Manchester United 4-3 Hull City – English Premier League – 1 November 2008 – Live Blog

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Manchester United (Ronaldo 3′ 44′, Carrick 29′, Vidic 57′) 4-3 Hull City (Cousin 23′, Mendy 69′, Geovanni pen. 82′)
Stadium: Old Trafford, England
Competition: English Premier League
Date: 1 November 2008
Kickoff: 15:00 GMT, 11:00 ET

Manchester United held off a furious challenge from Hull City in a 4-3 thriller at Old Trafford! Soccerlens brought you the action live! Click below for the live blog and feel free to leave comments below!

Match Preview:

When I subscribed to Setanta Sports Broadband, one of the reasons why was because they get first choice matches on Saturdays and Sundays. I’m sure there were a number of eye-catching matchups for them when the schedule first came out. Tottenham/Liverpool definitely. Chelsea/Sunderland, possibly. But Hull City/Manchester United? The idea of a team that had never been in the Premiership visiting the 10-time Premiership champions and reigning European champions would hardly top anyone’s list of great matchups. Yet, here we are. It’s a big-time match between two teams jockeying for position at the top of the table.

By anyone’s calculation, Hull City have overachieved this year. They’ve beaten Arsenal at Emirates Stadium. They’ve beaten Newcastle at St. James Park. They’ve beaten Tottenham at White Hart Lane. Other than a 5-0 thrashing at the hands of Wigan, they’ve defended well and have been tough to score on. They hung tough with Chelsea before giving up two second half goals on Wednesday. Either Hull City are much better than we thought they would be, or a lot of teams are continuing to overlook them as serious opponents.

Manchester United would be wise not to take them lightly. After a disappointing draw with Everton, United bounced back with a 2-0 win against West Ham on Wednesday and now sit in 6th place, 8 points adrift of Liverpool. Speculation continues to swirl around Cristiano Ronaldo’s future with the club, despite Real Madrid seemingly backing off and despite Ronaldo’s own statement that he wants to stay for another year or two. His goal “celebrations” have taken on the feeling of a funeral and he’s diving so much that you wonder if he’s trying to win a gold medal. Unrest also surrounds Carlos Tevez, who finally got his first start in a month against West Ham. Luckily for United, Michael Carrick seems to have recovered from his injury, and his return will be a welcome sight for Manchester United’s depleted midfield, which got utterly dominated in the second half of the Everton match.

Who will prevail in this huge Premiership clash? The overachieving Tigers or the sleeping giants of United? We shall see…


Manchester United: Van der Sar, Neville (c), Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo, Carrick, Anderson, Nani, Berbatov, Rooney.
Subs: Foster, Giggs, Park, Rafael, O’Shea, Fletcher, Tevez.

As expected, Van der Sar returns as the starting keeping after sitting out against West Ham. Neville also returns to the starting lineup, in place of Rafael. Carrick will make his first start in more than a month, coming in for Fletcher. With most eyes focused on the striking situation, it’ll be Rooney instead of Tevez today. A couple of milestones today, as skipper Gary Neville will be making his 550th appearance for Manchester United, while Ronaldo will be making his 250th.

Hull City: Myhill, McShane, Turner, Zayatte, Dawson, Marney, Boateng (c), Hughes, Geovanni, King, Cousin.
Subs: Duke, Barmby, Garcia, Mendy, Halmosi, Folan, Ricketts.

Hull will make it’s first change in six matches due to Ashbee’s suspension for yellow card accumulation. They’ll lineup in a 4-3-1-2 with Geovanni playing right behind the two strikers. Hughes will start in his place. Otherwise, there are no changes from the side that lost 3-0 to Chelsea. No Windass for Hull, which is too bad. I love that name (after Nacho Camacho from Atletico Madrid, of course).


90′ + 4 Hull throw it in and try desperately to get it into the box, but O’Shea knocks it away and there’s the whistle! What a match! Thanks to everyone who followed along! Join me on Monday when Aston Villa take on Newcastle!

90′ + 3 What a furious finish! Tevez tries to cross into the box to Berbatov, but it’s knocked away for a throw. Tevez gives it away cheaply, but Rooney knocks it away for a throw.

