The common ground between these two clubs is the success that Sir Alex Ferguson brought. Ferguson and Manchester United will be looking at having a productive pre-season so they are suitably prepared for a tough defence of their double achievement last season.
Sir Alex was manager of Aberdeen between 1978 and 1986 and today’s game marked the 25th anniversary of the Dons European Cup Winners’ Cup triumph in 1983, in a somewhat fitting first friendly of the summer for both sides. Tickets for the game sold out quickly, Aberdeen manager explained: “The whole city is buzzing about the game.”
United fielded a relatively strong side as Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs, Nemanja Vidic, Michael Carrick, Wayne Rooney, Wes Brown, and Gary Neville all seeing pitch time at Pittodrie.
The home side were unlucky not to go ahead early on but Darren Mackie’s effort was ruled offside. Manchester United won both halves though, scoring one in each. The first was a Wayne Rooney-won penalty converted by Michael Carrick, and Rooney heading powerfully to decide the tie.
Aberdeen found it tough containing Rooney, and Ryan Giggs showed no signs of a man whose legs have featured in over 750 competitive games for the Old Trafford firm. They could have scored in the second half though, were it not for Amos denying a curling shot from Jimmy Smith.
Manchester United and England forward Rooney started the game slowly, but found his rhythm as the game went on. To begin with, however, he failed to test Aberdeen’s goalkeeper Jamie Langfield and frustration began to find its way into his demeanour, as he continually struck straight at the stopper. His approach as a whole saw a marked change as he found the net in the second half and he eventually left the pitch to a standing ovation.
This puts the Red Devils in good stead for the new season. Considering the long-drawn out transfer rumours surrounding Ronaldo, it is imperative that the United strikers are firing on all cylinders from the off.
Aberdeen: Langfield; Foster, Diamond, Severin (c), Considine; De Visscher, McDonald, Kerr, Smith; Miller, Mackie.
Subs: Bossu, Maguire, Mair, Duff, Young, Paton, Stewart, Smith.
Manchester United: Amos; Neville (c), Brown, Vidic, Silvestre; Fletcher, Carrick, Scholes; Martin, Rooney, Giggs.
Subs: Woods, Evans, Gibson, Simpson, Campbell, Hewson, Eagles, O'Shea.