Manchester United: 7 Things We Learned About Them After 8-2 Arsenal Thrashing
It's not often that any team concedes eight goals in one night, and it's very rare to see a team like Arsenal get annihilated.
It's even more rare to see so many wonderful goals being scored in one night. There was some superb football, but there were many more things which were going on.
On a night when the scoreline reads 8-2, what can you learn? Read on.
1. Wayne Rooney Is Going to Give Lionel Messi a Run for His Money
Before the start of the season, Wayne Rooney had already announced his ambition of being as good as Lionel Messi or bettering him at what he does best. No. 10 has smashed the record for most Premier League goals scored by a Manchester United player, and the sky is surely the limit for him.
He was never far from the thick of action and three goals and an assist show exactly how he justifies his new contract and why he walked away with the match ball.
He IS in the ascendancy, and the rest of the English Premier League will dread facing him. On a lighter vein, maybe the hair transplant has done wonders for his scoring.
2. The Midfield Will Be Maligned No More
One of the reasons why Arsenal could not cope with Manchester United was that both their central midfielders, Anderson and Tom Cleverley, were given free rein in proceedings and distributed the ball beautifully—even coming to the aid of the defenders when needed.
The former, who has had a difficult time adjusting to life in England, has at last—dare I say it—found his feet and is orchestrating the midfield proceedings with a Brazilian flair.
Cleverley, on the other hand, had a chance at goal, which he may have fluffed, but the most maligned part of last year's Manchester United's team, the midfield, ensured that it got top marks in the performance.
3. Blue Good, Red Better
The Citizens may have sent Spurs scurrying in White Hart Lane, but the one team on whom all eyes will be on in the whole of England is Manchester United.
Manchester City may have sounded themselves as contenders, but Manchester United reminded them why they are still defending champions.
4. David De Gea's Biggest Test Is on His Way
David de Gea Quintana showed his caliber and class by saving a penalty for his side. His performance was a wonderful one, where he made crucial saves and showed the attributes required to succeed in the English Premier League.
However, he did concede two goals, one of which should have been saved (the shot by Theo Walcott). But de Gea put in a good shift between the posts.
His greatest challenge, however, is a particularly intimidating away trip to the Reebok Stadium, where he will face the Bolton Wanderers. If any team embody the physicality of the Premier League, it is Bolton Wanderers.
Their direct method of play, especially the way in which they unsettle the opposing goalkeeper and defenders, will test de Gea's mettle. His defenders need to be vigilant against Kevin Davies and Ivan Klasnic, and should the young Spaniard come out with flying colors, then he will go on to become one of the best.
5. Ashley Young Is the New No. 18 of Manchester United
Paul Scholes left a huge void in midfield when he announced his expected retirement. That responsibility has been taken up by Anderson and Cleverley, but it was his immortal No 18 which is now being worn by another superstar.
Ashley Young was a terror to the Arsenal defense. He was running directly and getting behind defenders, winning free kicks, getting the better of Carl Jenkinson and also scoring two amazing curlers.
He has made himself at home and has already justified his price tag. All he needs to do is to continue his red-hot scoring form and United will have no problems in replacing the Welsh veteran Ryan Giggs, who, truth be told, does look like he is in his last season at Old Trafford.
Two goals and three assists against Arsenal has endeared him to the United faithful and the season is just getting started.
6. Aim for the Stars
Having knocked Liverpool off their perch, the battle-hardened man from Govan is plotting on bringing down the Catalans and establishing Manchester United as the European Supremo.
It doesn't look easy, with Barcelona having assembled a jaw-dropping attack consisting of Chilean Wunderkind Alexis Sanchez, Lionel Messi and David Villa. All three of them are brilliant in attack, fed by the indefatigable Barcelona midfield.
The biggest question posed by the footballing world is when Sir Alex Ferguson will finally call it a day, but before he does, expect him to give Barcelona a real run for their money—or even beat them to it. Chuckle at your own peril, but recollect how he broke the monopoly of the Old Firm in Scotland.
The same man led Aberdeen FC to its maiden European triumph—a European Cup Winner's Cup against Real Madrid—and also claimed the scalp of Bayern Munich along the way.
This season is the most exciting one ever.
7. Nothing but Good News for the Three Lions
I've never been a fan of the Three Lions, but I think if they ever had a chance of winning a major international tournament, now can be the best time.
Assuming Manchester United is used as the spine of the English national football team, then Fabio Capello can rest assured that his side can and will thump anyone who stands in their way. Seriously.
Defenders: Ferdinand, Smalling, Jones
Midfielders: Young, Cleverley
Forwards: Rooney, Welbeck
It wouldn't take a genius to say that this side is capable of great things, especially with such a talented and gifted bunch of players.
Should Fabio Capello and his assistant Franco Baldini decide on making use of the entire Manchester United contingent, then rest assured the English national football team will break records and even deliver a trophy or two!
So, there we have it, seven things to learn from Manchester United's mauling of Arsenal!
Feel free to add comments/criticisms/suggestions, if any. Cheers!