COLUMNIST KEN BUCKLEY
A walk in the Glanford Park for rampant Blues
Cup time again against lower league opposition and many of us still have painful memories but today the team got about their task with purpose and, but for some sloppy finishing, we could and maybe should have been five up by half-time.
We started quickly and Coleman was very quick getting down the wing and passed his man to put in a cross that the keeper had to tip over for a corner. Saha was then at it again, this time just over three minutes gone and he found space and drilled home into the corner from 20 yards making it two in two. The travelling faithful were jubilant.
The home team then had a cross headed wide but from then on it was a Vanilla tide toward the home goal. Fellaini and Osman were becoming more and more influential and a good interchange of passes between Fellaini and Beckford saw the Belgian lean back and shoot over when the goal gaped.
Coleman put Beckford in with a superb pass but his shot lacked conviction when one-on-one, allowing the keeper to get a hand to it and deflect away for a corner. Baines then raided forward and picked out Osman with a cross of quality but his shot was deflected wide.
Baines again raided and found Fellaini, Baines continued his run into the box and Fellaini produced the deftest and sublime of back-heels to leave three defenders out of the game and Baines to cross and feed Saha but his shot was blocked by a last-ditch tackle. It was to be the move of the match.
The same duo of Fellaini and Baines were at it again when Fellaini played him free with a delightful pass and this time the Baines cross was glanced home by Beckford. 2-0 and the faithful celebrated and our cup song ?We shall not be moved? rang out in salute.
Half-time and all were happy and if we carried on in the same vein the score could be anything. Heitinga had been booked early in the half and with our centre-back problems I wondered would the manager replace him just in case... He didn?t and Jonny was a good boy.
Second half started and, as nothing is straight forward in football, we got caught cold right at the start of the half when a long Route One ball seemed to catch our defenders ball-watching as their Number 10 strode on and finished well with a shot that beat Howard all ends up and nestled in the corner.
It seemed to take us a good 20 mins to come to terms with this but slowly but surely Osman and Fellaini regained control and the Vanilla tide started to flow again and just on the hour mark , Beckford pulled wide left and was fed, he crossed and the in-rushing Coleman powered a header home, 3-1 ? game over and Coleman came to celebrate with the fans who were jubilant and then seemed to have a look of horror as he was booked for his kind gesture of celebrating with his own fans. Who thinks up these daft rules?
The manager seemed to think job done and the subs started, first was Saha replaced by Big Vic. The Vanillas continued to dominate and, around 70 mins, the Baines-Fellaini axis worked again and the Big Fella drilled home left-footed from the left hand corner of the 18-yd box. He celebrated more than the ecstatic fans and was immediately hauled off by the manager to give Rodwell an outing.
All the songs were being sung now and the manager?s song was sung out with gusto. Coleman was replaced by Gueye on the left with Bilyaletdinov going right. This with about 10 mins to go so we didn?t see much of him but he looks bubbly and bright with an attacking attitude. Still time for that man Baines to cap a very good performance when he jinked into the box past about four defenders who looked out on their feet and chipped an absolute pearler into the far top corner giving the keeper no chance.
Final whistle and all celebrated with the players quick to applaud the travelling faithful who responded in kind.
MotM ? For me, Fellaini by a mile... yet many thought Osman.
Overall, just the result you need in these games away against lower league opposition: no shocks and our superiority was rewarded. In fact, such was our superiority that at times I thought it led to a little sloppiness.
The derby next and just about anything can happen in these games so I won?t speculate but just see how it pans out and hope that at the final whistle Z Cars will be heard loud and clear from the voices of the Blue hoards crossing Stanley Park back to god?s country.
See you there UP THE BLUES
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1 Posted 09/01/2011 at 01:43:27
2 Posted 09/01/2011 at 01:58:28
3 Posted 09/01/2011 at 05:20:00
4 Posted 09/01/2011 at 07:18:07
5 Posted 09/01/2011 at 08:36:10
Andy - everyone has their opinions, but I thought Ossie was good today - although I do like him. I know it was only Scunthorpe - but he did more yesterday than Arteta has done all season. And I like him too. I actually thought he was the difference against Man City
As for Felli - we were saying there needs to be a MOM and a FOM (Felli of the match!!!!)
6 Posted 09/01/2011 at 09:01:36
7 Posted 09/01/2011 at 10:23:48
Top marks for everyone else too. Maggy looked sharp and I would have liked to have seen Mucha given a chance.
Not sure how Jonny H stayed on though, after his Van Damme impersonation. Jeez, he nearly disembowelled that player.
Now for the big one. As Cato the Elder used to say "The Shite must be destroyed".
8 Posted 09/01/2011 at 15:09:27
It's a squad game: Osman is a good player when played in the right place, he may not play in every game, nor should he... but it's using the squad correctly. We have looked a better team with two up front ? it gives the opposition more to think about. Gerrard is out of the derby after being sent off.
9 Posted 09/01/2011 at 15:46:12
10 Posted 09/01/2011 at 15:50:10
11 Posted 10/01/2011 at 04:48:28
12 Posted 10/01/2011 at 14:49:45
Both in the Spurs and the Scunthorpe games we were much more direct and a threat from both wings and having Beckford running around like a rabbit left Saha with more space.
I thought Gueye looked good on the left when he came on and interacted well with Baines for his goal. If out best little South African joins 'Arry then he could be our answer on the left.
Now for the RS and let's hope Moyes leaves well alone and sticks with the same formation, although I doubt he will,
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