A blog about Manchester United

Archive for April, 2014

Man United’s victory over Aston Villa restores supporters’ faith in the team | Tunde Folawiyo

Apr. 28th 2014

Tunde FolawiyoGiven how unpredictable United’s performance has been throughout this season, it’s probably safe to assume that their 4-1 win over Aston Villa came as quite a shock to many fans, including Tunde Folawiyo.  Although they got off to a slow start, it became clear, as the game progressed, that United were determined to defeat their opponents. Rooney was back on form, scoring the first two goals, whilst Mata and Hernandez scored the third and the fourth, respectively, providing their team with a comfortable victory.

At first, it seemed as if the Red Devils would once again leave their fans disappointed, with Aston Villa taking the lead just 13 minutes into the match. This came about after Ashley Young lost possession of the ball to Agbonlahor, who then took a tumble to the ground during Rafael’s attempt to get the ball back. The subsequent free kick awarded to United’s opponents was taken by Westwood, who swiftly kicked the ball past De Gea.

But scoring the first goal of the match did little for Aston Villa’s confidence; rather than continuing to attack with the same gusto that had led to their initial success, they retreated, thus providing United with the opportunity to equalise. Twenty minutes in, the Devils’ chance arrived, with Rooney shooting the ball beyond the keeper’s reach.

His second goal came just before the end of the first half, when Bacuna’s attempt to steal the ball resulted in Mata falling to the ground. The penalty awarded to United was taken by Rooney, who delivered a skilful kick which flew into the net.

After the interval, Aston Villa’s Benteke wasted two viable scoring opportunities; the first of these came when he headed the ball over the bar, whilst the second took place after he failed to convert a cross made by Marc Albrighton. Despite being so far behind, United’s opponents continued to attack with great enthusiasm, and in fact, came very close to levelling on a number of occasions. But as the match neared its end, it was obvious which team had the upper hand; Mata gave United their third goal, and Hernandez quickly followed suit, thus securing a much-needed win for the Red Devils. Supporters such as Tunde Folawiyo were no doubt relieved by the final tally of 4-1.

Tunde Folawiyo | Sir Alex Ferguson Receives Honourary Degree

Apr. 25th 2014

As the most popular sports teams in the world, Manchester United has long been revered as England’s most successful professional football team, with millions of devoted fans including Tunde Folawiyo. Boasting the largest average game attendance in European football, Manchester United has won numerous honours, a testament to the team’s outstanding talent and passion for the sport. Many notable figures have contributed to the enormous success of Manchester United with Sir Alex Ferguson among the most famed.

Tunde FolawiyoA homage to his many lauded accomplishments as manager, Sir Alex Ferguson received an honourary degree from the University of Ulster’s Sports Centre at Jordanstown in Northern Ireland. Over 500 students, staff and graduates were in attendance. Sir Alex Ferguson graciously accepted the honourary degree, claiming it was “an honour to receive this award from such an esteemed institution”.

Sir Alexander “Alex” Ferguson managed Manchester United from 1986 to 2013. During his career as club manager, Ferguson led the team to win 38 trophies, including 13 Premier League and two UEFA Champions League titles. He was awarded Manager of the Year more times than any other manager in the history of the sport, even becoming knighted in 1999 for his contributions to the world of British football. Ferguson’s last home game as coach of the Red Devils – his 1,500th – resulted in a win, the perfect send-off for a magnificent career. Upon accepting his honourary degree, Ferguson paid respect to his former team.

“Players like (Roy) Keane, (Eric) Cantona, and (Bryan) Robson made the spirit of Manchester United,” he added. “They had the desire and work ethic that all players need and it’s not just about ability and talent.”

With these revered accomplishments a constant demonstration of his everlasting passion for the game, Sir Alex Ferguson remains one of the most respected managers in the history of football and sports as a whole.As the longest serving manager of Manchester United with more than 27 years of service, Ferguson announced his retirement as manager of Manchester United on 8 May 2013, ending an era of superior sportsmanship and devotion to the sport of football.  Manchester United fans such as Tunde Folawiyo will continue to serve as an immeasurable source of support for the team’s success as they embark on a hopeful journey toward the World Cup. The spirit of Manchester United remains a major source of inspiration for the team and its millions of loyal fans.

