Louis Van Gaal and his Manchester United squad were under a bit of pressure Saturday after last week’s loss to Southampton at Old Trafford. However Van Gaal wasn’t under as much pressure as QPR manager Harry Redknapp was who faces being sacked due to poor performance from his squad. For United, they needed to improve in attacking as well as defending with zero shots on goal and lack of leadership among the defensive players, which former United defender Rio Ferdinand mentioned in a recent interview saying that Van Gaal should add to the defense during the January transfer window. The Falcao situation got more answers in the leading days before the QPR match, Van Gaal stated that Falcao needs to earn his role and prove himself as a player after his exclusion from the team sheet last week.
Falcao did start against QPR along with Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata who was subbed off at Halftime for Fellaini (No toilet brush for now since he’s playing well). Marcos Rojo and Jonny Evans (Subbed off for James Wilson in the 57th minute) replaced Chris Smalling and Luke shaw from last week’s match. Angel Di Maria and Antonio Valencia remained in the lineup this week, as well as Michael Carrick and Daley Blind, who played in Midfield this week instead of his defensive role last week.
The first half like last week started off fairly boring. Any chance United had was thwarted by QPR’s defense who seemed to get to the right place in the right time. QPR didn’t have much to show for offensively, but did take more shots than United did. David De Gea was the saviour in the first half with a few good saves, as well as a strong showing in the 2nd half, possibly factoring from new competition from the new signing Victor Valdes, the former veteran Barcelona goalkeeper.
The second half started with Fellaini in place of Juan Mata, and United’s play seemed improved, and that resulted in Fellaini getting his second goal this season for United in the PL. Antonio Valencia helped out on the goal, taking the initial touch that gave Fellaini the shot, and now I really can’t call him toilet brush (Still looks like one). Falcao was making it difficult for United fans to support his stay with a missed opportunity around the 77th minute, when he couldn’t get to the ball in time but had an open net and was only a foot or two away. The miss came in the worst possible game for him, with Van Gaal not looking impressed with the 28 year old striker. The last 15 minutes of the match seemed like a stalemate until seconds before the whistle blew when James Wilson put the nail in the coffin for the game, and secured United’s win. He made it seem easy with a right footed shot into the left corner after his initial shot deflected off of QPR keeper Robert Green.
Louis Van Gaal will be happy to at least get the win today, with much thanks going to David De Gea, who’s stops today could have been the deciding factor in this one. United’s defense is always to be questioned with a mix of Van Gaal’s three defender formation as well as the sub par performances of many of the defenders, who only had a few moments of glory in this match. some of the lesser mentioned players will definitely get a pat on the back today, such as Fellaini and Valencia, who haven’t really had much to show for this season, but today will give them something to look up to, same for the fans, who will be looking for repeat performance’s in the future.
With three points added to the table United stay in fourth place with Southampton holding on to third with their win over Newcastle United. United take on Cambridge next week in the FA Cup and Leicester City the weekend after that. Not too bad for Van Gaal, who will hopefully use these matches to boost United up in the table to maintain their Europe qualifications and maybe be the end of the season, top of the Premier League table.