United’s 3-1 victory over Spurs looked like a fairly easy three points on the surface, a goal before half time two in a nine minute spell in the second half and Tottenham’s strike not coming until it was too late to be anything other than a consolation.
Anyone who watched the game at White Hart Lane yesterday will know that it was far from a ‘walk in the park Kanzanski’ for the Reds. Spurs started off the game in dominant fashion and Aaron Lennon and Emmanuel Adebayor in particular caused United problems.
Ashley Young may have recieved most of the plaudits for his two stunning strikes- plus a great corner for Rooney’s opener- yes we scored from a corner- can you believe it? However for giving United the platform to win the game, much of the praise has to be aimed at the Reds defence, in particular the two centre backs who were excellent for the entire game.
It was almost too close to call between Rio Ferdinand and Jonny Evans as to who was the better of the two but I’m going to plump for the elder of the two simply because his organisation skills were an added edge over his defensive partner.
That may be being a tad harsh on Evans who didn’t put a foot wrong, but such was the immaculate nature of both players performances, it’s only the former skipper’s verbal display that just shades it for me.
Rio has been superb of late, its almost gone unnoticed by many in the media and even some Reds, but as is often said “if you don’t notice a defender, then he’s doing something right” and when was the last time Ferdinand was the subject of massive attention after a game?
With Vidic out it’s imperative United have a defensive leader and while Patrice Evra may wear the armband, there’s no denying it’s Ferdinand who does the organising, motivating and leading in the back four.
If the Reds are to win the title, it’s vital we keep Rio fit and I for one am glad he wasn’t involved in the England game against the Dutch last week- although it was obvious he should have been.
With players like Phil Jones, the Da Silva twins and even Chris Smalling often needing a bit of guidance on the pitch, Rio has been fundamental in keeping United in the title race.
Ashley Young was superb yesterday and was awarded the MOTM by Sky and many other sites, but Rio’s performance was just as important and arguably lasted the full 90 minutes, while Young’s was more two moments of brilliance.
Rio Ferdinand we salute you sir!