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United 2 City 0

Derby games are always strange and unpredictable. Last season City caused two shocks by doing the double over us and this year their form is so patchy that no one knew how they would do at Old Trafford. Fortunately their players seemed to forget everything derby matches are about and feel flat at Old Trafford to allow us to do the double over them as revenge for last season. With so many games over the last month and the pressure of the title run in, no one envisaged this being such a gentle stroll for the Reds.

We arrived at Old Trafford quite early anticipating kick off and all talk was about Tevez. Now I don’t doubt the quotes in the press at all, but I do question the implication that he wants to leave. My view is that he is desperate to stay and to play for us next season, but is worried that he is not wanted. And there is some truth in that bearing in mind very few owners let alone the Glazers would sanction a £30m purchase for a squad player. However, his performance against City (including the questionable celebration) showed his value and you wonder whether Macheda, Wellbeck, Campbell or  manucho would have had such an impact…..

Tevez was fired up as soon as the game began, and I was delighted to see him playing as you feared Fergie might drop him having seen the morning media. United passed the ball around well and looked in control but there were few clear chances. Then step up Ronaldo to do what he does so often- changes a game. It was not the best free kick but it found its way in and it sent Old Trafford mad. People can talk about his body language as much as they want so long as he keeps being the league’s top scorer and producing goals at key times like this. A year ago he was slated for not producing it in the big games, now who could claim that?

Moments after the goal Carlos Tevez produced my favourite moment of the game. He picked the ball up on the corner of the penalty area and hit a stunning curler which came off the post. It was so unlucky and warranted a goal, so just before half time he did the same again this time a little more centrally and this time found the net. Fantastic, and game over.

The second half was a pretty dull affair and United had few chances, although how tevez did not score from 1 yard out was quite amazing. Instead attention turned to the banter between the fans. City have spent all season singing about the UEFA cup final in Istanbul, so it is fitting that our trip to Rome was confirmed a few weeks after their European dreams ended. “Istanbul, Istanbul they’re not going, Istanbul, Istanbul they lied, Istanbul, Istanbul they’re not going, they’re not going cos they’re fucking shite” was the chant of the day. Followed by “City are shit, and that’s a fact” which found a way to mock City and Benitez all at once. Of course Que sera sera was sang in abundance too, as well as “Viva John Terry, he wants to go to Rome but he’s staying at home”!

The game ended and it had been surprisingly easy. No hard fought battles, no dirty tactics by City, no magic from Robinho and it was 3 points gained at a canter. Tevez had sent a clear message to the board and the title is one large step closer to us. You can just taste it now!�

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