Monday, September 23, 2013

Man City 4 - 1 Man Utd

Manchester City ensured David Moyes' first derby as Manchester United manager ended in abject humiliation with a crushing victory at the Etihad Stadium. 

In contrast to the despair of his opposite number, it was a day of delight for new City boss Manuel Pellegrini as he watched the rampant Blues make a powerful statement about their Premier League ambitions.
Sergio Aguero and Yaya Toure gave City a commanding half-time lead and any slim hopes of a United recovery were snuffed out by further goals from Aguero and Samir Nasri within five minutes of the restart.
Wayne Rooney's late free-kick offered nothing in the way of consolation for Moyes or United on a day of embarrassment that will sit uncomfortably alongside City's 6-1 win at Old Trafford two seasons ago.
United may have been without Robin van Persie because of a groin strain but the absence of one player - no matter how significant - cannot account for the manner in which Moyes' side were utterly outclassed.
This was arguably a more emphatic win than that Old Trafford thrashing, without the freakish element and simply the result of City's vast superiority in all areas.
Moyes, who never won a derby at Liverpool in 11 years as Everton manager, did not find the Etihad any more forgiving as City picked United apart in midfield, where Toure looked in a different class to United's £27.5m new boy Marouane Fellaini, and in defence as Aguero tormented Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand.
Pellegrini insisted this was a game City had to win - this they did and with the sort of performance that put down a marker for how the Chilean wants his team to play.
For Moyes, it means he has emerged without a win from the three toughest games of his opening Premier League phase as United manager, drawing at home to Chelsea and losing at Liverpool and now City.
City had already taken control long before Aguero put them ahead after 16 minutes. It was a move typical of so much that was produced by Pellegrini's men as Nasri linked with Aleksandar Kolarov, whose cross was volleyed home instinctively by the Argentine.
Rooney was virtually shouldering United's burden alone and with mounting frustration. It was no surprise when it boiled over and he was booked for a challenge on City captain Vincent Kompany, but at least he was showing the intent and desire markedly absent in the rest of his colleagues.
The only surprise was that City were still only one goal ahead as the first half drew to a conclusion but they got the lead their complete dominance deserved in stoppage time when Toure was unmarked at the far post to turn in Alvaro Negredo's touch from Nasri's corner.
If Moyes harboured hopes that the respite of the interval would provide some inspiration for his hapless United team, they were shattered within minutes of the restart as City quickly added two more goals to turn this derby into a rout.
United's defence went missing in the 47th minute when Kolarov and Negredo combined and the predatory Aguero was once more the beneficiary with a simple side-footed finish.
City were swarming all over United and the fourth came three minutes later when Jesus Navas crossed from the right for colleagues who were queuing up to score, the outstanding Nasri completing the job with a perfect volley.
In what almost seemed like an act of damage limitation, Moyes immediately introduced Tom Cleverley for Ashley Young, who had been arguably the worst among a whole collection of shocking United performers.
City, understandably, eased off and at least allowed United sight of goal, with Joe Hart saving well from Fellaini and Patrice Evra striking the upright with a powerful header.
Rooney deserved something for his efforts and he got it with a brilliant free-kick that made him the highest scorer in Manchester derbies 11 goals - but there was nothing else to please United on a day when they felt the full force of City's power.
From BBC
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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Man Utd 4 - 2 Bayern Leverkusen

Wayne Rooney reached the landmark of 200 goals for Manchester United as manager David Moyes made a winning start to his first Champions League group campaign. 

