Leeds United 0 – 3 Manchester United
Full time Man United’s unconventional back four suggested an upset might be on the cards but a professional display from Sir Alex’s side ensured that wasn’t to be the case, it wasn’t even a contest at half time if truth be told. Another example of the gulf in class between the upper echelons of the premier league and everyone else.
90+1min Nunez is through after some nice play by Snodgrass but he wastes the chance and it’s all over
90min Fourth offical shows two minutes of added time, not sure why as they stopped playing about 20 minutes ago
88min Nunez gets it in the box but is easily dispossessed in the box by Valenica, who’s looked solid at right back
85min This at almost testimonial pace now, neither side is even tackling at this stage
84min Berbatov plays Forssell offside rather well in his first involvement as a defender
83minSir Alex says ‘Ah sure why not’ and moves Berbatov to centre back. Valencia, Carrick, Berbatov and Fabio are their back four now
82min Man Uts are down to ten as Fryers comes off with a tight hamstring, he’s had a very composed if untesting debut
80min Clayton, Leeds’ best player tonight, shoots high from distance after more good defending keeps Leeds at a distance
77min SUB Larnell Cole on for Macheda who hasn’t made much of an impression on tonight’s game at all
76min Leeds win it back after some MUFC pressure but by the time they’ve moved past the half way line everyone’s back in position
75min Owen wins a corner as his shot is deflected following the first real action in the second half as Valencia finds space on the right
73min Both teams have their foot off the pedal now, looks like this one is just going to fade out
69min Danny Wellbeck comes on for Diouf
67min Nunez introduces himself on the game by jumping in needlessly on Valencia
66min SUB: Ramon Nunez on for McCormack
65min Leeds are offering nothing here, an early over the top ball from midfield and Becchio is offside. The Argentine hasn’t looked bright at all tonight
62min Pogba tries a shot, less than impressive
61min Macheda incidentally has been pretty poor tonight. Eager to get on the ball but no real idea what to do once he gets it
60min Macheda’s put through be Berbatov and shoots wide from a tight angle, flagged for offside anyway – wrongly
57min Pogba’s looked mature so far, always showing for it in the middle and giving a glimpse of his vision and work ethic with a long ball over the top for Diouf and following it up to pass to Park
55min Berbatov feeds it to Owen at the end of the box, Lonegan is in beaten but his scooped shot bounces past the far post. Owen should have done better
51min SUB: Mikael Forssell comes on for Becchio and Mika Vayrynen on for Andrew Keogh
50min Still no signs of life from Leeds, no pressure on the ball and allowing MUFC to pass between the lines
47min Darren O’Dea gets a yellow for a push and niggle on Michael Owen
47min MUFC continue as they left off, passing the ball around comfortably with little pressure from Leeds
45min SUB: Ryan Giggs off for hot prospect Paul Pogba, who’ll slot into the centre
Half time A very comfortable start for the Premier League champions and as Leeds continue if Leeds can’t lift themselves in the second half this could be a rout
46+1min GOAL. Another short corner, Park plays it back to Giggs who runs straight at the Leeds defender and pokes it with the outside of his left foot into the goal. Lovely from the veteran
44min They opt for another short corner, work it across the pitch and it‘s out for a throw-in to Leeds
43min MUFC win a corner, Aidan White gets caught on th eball by Valencia and crosses to the near post 41min Becchio heads wide, never really threatened and Leeds will have to find another gear if they are to trouble MUFC
38min Another promising move from Leeds breaks down as McCormack puts his foot on the ball and allows MUFC to regroup, and are happy to let Leeds pass it around without any aim in front of them
37min Snodgrass goes into the book with a reckless tackle from behind on Park
35min Valencia goes so close after MUFC are allowed stroll the ball into the box as Leeds drop off, should be three
31min GOAL Owen again, Diouf plays the ball across the box from wide, Owen takes a touch and a strong finish from the edge of the area
30min Fabio plays Macheda in with a nice pass but the Italian takes too long to make his mind up and it’s a corner only
