Kevin Pilkington joins us for his post match thoughts of the Arsenal FA Cup win.
Yolkie : Let’s be honest first and foremost.. after a difficult couple of weeks it looked like Fergie had completely written off the FA Cup with his team selection around 45 minutes before kick off. Did you think we had any chance?
Kevin : It did look a strange team selection to start with but you know Sir Alex wouldn’t just put any team out against Arsenal. I looked at the team and the first thing I thought with the twins playing in the wide positions was that there would be a lot of energy which would put pressure on Arsenals defence.
Yolkie : It was classic Fergie in a way. Play the media and then pick a side unfancied, knowing the players had a lot to prove. They did that didn’t they?
Kevin : They certainly did! I thought that nited were excellent, they defended very narrow which Arsenal don’t like because they like to try and play through teams and haven’t got natural width with Walcott missing. Smalling is playing like he has been there for years – he just doesn’t seem fazed by anything and he has been
a massive find. The twins and Rooney were fantastic and as I said on Twitter, van der Sar man of the match
Yolkie : There were performances all over the pitch. Smalling and Vidic were outstanding; the twins were brilliant too – but, as you’ve already mentioned on Twitter, your man of the match was Edwin van der Sar. What was it about his display that edged it for you?
Kevin : I just thought he pulled of four fantastic saves when called upon, especially the double save in the first half. He doesn’t get caught up in the hype of the game and he is such a calm influence on all the other players.
Yolkie : Despite Edwin’s saves it couldn’t really be argued that Arsenal deserved anything from the game. How much of a psychological bonus was it for United to have won with such a depleted side – particularly after the stinging criticism of Uniteds players?
Kevin : Arsenal created a couple of chances and some might say that with Edwin being man of the match that they had the better of the game. But Almunia was even busier. United were excellent on the counter attack and it was like the United of last season. Hopefully it will be a big boost for United for the run in and put a dent in Arsenals confidence.
Yolkie : United have drawn City in the semi final… should be some game after last season’s League Cup semis!
Kevin : It will be a massive semi final against city at Wembley! I expect a really passionate derby with tackles flying and tempers flaring! The last few games against city have been very tight games and I think a little bit of magic will win the game again!
Yolkie : You’re just one game from Wembley yourself (Luton are in the FA trophy), but Luton lost the first leg of the semi by a single goal to Mansfield – are you optimistic of getting there?
Kevin : It was a disappointing result for us on Sunday. We didn’t play very well but we still created four or five really good opportunities to score but we didn’t take them and Mansfield nicked a goal. But it is only half time and we still have a big chance of turning it around and reaching Wembley, but we need to play a lot lot better than we did on Sunday!
Yolkie : One final word – the United lads won in the Youth Cup quarter final at Anfield yesterday, coming back from 2-0 down late on to score 3 in front of the Kop. How much of that spirit is down to what United demand from the players? And do you keep upto date with events in the Youth team?
Kevin : Yes I was looking out for the result on Sunday and was delighted to find out that they had beaten Liverpool. I try and keep up to date with the youth team especially in the youth cup which is very special to me. I think as a United player that spirit is drummed into you from a young age and you never know when you are beaten and give every last ounce to win!