Post Match Reaction: Manchester United 0 - 1 CFR Cluj

Laurence Griffiths

An awful game and an awful performance. Cluj take all three points yet still do not qualify for the knockout stages due to Galatasary's 2-1 win over Braga.

That is 90 minutes of my life that I will never get back. I am scratching around for positives to take from that game. Phil Jones looked lively in his first start, sending in a number of fine crosses from the right. Alexander Buttner looked half decent. Nick Powell showed promise. Not a lot else however.

Old Trafford was half empty and the atmosphere was so drab that I would suspect there would be more life in a mortuary. That was reflected in the pace of the game. The one bit of real quality came from Cluj, and it was a hell of a strike that won it mid way through the second period. Luis Alberto had the ball at his feet after sub Paul Scholes had lost possession in the center of the park. Typically, Scholes then dived in to try and win it back. After Alberto had breezed past the Ginger maestro he bore down on the United defense. 30 yards out he let rip and he found the top corner leaving the recalled David De Gea a spectator.

Wayne Rooney went the full 90. He was shockingly bad. His one bright moment came in the first half. The ball fell to him in the right side of the opposition penalty area. His chipped effort forced a decent save from the keeper who had to scramble backwards. I have said it so many times however that he should just put his foot through it! Too often he opts for the beautiful option, instead of the more efficient, more ugly power. Another time he was in a prime position to shoot. He opted to lay it into the path of Javier Hernandez (He too had a poor game). It never got there. Taking the hard option once again. Reminds me of a recently departed Bulgarian....

Chris Smalling probably had United's best chance. His header inched past the post. And Tom Cleverley too had a decent chance but took one to many touches that let the keeper in to smother his shot. The England midfield man then went off on the stroke of half time due to a calf injury which means he is now doubtful for the Derby on Sunday.

I could go on bashing this team. But it was a second string side in a game that did not matter for us. We still should have beaten Cluj, who were game but lacked quality. At least players like Robin Van Persie, Rio Ferdinand and Micheal Carrick earned a rest ahead of the biggest game of our season so far. Make sure you join us for build up this week and the game on Sunday. It can't be any worse than tonight's game (He says with a very poor memory....)

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