I thought we did really well to dig in against West Ham last weekend. It is never easy going down to ten men and we could have easily cracked under the long ball pressure but we held firm. Paddy McCourt had a brilliant debut, ok he gave possession away a bit but no more than anyone else, he tried to bring the ball out of defence a few times and made some outstanding clearances. I laughed when he got cramp towards the end because I could see he was putting everything into the match and he will remember it for the rest of his life.
Wazza was a little unlucky but I do think it was a red card. If he had tripped Downing up by clipping his ankles he probably would have got away with a yellow however to kick him thigh high was always going to be seen as dangerous play and was actually pretty stupid, the only good to come out of it will be seeing Mata play a few games in his best position.
Towards the end of last season some fans were torn on whether they wanted us to finish fifth and end up in the Europa League or miss out on Europe completely. I was happy we never made it. Just look at Everton this week, they had to travel to Russia to play a team nobody has ever heard of on Thursday night, then fly back to face us at Old Trafford in an early Sunday kick off.
That would have been a nightmare for the players and fans. The only decent thing is if you win the Europa League it qualifies you for the Champions League next season but that is a long road to go down, especially if it affects your form in the Premier League. Is it a coincidence Liverpool and Everton are struggling this season……..I don’t think so!
Prediction : United to win 4-2