Everton 1-0 Man U: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly from Red Devil's Opening Loss
Well, that's not the start to the Robin van Persie era that Manchester United was looking for.
In a match that was thought to be a moderate test, the Red Devils fell to Everton 1-0 at Goodison Park. The loss marks just the third time Everton have triumphed at home to United in their twenty-one Premier League encounters there.
With last year's ridiculous point totals and City's opening win, the loss puts the red side of Manchester in a bit of a hole right at the start of the season.
So what happened in this match that led to this result?
Let's break down the match Clint Eastwood style.
Even in the worst losses, there are silvers to be seen.
The good in this one definitely has to be the play of David de Gea. The young Spaniard started last season poorly but progressed as the year went on.
Today, he produced a few fine saves to keep his side in the match.
Yes, there were a few shaky moments, especially early in the match. However, de Gea's play should inspire some confidence in the goalkeeping going forward.
The bad lies in the defense and their ability to handle Marouane Fellaini.
The big Belgian provided huge problems for United in the box, getting on the end of crosses numerous times and scoring the winner.
Granted, United had quite a few injury issues, which were especially in the back.
However, with Rio Ferdinand's injury possibly keeping him out a month, the defense will have to cope and play better over the next few matches. Otherwise, Everton's use of Fellaini could become a blueprint for how to play United.
The only way United's attacking play could have been uglier is if they had signed Franck Ribery this summer.
The ugliest part was Nani's crossing, which almost wasted all the moves that were building. However, it's hard to be too hard on the Portuguese winger, as replacement Ashley Young didn't do much better.
Even Paul Scholes had a difficult time creating moves, and Wayne Rooney didn't have his usual finishing touch.
The Red Devils' attacking play will surely need to improve if they hope to take the title back.
While the attacking play was certainly ugly today, it is easy to write it off as a mirage created by rust. Expect this to be a non-issue in the future, especially given the talent the side has at its disposal.
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