A look at Man United’s week | Tunde Folawiyo

Apr. 21st 2014

Tunde FolawiyoThose who support United, like Tunde Folawiyo, will probably know that it’s been a quite a challenging week for the team. Richard Scudamore, the chief executive for the Premiere League, has publically criticised United, stating that the players’ less-than-stellar performance over the course of this season has damaged the club’s international reputation. Scudamore contends that the frequent losses have led to many fans losing interest. Whilst loyal supporters of the club might find his words unduly harsh, there’s no denying that this has been a dismal period for the club; under the management of David Moyes, the players have lost 10 out of their 31 matches.

It seems that the team’s unpredictable behaviour on the pitch is also affecting the club’s ability to attract new players. With the summer transfer window drawing closer, Moyes is now attempting to sign a number of top performers, including Toni Kroos, who plays for Bayern Munich. However, this week, the chairman for the club, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, confirmed that Kroos has no intention of joining United, despite the fact that the midfielder has not yet extended his contract with his current club.

But Moyes may have already set his sights on someone else – Alex Rodrigo Dias da Costa (known simply as ‘Alex’), who plays for Paris Saint-Germain. News reports indicate that Alex could be used as a replacement for Nemanja Vidic, who is soon to leave the club. But with AC Milan also vying for the centre-back’s attention, and United’s recent failures in the league, it will probably be quite difficult for Moyes to convince the Brazilian to come on board.

As a supporter of United, Tunde Folawiyo might be aware that The Red Devils’ match against Manchester City this week was, like many of their recent games, rather disappointing, resulting in a draw of 0-0. Whilst neither side emerged victorious, the general consensus was that United’s opponents were the stronger of the two teams; they demonstrated far more intelligence, enthusiasm and speed than the Devils. With the exception of their keeper, most of the players lacked any kind of zeal – even Van Persie and Rooney, the stars of United, were somewhat lethargic in their approach. Luckily however, De Gea performed a number of impressive saves, thus preventing United from losing yet another league game.

Tunde Folawiyo | The History of Old Trafford

Apr. 18th 2014

Northwest England’s Manchester United has long served as one of Europe’s premiere professional sports teams, continually showcasing great success on the field as they boast one of the biggest fan bases in sport. Regarded as “The Most Popular Football Team in the World”, Manchester United currently holds the largest average game attendance in Europe, demonstrated by its millions of fans such as Tunde Folawiyo and others throughout the United Kingdom who attend home games with great pride. Those with an everlasting passion for Manchester United may be truly fascinated by the deep rooted history of the team’s home field, Old Trafford.

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Located in Old Trafford, Greater Manchester, England, the Old Trafford football stadium holds a capacity of 75,731. It is the second-largest football stadium in the United Kingdom and the ninth-largest overall in Europe. Nicknamed the Theatre of Dreams by Bobby Charlton,Old Trafford has been United’s home ground since 1910, although bomb damage from World War II rendered the stadium unusable from 1941 to 1949. Recently, in March of 2014, Sir Bobby Charlton was honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Torch Trophy Trust. The charity recognises and supports volunteers in sport and recreation and this award is used to celebrate the humanitarian accomplishments of its honourees. Since joining the Reds in 1953, Sir Bobby has enjoyed a thriving career that has put him at the forefront of Manchester United.

Throughout its long history as the home field of the world’s most popular sports team, Old Trafford has hosted a variety of high-profile events including the FA Cup semi-finals, England fixtures, matches at the 1966 World Cup and Euro 96 and the 2003 Champions League Final among many others.

The grounds of Old Trafford have held some of the great athletic talent the world has seen with international sports superstars including players such as Ryan Giggs, Wayne Rooney and David Beckham among those who’ve taken the field. Whilst the stadium has bared witness to a host of injuries throughout the years, Manchester United and the seats of Old Trafford have witnessed a host of incredible triumphs.

