Between the Lines

"Of all unimportant subjects, football is the most important" – Pope John Paul II

Some say thy fault is youth

Posted by hakanrylander on March 22, 2009

Since our defeat against Fulham I’ve read numerous comments from United fans in different forums claiming that the sending-off of Wayne Rooney was an absolute disgrace. This is of course nonsense. Rooney deserved his red card, and his second bookable offence was as clear a yellow card as you’re likely to see.

United were awarded a free-kick that Ryan Giggs took quickly and played the ball to Rooney. But the ref, correctly, ordered the free-kick to be retaken from the right spot. This caused Rooney to see red and he, clearly in anger, hurled the ball in the general direction of the ref. If this was merely an attempt to get the game restarted with a minimum of delay it would have been a better idea to throw the ball towards a team-mate.

So the problem is not with Phil Dowd but with Wayne Rooney. His temper is supposed to be an important part of his game, but in this case it means that he misses the game against Villa that has suddenly taken on a new importance. Sir Alex probably sees quite a lot of himself in Rooney, I’m not sure whether this gives him the necessary insight or just means that he doesn’t see the problem.

Finally, a bit of credit to Fulham who totally dominated United in the first half, even before Scholes’ red card.

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7 Responses to “Some say thy fault is youth”

  1. An interesting view point on the sending off of Rooney from an Man Utd blog!

  2. The Brain said

    Have to say, I agree with you!

  3. […] red card he picked up in Saturday’s 2-0 loss away to Fulham was actually the right decision. More on that here. Rooney had no reason to throw the ball in anger and who knows, it could have easily hit the ref. […]

  4. The Gaffer said

    Rooney really needs to control his anger. We can’t afford suspensions and other punishments for the big fella.

  5. hakanrylander said

    I agree, Gaffer. When Rooney channels his energy in the right direction he’s our greatest asset. When he doesn’t he’s a liability.

  6. Grif said

    If you look at a clip of the 2nd booking, you’ll notice Rooney’s throw went directly to Jonny Evans, who was standing behind and off to the side of the referee. He was standing on the spot where the ref wanted the free-kick to be taken from.
    Looks to me like he was just in a hurry to get the play going because he was frustrated with the same so far, and not because he was looking to throw the ball at the ref.

  7. hakanrylander said

    Cheers, Grif, and thanks for your comment. I’ve followed your recommendation and had another look at the video. I agree that Rooney wasn’t trying to hit the referee, and I didn’t intend to give that impression in my original post.
    But I disagree about Evans’ position as well as Rooney’s intentions. As I see it the ref was standing at the spot where the foul occured and where he wanted the free-kick to be taken. Evans was quite a distance behind that spot. If Rooney was making a genuine attempt to restart the game quickly he should have thrown the ball at rather less pace towards Giggs, who was closer to both the spot and Rooney. I also find it difficult to interpret Rooney’s bodylanguage as anything but dissent.

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