90′ + 2 Great play from Tevez to keep control of the ball in the box. He lays it off to Giggs, whose shot is saved by Myhill. It’s out to Berbatov, and his shot is just wide of the post.

90′ + 1 Giggs tries to find Tevez in the box, but Zayatte intercepts it. There will be three minutes of added time. Marney gets around Ferdinand again down the left wing, but Vidic is there to close him down. Ronaldo clears it away from danger (yes, he plays defense too).

90′ Hull on the attack and Marney sends a long cross from the left. It goes to Folan, who tries to head it on target, but he can’t get enough on it, and it’s out for a United throw.

89′ I think the penalty was valid. Ferdinand was clearly beaten and he had his arm up under Marney’s chin.

88′ O’Shea will come on for United and he’ll replace Anderson as United look to hold on.

87′ Boateng will come off and Hull will send on the striker, Folan. They’re going for it.

86′ Tevez kicks out at Boateng and he’ll get booked. United look rattled and have definitely lost their cool.

85′ Ronaldo goes down in the box and wants a penalty, but he no dice. Back the other way as Hull look to spring their counterattack. Evra cuts out the long pass to Mendy, who gets booked for a hard challenge on Evra.

84′ Rooney gets booked for a foul on Dawson. He kicked him right in the shin there.

83′ Don’t go anywhere, folks. This one is getting good.

82′ GOAL! Geovanni calmly puts it past Van der Sar and we have a game!

81′ Nothing doing on the corner and Hull go on the break. Mendy takes on Ferdinand in the box, and Ferdinand is called for the foul! It’s a penalty!

80′ Corner goes to Vidic, who heads it on goal, but Myhill saves it easily. Long pass from Rooney that finds Berbatov on the right edge of the box. Berbatov tries to center it to Tevez, but his shot is deflected out for a corner.

79′ Corner is cleared away, but United get another corner. It goes out to Rooney, who takes the long-range shot and it goes off Boateng for another corner.

78′ Tevez, who is really working hard in midfield, finally forces a turnover and Berbatov makes the run into the box. He waits a long time to release Rooney and when he finally does, Rooney can’t get the shot off as McShane knocks it away.

77′ Berbatov makes a good run into the box, but he gets closed down nicely and loses it over the endline for a goal-kick. Meanwhile, Stoke are up 2-0 on Arsenal.

76′ Rooney almost gets #100 when Tevez makes a great cross from deep down the right flank that Ronaldo flicks on to Rooney. Rooney unleashes a rocket of a shot that Myhill somehow saves. Wow.

75′ Dawson flicks in the free kick, but Hull lose it for a United throw.

74′ Rooney is called for a foul on Cousin, and he spikes the ball in disgust. Better calm down, Wayne. In the NFL, that would have been a penalty.

73′ Geovanni makes a run towards goal and he fires a shot on target. Van der Sar makes the save, though. Hull are not going to go away quietly.

72′ Nope, it’s Anderson and he goes for goal. It’s over the bar, though, and United waste a good chance. Meanwhile, Carrick will come off for Giggs.

71′ Carrick almost gets around Turner on the edge of the box, and Turner is called for a foul. He should probably get a second yellow for that, but no dice. Still, a good free kick chance for Ronaldo here.

69′ GOAL! Interesting play here as Mendy gets behind Evra and brings Van der Sar off his line. Mendy chips it over Van der Sar and Vidic tries to clear it away before it goes over the line, but he cannot. Replay shows that it was clearly over the line, so good call. We have a game here.

67′ Marney’s shot is blocked by Evra, and Ronaldo springs the counterattack. He lays it off to the right for Tevez, who takes an ill-advised long-range shot that goes well over the bar. Methinks Tevez is trying to make a statement.

66′ Cousin makes a nice read and backs off Ferdinand as he tries to clear it with his head. Cousin then easily takes it and tries to send it towards Halmosi in the box, but Vidic is there to intercept it.

65′ Mendy makes a nice turn in the box and shoots/crosses towards the far post. It goes out for a goal-kick.

63′ Tevez will come in for Nani for United. Hull will send in Halmosi for King.

62′ Rooney gets it on the edge of the box and holds it too long, looking for a shot. He loses it and we go back the other way. Probably should have passed it, but whatever. I can’t blame him for looking for the goal. Hull win a corner after Evra knocks Marney’s cross away. Corner goes to Turner, who is dangerous on set plays. His header lacks pace, though, and Van der Sar easily takes it.

