Ranking the Top Five Manchester United Goals from 2013/14
For Manchester United supporters, the 2013-2014 season was low on highlights and—at times—difficult to watch. There were occasions where the gloom was lifted to reveal glimpses of the United side that Sir Alex Ferguson trusted so much, but these were sporadic at best.
The most memorable performances under David Moyes’ tenure seemed to be reserved for the UEFA Champions League. United qualified from the group stages with apparent ease and finally succumbed to reigning champions Bayern Munich in the quarter finals, scoring some excellent goals along the way.
And who could forget Patrice Evra’s thunderbolt in the Allianz Arena?
With no European competition next season, United's form in the English Premier League must improve. Look hard enough at last year, though, and there were still some gems scored domestically. Here are five of the best.
5. Adnan Januzaj vs. Newcastle United
Adnan Januzaj is now a full international for Belgium, with a World Cup start under his belt. It was in the North East of England where the youngster showed signs that his star was about to rise.
A one-two with Juan Mata inside the area—which included a superb improvised backheel by the Spaniard—left three Newcastle United players stranded. All Januzaj had to do was sidefoot the ball inside the post. The youngster delivered with aplomb.
4. Robin Van Persie vs. Swansea City
The deadly Dutchman provided two tasty finishes in United’s opening game of the season. The first was an exquisitely executed hooked volley after chesting down a Ryan Giggs chipped pass in the area.
It is the second goal which makes the list, though.
Wayne Rooney laid the ball on for Van Persie in midfield and ran behind him in the hope of a return pass. Van Persie, however, had other ideas. Using Rooney’s run as a decoy, he went alone. Outside the area and still with two players to beat, he took the ball teasingly close to Chico Flores and then performed a little drag-back to change direction and buy himself some space.
A left-foot rocket was then dispatched into the corner of the net.
3. Danny Welbeck vs. Swansea City
It perhaps says much about the way United’s season developed that there is another goal on the list from the opening day fixture at Swansea City. Danny Welbeck’s contribution on the day cannot be ignored, though.
Welbeck darted into the penalty area in the dying minutes of the game, with Chico Flores chasing. The United forward took a quick look at the goal and the position of Swansea goalkeeper Michel Vorm and then delivered the sweetest of chips that nestled just inside the far post.
A 4-1 victory that appeared to promise so much for the season ahead...
2. Danny Welbeck vs. West Bromwich Albion
Danny Welbeck appears again on the list, although his finish was more simple this time. This was all about the build up play.
At times last season there was an obvious disconnect between the management team and players that manifested itself on the pitch. United’s third goal in their 3-0 victory at The Hawthorns showed no signs of this.
The finest team goal that the Reds would score all season, 17 passes were strung together in a patient build up before Welbeck finally placed the ball past the advancing Ben Foster.
1. Wayne Rooney vs. West Ham United
Voted goal of the season by supporters, it would be churlish to disagree.
An eighth-minute hooked clearance was misjudged by West Ham’s James Tomkins, allowing Wayne Rooney to turn with the ball. Seeing that goalkeeper Adrian was off his line, what happened next would make all the headlines the next day.
From almost 50 yards out, Wayne Rooney hit a stunning half-volley that soared over the forlorn 'keeper and bounced into the roof of the net.
A goal that the onlooking David Beckham would have been proud of, echoing as it did his own finish against Wimbledon in 1996.
It was an exuberant moment in a season that delivered few other reasons for United supporters to cheer.