Red Rants Archives for January 2009

Manchester United vs Arsenal - UEFA Champions League semi-final Live Blog!

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United take on Arsenal in the crucial Champions League semi-final first leg tomorrow and RedRants' Stephen Darwin will be here to bring you all the action as we present our brand new Live Blog feature.

Tune in here tomorrow evening from around 19:15 (BST) to follow all the action and hopefully celebrate a United victory!

Ryan Giggs - It’s SIRtainly inevitable!

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With 10 Premier League titles, four FA Cup's and two Champions League trophies to boot, Ryan Giggs has achieved more with Manchester United in eighteen years then Manchester City ever have in their entire history (although chin up Dimitar, you've probably won more in half a season with us too).

The recently crowned PFA Player of the Year has been enduring some pretty harsh criticism over the last few days purely because his fellow professional peers deemed it appropriate he receive the prestigious award.

Man Utd 5-2 Spurs: Were you watching, Merseyside?

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There are some sporting moments that are for the ages. Moments that, years down the line, one would sit under a chestnut tree and recount with glee; a glint in the eye will betray the nostalgia that, quite obviously, has overcome the storyteller.

Yesterday was one such moment.

As a matter of fact, we've had a rather strange season this year.

Man Utd v Spurs match thread

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Didn't have the soundest of sleep. So I'm in no position to write a preview. But please, do feel free to continue match discussion here so that the previous thread doesn't go slow.

"Man Utd v Spurs match thread" was originally published at Red Rants - Manchester United Blog.

Is the end nigh for shy guy Scholes?

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Before we start discussing this United legend and his future at the club, let's get talk of that magnificent milestone out of the way, as only a typically limelight loathing Paul Scholes would want us to do. I'm sure you don't need me to tell you but Wednesday's 2-0 victory over Portsmouth signalled Scholes' 600th appearance in a Manchester United shirt.

Portsmouth Preview

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Yesterday was a mad game. Sky Sports pundits love to call it a classic; most pundits love to trot that out when they see a rare occurrence of a high scoring game. I thought it was a rubbish game because of some appalling defending. And mainly from Arsenal who made back pass after misjudged back pass to tease Liverpool into scoring goals.

Closing Thoughts on the FA Cup Semi Final and Looking Ahead

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I haven't actually written a match report on this but there was a pseudo report yesterday when Stephen Darwin wrote on Berbatov which also sparked off heated debate on his value.

I'll try to touch on some of the things I didn't talk about in the comments over the past couple of days.

The main issue that's perhaps divided a lot of fans was team selection.

Dimitar Berbatov - How much longer will you give him?

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We've been split down the middle with our opinions of Dimitar Berbatov ever since he made the decision to swap North London for Old Trafford. You've had those supporters that are mesmerised by his beautiful touch and close control and then there are fans who continually berate his unambiguous lacksidasical style that, at the end of the day, epitomises him as a player.

Everton FA Cup Preview

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David Moyes, credit to him, did a manful job of getting his point across, casting doubts over Mike Riley's integrity to referee a Man Utd match. Since then you've had people wondering if the accusation carried weight. Scott on RoM did some digging and came up with stats on the number of penalties he's awarded.

Deconstructing the Fergie-Benitez-BWFM Triangular Puzzle

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A picture speaks a thousand word. A video speaks, well shows, depending on its length, anything between 10 and quadrillion images. So let's do this with video exhibits.

Exhibit I:

inference: Arrogance, good. Contempt, bad. Contempt for Big Walrus-faced manager, worse.

Manner of United’s Win More Important than three points

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Ronaldo showed why he can infuriate as well as excite the United faithful with his double yesterday. He showed little in the first half to merit the hype about his credentials as among the world's best. But still, Ronaldo, at half steam currently sits atop the league's top scorer. This from a winger who's been given a more orthodox wide role this season than last.

Man Utd v Porto: Preview

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It would be really incredible if I didn't mention the name of one of Porto's strikers; the Brazilian, Hulk. Porto are said to have a pretty good recent form, but I don't suppose they are anywhere near the side that sneaked past us, few years ago.

Yesterday Ronaldo strutted out lines you'd think he could have even said backwards; "I am at the right club", is about as obvious and politically correct as they can get, for now.

Sunderland Preview

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There is little else left to talk about midweek. Most of what I had to say has already been touched upon in the comments section in the last post. So let's move onto today's game.

United will be looking to take the positive result against Villa when they play Sunderland, who have been more or less in relegation form lately.

On Ronaldo’s Fergal Treatment

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Since it's already been reported by every conceivable media outlet, I suppose most readers would already be familiar with this bit of news.

The long and short of it is this: Ferguson made comments in the media about Ronaldo's general behaviour this season and, for a change, actually said something without being cloyingly appreciative of him.

Owen Hargreaves - Made of Glass or Different Class?

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I'll admit it. When it was first announced that we were splashing out around £18 million on the injury prone and rather ordinary but industrious Owen Hargreaves I was a little baffled to say the least.

Let's face facts. Hargreaves arrived at United having spent his fair share of time in the physio's room at Bayern Munich, most notably breaking his leg during his final season with the German club in September 2006.

United’s Champions’ League Unbeaten Run Continues

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It's an outstanding feat. United are unbeaten since that forgettable night at the San Siro in 2007. Going 23 games unbeaten in Europe is quite a feat, it must be said. The fact that we whine despite all this is a measure of the standards, we as United fans, tend to expect; which is often a euphemism for spoilt fans.

Gary Neville is a Red, he hates…retirement?!

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If Gary Neville ever considered changing his name, I'm sure ‘Manchester United' would be somewhere at the top of his list of choices. Not the most popular of Christian names but you just know it would suit our club captain to a tee. It is without doubt that Neville is Mr Manchester United and he literally has our great club coursing through his veins.

How’s the latest episode of the Ronaldo-Madrid soap opera an ‘exclusive’?

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Give me an effin' break! Or could I be really missing something? The Guardian have gone to great lengths to splash 'Cristiano Ronaldo ready to leave for Real Madrid in £75m transfer' across their site and yet, nothing in the articles printed carry any facts to back their claim (that this tale is an exclusive).