The feeling amongst football fans coming into this Sundays match between home side Manchester United and Harry Redknapp’s Queens Park Rangers was that United fans were growing impatient for a win and the Old Trafford fans were already losing faith in new Manager Louis Van Gaal, seeing massive amounts of summer spending as a nothing more than papering over the cracks of a weak team. They feared their club had lost sight of itself.
Being at Old Trafford for the game you soon realised this couldn’t be further from the truth. There was an enhanced buzz around the ground, the feeling that this game was the real start of the season. A quick wander around the club’s official store and the multitude of fresh names on shirts and you understood exactly why. Big singings like Di Maria from Real Madrid, Daley Blind from Ajax and Falcao, on loan from Monaco, were already assuring Man United fans that last season’s disaster wouldn’t be repeated any time soon.
On the pitch United backed this belief up instantly. The twenty times English champions showed signs of old battering QPR from the outset with a flurry of well organised attacks, orchestrated mainly by record signing Angel Di Maria.
United’s early barrage was eventually rewarded with a lead at the 24th minute mark, care of a curling Di Maria free kick that snuck into the bottom corner of Rob Green’s box. QPR had their best chance of the match soon after as David De Gea ventured too far off his line and left Jonny Evans to do the hard work of clearing Matty Philips’ scuffed shot. QPR were to rue that wasted chance as Utd’s lead was doubled ten minutes later as Ander Herrera scored his first goal for the club, and the game was all but over as captain Wayne Rooney fired low from another fabulous Di Maria created chance to make it three to the home side.
QPR showed very little as Man Utd controlled the pace for the second half. Nico Kranjcar forced a save from David De Gea early, however Utd soon regained dominance and a wayward Di Maria shot landed to the feet of Juan Mata who fired high to make it four.
The real talking point of the second half was the introduction of Columbia transfer deadline day singing Falcao entered the field to massive applause from the home crowd, summing up the satisfying feeling of the afternoon. The new number 9’s chances were limited, however he almost made it a dream debut with a chance from a saved Daley Blind shot that was scrambled up by Green.
QPR were admittedly very poor. Their defensive partnership of Caulker and Ferdinand, making his return to Old Trafford to rapturous applause, struggled to deal with United’s new found pace and failed to close down attacks, giving the Manchester club too much space to work with.
United and Van Gaal will have much tougher opponents in the coming weeks, however this attacking display gave the fans hope that the team can challenge for the top four or possibly even the title this season. QPR on the other hand showed why many people have written them off as relegation candidates already. There was a real lack of ambition to score and when Van Gaal’s side came knocking with their multi-million pound strike force the defence crumbled.
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