Rooney has emerged as United's outstanding performer so far this season after a summer of transfer speculation and he was the inspiration once more as Bayer Leverkusen were comfortably beaten.
The striker - still wearing protection on the head wound that sidelined him for the defeat at Liverpool and England's draw in Ukraine - put the hosts ahead in contentious fashion as the German side appealed furiously for offside.
And United had to survive a minor scare when Leverkusen captain Simon Rolfes equalised early in the second half before Moyes' side fashioned the emphatic victory their superiority deserved.
Robin van Persie's acrobatic volley put United back in front before Rooney turned on the style once more by scoring United's third and setting up another for Antonio Valencia with a pass weighted to perfection.
Omer Toprak's scrappy late second for Bayer could not take the gloss off a highly satisfactory night for Moyes on his first European adventure with United.
Rooney produced a body of evidence that only emphasised why Moyes and United were so steadfast in their refusal to consider his sale, despite the player's discontent and offers from Premier League rivals Chelsea.
Rooney's rehabilitation has been impressive and he was easily United's most dangerous performer as the Premier League champions got the three points they needed to start this Group A campaign.
He proved too powerful for the Bundesliga side to control and it would have been a familiar sight to their coach Sami Hyypia after his 10-year career at Liverpool.
Son Heung-Min was unfortunate to be shown a yellow card for a tussle with Rooney - but Leverkusen's pain was even more acute when he put United ahead in controversial fashion after 22 minutes.
Leverkusen thought Van Persie was offside in the build up but they were even more aggrieved when the referee's assistant - standing almost on top of the incident - failed to spot Valencia standing in a clearly offside position alongside keeper Bernd Leno as Rooney swept in Patrice Evra's cross.
Leverkusen showed signs of life after Rooney's goal but it was United, with Marouane Fellaini patrolling midfield effectively on his full debut, who were dictating terms and creating the better chances, with Rooney just off target with a free-kick and Shinji Kagawa's shot deflected just wide.
Rooney should have doubled United's lead, or at least given Van Persie the opportunity to do so, in a remarkable passage of play early in the second half.
Toprak's slip left Rooney clear as he rounded Leno but he decided to shoot rather than play the simplest of passes to Van Persie in front of an open net and fired his effort across the face of goal.
It was real reprieve for Leverkusen and they took full advantage seconds later as captain Rolfes swept a precise finish past motionless United keeper David de Gea, with the help of the slightest glance off Michael Carrick, after 54 minutes.
Leverkusen were only on terms for five minutes before Van Persie restored United's advantage with a typically athletic volley from Valencia's cross - although he was aided by a dubious attempt to save from Leno, who flapped limply at the shot as it went past him.
It effectively settled the contest and Rooney wrapped it up with a clever finish past Leno at the near post for a 200th United goal since his move from Everton in 2004.
And there was a touch of the old United flourishes when they went further in front with 12 minutes left. Rooney was instrumental once more as they broke at pace, bursting clear before providing an inviting pass for Valencia to take in his stride and drill past Leno.
Toprak scrambled in Leverkusen's second after 87 minutes - but it hardly qualified as consolation and Van Persie should have scored another only to somehow turn his effort across the face of an open goal when it seemed more difficult to miss.

