Manchester United – yes, there are positives from the Reading draw

In protest of Manchester United’s shambolic showing against Reading on Saturday 23rd September, Soccerlens refuses to publish a match report.

Instead, we’ll just bring you a sampling of Reading’s romp through the Championship last season, where they stormed to an unprecedented 106 points and scored 99 goals along the way.

Enjoy the rare footage.

Ok, ok, who am I kidding 🙂

Credit to Reading for putting up such a great show, but honestly, Manchester United should have buried them several times under. I know that Benfica are up on Tuesday, but if you’re putting Richardson and Fletcher on the wings, leaving Saha on the bench is not a great idea. Ronaldo had a good game but without Saha to give the final ball to, he kept taking shots himself.

Scholes tried very hard and for most of the match he was getting into positions outside the Reading area and then getting completely ignored by Richardson and Ronaldo, who preferred shooting themselves. Richardson in particular had a tough game,

Fans will criticise Ferguson for not strengthening the squad, but the reality is that right now, Manchester United have to make do with the resources they have and that’s not happening. I was happy to see Vidic and and Heinze start (even if Heinze was busier hacking down Seol Ki-Hyeun than providing any crosses and threat down the flanks), and hopefully these two will start against Benfica as well.

Yes, Reading defended well – but that’s what you expect with teams who want to win. It would be unfair to Reading to say that they went for a draw – they just weren’t good enough to get a win against Manchester United, and had it not been for a bad penalty call, they wouldn’t have gotten a point from this game either.

Richardson will improve, and I’m happy to see Fletcher improve as well, but we need to start playing Ole more regularly on that right flank, especially if Ronaldo is pushed up front or played on the left.

Some fans have voiced the opinion that Manchester United will never catch up to Chelsea now that we’ve fallen behind. I’d be more worried if Portsmouth and Everton won today and tomorrow than if we were 2-5 points behind Chelsea going into Christmas. Manchester United have the quality to overhaul any team in the Premiership, and while we have more or less squandered our perfect start there is still time to recover, regroup and renew our assault on the Premiership title. Remember, Chelsea will have a tough end to October and may drop points in the league before or after then – and we still have to play two matches against them.

Manchester United 1-1 Reading – Ronaldo saves us from shame

And as far as the ‘positives’ in the title are concerned..well, I’d point to Vidic’s return, Fletcher’s improvement, Scholes’ greater willingness to take responsibility in attacks (Ronaldo has to link up with him in training and practice more) and the improved showing from Carrick are all positives to take into the away clash with Benfica in midweek. At this rate, we’ll be crushing them and Newcastle too on Sunday.

Too optimistic? You must be mistaking me for a Tottenham fan from pre-season 🙂

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