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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Fabio Da Silva and Rafael Da Silva Highlights Video Clip


Wembley player ratings's Steve Bartram assesses how United's players fared in the Community Shield victory over Portsmouth at Wembley...

Edwin van der Sar
A virtual spectator throughout the entire match, United's penalty talisman could even have spent the shootout on a deckchair as Pompey squandered their chances.

Gary Neville
The skipper looked sharp in his first competitive start since March 2007. Neville was booked for a hefty challenge on John Utaka before being subbed after 66 minutes.

Rio Ferdinand
Barely broke a sweat in keeping Peter Crouch on a tight leash, dominating the Pompey new boy in the air and on the deck. As imperious as ever.

Nemanja Vidic
The one time Vida allowed perpetual pain Jermain Defoe some room, he did superbly to chase back and reel him in. Booked for hoofing the ball away, but otherwise impeccable.

Patrice Evra
Probably the star performer of the first half, with his staggering fitness levels clear for all to see as he rampaged up and down the left flank.

Darren Fletcher
Got forward with great intent and had United's best pair of chances. Although Fletch mis-timed his sliding effort in the first half, only a stunning save from James denied him later.

John O'Shea
A quietly effective display from the Irishman, who regularly prevented Pompey from building any attacking momentum and lent attacking support when circumstances allowed.

Paul Scholes
The Reds' timeless lockpicker coped well with Lassana Diarra's energy and exuded his usual string-pulling cool.

The Portuguese winger terrorised the Pompey defence throughout, particularly in the first half, and his attacking threat will be missed against Newcastle next Sunday.

Carlos Tevez
Having starred all pre-season, the bustling Argentine should have had a penalty, could have had a couple of goals and generally ran the show in United's attack.

Ryan Giggs
A record seventh Community Shield for Giggs, who outsmarted the Pompey defence time and again, and was one of the Reds' most potent attacking threats.

Wes Brown (sub, 66 mins)
A seamless replacement for Neville, Wes had little to do defensively in his 24 minute cameo.

Michael Carrick (sub, 66 mins)
Lent more attacking creativity. Another shootout, another goal for the classy midfielder.

Fraizer Campbell (sub, 79 mins)
Unfortunate not to score after cleverly making space, and showed plenty of graft.

Reds' dominance delights Boss

Sir Alex Ferguson was mystified that it took penalty kicks to overcome Portsmouth in the Community Shield, but still declared himself happy with an excellent performance.

The Reds dominated Harry Redknapp's side for long stretches at Wembley and, while satisfied by yet more silverware, it was the display which most delighted the manager.

"It's always nice, winning - I think that's the name of the game at our club," Sir Alex said. "The players showed that today, the determination and enjoyment of the game was good and I was very pleased with the performance today, it was excellent.

"How it got to penalty kicks, that's one of the mysteries of football. We created a lot of chances, we were the better team, but it's only pre-season."

Sir Alex is under no illusions that, while the first trophy of the season has been procured, the barometer of United's strength comes in the shape of next Sunday's Premier League curtain-raiser against Newcastle.

"It doesn't really do a lot other than it gives us the winning of the shield. It's very good for the young players involved today like Campbell, Possebon and da Silva," he said.

"It keeps the momentum going from last year I suppose, but the real test is when it kicks off next Sunday - Newcastle at home.

"We have some issues at the moment with fitness and injuries, and Nani is suspended, so we have to find a way around that and pick a system that will get us victory."

Captain praises Carlos

Gary Neville spoke about two sides of Carlos Tevez's game after the striker inspired United to glory in the 2008 Community Shield.

The Argentinian was a constant threat to Portsmouth and scored the Reds' first kick in the victorious penalty shoot-out. But Tevez's angry reaction after being outrageously rugby-tackled in the box by Hermann Hreidarsson could have resulted in a red card.

"I didn't see Carlos' reaction," admitted Neville, "but I imagine it would have been one of frustration.