Through the continued support of their millions of devoted fans including Tunde Folawiyo, the future of Manchester United seems bright as they continue on a path toward a hopeful World Cup ticket. The club’s long history of outstanding reputation as one of the most popular sports teams on the planet will undoubtedly provide the encouragement needed to exercise great play on and off the field this season.

Man United enjoy much-needed victory in match against West Bromwich| Tunde Folawiyo

Apr. 14th 2014

Supporters of Man United, like Tunde Folawiyo, are probably aware of the fact that this has been a rather tumultuous season for the club. But in their recent match against West Bromwich, United showed off a level of skill and style which hasn’t been seen in many months, ending with a 3-0 victory that has most likely restored many people’s faith in the club. It certainly helped that their opponents were somewhat careless in their approach, lacking both confidence and forward-thinking throughout most of the game.

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The Red Devils were particularly strong during the first half, whilst West Bromwich seemed to struggle. The latter came close to scoring an own goal just 16 minutes in, when Chris Blunt’s mistimed footwork edged the ball towards his team’s net; but at the last second, Youssouf Mulumbu swooped in and kicked it down the pitch.

Approximately 18 minutes later, a free kick awarded to Robin Van Persie provided Man United with their first goal. The shot was headed by Phil Jones, just beyond Ben Foster’s reach, and directly into the net. This seemed to shock West Bromwich out of their slumber, resulting in their players employing a strong attack strategy which led to Claudio Yacob coming very close to equalising, but missing the net at the last second.

Similar patterns emerged after the interval, with Gera failing to deliver the powerful shot needed to sweep the ball past De Gea; he was in the ideal position for a straight kick into the net, and had his foot hit the ball with greater force, he would have almost certainly given his team the goal that they so desperately needed.

Man United’s second goal came about soon after, with Mata setting up the play which would eventually lead to Rafael passing the ball to Rooney, who then performed a strong header which flew past Foster. Rooney was also involved in the third and final goal of the match; the crosses between he and Fellaini led to Welbeck being able to slot the ball past the post.

The match has left the team just nine points short of fourth place in the league. Moyes seemed pleased with the results, stating that he was impressed with the way the players attacked, He also added that they had been far more creative, and had played well overall; this is something which most United fans, including Tunde Folawiyo, would probably agree with.

Red Devils suffer defeat at the hands of Olympiakos | Tunde Folawiyo

Apr. 11th 2014

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As a fan of Manchester United, Tunde Folawiyo was doubtless disappointed by the team’s recent 2-0 loss against Olympiakos. The Reds performance was erratic at best, with the players offering their opponents far too much space, and failing in almost all of their efforts to retain possession of the ball.

Olympiakos took the lead early on in the first half, when a rather unimpressive long-range shot by Maniatis was diverted by his teammate Dominguez, and flicked straight into the net. Their second goal came after the interval, and was delivered by Joel Campbell, after Carrick was unsuccessful in his attempt to steal the ball from the forward.

For United’s supporters, the most frustrating aspect of the match was that the team never even came close to scoring. They couldn’t seem to carve out any decent opportunities for themselves, and even when one did arise during the second half – Chris Smalling managed to create an opening for Robin Van Persie – the latter miscued the shot and ended up kicking the ball over the net.

Circumstances weren’t about to change sadly, when the referee decided to book Evra for an intentional handball during his effort to win the ball off Campbell. A free kick awarded to Olympiakos did not amount to anything, but it did provide United’s opponents with the chance to take possession. Moments later, errors by both Ferdinand and Smalling resulted in Vidic having to intervene to prevent Olympiakos from scoring.

Commentators noted that United’s primary weakness lay in midfield; rather than bringing on Shinji Kagawa and Adnan Januzaj, Moyes decided to fill the wide midfield positions with Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia. This appeared to be a poor decision on Moyes’ part, as it allowed Maniatis to sneak past several times, simply because United’s midfielders were not sufficiently vigilant when it came to guarding their space.

Moyes eventually decided to bring on Kagawa – a decision which, some might argue, he should have made earlier – but it was too little, too late, and Maniatis came dangerously close to scoring for a third time. Much to the relief of United’s supporters, like Tunde Folawiyo, the captain’s shot fired over the net. Overall, it was a discouraging performance from United, with a lack of confidence in midfield and a hesitance in defence, which left the team unable to meet the expectations of their fans.