61′ Long ball to Rooney, and he gets behind Zayatte, but it’s just long and Myhill takes it.

60′ Great cross from Cousin down the left into the box for Geovanni, but it just eludes the Brazilian. That could have made things very interesting…

59′ Hughes will come off for Hull and he’ll be replaced by Mendy. Berbatov’s dangerous run towards goal is halted by Dawson, who makes a great tackle to stop that advancement.

57′ GOAL! Short corner, but Hull knock it away for another one. This time, Rooney whips it into the box and Vidic gets a free release and volleys it past Myhill.

56′ Ronaldo makes a great run and is alone with the keeper. Zayatte comes out of nowhere to knock it away for the corner.

55′ Anderson fouls Geovanni, but it’s too far for Hull to do anything with. Sure enough, United clear it and Ronaldo leads the charge. He threads it through to Berbatov, but the striker can’t control it and goes down in the box. No penalty, though, and it looks like he fell on his own.

54′ Ronaldo misses a golden chance as Berbatov makes a great hesitation move into the box that freezes his defender. He lays it off to Ronaldo, who is wide open to his right. Ronaldo fires on goal, but misses wide of the near post.

53′ Roy Keane has been sent into the stands, apparently. Hey, I’d be pissed off too if my team were getting spanked 5-0.

52′ Poor cross from Rooney from the left flank into the box and Hull spring their counterattack. Marney with a long cross towards goal for Cousin, but it’s over his head and out for a United throw.

51′ This time, Geovanni goes for goal, but he pulls it just wide of the near post. I guarantee you United fans were nervous there.

50′ Anderson gives up a free kick after fouling King, and Hull will have a good chance here. Let’s see if they can do it again.

49′ Berbatov misses a golden chance after he does well to take the ball away from Zayatte after Rooney’s cross is short. His shot is wide of the far post.

48′ Ronaldo makes a run and lays it off to Berbatov. He gives it to Nani, who is on the left edge of the box. Nani tries to play Berbatov through, but the Bulgarian had stopped his run. I think he’ll be on cruise control for the rest of this match.

47′ Hull still have it, but can’t find a way to break United’s defense. Myhill kicks it too far and Neville easily heads it to Van der Sar.

46′ Hull will kick off and we’re underway! Hull go on the attack early and do a good job keeping the ball.

46′ Possession stats were fairly close in the first half. 55%-45% in favor of United. Let’s see if Hull can do a little better in the second half.

46′ Ronaldo’s first goal is a good microcosm of his season, thus far. He was missing those during his first month back. Now, they’re going in for him the way the did last season. If he’s back in top shape, then the rest of the league better watch out.

46′ Here’s your league round-up. Arsenal are down, 1-0, at halftime. The culprit for that first goal? Kolo Toure. Looks like their defensive woes continue. Meanwhile Chelsea are taking care of business against Sunderland, 3-0. Pompey gave away another penalty (once again, it was Diop) and are down, 1-0. Blackburn are down to 10 men, but lead West Brom, 1-0.

Well, it was an entertaining half, but it turned out to be entirely one-sided. Hull hung in there, and deserved their goal, but United are flexing their muscle and showing their class. We’ll see if they come out with their foot on the gas or if they go into cruise control like they did against West Ham.

45′ + 3 There’s the whistle and we’re at halftime!

45′ Three minutes will be added on.

44′ GOAL! Nani’s corner finds Ronaldo, who gets some serious air on his jump. Ronaldo heads it towards goal and it takes a deflection off McShane, but it’s in for a goal! And yes, Ronaldo smiled once again.

43′ King with a dangerous cross into the box for Cousin after Evra screws up his clearance. Ferdinand is there to knock it away, though. Rooney makes a move on Dawson, but he trips over his own feet. He wants a penalty on Dawson, but it was clear that Dawson didn’t touch him and got the ball. Come on Rooney, you’re better than that. It goes out for a corner.

41′ Berbatov sends in a long cross from the right flank into the box. McShane can’t clear it away and Rooney gets a free header. He can’t get the ball down, though, and it’s out for a goal-kick.

