G. Thorne 37′
The indefatigable Wayne Rooney gave the Reds the lead with a wonderful early goal – his sixth strike in as many games.
The Reds were utterly in control of the Friday night wintry FA encounter with Derby County but, eight minutes before the half time break, catastrophe struck as Derby equalized out of the blue, sending me into an unqualified frenzy. This anomaly happened as the Derby midfielder Thorne ran onto a neat ball over the top to slot past the cleanest stopper, David De Gea. I was devastated and it was: ‘not again!’
However, Manchester United progressed to the fifth round of the Emirates FA Cup with an entertaining victory over Derby County at the iPro Stadium.
We dominated much of the game and Daley Blind netted smartly midway through the second half, before Juan Mata added a late third to secure United’s place in Sunday’s draw.
Juan Mata and Daley Blind scored vital goals against Derby County on Friday, yet they were quick to highlight Frenchman Anthony Martial’s impact on the result.
The 20-year-old France international did not add his name to the scoresheet in the Emirates FA Cup fourth-round tie but was a constant menace throughout the 90 minutes, regularly terrorizing his marker and creating several scoring opportunities for the Reds. This led to him being named Man of the Match by followers of the club’s official Twitter account, @ManUtd, with 73 per cent of votes cast online.
Photo: L-R . Daley Blind congratulates Anthony Martial (Man of the Match).
It was Martial’s superb assist that led to Mata scoring the final goal of the night in Derbyshire and the Spaniard was clearly enthused by his team-mate when speaking to MUTV after the final whistle, stating his belief that his colleague has “incredible potential” to fulfil in the coming seasons.
Louis van Gaal has praised the performance of his Manchester United players following Friday night’s comfortable 3-1 win over Derby County in the Emirates FA Cup fourth round. Here are the main points from the manager’s post-match interview with MUTV.
ON THE RESULT AND PERFORMANCE
“I am very happy. The performance was also very good and I said that at half-time; that we can continue with the way we had played in the first half. We gave a goal away and it was by ourselves again, but I liked the performance in the first half, it had a lot of confidence and that is back which is very important. The second half was even better, we created a lot of chances and we scored goals. But also we created more chances to score more goals. I am a very happy coach.”
ON THE SUPERB PERFORMANCE OF ANTHONY MARTIAL
“He started not so good, I think, but I said that to him and after the first 20 minutes he came into the match and he was fabulous. I am very happy that he is a Manchester United player because I think he shall be a great player for Manchester United for a long time.”
DID UNITED PLAY WITH MORE FREEDOM?
“I have to say Derby County in the second half were pressing forward more. When we beat that pressure then there was more space and that was also the reason why we scored two goals.”
A CATALYST FOR MORE WINS?
“We have won almost every game in 2016 – against Southampton we lost and that was because of the lack of confidence. We played at home and the fans were supporting us, so it [our performance] was a little bit ridiculous. But that’s how it was. Now the confidence is back, we dared to play again and in spite of the pressure of Derby County in the second half we met that pressure, we created chances and we scored fantastic goals I have to say. The second and third were fantastic combinations and fantastic finishes as well.”
DALEY BLIND’S GOAL
“It was unbelievable, but he sniffed the chance and that is why he can score. I also have to say that the youngsters did well too, so I cannot complain.”
PRAISE FOR THE FANS
“It is unbelievable and still they come to look to ‘boring’ Manchester United. It is fantastic – amazing!”
After Friday night’s encounter with Derby County, whither the direction or position of the ignoble “British Press” on this issue of wanting to get rid of Van Gaal (photo: above) from Old Trafford? Their machinations have come to nil!
In the midst of the British Press’ ignoble machinations against Manchester United and the unflappable Louis Van Gaal, I can happily say to them . . .
Up Man U!