It was far from convincing, nonetheless, Manchester United went top of Group C -- on goal differential -- after a 2-0 win over Otelul Galati at Old Trafford on Wednesday night. Antonio Valencia opened the scoring after a marauding Phil Jones whipped in a cross in the 8th minute. 79 minutes later, Wayne Rooney sealed the victory when his shot from distance was deflected in. The Reds failed to convince the doubters from their recent form but they currently top their group on goal differential after Benfica's draw with FC Basel. Here are the highlights from the match:
For United States' viewers:
For worldwide viewers:
The Busby Babe United Galati Shots (on target) Total Passes Passing Accuracy Ball Possession Tackles won Interceptions Fouls Corners Offsides
The Busby Babe
Shots (on target)
* David De Gea (goalkeeper): 3 saves, 0 goals conceded, 30/53 passing (57%)
* Jonny Evans (left-center-back): 78/81 passing (96%), 2 tackles, 0 interceptions, 5 clearances, 0 blocks, 2 fouls, 0 aerial duels won
* Rio Ferdinand (right-center-back): 67/71 passing (94%), 0 tackles, 0 interceptions, 12 clearances, 0 blocks, 0 fouls, 3 aerial duels won
* Fabio (left-back): 54/63 passing (86%), 3 tackles, 5 interceptions, 6 clearances, 0 blocks, 2 fouls, 0 aerial duels wons
* Phil Jones (right-back): 39/50 passing (78%), 3 tackles, 1 interception, 7 clearances, 0 blocks, 0 fouls, 2 aerial duels won, 1 assist
* Anderson (central-midfield): 62/82 passing (76%), 1 key pass, 4 tackles, 4 interceptions, 0 blocks, 0 fouls won, 0 successful dribbles
* Wayne Rooney (central-midfield): 98/110 passing (89%), 2 key passes, 2 tackles, 3 interceptions, 0 blocks, 1 foul won, 1 successful dribble, 1 goal
* Nani (left-winger): 64/71 passing (90%), 2 key passes, 1 successful dribble, 2 fouls won, 3 shots (1 on target), 2 tackles, 1 interception
* Antonio Valencia (right-winger): 40/51 passing (78%), 1 key pass, 0 successful dribbles, 0 fouls won, 2 shots (1 on target), 2 tackles, 1 interception, 1 goal
* Michael Owen (striker): 5/5 passing (100%), 0 key passes, 0 successful dribbles, 0 fouls won, 0 shots
* Dimitar Berbatov (striker): 33/42 passing (79%), 1 key pass, 0 successful dribbles, 2 fouls won, 3 shots (1 on target)
* Javier Hernandez (striker | substitute): 29/32 passing (91%), 2 key passes, 0 successful dribbles, 1 foul won, 5 shots (1 on target)
* Ji-Sung Park (central-midfield | substitute): 11/11 passing (100%), 1 key pass, 0 tackles, 1 interception, 0 blocks, 1 foul won, 0 successful dribbles, 1 assist
* Zeki Fryers (center-back | substitute): 1/1 passing (100%), 0 tackles, 0 interceptions, 0 clearances, 0 blocks, 0 fouls, 0 aerial duels won
Sir Alex Ferguson | MUFC manager
(On the upcoming match versus Benfica in Group C...) "It's down to us. If we beat Benfica, we've won the group, simply that. It's a good incentive for us, being at home on a big night. Manchester United and Benfica... the history between the two clubs is fantastic, so hopefully it will be a very, very good night."
(On Otelul Galati...) "The winning was important tonight. Our opponents were aggressive, defended very well, pressed the ball everywhere on the pitch, put some energy into their game and made it difficult for us."
(On Wayne Rooney in central-midfield...) "I thought he was fantastic in central midfield, I really did. His awareness of people around him, his choice of passing was very, very good. He did really well for us tonight. It's difficult to say how Wayne would play in another Champions League game but I'd be confident playing him there."
(On whether Rooney there is a short-term measure...) "Yes, I think so. We're just trying to organise our midfield a little bit. We've had injuries in that department. Michael Carrick's still injured, Tom Cleverley's still injured and we're spacing out Darren Fletcher's games. We can play Ji-sung Park in there but Ji's got an important role for us [against Sunderland] on Saturday."
Wayne Rooney | MUFC striker/midfielder
(On playing in the central-midfield...) "I’ve said it before, I’m a good enough footballer to play anywhere on the pitch. That’s not being big headed. I feel I’m capable of doing that. If the manager wants me to play there, I’ve no problem doing that. I played there a lot [in midfield] when I was younger. You get a lot of the ball there and we had to defend as well at times tonight. If the manager asks me to do it, I’m happy to do it. I don’t know if it’s long term, that’s down to the manager, so we’ll see what he decides."
(On the challenge Otelul Galati presented...) "We’ve come out and done a job. We knew we had to win but we also know there are no easy games in the Champions League. They came and pressed us quite high which was surprising. Thankfully we got the 2-0 win and if we win our next home game then we’ll win the group.It’s difficult in the Champions League, as we saw the other night with Chelsea [drawing 1-1 with Genk]. People might look and think Galati aren’t the best team but if they work hard and defend well it’s difficult to break them down."
Phil Jones | MUFC defender
(On United's overall performance...) "It was a good performance. It probably wasn’t the prettiest of games to watch but we saw it out, got the clean sheet and scored two goals as well. But the lads have pulled out a professional performance and we got the three points. There are no mugs in the Champions League. They (Galati) are not in the Champions League for nothing and we stopped them from creating chances. We’ll build on that."
(On Rooney playing out of position...) "He was great. He’s a fantastic lad and a fantastic player as everyone knows and wherever the manager asks him to play he’ll go and do that. He showed that tonight. I am happy to play anywhere in the team, too, whether at centre-back or right-back. The main reason I came here was to play in the Champions League and test myself against some of the best players in the world. I am doing that and enjoying it."