"It looked (like it should have been) a penalty (to United) from where I was. If a player doesn't get the decision that he wants, then the emotion of the game and the importance of it means they are going to react.

"We can't take that human element out of football. It's just a case of keeping the reaction under control."

Tevez had no such trouble controlling the ball as he buzzed around the pitch in his first Wembley appearance for the Reds. Neville was delighted to witness it, especially at first-hand.

"He's probably been our most exciting player in pre-season," said Gary.

"He's been fantastic throughout all the games. He caused Portsmouth a lot of problems and could have had one or two goals. He was deservedly the (match sponsor's) man of the match.

"As for me, it was fantastic, just to get a competitive game under my belt. After being out for so long, I was just happy being out there with the lads and being part of it again. Hopefully this season I can contribute and earn my corn."

Neville now aims to lead out the team against Newcastle next Sunday, after reporting no adverse reaction to his first competitive start since March 2007.

"Touch wood, I didn't feel anything. Apart from picking up something in Nigeria, I've had a decent pre-season.

"I trained all last week. I just need more games really for my sharpness."

Manchester United Vs. Portsmouth Highlights Video Clip

Manchester United [0 - 0] Portsmouth (Community Shield Final)
penalty shoot-out : [3 - 1]


Manchester United Vs. Portsmouth Result Report

United lifted the Community Shield for a record-extending 13th time, after overcoming Portsmouth in a penalty shootout at Wembley Stadium.

The Reds dominated for long spells against Harry Redknapp's side, but found themselves frustrated by another superb display from Pompey goalkeeper David James, who made fine second-half saves from Darren Fletcher and Carlos Tevez.

The England international was unable to extend his heroics into the shootout, however, as Tevez, Ryan Giggs and Michael Carrick all found the net, while Pompey missed three of their four kicks.

In normal time, the only clear opening of the first 45 minutes fell to Fletcher after Nani superbly robbed Glenn Johnson and crossed into the box. In sliding to reach the ball, Fletcher ended up stubbing his effort into the ground and effectively blocking his own shot.

United's dominance continued in the second period, with James called upon to superbly tip Fletcher's chip onto the crossbar and then clutch the rebound gratefully as Tevez managed to head an effort goalwards.

James made another stunning fingertip save to turn a Tevez effort wide of his right-hand post shortly afterwards, before Jermain Defoe burst through on goal in a rare Pompey attack, only to be denied by fine tracking back from Vidic.

With 15 minutes remaining, United should have been handed the chance to win the game from the spot when Hermann Hreidarsson inexplicably held onto Tevez's leg inside the area, but referee Peter Walton saw no wrong.

Although John Utaka notched Pompey's first shot on target - after 77 minutes - the pressure was still all United's. Substitute Fraizer Campbell fashioned space for himself but fired over the bar, and the Reds kept pressing until the very end.

Penalties were required though and, having triumphed against Chelsea in last year's Shield and the Champions League final, United had every cause to be confident. Serial spot-kick hero Edwin van der Sar was only required to make one save - from Arnold Mvuemba - as Lassana Diarra and Glenn Johnson both blazed their kicks over.

Johnson's effort sealed a 13th outright Community Shield triumph for the Reds - as well as five shared Shields - and ensured a silver-lined start to the 2008/09 season.

The teams

Manchester United: Van der Sar; Neville (Brown 67), Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra; Fletcher, O'Shea (Carrick 67), Scholes, Nani (Campbell 79); Giggs, Tevez.
Subs not used: Kuszczak, J Evans, Possebon, R da Silva.
Booked: Vidic, Neville

Portsmouth: James; Johnson, Campbell, Distin, Hreidarsson (Lauren 80); Diop, Mendes (Mvuemba 76), Diarra, Kranjcar (Utaka 60); Crouch, Defoe.
Subs not used: Ashdown, Sahar, Cranie, Traore.
Booked: Distin