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Saturday, 1 November 2008

Half Time - Manchester United 3 - 1 Hull City

A Cristiano Ronaldo double gave Hull City a glimpse of the real gulf in the Premier League as Manchester United opened up a 3-1 half-time lead at old Trafford.

Wayne Rooney returned for United as Hull made their first league visit to Old Trafford for 33 years. Rooney replaced Carlos Tevez, one of four changes to Sir Alex Ferguson's side, with Michael Carrick making only his third start of the season after recovering from ankle and foot injuries.

Hull City chief Phil Brown was forced to bring in Bryan Hughes for suspended skipper Ian Ashbee as the visitors looked to emulate their remarkable victory at Arsenal. Brown stuck to his normal attacking philosophy, with Geovanni operating just behind Marlon King and Daniel Cousin. He was soon forced into a rethink though as the visitors fell behind within three minutes. When Ronaldo flicked a pass to Dimitar Berbatov, not only did no-one close down the Bulgarian, Ronaldo was left on his own as well to collect the return pass.

By the time Hull were alive to the danger, the FIFPro world player of the year had spun inside the area and found the net with a precise finish that bounced in off Boaz Myhill's left-hand post.
Geovanni rocketed a free-kick high over the bar as Hull sought an instant reply, although Ronaldo threatened greater danger with an effort which bounced around inside the area before Michael Turner cleared. A brilliant bit of skill from Berbatov released Nani down the left flank but Kamil Zayatte was able to nod away before Ronaldo finished from close range.

Gary Neville outmuscled King to prevent the striker controlling a cross from former United defender Paul McShane but the hosts were soon on the attack again, Zayatte needing to slide in on Rooney to prevent the England man presenting Berbatov with a clear sight of goal. Rooney, needing one for his 100th club goal, flashed a shot just over from the edge of the area as United continued to dominate.

Turner became the first man in referee Mike Dean's book for a late tackle on Nani. But it was Nemanja Vidic's tug on King near the touchline that had far greater repercussions, as Andy Dawson curled the free-kick into the United box. Cousin leapt highest to steer an excellent header into the far corner beyond Edwin van der Sar's despairing dive.

Hull were enjoying themselves, although they were fortunate Zayatte was able to stick out a leg and stop Rooney reaching Ronaldo with a through ball after Geovanni had gifted possession to the hosts on halfway. It was a let off for the visitors but they did not survive again a minute later as Vidic and Rooney set up a counter-attack in which Berbatov played a leading role. Once again, the Hull marking was slack as Carrick charged up in support. After collecting Berbatov's short pass, Carrick was allowed to reach the edge of the area before McShane closed him down.
By then it was too late as the midfielder rifled home a shot off the same post Ronaldo benefited from earlier. Ronaldo then brought an excellent save out of Myhill with a fierce drive before the Hull keeper flew out to smother before the Portugal star could reach Rooney's through ball.

Rio Ferdinand created half an opening for Ronaldo before Nani fired over. Rooney had a goal correctly disallowed for offside, then nodded over from six yards. But United were on the trail of more goals and when Nani floated a corner to the near post, Ronaldo rose to head home.

Man Utd: Van der Sar, Neville, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo, Carrick, Anderson, Nani, Berbatov, Rooney.

Subs: Foster, Giggs, Park, Rafael Da Silva, O'Shea, Fletcher, Tevez.

Hull: Myhill, McShane, Turner, Zayatte, Dawson, Marney, Hughes, Boateng, Geovanni, King, Cousin.

Subs: Duke, Barmby, Garcia, Mendy, Halmosi, Folan, Ricketts.


Jelzee said...

shouldn't u be blogging on the womens game rather than the mens. sorry i can't see how u could have any knowledge on football when u've never played. maybe kitchen and home economic blogs a better subject for you? good.

carlyluvsunited said...

I struggle on by thanks. I appreciate your concern though. I get a couple of hundred a day come here so I guess it's doing OK.