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +3:05 Full time
Full Time The game is over, as the referee blows the whistle.
90:00 +2:19 A cross is delivered by Robbie Kruse. Clearance made by Patrice Evra.
90:00 +0:07 Giulio Donati delivers the ball. Clearance made by Chris Smalling. Emre Can takes a shot.
88:15 Shot by Robin van Persie missed to the right of the target.
87:35 Goal scored
Goal! - Omer Toprak - Man Utd 4 - 2 B Leverk'n Omer Toprak slots the ball right footed into the goal. Man Utd 4-2 Bayer Leverkusen.
86:58 Corner from the right by-line taken by Emre Can. Header at goal by Stefan Reinartz hits the woodwork.
86:42 Lars Bender produces a cross. Rio Ferdinand manages to make a clearance.
84:09 The ball is delivered by Antonio Valencia. Clearance made by Omer Toprak.
83:57 Substitution
Substitution Wayne Rooney leaves the field to be replaced by Javier Hernandez.
82:26 Corner from the right by-line taken by Robin van Persie. Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Bernd Leno catches the ball.
81:28 Corner taken by Robin van Persie. Clearance by Eren Derdiyok. Antonio Valencia takes a shot and went wide of the right hand upright.
81:09 A cross is delivered by Antonio Valencia. Clearance made by Emir Spahic.
80:34 Substitution
Substitution Marouane Fellaini leaves the field to be replaced by Tom Cleverley.
78:29 Assist on the goal came from Wayne Rooney.
78:29 Goal scored
Goal! - Antonio Valencia - Man Utd 4 - 1 B Leverk'n Antonio Valencia scores with a right foot finish. Man Utd 4-1 Bayer Leverkusen.
77:33 Substitution
Substitution Eren Derdiyok replaces Stefan Kiessling.
77:33 Substitution
Substitution Robbie Kruse is brought on as a substitute for Sidney Sam.
77:11 Lars Bender delivers the ball. Clearance by Rio Ferdinand.
76:22 Antonio Valencia sends in a cross. Emir Spahic makes a clearance.
74:48 Lars Bender fouled by Robin van Persie, the ref awards a free kick. Sidney Sam has an effort direct from the free kick. David De Gea catches the ball.
74:19 The ball is delivered by Simon Rolfes. Chris Smalling manages to make a clearance.
72:57 Antonio Valencia is caught offside. Free kick taken by Sebastian Boenisch.
70:37 Substitution
Substitution (Man Utd) makes a substitution, with Ashley Young coming on for Shinji Kagawa.
69:30 Goal scored
Goal! - Wayne Rooney - Man Utd 3 - 1 B Leverk'n Wayne Rooney scores a right footed goal. Man Utd 3-1 Bayer Leverkusen.
69:01 Lars Bender takes a shot. David De Gea safely holds on.
67:47 Antonio Valencia takes the chance to get an effort at goal and missed to the left of the target. Corner from the left by-line taken by Wayne Rooney. Stefan Kiessling manages to make a clearance.
65:16 Free kick awarded for a foul by Giulio Donati on Robin van Persie. Srike on goal from Wayne Rooney hits the wall from the free kick.
63:36 Substitution
Substitution Heung-Min Son goes off and Lars Bender comes on.
63:15 Sebastian Boenisch takes a shot and went wide of the right hand upright.
62:00 Sebastian Boenisch sends in a cross. Marouane Fellaini makes a clearance.
58:47 Assist by Antonio Valencia.
58:47 Goal scored
Goal! - Robin van Persie - Man Utd 2 - 1 B Leverk'n Robin van Persie scores with a right foot finish. Man Utd 2-1 Bayer Leverkusen.
58:39 The ball is crossed by Antonio Valencia.
57:46 Wayne Rooney crosses the ball. Clearance made by Stefan Reinartz.
57:11 Corner taken by Wayne Rooney from the left by-line. Clearance by Giulio Donati.
56:27 Sidney Sam takes a shot and missed to the left of the target.
53:44 Heung-Min Son provided the assist for the goal.
53:44 Goal scored
Goal! - Simon Rolfes - Man Utd 1 - 1 B Leverk'n Simon Rolfes grabs a goal with a left foot finish. Man Utd 1-1 Bayer Leverkusen.
53:24 Heung-Min Son takes a shot. Rio Ferdinand gets a block in.
53:02 Antonio Valencia produces a cross.
51:51 Shot by Wayne Rooney went wide of the right-hand post.
50:30 Sidney Sam takes a shot. David De Gea safely holds on.
