Saturday, 11 January 2014

EPL: Manchester United vs Swansea - LIVE Commentary

Hello and welcome to my latest blog post where I have LIVE Commentary of an EPL match being played today - with 7th placed Manchester United hosting Swansea for the second time in a week at Old Trafford, this time in a league match where they hope to win their first game in 4. 

The earlier results in the EPL:

Hull City 0 Chelsea 2
The Blues moved top of the table (at least for now..) with a comfortable 2-0 away win against Hull in the early afternoon kick-off. 

Cardiff City 0 West Ham United 2

Everton 2 Norwich City 0

Tottenham 2 Crystal Palace 0 

Fulham 1 Sunderland 4

Southampton 1 West Bromwich Albion 0

LIVE Coverage: 

17:30 - The referee has blown his whistle to kick-off the match at Old Trafford, here are the team line-ups: 

Manchester United: De Gea, Rafael, Smalling, Vidic, Evra, Fletcher, Carrick, Valencia, Kagawa, Januzaj and Welbeck.

Subs: Lindegaard, Cleverley, Buttner, Hernandez, Giggs and Lingard. 

Swansea: Tremmel, Rangel, Amat, Williams, Ben Davies, Britton, Canas, Pozuelo, Shelvey, Routledge and Bony. 

Subs: Taylor, Chico, Cornell, Vazquez, Richards, Donnelly and Lucas. 

17:45 - 15 minutes played at Old Trafford, and it's been an interesting start to the game.. United looking lively but not pressing which gives Swansea time to counter attack despite not having much ball possession.

Young Belgian midfielder Adnan Januzaj has hit the crossbar with a 20-yard swerving effort from a free-kick, and Swansea could have broken the deadlock also but have failed to test de Gea as of yet. 

16: Swansea are being forced into making an early substitution, with defensive midfielder Jose Canas limping with a knock that he cannot shake off. 

17: Swansea SUB:
Jose Canas OFF (injury)
Chico Flores ON

Flores is a solid replacement for Canas, which will make it slightly harder for United to break down if he slots into defensive midfield or plays as a centre-back. 

20: A Swansea corner comes of nothing as a nice one-two move between Pozuelo and Shelvey near the touchline does not find any Swansea player in the penalty area.

24: Swansea comfortable to hold ball possession looking for space, occasionally getting tackled in midfield but happy to control the tempo of the game as they look for the opener. 

27: Good build-up play by United, with the attacking move culminating with left-back Patrice Evra having a strike just inside the box caught comfortably across goal by Tremmel.

30: Swansea doing well to hold off any United counter attacks, with the defence holding out. Januzaj and Welbeck are trying to push Chico and Williams back. 

34: United with another chance as a delivery by Evra into the box ends up at the feet of Scottish midfielder Darren Fletcher, who hits the ball with power and swerve, but the strike keeps rising and flies over the bar into the crowd. Unlucky.

35: A long ball finds Bony from 20 yards out, and the striker heads the ball straight into De Gea's comfortable gloves. 

37: A glorious chance for Welbeck to break the deadlock there! Good passing across the box finds the young English striker open in space with only Tremmel to beat, but the finish was not powerful enough or accurate enough - the ball fizzles out for a goal-kick. 

39: Swansea's young Spanish starlet Pozuelo does well to beat two United defenders with close dribbling on the ball, before feeding Shelvey with a through ball across the box but the Englishman's strike does not trouble de Gea and trickles away from the post.

45: The fourth official signals for 2 minutes of stoppage time to be added on, while Swansea continue the goalmouth pressure on their hosts.

45+2: The referee has blown his whistle for half-time at Old Trafford, with the scoreline still goal-less despite United dominating in terms of goal-scoring chances. I doubt it will stay 0-0 though....

18:34 - The teams are running out onto the pitch, ready for the second 45 minutes. 

45: The referee blows his whistle, and United instantly go on the counter attack with Januzaj trying to cross the ball into the box despite being pressed by a Swansea defender near the area.

46: GOAL! United have broken the deadlock finally, and it was coming! Regardless of whether it was a lucky or easy goal, winger Antonio Valencia opens the scoring straight after the restart with a rebounded shot after Tremmel parried away Kagawa's header at the far post. 

Advantage: Valencia smashes the rebound into the back of the net from Kagawa's saved header.

Surprise scorer: Valencia celebrates with relief as he puts United ahead after the break
47: The opener comes as huge relief for United, having so many chances and no goals to show for it. 1-0 to the hosts, will they defend their lead or go for more? Swansea aren't out of the fight yet, don't count them out. 

58: GOAL! United make it 2-0!! striker Danny Welbeck finally gets his goal, with a cheeky flick from a strike by Evra which deflected off his heel and beat Tremmel into the bottom corner of the net. United comfortable now with a 2-goal cushion but Swansea will feel hard done by that they are 2-0 down..

Flick and in: striker Danny Welbeck celebrates his back flick to make it 2-0 to United.
60: It will be harder for Swansea to get back into the game, manager Michael Laudrup needs to make a few changes if he wants anything out of the game now.

61: The United fans are in full voice now as Swansea prepare for a substitution.

62: Swansea SUB:
Jonjo Shelvey OFF
Alvaro Vazquez ON

Vazquez comes on as an attacking option for Swansea (with Shelvey having a decent game) to help Bony in the middle of attack - can he contribute to the team and help them get back into the game? 

65: Another chance for United as Kagawa does well to feed a drilled cross into the box for a darting Smalling to tap towards goal... but he doesn't get his foot through the ball and his strike misses the target and flies over the bar. Could have easily made it 3-0 there... 

70: United look comfortable to hold this 2-0 lead now, Swansea need to conjure up something to even get back into this game let alone salvage a point.

80: Manchester United SUB:
Patrice Evra OFF
Alexander Buttner ON

Buttner gets 10 minutes of football after starting during midweek's 2-1 loss against Sunderland in the Capital One Cup semi-final first leg - a case of fresh legs.

83: Yes, I said it - United are happy to keep the ball with good interchanging play by Fletcher and Januzaj, who can blame them... they want a comfortable win and a clean sheet is a bonus.

86: Manchester United SUB:
Danny Welbeck OFF

Javier Hernandez ON

90: The fourth official has signalled for 3 minutes of stoppage time to play at Old Trafford, with United virtually sealing the three points and playing down the clock. 

90+2: Swansea have a free-kick from 25 yards out, with striker Wilfried Bony stepping over the set-piece wanting to have a strike... and the strike stays in the air and goes over the bar with De Gea watching it go over his head and narrowly over the crossbar. 

90+3: The referee blows his whistle to end the game at Old Trafford, with United winning at home thanks to a comfortable 2-0 win over Swansea. 

My Man Of The Match:
Adnan Januzaj 

The young Belgian was a pest for the Swansea defence to deal with throughout the game, almost scored a great free-kick from 20 yards out in the first-half and created many chances for the rest of his team-mates to take advantage of.

Pest: Januzaj is my MOTM, as he created many chances and almost scored for United today.
Was involved in both goals, crossing the ball into the box for Kagawa's header (which Valencia smashed into the net) before finding Evra's darting run into the box (which Welbeck flicked into the bottom corner of the net) 

He has a lot of potential to fulfil, at the tender age of 18 he could become one of the best creative midfielders in the world in a few years, as long as he focuses on his development, makes sure he stops diving and does not let the hype get to him. 

Thank you for reading my blog post today, I should have more LIVE Commentaries tomorrow afternoon as Newcastle host Manchester City (2.05pm) and Liverpool play against Stoke City (4.10pm)

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