40′ Rooney puts one past Myhill, but he’s ruled offside. Replay shows that he was well off.

39′ Nice run by Anderson, but he runs into a few too many orange and black shirts and he loses it on the edge of the box. Hull go on the counterattack, but Cousin’s long-range shot is well over the crossbar.

37′ Cross from the left wing towards the far post is knocked out by Dawson for a corner to United. They play it short and Nani gets it and makes a run into the box. He turns and shoots while falling down and it’s well over the crossbar.

36′ Berbatov and Ferdinand do a nice one-two on the edge of the box. Ferdinand gets into the box and tries to send it back to Ronaldo. He gets a shot off, but Zayatte (who’s playing really well), blocks it.

34′ Neville makes a run into the box and Ronaldo does a no-look flick that catches Neville in stride. Good defending by Hull, though, and Neville wants a penalty that isn’t coming.

33′ Geovanni almost gets through, but Vidic takes it away. Rooney makes a run into the box and tries to thread it through to Ronaldo. Myhill makes a daring play and comes out to get it first.

30′ Ronaldo makes a great run into the box and he has Rooney in the center of goal with plenty of space. Ronaldo goes for the brace, though, and Myhill makes a great save to deny him. It’s out past the touchline for a throw-in.

29′ GOAL! Great clearance from Vidic in the box springs the counterattack. Rooney gets it and passes it to Berbatov, who makes a nice run towards the box. He lays it off to the left where Carrick is waiting. McShane hesitates and doesn’t close him down. Carrick fires on goal and hits the far post, but, like Ronaldo’s goal, it ricochets in for a goal! Welcome back Michael Carrick!

28′ Geovanni gives it away to Rooney and Rooney has a great chance here. He tries to pass it to Berbatov, but it’s far too short and Zayatte is there to knock it away. Rooney should have done better there.

26′ Well, Hull certainly came to play today. Got to give them credit for not falling apart after that early goal.

25′ Nani’s free kick goes into the box, but Zayatte knocks it away.

24′ Neville comes back and sends in a dangerous cross into the box towards Ronaldo. It’s bounces behind him, though, and McShane is able to clear it after muffing his first attempt. McShane then gets called for a foul on Ronaldo deep down the left flank.

23′ GOAL! There it is as Cousin heads it past Van der Sar for the equalizer. Great header from the Hull man.

22′ Vidic concedes the free kick as he is called for a foul on King. Hull will get a free kick from about 25 yards out or so. We’ll see how they do. Turner has scored on a couple of these.

20′ Giveaway by Carrick cuts short a United fast-break. We want Fletch! Just kidding. Turner takes Nani out with a hard tackle near the center line and Turner gets booked. Nani is able to walk off the field on his own power.

19′ Error by Carrick allows Hull to set up in the Man Utd. half of the field. Long pass to McShane goes out for a United throw-in.

18′ Rooney tries to get fancy and flick the backheel to Ronaldo, but Dawson intercepts it. Hull set up their attack, but Evra knocks it away.

17′ Rooney makes a nice move to get around Zayatte on the front edge of the box. He shoots it hard, but it’s just over the crossbar. A few inches down and that would have been #100 for him as Myhill didn’t have a chance at stopping that one.

16′ Stoke has scored to up 1-0 on Arsenal.

15′ Rooney works on Zayatte down the right flank. Rooney tries to get around, but Zayatte holds his ground. Ultimately, Rooney’s cross goes out for a corner. It’s a short corner and Carrick gets it on the edge of the box and tries to lob it towards the goal. It’s knocked away from danger, though, and Hull escape.

14′ Nice entry pass into the box for King, but he can’t control his header and it’s out for a goal-kick. On the replay, it’s clear that Neville had both arms around him. And who said Gary wasn’t a friendly guy?

10′ Another good chance for United as Berbatov shows off some more good moves, this time in midfield. He flicks it over his defender and spins around him to regain the ball. He passes it to Nani, who then rips a cross into the box towards Rooney, but Zayatte is able to knock it away. Wow. Berbatov may have his faults, but you can’t deny that the man has skills.

9′ King gets behind Evra, but Evra recovers and knocks away the over-the-top pass before King can do any damage.

7′ Nani gets deep down the left flank and swings a cross towards the near post for Rooney. The bald-one can’t handle it, though, and it’s out for a goal-kick.