50:17 The ball is crossed by Giulio Donati.
49:42 Stefan Kiessling gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Marouane Fellaini. Marouane Fellaini takes the free kick.
49:09 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Simon Rolfes by Robin van Persie. Omer Toprak takes the free kick.
48:36 Patrice Evra challenges Giulio Donati unfairly and gives away a free kick. Emir Spahic takes the free kick.
47:44 Antonio Valencia produces a cross that goes out of play.
45:46 The ball is sent over by Wayne Rooney. Bernd Leno catches the ball.
45:01 The second half kicks off.
45:00 +0:22 Half time
Half Time The whistle is blown to end the first half.
44:56 Shot by Robin van Persie missed to the left of the net.
44:42 Corner from the right by-line taken by Robin van Persie.
43:52 The ball is delivered by Antonio Valencia. Shinji Kagawa takes a shot and missed to the right of the net.
41:11 Foul by Emre Can on Robin van Persie, free kick awarded. Shot comes in from Wayne Rooney from the free kick that goes wide of the left-hand upright.
38:05 Booking
37:56 Giulio Donati fouled by Robin van Persie, the ref awards a free kick. The referee books Robin van Persie for unsporting behaviour. Bernd Leno restarts play with the free kick.
37:27 Foul by Robin van Persie on Omer Toprak, free kick awarded. Bernd Leno restarts play with the free kick.
35:00 Robin van Persie delivers the ball. Clearance made by Emir Spahic.
34:15 Free kick awarded for a foul by Chris Smalling on Simon Rolfes. Free kick taken by Stefan Reinartz.
33:40 Sebastian Boenisch produces a cross that goes out of play.
31:38 Giulio Donati takes a shot. Blocked by Nemanja Vidic. Corner taken by Emre Can from the left by-line.
31:06 Sebastian Boenisch produces a cross. Rio Ferdinand manages to make a clearance. Corner taken by Emre Can. Nemanja Vidic makes a clearance.
27:48 Sidney Sam delivers the ball. Clearance made by Chris Smalling. Corner taken by Emre Can from the left by-line.
26:29 Marouane Fellaini gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Simon Rolfes. Simon Rolfes restarts play with the free kick.
26:13 The referee blows for offside against Robin van Persie. Omer Toprak takes the free kick.
24:34 Corner from the right by-line taken by Robin van Persie.
21:09 Assist on the goal came from Patrice Evra.
21:09 Goal scored
Goal! - Wayne Rooney - Man Utd 1 - 0 B Leverk'n Wayne Rooney grabs a goal with a right foot finish. Man Utd 1-0 Bayer Leverkusen.
21:09 A cross is delivered by Patrice Evra.
18:30 Booking
18:19 Stefan Reinartz challenges Michael Carrick unfairly and gives away a free kick. Stefan Reinartz is given a yellow card. Robin van Persie produces a cross. Header at goal by Chris Smalling goes over the bar.
16:21 Chris Smalling produces a cross. Emir Spahic makes a clearance. The ball is sent over by Michael Carrick. Bernd Leno catches the ball.
15:52 Free kick awarded for a foul by Stefan Kiessling on Nemanja Vidic. Free kick taken by Nemanja Vidic.
14:26 A cross is delivered by Sidney Sam. Clearance by Rio Ferdinand.
13:23 Booking
13:14 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Wayne Rooney by Heung-Min Son. Michael Carrick restarts play with the free kick. Heung-Min Son goes into the book for unsporting behaviour.
12:31 Stefan Reinartz takes a shot. Nemanja Vidic gets a block in. Corner from the right by-line taken by Sidney Sam. Nemanja Vidic manages to make a clearance.
11:40 Emre Can sends in a cross. Clearance made by Nemanja Vidic.
10:23 Corner taken by Sidney Sam. Clearance made by Rio Ferdinand.
9:55 Robin van Persie takes a shot and missed to the right of the net.
9:01 Foul by Stefan Reinartz on Marouane Fellaini, free kick awarded. Michael Carrick takes the free kick.
7:11 Wayne Rooney takes a shot. Omer Toprak gets a block in.
4:13 Free kick awarded for a foul by Sebastian Boenisch on Chris Smalling. Michael Carrick takes the free kick.
0:00 The match begins.

