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Played
September 29, 2012 5:30 PM BST
Old Trafford — Manchester
Referee:‬ C. Foy‎
Attendance:‬ 75566‎
 
51′ Nani
Jonny Evans 2′ (OG)
Gareth Bale 32′
 
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Manchester United 2-3 Tottenham

Jan Vertonghen and Mousa Dembele set the tone for Spurs in the first half but, as they dropped deep and let the hosts back in, Wayne Rooney's fiery showing deserved more

By George Ankers

  • Anders Lindegaard
    100
    122
    3.00

    Anders Lindegaard

    Let down by the deflection for Vertonghen's goal and his midfield for Bale's. Did pretty much as well as could be expected for the Bale shot that Dempsey pursued for the third, as well.

  • Rafael
    72
    88
    2.50

    Rafael

    Woke up after the half-time hairdryer as United took control of the game but whenever Bale, or the havoc-causing Defoe, ran at him in defence, the Brazilian looked second-best.

  • Patrice Evra
    46
    126
    2.00

    Patrice Evra

    Implied fairly early on an awareness that he could not deal with the pace down the right offered by Aaron Lennon and Kyle Walker, some cynical challenges to stop them before they got into full flow.

  • Rio Ferdinand
    41
    155
    2.00

    Rio Ferdinand

    Badly outpaced by Bale for the second goal although he had been let down by the midfield, whose flakiness allowed the Welshman to build up a head of steam, and caught out by Vertonghen for the opener too. Some useful interceptions when not in direct competition for speed but decidedly not the colossus of old.

  • Jonny Evans
    53
    104
    2.50

    Jonny Evans

    Ungainly in his fall to the floor in a vain attempt to block Vertonghen’s second-minute shot and, given its keeper-bound trajectory, arguably deserved the real credit for the goal.

  • Ryan Giggs
    63
    151
    1.50

    Ryan Giggs Flop of the Match

    His time has been and gone - the evidence continues to pile up that Giggs is no longer a reliable starter for United. Shrugged off the ball far too easily by the hyper-aware Spurs and quietly removed at half-time.

  • Michael Carrick
    58
    96
    2.50

    Michael Carrick

    Mostly invisible and bullied by a rampant Dembele in the first half, Carrick simply is not a good enough "defensive" partner for Scholes against a midfield as good and switched-on as Tottenham's. When the game opened up, though, it was a different story, as the England man offered some sumptuous passes.

  • Nani
    117
    85
    3.00

    Nani

    Should have been awarded a penalty when Vertonghen pulled his shirt in the box and drew a regulation save from Friedel moments later - which was at least more than his colleagues had done until then. Switched on to poke home Rooney's fine cross just after the break but put in a few trademark Row-Z shots as time dragged on.

  • Paul Scholes
    194
    48
    3.50

    Paul Scholes

    In between some surprisingly proficient tackles, the 37-year-old was embarrassingly vital for United in the first half. When not closed down by a rampaging Dembele his long passes seemed their only outlet – then, when Spurs had given up the momentum, he was once again the beating heart of the recovery effort.

  • Robin van Persie
    91
    144
    2.00

    Robin van Persie

    Looked to be doing the work that should have been Rooney's in the first half, with no man running into the box to take advantage of his clever touches and industry. Guilty of some uncharacteristic misses in the second, including one really glaring chance at the near post. A disappointment from the Dutchman.

  • Shinji Kagawa
    212
    58
    3.50

    Shinji Kagawa

    Lovely close control in the first half, though badly served. Proved that quality in the second with his truly sublime turn and finish to make it 3-2 in a crazy atmosphere. The Japan international really is a class act and it was a bit of a surprise to see him withdrawn for Welbeck.

Substitutions

  • Wayne Rooney
    196
    53
    3.50

    Wayne Rooney

    Made a clear and immediate difference when brought on at half-time. Played with real fire in his belly, his cross for Nani just after the break an incisive one. Will surely start the next game.

  • Danny Welbeck
    51
    111

    Danny Welbeck

    Brought on in place of Kagawa as things got desperate but mostly served to illustrate how the Japan star's touch was missed.

  • Brad Friedel
    96
    20
    3.00

    Brad Friedel

    Once again made some important saves in the second half but one might argue that he could have taken on more responsibility for firing up his defence to wrest more control back from the desperate hosts.

  • Jan Vertonghen
    167
    33
    4.00

    Jan Vertonghen Top of the Match

    His run to open the scoring set the tone for a superb first half, a buccaneering thrust that stunned the hosts. From then until the break he was everywhere, totally dominating the left half of the pitch - but lucky not to give away a penalty for pulling Nani’s shirt. His influence waned as Spurs dropped deep in the second half.

  • William Gallas
    88
    29
    3.00

    William Gallas

    It was a slight surprise not to see the captain go off at half-time as he appeared to be nursing an injury - not so much that the ageing Frenchman was pipped to Rooney’s cross by Nani just after the break. Picked up once the mayhem had died down, though, to stay strong and help his side hang on.

  • Kyle Walker
    69
    32
    2.50

    Kyle Walker

    Some neat interceptions covering for Sandro and, though Tottenham mostly attacked down the left through the inspired Vertonghen, the right-back looked potent as well. Found it too easy to power past defenders on the flank in the first half but a little defensively suspect as United pressed late on.

  • Steven Caulker
    78
    21
    3.00

    Steven Caulker

    The more solid of Tottenham's centre-backs, he looks very comfortable with the step up to a top club.

  • Clint Dempsey
    109
    24
    3.00

    Clint Dempsey

    Could easily have given away a goal when his poor defensive header was not capitalised upon in the early stages but, of course, looked more comfortable in attack and bagged his first goal for Spurs by being in the right place at the right time. Taken off with 20 minutes left as Villas-Boas sought additional control.

  • Aaron Lennon
    72
    30
    2.50

    Aaron Lennon

    The most visibly buzzed by the early goal with some sugar-rush dribbles but never quite followed through on that threat. Should really have been punished for a bad second-half tackle.

  • Gareth Bale
    156
    19
    3.50

    Gareth Bale

    Some sizzling moments of pace and skill - the head of steam that he built himself as he raced through to score the second was quite thrilling. Unlucky not to net his second after the break but Dempsey tapped home the rebound.

  • Mousa Dembele
    132
    20
    3.50

    Mousa Dembele

    For the second time this season, the Belgian made it painfully obvious that he is exactly the type of player that United desperately need. A monster in midfield, defensively and offensively, until Kagawa's goal went in and the worried, defensive mindset took over, at which point he subdued.. Withdrawn late.

  • Sandro
    76
    39
    2.50

    Sandro

    The second half should have been the period in which the Brazilian frustrated and dominated United but instead his game was better summed up by what could have been a penalty; a handball for which he looked pretty clueless.

  • Jermain Defoe
    115
    30
    4.00

    Jermain Defoe

    Tottenham’s domination came through the midfield but Defoe’s part should not be overlooked. His runs with and, in particular, off the ball were superb all day. Dragged defenders out of position for the second goal and set up Tottenham’s third with his industry and vision. Left isolated as his team-mates dropped deep in the second period.

Substitutions

  • Tom Huddlestone
    61
    28
    3.00

    Tom Huddlestone

    The midfielder was a late replacement for Dembele and was quiet and composed enough as United got desperate.

  • Gylfi Sigurdsson
    69
    23
    3.00

    Gylfi Sigurdsson

    Came on for Dempsey as Tottenham looked to wrest some momentum back and was not able to do that - but calm enough on the ball as they held on, however.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Manchester City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man Utd.
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
15 0