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Januzaj Makes Scorching Debut

 Posted by on September 16, 2013 at 11:02 am  Blogs/Media, England, Manchester United
Sep 162013

Manchester United 2-0 Crystal Palace
69846755 rooney pa2 Januzaj Makes Scorching Debut

All hail the new wonder kid! On the Fiftieth anniversary of the day when a fine-boned Belfast B’y by the name of George Best made his debut for Manchester United against West Bromwich Albion, a new kid with the number 44 on his back popped up like a mealy worm out of an apple. Having witnessed both miracles in the flesh (so to speak!), let me tell you, dear reader, that this new kid, a certain Adnan Januzaj, a brilliant Belgian winger of Albanian extraction, is about as the Real Deal as the Real Deal can get! Barring some horrific injury or accident Adnan Januzaj is going to be a Superstar!

Anyway, more on that later. Manchester United were more or less mediocre on the day. Not particularly bad on a day when they collectively gave their new manger, David Moyes, the gift of his first win ever at Old Trafford, just plain old mediocre. Although Robin Van Persie had a smashing time in midweek, scoring twice for the Netherlands, making himself his country’s highest goalscorer ever, he has been a bit of a dud for United of late. Still, he showed the kind of calm ruthlessness we have come to expect of him when he stroked home a penalty kick right on the blessed cusp of half-time. Paired up with his partner Wayne Rooney again, in spite of the high number of chances they were selflessly dished up by their teammates, nothing would go in, No big deal, though. Nothing troubling. It was ringingly clear that this was just a temporary status quo and that soon the floodgates will open and they really will both score goals galore. When Wayne finally did take his chance in the 81st minute it was from a dead-ball free kick, and it was very pleasing to see the Scouser dance happily after scoring, his arms both raised to the home crowd in a gesture of joy and supplication.

Awkward and disjointed in the first half, United genuinely improved in the second half after the introduction of Januzaj and their new club-record buy, Marouane Fellaini. Those famous ‘Bog Brush’ Afro-wigs, so popular with Everton fans for so long, were pulled out of thousands of pockets as the smiling Belgian midfielder was gifted the unilateral joy of 76,000 clapping fans. After that happy moment, United really never looked back.
38891b15 8e82 4710 9b70 a24542fee75b 140x84 Januzaj Makes Scorching Debut
In the first half, United simply couldn’t do anything fluid. Moyes’ pairing of Anderson and Carrick in central midfield simply couldn’t get going: Repeatedly missing passes and letting themselves get caught in possession. Only one chance fell Palace’s way as Dwight Gayle caught Rio Ferdinand badly out of position, running in diagonally from the left, only to clip his shot over an advancing David de Gea but wide of the far post. Otherwise, Palace never looked even slightly like scoring. But, having dodged innumerable counterattacking bullets, the Londoners blew it big time as the big, lumbering Kagisho Dikgacoi, after numerous warnings and a yellow card from one of many attempts to stifle Ashley Young, let his frustration get the better of him and drew a second yellow. It was definitely a foul on Young, but, the United winger actually received the illegal tackle a foot or so short of the penalty box. A clever player with the ability to control his body well, Young fell far and fast forward, his momentum taking him into the box before referee Jon Moss blew his whistle and pointed to the penalty spot.

Young may have been successful in drawing a penalty, but, over all, it was not a good match for him. With Young fighting desperately to retain his place on the team, and, no doubt looking over his shoulder to see Nani, Valencia and now Zaha and Valencia breathing down his neck, he did himself no career favors by adding one more demerit to his already fat portfolio of diving offenses. Repeatedly reprimanded by Sir Alex Ferguson for being the sort of conniving ham who gives United a bad name, his latest offense, when he dived with his leg waggling after receiving a slight touch by Dikgacoi smacked of the kind of shameless theatricals relentlessly used by Robert Pires, Thierry Henri and Patrick Vieira in the Arsenal team of the late-nineties. Yet Palace barely threatened De Gea’s goal, either before or after they were down to ten men.
Manchester Uniteds Ashley 008 Januzaj Makes Scorching Debut

United came only really close once in the first half when Van Persie smacked a right-footed volley against the crossbar in the first half and Julián Speroni only began to have a busy afternoon once Adnan Januzaj, looking like an 18-year-old blond waif, made his Premier League debut as a substitute. Confident and relaxed, Januzaj sprinting along the wing line with the ball seemingly glued to his foot in a Messiesque manner, proceeded to give fits to a number of hapless markers. Having brought on Fellaini in the 62nd minute for Anderson, Carrick began to find more passing corridors opening up. With Evra bringing up the rear, Januzaj kept pumping in crosses, forcing throw-ins and drawing fouls. The latter proved crucial as he was clattered by on the edge of the penalty box by Jed Moxey, winning the 81st minute free-kick which Rooney wickedly span around the wall, three inches too low for a diving Speroni, who had guessed right, to reach. It was an exquisite clincher.

Tuesday at Old Trafford sees a visit from the Bundesliga‘s number three team, Bayer Leverküssen. A youthful team full of hungry academy players led by Sven Bender, a box-to-box dynamo with relentless energy, they will be a good season opener to the altered tempo of the Champions League.

Ivor Irwin

  2 Responses to “Januzaj Makes Scorching Debut”

  1. Quality read Ivor…spot on mate.

  2. Ivor – from the minute I saw him up in Dallas with the U19s back in March, I have been telling people about januzaj and about him being the real deal. This kid has a great future ahead of him and will definitely force his way into the team. So much natural ability. he’s also got his feet firmly planted on the ground. I was able to speak to him at length in Dallas and what a well grounded kid he is who takes nothing for granted.

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