The Fa Cup is a traditional competition that English football clubs take pride in, right from Top flight Premier League football, down to Non-League football. Now, whether or not the Fa Cup is what it once was is another debate that I discuss here.
On this Day in the Fa Cup 2011, Manchester United played a third-round Fa Cup game against Liverpool which was full of action. I’m going to take a trip down memory lane and re-cap the events that happened during the game.
This game bought an attendance of 74,727 to Old Trafford displaying what a fierce rivalry we have.Manchester United on this day - Ryan Giggs seal 1-0 over Liverpool Click To Tweet
Manchester United On This Day – Fa Cup 2011
On this day “Ryan Giggs is spot on to ruin Kenny Daglish’s second coming as Liverpool manager. Giggs’ Penalty in the second minute is enough to seal a 1-0 FA Cup third-round victory at Old Trafford. Liverpool, who had replaced Roy Hodgson with Daglish the day before, complete the tie with ten men as Steven Gerrard sees red for a foul on Michael Carrick” – Mike Donavon (2012) Manchester United on this day, : Pitch publishing.
Definitely one of a few times when Stevie G was walking alone! Sometime’s a new manager can have an immediate effect on the team and boost them up, especially when they’re a legend like Daglish is to Liverpool so I’m happy that we came out with a win and made our rival’s romantic reunion start off on a bad foot.
One thing I like about playing Liverpool is you can almost guarantee it’s going to be a great game when we play them. The rivalry means every tackle is met with huge cheers by the fans, every goal means that little bit more, and every decision the referee makes is met with huge conflict by players, managers, and fans. This is exactly what happened when Howard Webb had to make two major decisions, one of them being in the first two minutes of the game.
Penalty or Dive
People say Berbatov dived from the Daniel Agger challenge and when I say people it’s mostly Liverpool fans. To me, a dive is when the defender makes no connection or close to minimum contact with the attacker. If the defender makes contact and the attacker can stay on his feet but chooses to go down, I wouldn’t class it as a dive. Because the thing is, if you don’t go down the chances of getting a penalty is very slim. Manchester United on this day - Ryan Giggs seal 1-0 over Liverpool Click To Tweet
Was it a red card?
For me, the Steven Gerrard challenge on Michael Carrick is a red card and people are probablythinking ‘obviously you’re going to say that, you’re a United fan’ and that’s exactly why I’m saying it. Let me explain…
The challenge is one of them that, if you’re on the receiving end or your teammate is, then you would see it as a red. If you or a teammate was the person who gave the challenge you’d probably think it was a yellow. Make sense?
Let’s put this into context and look at the three main factors of the slide tackling law is:
- Can not be two-footed
- Can not be leading with studs showing
- Both feet should not leave the ground
Steven Gerrard’s challenge had all these factors involved which is why I say it was a red card. On the other hand, the reason why I understand why some fans may have thought the decision was harsh is because he (Gerrard) genuinely looks like he’s going for the ball and the contact he actually makes with Michael Carrick doesn’t look to be that much.
|1||1st Half Goals||0|
|9||Shots on Target||4|
|8||Shots off Target||8|
Rachel Griffiths (2011) United deny Reds revival, Available at: www.skysports.com/football/man-utd-vs-liverpool/229788
Manchester United on this day - Ryan Giggs seal 1-0 over Liverpool Click To Tweet
Manchester United deserved to win that game, you don’t have to take my word for it but just look at the statistics. However, I did watch the game live and the way we had a foothold of possession and the chances we had on goal, we should have scored more than the one goal.
People used to banter us about how they think Howard Webb favours Manchester United when he referees them. I genuinely feel Howard Webb got both major decisions right.
Making contact with an attacker more or less gives the attacker the choice on whether to go down or not. If players only went down when they are unable to stay on their feet, so many penalties wouldn’t be awarded, which I think is wrong. I agree that Berbatov could have stayed on his feet however, the contact made was a penalty.
When you’re playing in a game against your biggest rivals, emotions can get the best of you and players tend to try harder. Especially when your homegrown and come through the academy as Gerrard did. Also, the extra pressure to please the fans can influence you to do the best and the worst things sometimes. On the Gerrard situation, this is exactly what I think happened. The tackle wasn’t the worst I’ve seen by a long shot but, based on the laws of the game, it is a red card.
What are your thoughts on the referee’s decisions? Did he get both right? One right? Or both wrong?