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Monday, January 14, 2008

Rio relishes Reds' miserly streak

Rio Ferdinand insisted clean sheets are as important as goals after United’s 6-0 romp over Newcastle on Saturday.

The towering centre-back scored the Reds’ fourth goal against the Magpies, but he took greater pride from his side’s imperious defending throughout the match as United registered a 13th clean sheet in 22 league games.

“It’s nice to get on the goalscoring sheet, but more important for me was the clean sheet,” he told Setanta Sports. “If we keep clean sheets then we’ve got people like Ronny (Cristiano Ronaldo) upfront who can score us goals.”

The Reds’ canter, allied to Arsenal’s failure to beat Birmingham, saw the champions move back to the top of the Premier League. United’s form augurs well in the ongoing title race, and Ferdinand is keen to keep his focus in-house.

“We’ll have to wait and see, we just concentrate on Manchester United,” he said. “If we keep clean sheets and score the odd goal here and there then we know we’re going to be in with a shout at the end of the season.

“It’s too early to say whether we’re going to stay there or not, we have to get our consistency going and make sure we’re performing like we did today and we’ll be alright.” Read more...

Rooney's been robbed!

Wayne Rooney's frustration at not finding the net in the Reds’ 6-0 win on the weekend was clear, and perhaps more understandable when you consider the United ace learnt just 24 hours prior to kick off that his personal goals tally had been cut by the Premier League.

A memo circulated last Friday from the Dubious Goals Committee revealed the Reds’ opener at the Emirates Stadium in November had been ruled as a William Gallas own goal.

United’s club statistician and official media outlets, including, had previously credited the strike to the England international.

The decision now means Rooney’s 2007/08 tally stands at nine, while his goal at Villa Park in the recent FA Cup third round clash was his 68th in a United shirt.

Other rulings by the Dubious Goals Committee included allowing Rio Ferdinand and Ryan Giggs’ strikes at Villa Park in October to stand as Reds goals, while the same decision applies to Carlos Tevez’s second against Middlesbrough and Cristiano Ronaldo’s first against Blackburn Rovers. Read more...