Barclays Premier League Daniel Sturridge

The Good, the Bad, and the Not Enough

3:00 PMAleks Vee

Vidic and Evra celebrate their goal.
A full house at Old Trafford and three goals on the pitch were enough to make an exciting historic match-up. Sir Alex's strategy was spot-on - United was building up from the midfield and seemed in no hurry to score, but were keen whenever Luis Suarez got possession. There were always several players marking the Uruguayan striker. Despite the fierce rivalry and occasional booing of Luis Suarez by the home crowd, it was nice to see Evra and Suarez share a civil handshake, reminding us what the game was really all about. United were quietly putting on more pressure, but still hadn't tested Pepe Reina; there was a chaotic shuffle on the pitch from both sides. As soon as the visitors cranked up the speed, Danny Welbeck took advantage, getting the ball on the right and finding Tom Cleverley. Patrice Evra picked up the ball on the left of the box and presented van Persie with the perfect pass for a one-touch finish. As expected, RVP made his mark; the talented striker shows no signs of stopping. From a risky pass to the keeper to Gerrard's flub, Liverpool's mistakes were never-ending, giving both RVP and Welbeck ample room for opportunities.

United scored their next goal from a set piece, and once again, Robin van Persie's involvement was crucial. His delivery gave Evra the header that was taken up by Vidic near the net. But the skipper's goal was United's last trace of activity for awhile; three minutes later, Steven Gerrard tested the net. De Gea blocked the shot, but Sturridge was keen on the rebound. Another mistake would deprive the Red Devils of a possible 3 points. Sir Alex's team slowed down a bit after halftime, and the lack of attentiveness caused them to concede. Liverpool had some great defending, and Pepe Reina saved the team from a possible Kagawa goal. Nevertheless, Rodgers's team was still not fast enough to compete with the Red Devils. The problem was apparent in their passes and incomplete counters. United took away a well-deserved win and showcased their improvements, Welbeck and Kagawa among them. Sir Alex's side are only 3 days away from the second leg of their FA Cup match against West Ham, and today's game showed both their strong suits as well as potential weaknesses that could come back to haunt them in other tournaments.

English Premier League - 22nd Match Week
Saturday, January 13, 2013, 8:30AM EST

Manchester United vs. Liverpool - 2:1 (1:0)
Venue: Old Trafford (Manchester)
Referee: Howard Webb (Yorkshire)
1:0 Robin van Persie (Asst. Patrice Evra) (19')
2:0 Nemanja Vidic (54')
2:1 Daniel Sturridge (57')

Half Time Stats:
Shots on target: 5:0
Shots off target: 3:1
Fouls committed: 7:6
Yellow cards: 0:1
Red cards: 0:0
Corners: 1:1
Offsides: 1:0
Possession: 57:43

Full Time Stats:
Shots on target: 5:3
Shots off target: 10:10
Fouls committed: 14:16
Yellow cards: 1:4
Red cards: 0:0
Corners: 3:1
Offsides: 1:1
Possession: 46:54

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