Sunday, 20 September 2009

Derby reax

Henry Winter, Daily Telegraph

Owen was taken to United hearts for embodying their DNA: a refusal to surrender. Sir Alex Ferguson’s side had dominated for much of this absorbing game yet City, resilience personified and inspired by the outstanding trio of Given, Nigel de Jong and Bellamy, kept fighting back, kept equalising. As the team who live closest to United, City should really know about their neighbours’ most celebrated quality. United never give up. From Nou Camp ’99 to Old Trafford ’09, injury time is their time.

Matt Lawton, Daily Mail

But there were times when United were second-best and Hughes looked so right when he dared suggest United were not the same now Cristiano Ronaldo and Carlos Tevez have moved on.

Tevez was terrific, ignoring the boos and a lack of fitness to deliver a display that would have been perfect had he not squandered one first-half chance with a shot that bounced off a post.

For long periods City were the better team in crucial areas: in midfield, where Gareth Barry, Nigel De Jong and Stephen Ireland dominated their opponents in much the same way they had Arsenal, and further forward, where the superb wing play of Craig Bellamy and Shaun Wright-Phillips exposed Ferguson's failure to find a decent replacement for the world's best player.

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