Date: 15th April 2012
Venue: Old Trafford
Referee: Mark Halsey
Score: Manchester United 4-0 Aston Villa
Scorers: Rooney (pen) 7’ 73’, Welbeck 43, Nani 90’
Yellow Cards: Carrick, Scholes, Nani; Gardner, Hutton, Bannan
Red Cards: None
Manchester United: De Gea; Rafael, Evans, Ferdinand, Evra; Young (Nani), Carrick, Scholes (Cleverley), Valencia; Rooney (Berbatov), Welbeck
Subs: Amos, Jones, Berbatov, Giggs, Hernandez, Nani, Cleverley
Aston Villa: Given; Hutton, Collins, Baker, Lichaj; Bannan, Clark (Heskey), Ireland (Carruthers), Gardner; Weimann (N’Zogbia), Agbonlahor
Subs: Guzan, N’Zogbia, Delfouneso, Heskey, Cuellar, Johnson, Carruthers
The boss made three changes from the midweek defeat to Wigan, recalling Paul Scholes, Rafael and Danny Welbeck, with Giggs, Jones and Hernandez dropping to the bench, Nani seemingly not fit enough for the full 90 minutes once again makes the bench.
It was exactly the reaction we needed today, we attacked from the off but it’s fair to say Villa offered nothing at all. The breakthrough came from the penalty spot, and it was another debatable refereeing decision. There was definite contact there, but Ashley Young made the most of it, Rooney stepped up and made it 1-0, as cool as you like. The first half was definitely up there with the best we have played this season, and we doubled our lead just before half time, Danny Welbeck poking home a teasing ball from Ashley Young, it’s great to see him getting back on the score sheet as we enter the run in.
The second half was a much more dull affair, however we were still firmly in the driving seat, Rooney made it 3 in the 73rd minute when a deflected shot gave Shay Given no chance in the Villa goal. Then Nani came on, and caused some problems late on, and he got himself a goal with a neat finish, after some nice linkup play in added time.
Nani could be so important over these last four games, it seems the flair he brings to the game is what we have lacked. He can make something out of nothing, and he always has that wonder-goal in him. Let’s hope he finds some good form and takes us to that 20th title we all crave! Win our next two games, and it’s ours!
Man of the Match
Paul Scholes: What else can we say about this man? He played outstanding again today, putting in another passing master class. What a legend he is!
We were excellent throughout today, it’s great to see us playing some good football in such an important game. It restores the five point gap with only four left to play. The pressure is firmly on!