From BBC
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Manchester United: Federico Macheda joins Doncaster

Doncaster Rovers have completed the signing of Manchester United striker Federico Macheda on an initial one-month loan deal. 

The 22-year-old Italian could make his Championship debut for Rovers at Watford on Tuesday.
Doncaster manager Paul Dickov told BBC Radio Sheffield it was "a massive coup" for the South Yorkshire club.
"We've got him for an initial month with a view to extending it to the 93 days, which is the maximum," he said.
"I know from speaking to Sir Alex Ferguson and David Moyes he's a top quality player and David knows we'll look after him and keep him informed on his progress.
"We had a little nibble at him before the season started, but it wasn't to be then.
"Hopefully he'll add goals. He's been to big clubs on loan but not really played for them, and he's very hungry to get his career back on track. It's been a frustrating couple of years for him and he's keen to hit the ground running.
"Technically he's very good, he can hold the ball up, but we want to get him in the box because that's where he's at his best."
Macheda, who has played for Italy at every level up to Under-21, has made only 15 full and 21 substitute appearances for Manchester United in all competitions since joining the club as a trainee from Lazio in 2007, scoring five goals.
He trained with Rovers on Monday, and the club completed the paperwork later in the day.
From BBC
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Sunday, September 15, 2013

Man Utd 2 - 0 Crystal Palace

Robin van Persie's controversial penalty helped Manchester United beat 10-man Crystal Palace, giving new boss David Moyes a first home league win.
Van Persie slotted in a 45th-minute spot-kick after Kagisho Dikgacoi was adjudged to have fouled Ashley Young.
Dikgacoi was red-carded, with Palace unhappy at the decision and arguing the offence took place outside the area.
Marouane Fellaini came on after 62 minutes to make his United debut before Wayne Rooney scored from a free-kick.
Moyes will be relieved at the three points after one Premier League win from his opening three games, while he will also welcome the scoring return of Rooney ahead of a Champions League group match against Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday.
However, on the whole, United struggled to break down their stubborn visitors - even when Palace were down to 10 men - in an unconvincing performance watched by former manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
The Eagles will be left aggrieved by a dubious penalty decision by referee Jon Moss which had such a big bearing on the match.
Palace manager Ian Holloway had to watch from the stands as he served the first match of a two-game ban, but his strategy was to contain United and hope to catch them out on the counter-attack.
The game plan invited pressure, but the visitors slowly becalmed their hosts with a disciplined and organised rearguard.
United had not scored in their previous two league games and, apart from having a long-range Michael Carrick shot saved, they were being frustrated by Palace.
The Old Trafford side also had two penalty shouts turned down, with the first waved away after Patrice Evra went down following a Mile Jedinak challenge.
Young also went to ground following a Dikgacoi tackle but the United winger was booked for diving instead of being awarded a spot-kick.
As the first half drew to a close, there was a flurry of activity. Van Persie's near-post flick from a low Evra cross went wide before the Dutch striker beautifully controlled a floated Rooney ball and volleyed against the crossbar.
At the other end, Palace forward Dwight Gayle excellently controlled a cross and went past centre-back Rio Ferdinand only to dink his shot wide of onrushing keeper David De Gea.
Then came the main moment of contention in the match as Jedinak gave the ball away to Young, who was clean through on goal before going down as Dikgacoi came across to block him.
The referee pointed to the spot and sent off the Palace midfielder before Van Persie sent keeper Julian Speroni the wrong way from the spot.
Palace felt wronged by the decision but regrouped and continued to show resilience to limit the damage, although the minor goal threat they had carried was blunted by the sending off.
United were doing all the attacking and went close when a Young shot was parried by Speroni, who then pushed away a well-struck Fellaini half-volley.
The Old Trafford side did eventually extend their lead when Rooney curled in a 25-yard free-kick as United extended a run of nearly 12 years unbeaten on home soil against newly promoted teams.
Crystal Palace manager Ian Holloway:
"My opinion doesn't count because the rules are the rules. I just have to deal with it and would rather talk about that and the team and the pride I feel.
"The referee has a difficult job to do and, with a crowd like that that, I wouldn't like to do it.
"I am disappointed in the fact we lost but not in the manner we lost it, behaved and applied ourselves. It was as good a performance with 10 men as I have seen for a long time. Hopefully we can gain some solace from that.
"We relaxed and looked like we came of age. We were much, much better in the second half."
From BBC
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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Marouane Fellaini joins Manchester United for £27.5m

Manchester United have signed Everton midfielder Marouane Fellaini for £27.5m late on transfer deadline day. 

United had made a joint bid of £28m for both Fellaini, 25, and full-back Leighton Baines in August, which the Toffees had described as "derisory".
Fellaini had a release clause of £23.5m in his Everton deal until 31 July.
Manager David Moyes said: "He is a player with great ability and strength and I think he will make a real difference to our squad."
He added: "He can play higher up, if we need it, behind the striker or as a defensive or holding midfielder. In any position in the middle of the field he's comfortable.
"Because of that I think it's definitely a position where people have said we've been short of numbers, with the likes of Paul Scholes [retiring] and Darren Fletcher not ready to come back just now. I felt we needed to strengthen there and I'm glad we got him."
The Belgian, who joined Everton from Standard Liege for £15m in 2008, was contracted to the Toffees until 2016.
He said: "I am thrilled to sign for Manchester United. I have known the manager for many years now and I have a lot of respect for his way of working. When I was given the opportunity to work with him again, I jumped at the chance.
"Being a Manchester United player is something that every player dreams of and I believe that I can make a real contribution to the team's efforts to win trophies in the future."
Full-back Guillermo Varela is United's only other signing of the summer.
United tried to sign Athletic Bilbao midfielder Ander Herrera and Everton full-back Baines before the deadline, but failed in their attempts.
They were also left waiting on a deal for Real Madrid left-back Fabio Coentrao which is yet to be confirmed.
Old Trafford manager David Moyes said after the 1-0 defeat at Liverpool on Sunday that the club would try to bring in more players before summer window shut, but added: "I'm more than happy with the players I've got."
Fellaini was signed by Moyes five years ago and was a regular first-team player for the Scot. Despite being a midfielder, he was used as an emergency striker during his debut season and scored nine goals.
The Belgian, who made his international debut in 2007, was also booked 10 times in his first 17 games, but avoided a lengthier suspension by attending a personal hearing with Keith Hackett, England's chief referee, where the player gave his side of events but also vowed to improve his behaviour.
He suffered an ankle ligament injury in February 2010 that kept him out of the rest of the season and another ankle injury around the same time the following season that forced him to miss the remainder of that campaign.
Fellaini bounced back and had an impressive 2011-12 season and was awarded with a five-year contract in November 2011.
He finished last season as the Everton's top scorer with 12 goals in all competitions.
The deal was confirmed 51 minutes after the 23:00 BST deadline on Monday.
From BBC
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Manchester United: Nick Powell joins Wigan on season-long loan

Wigan have signed Manchester United's Nick Powell on a season-long loan. 

