Yep. You read that title right. Four goals apiece.
You would think that after a game like that, I would know what to say. Wrong. Manchester United were 3-1 up, and then 4-2 up. And we went to sleep both times thinking the game was won. It should have been. But it wasn't. Lets give credit to Everton, because after last weeks cup disappointment, who would have thought they would have had that fighting spirit in them.
Im at a loss. With proven winners in this team, we managed to throw that one away. Players like Rio Ferdinand. Paul Scholes. Micheal Carrick. Patrice Evra. Wayne Rooney. These players should have the experience to close a game like that out. Youth players may be forgiven for being so naive. Not players of Manchester United. Title number 20 hangs on results like this. Have we just chucked away all the hard work we have done from January onwards.
Anyway. Everton went ahead early on. The good movement of Jelavic had already caused us problems, and he peeled of Rafael to head home a Tony Hibbert cross. The angle was tight and there was no way he could have scored. Wrong again. The header and just the right amount of loft to give David De Gea no chance.
But back came United in the form of Rooney. Nani cut in from the left and provided an inswinging cross. It travelled just over Phil Neville's head, and right onto Rooney's.
And after half time Danny Welbeck lit up Old Trafford. He jinked past the incoming defender with great footwork, and curled a sumptuous finish past another Manchester United old boy, Tim Howard.
And soon after it was three. Carrick played in a ball for Welbeck, Nani held his run just enough so that the England man could play a first time pass into his feet. The winger dinked the finish for a wonderfully crafted goal. But back came Everton in the form of the big haired Belgian.
Felliani. Wonderful throughout was he. Gave the defense a torried time. And he scored a great volley. David De Gea got a hand to it, but you cannot blame him. It would have been a remarkable save had he managed to keep it out. Instead, Jonny Evans should have been much tighter, either stopping the cross or blocking the shot.
And then United must have thought they had killed the game off for a second time. Rooney and Welbeck. Their link up for this goal brought back memories of Yorke and Cole. Welbeck dummied, Rooney played it, Welbeck ran onto it, Welbeck passed it, Rooney finished. Football like that is a joy to behold.
After that United had a small spell of pressure. However Everton overcame that and got back on the front foot. What shocked me however was the energy levels of United. Didn't look to win the ball back, and gave it away far too easily. Paul Scholes was starved of possesion and was not able to dictate in the way he has in all of United's previous wins.
Everton's third from poor defending again. Rio and Evans jumped for the same ball. It fell to Jelavic who swept home despite the challenge of Rafael. And the equaliser came soon after. Rafael afforded Felliani far too much time in the box, and he provided a ball for Steven Pienaar to cap a brilliant fightback with five minutes of normal time left.
United pressed for a winner. Jonny Evans had a difficult header that sailed over. But Rio Ferdinand had a chance in the 5th minute of injury time. The ball fell to his left foot, and it look destined to ripple the net and send Old Trafford into dreamland. But Tim Howard (Damm him) make a great save with his right hand. Tipping it over. Game over.
Again. I am astounded with the way we played once going two goals up. We should have played keep ball. Smart football. But we were far too gung-ho. And they sure as shit made us pay. Ok, we are six points clear. But we next travel to the Ethiad, who are just about to KO at Wolves as I type this. And lets be honset, who gives Wolves a hope in hell of getting anything, and prolonging their Premier League status? I don't.