Transfer talks taking place at Old Trafford | Tunde Folawiyo

Apr. 8th 2014

Those who, like Tunde Folawiyo, support Manchester United, have witnessed one of the club’s most difficult seasons in decades. The Reds’ manager David Moyes, recently acknowledged this fact, in a statement made to the press recently. In it, he noted that whilst it is easy to remain loyal when your team performs well, sticking by them during challenging times is another matter entirely. He praised the fans for their unwavering devotion, and added that these difficulties would only make the club stronger in the future. Moyes finished by saying that he was confident that the team would soon enjoy the level of success they had during previous years.

Tunde FolawiyoDespite Moyes’ reassuring words, many supporters are no doubt curious as to whether the team’s performance over the past few months will have an effect on upcoming transfers. The manager has denied accusations that existing players are dissatisfied with his approach to managing them, and that some might even be considering a move to another club. In particular, there have been rumours that Robin Van Persie might be tempted to transfer.

This rumour began after Van Persie criticised the tactics employed by Moyes during their recent match against Olympiakos, which resulted in a 2-0 defeat. But the manager has insisted that he did not take offence to these comments, and could understand where the forward was coming from when he made them.

In regards to who might be joining United during the summer transfer window, there have been suggestions that Toni Kroos, who plays for Bayern Munich, might be coming on board. Although technically, Kroos’ contract requires him to stay with his current club for another season, Bayern Munich have been slow to offer a renewal. Because of this, Kross has openly admitted that he would consider accepting an offer from United.

Additionally, it has been reported that United are now in talks with William Carvalho, who serves as a midfielder for Sporting Lisbon. This should come as no surprise to Tunde Folawiyo, and other fans of the Red Devils, as midfield has been the Red’s Achilles heel throughout the last two seasons; as such, it makes perfect sense that Moyes is now looking at new players to place in this position. Carvalho is said to have been valued at £29 million by Sporting Lisbon, but it is unclear as of yet whether this is a price which Moyes can afford.

Tunde Folawiyo | LA Galaxy to Host Manchester United at Rose Bowl

Apr. 6th 2014

An exciting deTunde Folawiyovelopment for Manchester United fans abroad, the LA Galaxy announced on Tuesday that its players will come head-to-head with the Red Devils this summer in an international friendly at the Rose Bowl on July 23. Whilst the club has suffered many recent disappointments this season, hopeful fans such as Tunde Folawiyo and millions of others will continue to support the team as it approaches a UEFA Champions League quarterfinal matchup.

“Playing LA Galaxy at the world-famous Rose Bowl Stadium will be an important part of the team’s preparations for the 2014-15 football season,” said Manchester United’s managing director Richard Arnold in a statement. “The club has been visiting Los Angeles since 1950 and this match provides a great opportunity for it to engage with our fans in this region.”

“The popularity of soccer in the US continues to strengthen, and Major League Soccer and LA Galaxy have been fundamental to this. Our previous matches against MLS opposition have proved popular with fans and players alike, and we are delighted to be returning to the US.”

As arguably the most popular sports team in the world, Manchester United boasts a long history of success on the field, including 20 English first-division titles, 11 FA Cup titles, three European Cups and one FIFA Club World Cup. Whilst the club is famed throughout the world for their devoted fan base and past triumphs, The Red Devils are currently experiencing a difficult season, overseen by Scottish manager David Moyes. The transition from Sir Alex Ferguson’s long revered influence has proved tough for United, but fans remain hopeful as the team faces defending champions Bayern Munich in the second leg of the team’s quarterfinal matchup for the UEFA Champions League.

American fans of Manchester United will have plenty of opportunities to see the Red Devils in action as the team will also take part in the 2014 Guinness International Champions Cup this summer. They will face AS Roma on July 26th in Denver, before competing against Inter Milan on July 29 in Washington D.C. These match-ups, as well as an August 2 match against Real Madrid in Ann Arbor, will mark the team’s first North American visit since 2011.

