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September 24, 2011
• Britannia Stadium, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire
Referee: P. Walton
• Attendance: 27582
P. Crouch 52'
And that's that. United unable to continue their 100% record at the Britannia as the Stoke fans celebrate as though they'd won. Neither side should feel aggrieved by the result, but United will feel aggrieved by some of the refereeing decisions.
90' + 1'
Giggs misses a great chance! Nani did well down the right to put a cross to the far post, but the incoming Giggs, volleyed wide from a couple of yards!
United looking to exert some pressure right at the end of this match now as the go for the winner, but Stoke are defending in numbers.
Crouch wastes another golden chance for Stoke. Etherington crosses to the far post where Crouch controls the ball on his chest and volleys from 5 yards, but puts it wide.
Crouch goes close again from the corner, but puts his effort wide at the far post, once again climbing all over Phil Jones.
Stoke with a corner from the same side that brought the equaliser.
United back in control here. Giggs looks in the mood since coming on after showing nice link-up play with Evra down the left, but no telling contribution yet.
Owen with the latest chance as he heads a Jones cross towards goal, but it sails over the bar.
Another shot by Nani as he shimmies away from two Stoke defenders before shooting left-footed, but a deflection gives United a corner.
United win a corner as Giggs' cross put behind by Stoke defender, but United played quick and it was easy for Begovic.
Evra and Walters collide in the air and the Frenchman looks to have come off worse as he clutches his ankle.
More penalty claims for United, but this time it looked like blatant handball. Evra smashed a shot into the area and the ball appeared to strike Shawcross on the arm. United not happy about that decision.
Ferocious shot from a free-kick by Wilson! The full-back's shot went straight through the wall, but De Gea stayed strong and met it with his fists.
Shouts again for a United penalty. Berbatov received the ball just inside the area from Valencia and then received a pull on the shirt. However, replays suggest he made a meal out of nothing.
Another chance for Crouch! Pennant got into the area and squared to Crouch, but out came De Gea and tackled with his feet. Unorthodox, but effective.
Stoke with some good combination play involving Pennant as the winger returns passes with Crouch and gets a cross in from the goal-line, but no one was there to get on the end of it.
Anderson is allowed to advance and eventually gets away a shot with his left foot, but Begovic saves down to his left with ease.
Some more impressive dribbling by Nani as he skips past Wilkinson with ease before dazzling with his quick feet in the area. He then looked for Berbatov, but the Bularian's first-touch was uncharacteristically poor.
Crouch misses a sitter! Pennant chips a ball into the box and Ferdinand misses it allowing the ball to drop to Crouch who controlled and shot from 4 yards out, but De Gea sticks out an arm and luckily concedes only a corner.
Assist Matthew Etherington
Goal Peter Crouch
GOAL!!! Stoke equalise! Peter Crouch got away from Jones and headed in Etherington's corner. Question marks over the positioning of De Gea, but a goal is a goal.
Decent chance for United there. Evra played the ball into the area towards Young who then turned and passed in to Owen, but the striker couldn't quite get any direction on the pass.
The hosts are having a decent amount of possession at the beginning of this second half. United presented with a few opportunities to get on the ball but they lose it almost immediately.
We're back underway in Stoke.
An entertaining half of football at the Britannia stadium and although United lead thanks to that impressive goal from Nani, De Gea in the United net has been without doubt the busier of the two shot-stoppers, but the visitors will be pleased with their opening 45.
Another brilliant run by Jones. The centre back marched forward before shooting left-footed, but a deflecion took it wide.
Another good bit of play by Nani. The winger controlled the ball as it was bouncing before flicking it over Wilson's head and attempted a pass behind the defence to Owen, but Begovic collected.
Good play by United again. Fletcher plays Nani in down the right, and despite getting fouled the entire way, he plays a nice ball into the area along the floor, but Owen's touch is heavy and Shawcross gives away a corner.
