Posts Tagged ‘Manchester United’

Feature: Resolute Rooney determined to enjoy World Cup

“Rooney was one of few United players to find form during a disastrous 2013-14 season and he feels that a pre-season pep talk with former manager David Moyes helped him rediscover some of his famous fire. ‘He felt I had lost a bit of aggression out of my game -€“- which I was asked to do, by the way. He said he wanted me to find that aggression back,’ Rooney said of Moyes, who was sacked by United in April. ‘I thought about it a lot. It wasn’t really me. Maybe there are times when you have to try and lift the crowd with a tackle — obviously not a stupid one, but a run back and tackle can lift the fans and even turn a game round.’”

My first AFP dispatch from the 2014 World Cup, on Wayne Rooney’s eagerness not to let another major international tournament pass him by, can be read here.

Profile: Ryan Giggs, from pin-up to old master

“Following his parents’ divorce, Giggs adopted his mother’s surname and it was with that name on the back of his shirt that he was to become an international sporting icon. Giggs was the first member of United’s feted ‘Class of ’92′ youth team to infiltrate the senior squad, setting an example that David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and the Neville brothers would go on to emulate. A wiry, jet-heeled left-winger, Giggs’s weaving runs made him one of the stars of Ferguson’s first great United team and moved team-mate Gary Pallister to comment that he gave his opponents “twisted blood”.”

My AFP profile of Ryan Giggs, who announced his retirement on Monday after an era-defining 23-year career, can be read here.

Report: Man United past and future see off Hull

“Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Teenage debutant James Wilson scored twice as Manchester United rang out the old and ushered in the new in a 3-1 win at home to Hull City on Tuesday.”

My AFP match report on a night of hellos and goodbyes at Old Trafford can be read here.

Reaction: Giggs ‘still undecided’ on Man United future

Analysis: Man United break with tradition in Moyes sacking

“Whereas United had not lifted the English title for 18 years when [Alex] Ferguson was appointed in November 1986, [David] Moyes’s job was to take command of the juggernaut that his predecessor had built. Ferguson hoped the structures he had put in place would allow Moyes — who failed to win a trophy in his 11 years at Everton — to slot seamlessly into place, thereby enabling United to maintain a tradition of appointing promising, hungry, British managers. It was for these reasons that United opted for Moyes, rather than a brash upstart such as José Mourinho, but the former Everton manager’s subsequent failure laid bare the shortcomings in their recruitment process.”

I wrote a piece for AFP on how the David Moyes affair exposed the fallacy of the club’s attachment to tradition, and you can read it here.

Profile: How Moyes shrivelled beneath the United spotlight
Analysis: Five issues for Moyes’s successor to address
Profile: Studious Giggs set for another reinvention

Report: Bayern held by resurgent Man United

“Manchester (United Kingdom) — Under-performing Manchester United produced a vastly improved display to hold  defending champions Bayern Munich to a 1-1 draw in the home leg of their  Champions League quarter-final on Tuesday.”

My AFP report on an evening that stirred old passions at Old Trafford can be read here.

Reaction: Guardiola ruffled as Man United frustrate Bayern

Report: Džeko downs United to give City derby spoils

“Manchester (United Kingdom) — Manchester City snuffed out Manchester United’s recent revival and closed on Premier League leaders Chelsea as Edin Dzeko scored twice in a 3-0 victory at Old Trafford on Tuesday.”

My AFP match report on a night when the mood changed at Old Trafford can be read here.

Reaction: Rebuilding United will take time, warns Moyes
Analysis: Moyes faces backlash after United derby woe

Report: Van Persie rescues Man United in Champions League

“Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Robin van Persie scored a hat-trick as Manchester United kept their season alive by storming back to beat Olympiakos 3-0 and reach the Champions League quarter-finals on Wednesday.”

My AFP report on a stirring European comeback at Old Trafford can be read here.

Reaction: Moyes defiant after Man United fightback
Analysis: Giggs and Van Persie buy Moyes time

Report: Title-chasing Liverpool sink sorry Man United

“Manchester (United Kingdom) — Steven Gerrard scored two penalties as Liverpool closed to within four points of Premier League leaders Chelsea with a 3-0 win at beleaguered rivals Manchester United on Sunday.”

My AFP match report on a memorable day out at Old Trafford for Liverpool can be read here.

Report: Olympiakos bring listless United to their knees

“PIRAEUS, Greece (AFP) – Manchester United were shunted towards an unscheduled exit in the Champions League after crashing to a shock 2-0 defeat at Olympiakos in their last 16  first-leg match on Tuesday.”

My AFP match report on yet another bleak night for David Moyes and his team can be read here.

Reaction: Moyes mystified by Man United’s Greek tragedy
Analysis: Spirit of resolve deserts flatlining Man United

Report: Arsenal, Man United keep each other in check

“Arsenal and Manchester United each had cause for regret after playing out an attritional and occasionally turgid 0-0 draw at the Emirates Stadium in the Premier League on Wednesday.”

My AFP match report on a night of frustration for both sides at the Emirates can be read here.

Reaction: Moyes looks to past for United inspiration

Report: Sunderland stun United in League Cup semi-final

“Manchester (United Kingdom) — Manchester United’s desperate season met with fresh degradation on Wednesday as they sensationally lost on penalties to Sunderland in the League Cup semi-finals at Old Trafford.”

My AFP match report on yet another miserable night for Manchester United at Old Trafford can be read here.

Reaction: Man United not good enough, admits Moyes

Report: Eto’o hat-trick sees United sink deeper

“Manchester United’s Premier League title defence died another death on Sunday as Samuel Eto’o’s hat-trick earned Chelsea a 3-1 win that left the champions 14 points off the pace.”

My AFP match report on another chastening day for Manchester United and David Moyes can be read here.

Reaction: United won’t give up on title, vows Moyes

Feature: Ferguson exit sparks England’s year of change

“The year had started in familiar fashion, with United romping to an unprecedented 20th league title, but at 09:17 on the morning of Wednesday, May 8, everything changed. A tweet published by the United press office confirmed the jaw-dropping rumours that had first emerged on the Daily Telegraph website the previous night: Ferguson, the father of the modern United, the most successful manager in British football history, was stepping down after 26 and a half record-breaking years.”

My AFP review of the year 2013 in English football can be found here.

Analysis: What’s gone wrong for Manchester United?

“Moyes pledged not to tinker with Ferguson’s winning formula, but he has already overseen sweeping changes, notably with the introduction of a completely new set of coaches. Pundits including former United defender Gary Neville have observed that United appear to be taking up deeper defensive positions on the pitch, while they have also become more vulnerable at set-pieces. For his part, Moyes has emphasised that the club are going through a “great transition”.”

My take for AFP on the problems at Old Trafford can be read here.

Report: Rooney gets United out of trouble at Spurs

“London (AFP) – Wayne Rooney scored a brace as Manchester United twice came from behind to draw 2-2 at Tottenham Hotspur in an entertaining Premier League encounter on Sunday.”

My AFP match report from White Hart Lane can be read here.

Reaction: Villas-Boas rebukes reporter after Spurs draw

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