Between the Lines

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

Match Report: United Reserves 3 Blackburn Reserves 0

Posted by hakanrylander on October 23, 2009

A good result for the reserves who went top of the Premier Reserve League North. But let’s face it, who cares about the result in these games? More important is to spot the individual performances that indicate whether a player is ready to move on to the first team. Or not. In this respect the game contained three positives and one negative.

United were captained by Ritchie de Laet who seems to keep up his remarkable improvement. I was particularly impressed by a couple of forward surges of the kind I would like Rio Ferdinand to make more often. Solid at the back, dangerous going forward and comfortable on the ball. I would be surprised if he doesn’t get a game against Barnsley in the Carling Cup next Tuesday.

Hopefully Gabriel Obertan will also be in that game. He played the full 90 minutes yesterday and suffered no apparent injury problems. He was involved in many of United’s best moves and combined well with King, de Laet and others. Judging from this game he’s equally comfortable on either wing or through the middle.

I’ve read a number of positive reports about Josh King, but was still surprised by how good he already is at 17. Good movement, pace and control and also linked up well with Obertan. He faded in the second half, but maybe Macheda and Welbeck will soon have to look over their shoulders.

Zoran Tosic scored a good goal from distance in added time, but otherwise again failed to impress me.  He saw a lot of the ball but ran into dead-ends most of the time. Still a long way from the first team in my opinion since he couldn’t really trouble an inexperienced Blackburn side (I didn’t recognize any of their players apart from Santa Cruz Jr). Nani drives me nuts, but I still prefer him to Tosic.

For a different angle on this game and a completely different opinion about the performance of Tosic, please check out the excellent United Youth.

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