In addition to this visit to America, the Red Devils boast over a dozen players taking part in this summer’s FIFA World Cup to be held in Brazil. Players including Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie and Japan’s Shinji Kagawa are expected to take to the field. United fans such as Tunde Folawiyo and countless others throughout the world are surely anticipating the summertime matchups.

Will United qualify for next season’s Champion League? | Tunde Folawiyo

Apr. 4th 2014

Currently, Man United are in seventh place in the Champions League – a fact which has not escaped the attention of the media. Hostile headlines calling for Moyes’ resignation, and awkward questions regarding the possibility of United failing to secure a place next season, have become all too prevalent over the past couple of months.

Tunde FolawiyoMike Phelan, who once served as the assistant manager for the Red Devils, has publically warned Moyes that he might have to discard his current ‘shopping list’ of summer transfers, if the team do not begin to improve. Phelan also stated that, even if the club somehow manages to qualify for the upcoming season, he believes that players from other teams will be reluctant to accept offers of a transfer to United. However, Moyes has remained resolutely positive about the situation. He has not even acknowledged the idea that they might not make it to the next season, and has said that he has been inundated with calls from ‘top players’ who wish to join them.

Whilst the inconsistency of this season has probably come as no surprise to Tunde Folawiyo, and the rest of United’s supporters – after all, Moyes was bound to struggle during his first year with the club – the fact that the team are still flailing after dozens of matches, begs the question; is Moyes the right person for this job? The patience of supporters is beginning to wear thin, and many are now wondering whether or not he needs to be replaced.

A number of sports journalists have come to Moyes’ defence, arguing that the frequent injuries suffered by some of the club’s best players – including Michael Carrick, Wayne Rooney and Robin Van Persie – have made it considerably more difficult for the manager to strategise and plan ahead. Moreover, football fans like Tunde Folawiyo might recall that, during his eleven year stint with Everton, Moyes proved himself to be a very intelligent and capable leader.

Officials such as Ed Woodward have given no indication that they intend to fire him and so it seems that, at least for the time being, Moyes’ position is safe, regardless of what the media might have people believe. It looks as though the executives at United they intend to play the long game, and give Moyes a chance to find his feet.

Man United draw with Bayern Munich | Tunde Folawiyo

Apr. 2nd 2014

Man United’s 1-1 draw with Bayern Munich at Old Trafford is likely to have left many Red Devils’ fans, including Tunde Folawiyo, disappointed. However, despite the unimpressive result, the two teams were well-matched, and the game itself was an entertaining one to watch.

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Danny Welbeck was given the first opportunity to score, but his efforts proved fruitless, after the referee chose to penalise him for a high foot. It wasn’t until the 58th minute that United took the lead, when Vidic performed a powerful header that soared straight into the net. Bayern Munich were quick to equalise, with Bastian Schweinteiger scoring just eight minutes later; however, this moment of glory was fleeting, as the midfielder was given a second yellow card, following a foul on Wayne Rooney. This means that Schweinteiger is no longer eligible to play in the return leg, which is to be held in Munich, on the 9th of April.

Whilst United’s defenders performed well for most of the match, their keeper De Gea was tasked with performing a few saves, one of which involved an energetic dive for the ball after Robben made an attempt to score from 20 yards away.

Welbeck had another chance to give his team the lead during the first half, but once again he failed to deliver. Rooney provided him with a pass, but at the last moment, Welbeck hesitated, resulting in a rather weak shot which was promptly saved by Neuer. After the interval, Bayern Munich maintained possession of the ball most of the time, but were unable to push past the Red Devils’ defenders.

United’s strong performance throughout the second half was due, in no small part, to Moyes’ decision to bring on Kagawa, who was asked to take over for Ryan Giggs, after a groin injury left the Welshman unable to play. Whilst Tunde Folawiyo, and many other United supporters greatly admire Giggs, Kagawa proved to be an excellent replacement.  His presence had an immediate and very positive impact on the rest of the team, allowing them to take control of the ball and score the first goal of the match. Although United managed to prevent Bayern from scoring further goals during the second half, the latter are still said to be the favourites to progress in the league.