right now. Hopefully, that feeling of invincibility will be sustained until next week because of the tough match against Arsenal.
If there’s still any doubt that Wayne Rooney can ably fill the big shoes left by Cristiano Ronaldo, it was erased with the stunning 4 – 0 routing of Manchester United against Hull. Rooney scored all four goals against Hull and this has resulted in the Red Devils speeding up the ranking tables and becoming the top team in the Premiership League.
Rooney scored the first goal a mere seven minutes into the game, with a hit on a rebound after Paul Scholes’ long range shot was saved. He would then explode with three goals that he would fire off within the span of less than ten minutes late in the game. The three goals, which came in at the 83rd, 86th and 90th minutes were astonishing and brought the Manchester United faithful to its feet. Rooney’s four goals in the game, his first ever, brings his season total to 20 goals. Rooney’s consistency has brought the Red Devils two points clear at the top of the Premiership League table.
Hopefully, Rooney’s amazing performance this season and the Red Devils enjoying the top spot will be enough to ease the tension in Old Trafford because of the debts the team is suffering from — to the tune of 700 million pounds at present.
Manchester United may be swooping up to the top of the Premiership League despite being plagued by injuries this season. Another player to be officially added to the growing list of injured players is John O’Shea. It has been announced that O’Shea will be missing the rest of the season because of complications that happened after he suffered a dead leg and it looks like it is far more severe than initially thought.
Sir Alex Ferguson has said that the injury itself is unusual because a dead leg usually lasts for just three or four days. He further revealed that the blood clot that is one of the causes of the problem has become knotted and this has caused calcification. He said that treating this will take a long process and this is the reason he will be unfit to play for the rest of the season. Sir Alex further revealed that it’s a really big blow for O’Shea given that he would’ve been a sure starter this season because of the Manchester United defense has been reduced because of injuries. O’Shea is known for being very versatile at the back and he can even play midfield, which really makes it a bigger disappointment that he’ll be gone for the season.
With the Red Devils beset by all these injuries it’s a big accomplishment for the team that it has soared to the top of the Premiership League again. Will O’Shea’s injury stop this momentum or is the team just too hot right now that one less player would hardly matter at this point? Personally, I’m hoping for the latter.
O’Shea will also miss Ireland’s friendly with Brazil at the Emirates Stadium on March 2 and a scheduled end-of-season training camp.
Ferguson says the upcoming friendly date is one that club managers could do without.
He added: “I don’t even think the international managers think they’re all that important now. They never play their full team and there’s always drop outs.”
Rumors that Gary Neville is planning to retire at the end of the season were immediately quashed by Sir Alex Ferguson.
Neville will be celebrating his 35th birthday soon. Though he’s getting long in the tooth, he’s still not considered within retirement age. But time has not been kind to him. He has been suffering from numerous injuries over the last three seasons. Add to that his sub par performance during the absolutely devastating defeat against Leeds United, which has led to the third round exit of the Red Devils in the FA Cup and you’ll realize why the retirement rumors are so strong.
Everything will be determined this summer though. Both Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes have already extended their stay at Old Trafford for an additional year. We’ll find out what Neville’s decision is in a few months.
Personally, I think Neville still has a lot of years to offer Manchester United. Everything really depends on his injury situation. Hopefully, his injury problems will end this season and this will prompt him to renew his contract.
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Manchester United’s defensive woes continue to haunt it as defender Nemanja Vidic has been sidelined for at least ten days following an injury he suffered in his leg.
Vidic is one of the most consistent defenders in the team and his injury comes at a very bad time for the Red Devils. Vidic suffered his injury during the warm-up for the FA Cup third round match versus Leed United. The Red Devils will go on and lose 1-0 and handing Sir Alex Ferguson his first ever third round defeat in the FA Cup every since becoming United’s team manager.
Because of the injury, Vidic will definitely miss the match against Birmingham this weekend and the game against Burnley next weekend.
Vidic’s injury is just one of the many injuries the Red Devils’ defensive side has suffered this season. Vidic’s partner, Rio Ferdinand, has been sidelined for months because of his own injury problems.
We’ll see how Vidic’s problems get resolved especially since there are also rumors that he is unhappy at Old Trafford and would like to move to another team, preferably Real Madrid.
Manchester United’s goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar has been announced to have been given an indefinite compassionate leave after her suffered a personal crisis. Van der Sar’s wife suffered a brain hemorrhage.
Van de Sar has not played since Manchester United’s win over Everton because of a knee injury. Because of the unfortunate medical emergency, he was allowed to go back immediately to Holland. He will just receive treatment for his knee from a Holland-based team doctor.
There is no news yet on the condition of Van der Sar’s wife. Annemarie van Kesteren is 36 years old. She is being examined to find out the cause of the problem.
Our well wishes for the speedy recovery of Annemarie.
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