Never has there been a better time for defenders to go on a hot scoring streak. With Wayne Rooney having been sidelined with injury, Manchester United’s defenders have stepped up to fill the gap.
The winning goal in the Liverpool clash was scored with the help of two United defenders. Whomever you view the goal going to, both Patrice Evra and Nemanja Vidic helped the ball into the net.
Evra has already accumulated four goals to his name in the 2012-2013 season, reminiscent of Vidic’s 2010-2011 season in which he amassed five goals from the back or the 2008/2009 season in which he scored seven.
In a year in which there has been constant issues with the back line, it was encouraging to see a back four that was seasoned as a unit.
Even more encouraging was seeing Vidic stay out of trouble against a Liverpool team he has been known to have a few disciplinary issues with.
Admittedly, the lone Liverpool goal could have been prevented, as it came down to some errors from David De Gea in goal and Rafael who was closest to Daniel Sturridge.
In last night’s match against West Ham, United’s inexperienced back-line did well on their way to advancing through to the next round of the FA Cup. It was probably a good time to rest the likes of Evra, Vidic and Ferdinand to give the youngsters a go.
Vidic of course hasn’t been the only player to return from injury this week. Rooney made his own return last night, scoring the winner before blazing a penalty over that would have settled the nerves in the final quarter of the game.
With a full strength offense, United will also look to improve even further their goal differential, as cross-town rivals Manchester City are only three behind in that statistic, while being seven behind in points.
Having a full strength squad will hopefully be beneficial in decreasing goals allowed and increasing goals scored, the only statistic that stood in the way of Manchester United winning the Premier League in 2011-2012.
The Red Devils want their title back from City, and with the second half of the season underway, they look to be heading on the path to doing so.
Spare a thought for the City players who may have to sell stuff online if their fail to recapture the league title.
By Jennifer Calhoun @Calhouner