Date: 26th August 2007 at 7:27pm
Written by:

Tomasz Kuszczak, Chris Eagles, John O’Shea, Dong Fangzhuo, Darren Fletcher. Subs of the champions of England today.

United needed a win desperately today, after a poor start to their league campaign. The opponent were Champions League-aspirants Tottenham, Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo were out so things looked bleak.

Yet we had been comforted by the manager’s claim that Anderson and Saha are both fit and are set for a bench role. Finally, we could send in players who can change the game in a second when we are in trouble.

But it seems that they are not fit enough. One thing I do not understand though. If DONG was preferred to Saha and Anderson, they must be REALLY unfit. If they are, why Fergie said they would be on the bench?

Is it the same than with Gary Neville? He should play since April last season – think about it: first diagnosis said he would be back for the Sheffield United game and even five days before that match Fergie confirmed he would be involved. Yet he’s still absent through injury.

Saha’s case is very much the same so I should not be surprised that he had been left out again. But Anderson? Will he be another one of those always offering hope of an appearance, yet ruled out of game after game through some stubborn, recurring injury? Hope not.

Fergie’s gamble paid off – but it could have been far worse. For it was apparent that our players were nervous: they miscontrolled easy passes, could not make easy passes themselves, made wrong decisions all the time. Fortunately, Nani is not a nervous type and this win could set us on the way – but had we failed to win, and there was every chance of failing today, we should ask seriously why Fergie didn’t risk Saha and Anderson in a game what we had to win at all costs.