30min Half an hour, the MUFC back line has proved fairly solid so far. Fryers looks confident on the ball and seems to have a decent passing range
28min Snodgrass can’t quite find the target from an ambitious but well taken shot after finding himself in space
26min Becchio wins the first header from the resulting free but Bromby is offside for the follow up, they’ve been poor so far from set-pieces against a less than convincing United back line
26min Diouf joins Fabio in the back after tackling Snodgrass from behind
23min Fabio is the first name into the book, dives in from a distance on Bromby but no malice in it
22min LUFC are now enjoying the lion’s share of the ball but Fergie has his men defending in numbers and Leeds can’t find that killer pass
21min Clayton makes a bit of space for himself, cutting in from the left wing and gets a shot off but it’s straight into Amos’ arms
20min MUFC have been in control since the goal and are settling into possession better than the home side
14min GOAL! Michael Owen shoots from inside the box after a cut back from Park
12min Snodgrass crosses a dangerous one but Fabio has no trouble clearing
9min Owen goes down just outside the area, Clayton had an arm around him but it would have been a very soft free
7min Just while the game calms down, Giggs is taking up a role in the middle of the park with Macheda drifting out left
5minCleared off the line twice by Leads after Snodgrass gets free on the left hand side and the home side pour into the box, game has started at a good pace
2min Diouf ends a nice passing movement from MUFC with a rather embarrassing air-shot leaving him on his back side
1min Ross McCormack attempts a very feeble shot from 30 yards out, game is yet to settle
0min MUFC kick off and immediately give away possession. It’s a electric atmosphere in Elland Road
0min The teams enter the pitch to a rousing chant of “Leeds, Leeds, Leeds, Leeds”, effective if not imaginative from the Leeds fans. We’ll be under way in a few
0min So Ferguson has said that Fryers, Carrick’s partner at centre back is naturally a left back whose best abilities are his “lightening pace and good passing.” He must be hoping that they have a lot of the ball with that back four and Luciano Becchio spearheading the Leeds attack
0min The teams are in; Leeds United: Lonergan; Lees, O’Dea, Bromby, White; Snodgrass, Clayton, Howson; Keogh, McCormack, Becchio Subs: Rachubka, O’Brien, Vayrynen, Brown, Forssell, Nunez, Tayor.
Manchester United: Amos; Valencia, Fryers, Carrick, Fabio; Giggs, Park, Macheda, Diouf; Owen, Berbatov.Subs: D’Gea, Wellbeck, Brown, Keane, Thorpe, Pogba, Cole. Hmm… Carrick at centre back with Valencia at right back?
The early stages of the Carling Cup rarely throw up any real excitement but this encounter showcases arguably England’s fiercest rivalry and always makes for a feisty atmosphere – the 9,000 Leeds’ fans reaction to last year’s FA cup win at Old Trafford is testament to that.
Even though the stakes are low for Manchester United, Sir Alex will be keen to avenge that loss and he may temper his usual Carling Cup youngsters with the likes of Michael Carrick, Michael Owen and Ryan Giggs all expected to feature.
Of the youngsters, French 18 year-old Paul Pogba is the one to keep an eye on – the athletic central-midfielder has been compared to Patrick Viera but has a superb vision and execution that points to a more complete attacking force, he has impressed with a number of long-range goals in his time at United.
We’ll have the teams as we get them and live commentary will begin at 7.45
Leeds will be without suspended defender Patrick Kisnorbo so one of Leigh Bromby and Alex Bruce will be come in. Manager Simon Grayson has no new injury problems ahead of the game but could a first start since April to fit-again Luciano Becchio. Becchio could be paired alongside Billy Paynter who is also fit after a shin injury.
Sir Alex Ferguson will make a number of changes to his team youngster with Paul Pogba and Will Keane set to be involved, as will Michael Owen who is set to make his first appearance of the season for United.
Fellow strikers Mame Biram Diouf and Federico Macheda will also be involved while the experience will come in the shape of duo Park Ji-sung and Ryan Giggs, who are included in the match day squad.
Man Utd (from): Lindegaard, Amos, Fabio, Jones, Evans, Giggs, Park, Carrick, Fletcher, Valencia, Owen, Berbatov, Macheda, Diouf, Pogba, W Keane, James, Brown, M.Keane, Thorpe, Fryers.