Powell, 19, made just six appearances for United since joining from Crewe Alexandra last summer for around £6m.
In joining the FA Cup holders, he follows in the footsteps of fellow United midfielder Tom Cleverley, who spent 2010-11 on loan at Wigan.
"We obviously had Tom on loan and I think United were happy with the job we did with him, it's good news," said Latics chairman Dave Whelan.
England Under-19 international Powell, a product of the respected Crewe youth system, scored against Wigan on his debut in a 4-0 win Old Trafford.
He made two appearances in the Champions League under Sir Alex Ferguson, but has been allowed to move on a temporary basis to a club which will allow him to remain settled in the north-west of England.
Whelan, meanwhile, believes any transfer which could take Wigan midfielder James McCarthy to Everton is unlikely to materialise.
The Republic of Ireland international had been widely tipped to move to Goodison Park as a replacement for Everton's Marouane Fellaini, who has submitted a transfer requested ahead of an expected move to Manchester United.
"Everton are not matching what we are looking for. We asked for a certain price from Everton for James McCarthy, and they have not come near it," Whelan said.
"We have to be fair with the player, and our football club. They said they were going to pay us over four years."
From BBC
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Monday, September 2, 2013

Rooney, Jones & Johnson to miss World Cup qualifiers

Injured trio Wayne Rooney, Phil Jones and Glen Johnson have withdrawn from the England squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Moldova and Ukraine. 

Manchester United striker Rooney suffered a head injury during training and missed the 1-0 defeat at Liverpool, while team-mate Jones came off with an ankle problem during the match.
Liverpool full-back Johnson also left the field with the same problem.
Cardiff defender Steven Caulker, 21, has been called up to the senior squad.
England play Moldova at Wembley on Friday before a tough assignment in Ukraine the following Tuesday.
United manager David Moyes had stated before Sunday's Premier League match against Liverpool that 27-year-old Rooney would not be available for England duty
"[The injury will] probably keep him out for a few weeks," said the Old Trafford manager.
"He's got a cut down the middle of his forehead. I would think he's got no chance [of playing for England]."
England coach Roy Hodgson was at the game at Anfield and witnessed Jones come off in the 37th minute before Johnson left the field late in the second half.
Meanwhile, Reds striker Daniel Sturridge, who scored the winner, said he had been "hindered" by a thigh injury but was hopeful he would be available for the forthcoming qualifiers.
"He has struggled in the last couple of games and we need to think of Liverpool first," said his manager Brendan Rodgers.
England currently trail Montenegro by two points in Group H with a game in hand and are only one point ahead of Ukraine.
From BBC
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Liverpool 1 - 0 Man Utd

Liverpool secured their best start to a Premier League season since 1994-95 with victory over champions Manchester United at Anfield. 

