Campus Life

The Manchester United juggernaut stirs

Source: Getty Images

Source: Getty Images

An air of expectancy hovered over Manchester yesterday evening as Louis Van Gaal and his newly-assembled Manchester United team made their way onto the hallowed Old Trafford turf to square off against unfancied QPR.

There was a buzz in the crowd that hadn’t been felt during David Moyes’ tenure, but now, with Van Gaal and his ‘Gaalacticos’ in tow, the Old Trafford faithful was buzzing again; an air of excitement tempered only by the news that new striker Radamel Falcao would start the match from the bench.

It wasn’t long before the crowd was singing however as another United new boy, Angel Di Maria, scored from a free-kick. His low, fizzing delivery was intended for the head of an onrushing teammate, but the ball was so perfectly placed that it evaded everyone on the pitch, including the outstretched arms of QPR keeper Robert Green. 1-0 United.



Soon it was 2-0. Di Maria made a mazy run into the box and cut it back perfectly for Rooney, who had his shot blocked, before laying it off for Herrera.  The Spaniard didn’t need a second invitation as he hit the ball first time, low and hard, into the back of the net.

The writing was on the wall for QPR when Rooney was given time and space in the QPR box and slotted the ball past Green to get his goal. And it was 4-0 shortly into the second-half as a mishit shot from Di Maria pinged its way onto Mata’s foot. Mata only had to fire it past the hapless Green to compound QPR’s misery.

At 4-0 the stage was set for Falcao’s debut and the crowd swelled with applause as the star hitman stripped off his tracksuit and got ready for action. Falcao enjoyed twenty-five minutes on the pitch and nearly preyed upon a Robert Green error, but the QPR shot-stopper made a smart save to deny Falcao a dream start to his United career.

In the end, Falcao’s inability to score was the only slight blemish on a perfect day for Van Gaal and his new-look team. A United crowd hasn’t been this excited since Ferguson’s glory days.

It’s too early to make predictions yet, but United’s new signings look a potent force.