Very good save from De Gea! Walters looked to shoot across the goal and in the process the ball went through Evra's legs, but De Gea got down very well to his right and tipped the effort round his right-hand post.
Delap goes for goal from outside the box, but he drags his shot wide.
Golden chance for Nani to grab his second! Shawcross plays a dangerous back-pass to Begovic, but the 'keeper is challenged by Young who plays the ball back a couple of yards to Nani but his first time effort goes over the practically empty net.
It's fair to say Wayne Rooney was impressed with that goal: "Nani. World class get in."
What a brilliant save by De Gea! Wilkinson lashes a powerful shot towards the goal just inside the United area but the Spaniard launched himself into the air and tipped the shot over.
Assist Darren Fletcher
GOAL!!! Nani!!! Fantastic goal by the Portuguese winger! He cut inside from the right, played a nice one-two with Fletcher, surged towards the area dodging tackles on the way, reached the area, skipped past yet another tackle and found the the bottom corner with his left foot. Great goal!
The match seems to have settled down a little bit now after a very frenetic start. United haven't really got going yet, but Stoke haven't looked much better.
Break in play at the moment as Pennant receives treatment for an inaucuous injury.
Berbatov gets his head on the Anderson corner, but nods the ball wide under pressure from former Spurs teammate Woodgate.
Corner to United as a wayward Anderson pass is deflected behind. The Brazilian goes over to take it.
Although he isn't playing, Rooney is still putting across his opinion. On twitter a few minutes ago, he said: "No penalty on Hernandez?"
Free-kick to United in their own area as Crouch climbs all over Jones at the back post. Despite the quite needless foul, Crouch still manages to miss the target.
Michael Owen gets the nod ahead of Macheda and Welbeck as he replaces the injured Hernandez.
Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez
Great attacking play by centre-back Phil Jones. He charged down the left-wing, skipping past Shawcross before looking to cross to Berbatov, but Woodgate puts it behind for a corner.
Big blow for United as Hernandez walks down the tunnel after failing to recover from that incident a few moments ago.
Good chance for United! Anderson whipped in a free-kick on the right-wing and Jones got his head to it, but it gets cleared.
Yellow Card Glenn Whelan
Stoke aren't holding back here! Glen Whelan sent Patrice Evra miles into the air and is booked.
That really could have been a penalty. Woodgate came in from behind and barely touched the ball - if at all.
Massive shouts for a United penalty! The Hernandez got in between Woodgate and the ball, but the defender attempted to tackle from behind pushing the striker and in the process resulting in Hernandez getting clattered by Begovic.
We've just seen Stoke's first long-throw of the match too. Delap launched it in from the right and De Gea got a hand to it, but it wasn't very convincing.
First corner of the match awarded to Stoke as Pennant's atempted cross deflects off Jones and out.
We're underway at the Britannia!
Last minute injury news. Jonny Evans has picked up an injury in the training meaning Jones will shift into the centre and Antonio Valencia will start at right-back. Kiko Macheda takes Valencia's place on the bench.
With Rooney not involved Dimitar Berbatov looks set for his first league start of the season.
The main talking point from the two line-ups is without doubt the absence of Wayne Rooney from the Manchester United team. The England striker is suffering from a slight hamstring injury, but is still expected to be involved against FC Basel on Wednesday.
The United starting eleven and subs are: De Gea; Jones, Ferdinand, Evans, Evra (c); Nani, Fletcher, Anderson, Young; Berbatov, Hernandez SUBS: Lindegaard, Fabio, Owen, Welbeck, Giggs, Park, Valencia
The Stoke line-up and bench is as follows: Begovic; Wilkinson, Shawcross, Woodgate, Wilson; Pennant, Whelan, Delap, Etherington; Walters, Crouch SUBS: Sorensen, Huth, Whitehead, Upson, Shotton, Jerome, Palacios
Good evening and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE commentary of Stoke City - Manchester United.
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