Let’s be fair the FA Cup was (at least before the draw last night) our best opportunity to win Silverware again this season.
To be picked away at Old Trafford, a place where we haven’t won since 2011 when Aaron Ramsey scored the only goal of the game in a 1-nil victory shows how difficult it may be.
Last season when United were really struggling we lost to a RVP goal, and even this season at home we out played and out witted them for the entire game only to come away with nothing. Certainly from a mindset of coming away victorious they would certainly be the happier with yesterday’s outcome. Cheers Roy!
But, I now see this as our fate with United has gone full circle. No longer are we the two powerhouses of the Premier League battling it out for the title. We are now mere also rans like Liverpool, Spurs and Everton looking for that place in the lucrative Champions League or perhaps the chance to nick a cup or too along the way. Oh how football has moved on. As much as they are trying now, these two giants are trying to keep up with Chelsea and Manchester City that certainly got a head start in terms of playing in the Premier League new age. We had hoped we’d evolve into much quicker.
But put City and Chelsea aside for this exercise as we are now back against probably our most fearful and hated rival in the last 20 odd years. (I cannot add Spurs to this as they have not been competitive) A fixture has returned to deem whether our season will be viewed a success or a failure. Make a note: The weekend of March 7th or 8th and May 16th will be the 2 games against the same team that will decide our fate. March will be the FA Cup quarter final. You may say ”this is only the quarters” But would you back the winner of this game lifting the cup in May? I certainly would.
This then is followed up with such a crucial game on 16th May where again we go to Old Trafford in the league. Yes there are a lot of games in between now and then, but they are playing badly and winning and the Spurs defeat aside we have been collecting a lot of points recently. Therefore my question here would be would you see whoever wins that game making top four? For me yes.
And I would also say would you see the team that loses this perhaps falling out of it with only 1 league game to play after? I would say most definitely.
The two games in my mind are so apparent on the future of this season, I would go as far as I think player commitment relies on it. You have heard rumours over the last day or so about Santi Cazorla. So much so that Guillem Balague has mentioned it on Sky Sports’ Revista’. I think we can rest assured that some contact has been made. Don’t win a trophy and drop out of Champions League would be catastrophic to the club. Santi is only part of the rumour we have heard about.
But that is how important now these two games are. Once again, even for a lesser goal than ‘the good old days’ Arsenal and Man Utd are back on a level playing field, fighting it out for the honours in which remain in their season. Enjoy the rivalry and I hope that it still exists as it did not so long ago. There have been some great games between these too. Arsenal are showing glimpses that they can be that side again, Utd are winning without playing well so there are definitely resemblances that it could be just like it was.
I am sure Vieira and Keane will be watching with baited breath.