6′ Anderson tries to get around McShane, but McShane clotheslines him to the ground and United will have a free kick from about 30 yards away or so. Ronaldo swings it into the box, but Hull clear it away and go on a counterattack. Geovanni loses it, though.

5′ Hull get a free kick (we don’t see how since they’re showing the replay of Ronaldo’s goal). Geovanni takes it from about 30 yards out, but it’s over the crossbar for a goal-kick.

3′ GOAL! That didn’t take long. Ronaldo scores after he gets a nice pass into the box from Berbatov. Ronaldo turns and fires on goal. He beats Myhill and hits the near post, but it goes over the line for a score! Ronaldo even cracks a smile afterwards and shows off the pearly whites.

2′ Evra gets in deep down the left and passes it back to Nani. Nani tries to give it back, but he gives it away. To his credit, though, Nani tries really hard to get it back. He comes up short, but at least the effort was there.

1′ United will kick off and here we go! Scouser Mike Dean is our referee. Let’s hope he doesn’t have any money on this match. United attack early down the left, but Anderson’s pass to Evra goes out past the touchline for a Hull throw. Geovanni tries to thread one through to King, but Ferdinand gets to it first.

0′ Got to say, Rooney’s shaved look is really starting to grow on me.

0′ Here they come on to the pitch. Hull have played so well this season, but you have to think that they’ll be a little nervous, especially since they’re playing at Old Trafford.

0′ I feel for Fletcher, who has played really well all season long, but Carrick is a big upgrade in midfield. Just look at the second half of that Everton game when the United midfield got overrun by the Toffee’s pressure. Carrick is a better defensive player and passer. Plus, Ferguson can always call on Fletcher if he needs a goal, right?

0′ Interesting lineup for Arsenal today. Toure and Silvestre in central defense. Clichy still in the starting lineup despite his horrendous giveaway against Tottenham that led to their 3rd goal. Walcott, Nasri, and Van Persie go to the bench, which is probably more for rest than anything else. Still, that midfield of Denilson, Fabregas, Song and Diaby looks pretty weak. They lost to Fulham because of poor midfield play. We’ll see if Stoke can surprise them. Plus, we get to see Adebayor with his good buddy, Bendtner, up front.

0′ Louis Saha has scored for Everton. And no, he did not pull a hamstring while celebrating. At least, not that I know of.

0′ Hull’s keeper, Myhill, was born in the U.S. but plays for Wales. Probably a smart idea. Goalkeeper is probably the one position where Americans are actually strong. He wouldn’t start over Howard (although he would probably be #2 ahead of Guzan).

0′ Everyone expects Manchester United to run away with this match. That should only help Hull City, knowing that everyone is overlooking them. With the way Manchester United have struggled to find that opening goal this season (other than against West Ham, of course), Hull could hang tough with them for a half and really make the Old Trafford faithful nervous.

0′ Hello everyone and welcome to Soccerlens’ coverage of the big Manchester United/Hull City match. I’m Victor and I’ll be your liveblogger.

Match Review:

Wow. United definitely deserved to win and probably should have put 5 or 6 in past Myhill, but you have to give credit to Hull City for a spirited display. Going into this match, people were asking questions of Hull City, and they certainly answered a lot of their critics with a 3-goal display at Old Trafford. There’s no question that the gap in class between these two squads is considerable, but Hull showed the kind of guts and determination that has characterized their season, thus far.

As for United, they got the points, which is the important thing. They were a little shaky on defense as Ferdinand’s erratic play continues. Vidic had another great game, otherwise United could be looking at dropped points. While Berbatov, Rooney, and Ronaldo all played well on offense, they need to be better at finishing off their chances. Still, they won, and that’s all that counts. I’m sure Ferguson won’t be happy about the way it ended, but that’s what the hairdryer treatment is for. They can use this win as a lesson and should be in good shape going into next week’s big clash with Arsenal.

Man of the Match:

Cristiano Ronaldo

Looks like the 2007-2008 model is back. Ronaldo not only scored two great goals, but he showed the dazzling arsenal of fancy passes and beautiful crosses that he’s known for. He even seemed happy to be a United player for the first time in a long time. Well done, Ronny!

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