Daniel Sturridge celebrated his 24th birthday with his third successive winner of the season by steering in a close-range header in the third minute.
Liverpool deserved their latest single-goal victory, a result that also maintained new United manager David Moyes' miserable record at Anfield.
Moyes hoped for better luck with United after 12 games without victory as Everton manager - but his team came up short despite enjoying plenty of possession in the second half after being outplayed before the break.
The visitors were without Wayne Rooney after he suffered a head wound in training, which also keeps him out of England's World Cup qualifiers against Moldova and Ukraine. How they missed his creativity.
Robin van Persie squandered United's best chance late on but otherwise it was a relatively comfortable afternoon for Liverpool's new goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, who has yet to concede a Premier League goal since his £9m summer move from Sunderland.
And it was a fitting victory for Liverpool as Anfield celebrated the 100th anniversary of the birth of their legendary Scottish manager Bill Shankly.
Current incumbent Brendan Rodgers will surely settle for fourth place this season and the early evidence hints at great promise, with suspended striker Luis Suarez still to return.
As for United, this was a performance lacking in inspiration, purpose and threat and once again underlined the urgency for transfer business to be done in the closing hours of the transfer window.
Everton's Marouane Fellaini looks one certain arrival but Moyes, who also saw United held to a draw by Chelsea at Old Trafford on Monday, needs even more of a spark in a midfield that looked laboured by this team's standards.
Having suffered the loss of Rooney just as he had returned to the fold, Moyes' mood will not have improved as Liverpool took the lead in the third minute. Ashley Young's ill-advised attempt to dribble out of danger ended in a corner and when Steven Gerrard's delivery was headed goalwards by Daniel Agger, Sturridge deflected it home from virtually on the line.
United's initial response was bright, with Young's corner drifting untouched across the six-yard area and Van Persie just unable to keep an overhead kick down.
Moyes was forced into a first-half reshuffle when Phil Jones, watched by England manager Roy Hodgson ahead of World Cup qualifiers with Moldova and Ukraine, limped off and was replaced by Antonio Valencia.
But as the half progressed, Liverpool's pressure and high-tempo passing game increased United's frustration and it threatened to boil over on the stroke of half-time when Van Persie, who had already been booked, was involved in angry verbal exchanges with several Liverpool players, particularly Gerrard.
United began with more purpose in the early phase of the second half and Liverpool were grateful for Glen Johnson's crucial block from Young's goalbound shot.
It was the disappointing Young's final contribution as he was replaced by Nani shortly after Liverpool had introduced Raheem Sterling for Iago Aspas.
United were having more possession but a sign of the effectiveness of Liverpool's defence was that it took the visitors 76 minutes to force Mignolet into serious action, when he dived to punch away a shot from substitute Nani.
There was another worry for Liverpool, and watching England boss Hodgson, when Johnson limped off with 13 minutes left.
Van Persie wasted United's best chance with three minutes left when he was played in by substitute Javier Hernandez but could not find the target with an angled finish.

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +5:36 Full time
Full Time The referee brings the game to a close.
90:00 +5:19 Short corner taken by Luis Alberto.
90:00 +4:39 Raheem Sterling takes a shot. David De Gea turns it away with a finger tip save.
90:00 +4:08 Martin Skrtel restarts play with the free kick.
90:00 +3:33 Tom Cleverley challenges Daniel Sturridge unfairly and gives away a free kick.
90:00 +2:04 Free kick taken by Steven Gerrard.
90:00 +1:34 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Raheem Sterling by Michael Carrick.
90:00 +0:27 The ball is crossed by Tom Cleverley.
90:00 +0:14 Jordan Henderson manages to make a clearance.
90:00 +0:14 Tom Cleverley makes a clearance.
90:00 +0:08 Clearance by Jordan Henderson.
90:00 Sanchez Jose Enrique manages to make a clearance.
89:57 Robin van Persie crosses the ball in from the free kick.
89:18 Leiva Lucas receives a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.
89:18 Booking
88:59 Leiva Lucas gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Tom Cleverley.
88:05 Raheem Sterling makes a clearance.
88:02 Centre by Patrice Evra.
87:56 Antonio Valencia sends in a cross.
87:55 Martin Skrtel makes a clearance.
 From BBC
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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Gareth Bale: David Moyes coy on Manchester United interest

Manchester United boss David Moyes refused to deny his side's interest in Gareth Bale after it emerged a club have made a rival bid to Real Madrid for the Tottenham forward.
Real have offered a world record £86m for the 24-year-old but Spurs have not accepted the bid yet.
When asked whether they were in for Bale, Moyes said: "I said at the start when I got the job that Manchester United will always be interested in the best players and we're always looking to try to improve the team."
Speaking after the 0-0 draw with Chelsea, he added: "The owners have given me every opportunity to bring in who I want and we'll continue to try and find those players.
"It's been tough in this window but we're always looking at the best players. I can't give you any more."
Real Madrid are still believed to be favourites to sign the Wales international.
Bale, who joined Spurs in a £10m deal from Southampton in 2007, was named player of the year by both the Professional Footballers' Association and Football Writers last season after scoring 26 goals for the White Hart Lane side.
Ex-United assistant Mike Phelan, who left the club this summer, told BBC Radio 5 live that he still expects Bale to join the Spanish giants.
"I'd be extremely surprised if Bale doesn't join Real Madrid in the next couple of days.
"Man United would be in position to do a deal of that magnitude if they wished. It would be hugely disappointing for Bale if it [the Real move] didn't happen.
"Good players are always targets and he's been a consistently good player. It's no surprise that he's attracted massive attention."
From BBC
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Man Utd 0 - 0 Chelsea

The much-anticipated meeting between Manchester United and Chelsea ended in anti-climax as Old Trafford witnessed its first goalless draw in the Premier League since May 2009. 

David Moyes was taking charge of his first competitive home game since succeeding Sir Alex Ferguson as Manchester United manager, while Jose Mourinho had his sights sets on a third successive league win since returning to Chelsea.
In the end, despite an outstanding performance for United by the recalled Wayne Rooney, both Moyes and Mourinho had to settle for a point in the first blank scoreline here in 77 Premier League games, since United clinched the title against Arsenal in 2009.
Rooney was the game's most dangerous player and was vociferously backed by United's supporters throughout - as well as receiving vocal support from the travelling Chelsea fans who still hold out hope he can be lured to Stamford Bridge despite Moyes' insistence he would not be sold.
It was a game short on clear-cut chances and quality, with United's Danny Welbeck wasting the best opportunity when he shot wide just before the hour.
Mourinho will be happier with the point but there was frustration for Moyes, who would have hoped to make a winning start at Old Trafford as he starts the task of retaining the Premier League won by Ferguson before his retirement.
Rooney's discontent at Old Trafford provided much of the sub-plot before the game but Moyes was happy to select Mourinho's top transfer target and was rewarded with a fine personal performance.
Mourinho's selection was perhaps more of a comment in his lack of faith in his strikers as Fernando Torres and Romelu Lukaku were left on the bench and Demba Ba was not in the squad.
Perhaps the biggest surprise was the absence of Juan Mata, and the likes of Kevin De Bruyne and Andre Schurrle did little to suggest they were worthy of selection ahead of the Spain star who has illuminated Stamford Bridge.
The two managers greeted each other warmly on a night of high expectation that was not fulfilled, particularly in a turgid opening half.
Robin van Persie lifted the tedium with a shot into the side-netting while the lively Rooney forced Petr Cech to save low down. Chelsea's only serious response was a snap shot by Oscar that was easily dealt with by United goalkeeper David de Gea.
Rooney created United's best chance so far by playing in Welbeck in the area in the 58th minute but his finish was poor, much to Old Trafford's frustration.
Gary Cahill then fired straight at De Gea from long range before Mourinho introduced Torres for De Bruyne.
Moyes made a change of his own when Ashley Young replaced Antonio Valencia and he instantly produced two fine crosses that required a fine headed clearance from John Terry and a desperate scramble from Cech.
Rooney had been, by some distance, United's biggest threat and the crowd rose to him once more when a 25-yard effort brought a fine diving save from Cech.
United tried to mount a trademark late charge but Van Persie was denied by a fine block by Branislav Ivanovic in stoppage time. 

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +4:07 Full time
Full Time The referee signals the end of the game.
90:00 +3:26 Gary Cahill manages to make a clearance.
90:00 +3:22 Shot by Wayne Rooney went wide of the right-hand upright.
90:00 +3:21 Shot by Nemanja Vidic went wide left of the goal.
90:00 +3:19 Corner from the right by-line taken by Robin van Persie.
90:00 +3:10 Substitution
Substitution (Chelsea) makes a substitution, with Cesar Azpilicueta coming on for Eden Hazard.
90:00 +2:31 Clearance by Ashley Cole.
90:00 +2:30 Centre by Ashley Young.
90:00 +2:06 The ball is swung over by Eden Hazard.
90:00 +0:32 Ryan Giggs makes a clearance.
90:00 +0:06 Ashley Young manages to make a clearance.
89:40 Clearance by Rio Ferdinand.
89:02 Free kick taken by Petr Cech.
88:29 Unfair challenge on Gary Cahill by Robin van Persie results in a free kick.
88:26 Free kick taken by Nemanja Vidic.
88:18 Free kick awarded for a foul by Fernando Torres on Nemanja Vidic.
88:16 Nemanja Vidic makes a clearance.
87:42 Patrice Evra takes the chance to get an effort at goal and missed to the right of the target.
87:39 Robin van Persie has an effort at goal. Mikel gets a block in.
87:34 Clearance made by Gary Cahill.

From BBC
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