Van Persie ‘could have been killed’

Swansea City 1 Manchester United 1

Patrice Evra struck with a first half header from van Persie’s corner, but after Michu had equalised with his 13th goal of the season, United were strangely shy in front of goal where Wayne Rooney, van Persie, Ashley Young and Michael Carrick all missed opportunities to win it.

But Ferguson was in no mood to celebrate his side’s first draw of the season. Instead the United boss was up in arms about the second half incident when Williams kicked the ball at van Persie after the Dutchman had been floored by a tackle on the edge of the penalty area.

Ferguson said; “He could have been killed. The FA has got to look into it, irrespective of him having a yellow card. He should be banned for a long time because that was the most dangerous thing I’ve seen on a football field for many, many years.

“It was absolutely deliberate, absolutely no question. The whistle has gone, the game has stopped and he’s done that right in front of the referee a foot from the player.

“He could have really killed the lad, it was a disgraceful act by the player.”

Having seen their neighbours cut the lead at the top of the league to three points with Saturday’s last-gasp victory over Reading, United were keen to restore their six-point advantage.

Valencia had an early cross blocked by Ben Davies but it was Swansea who looked the more likely as Michu had an opportunity. The Spaniard fired high and wide before Wayne Routledge tested David de Gea with a shot on the turn.

The warning signs, for United that is, were always there and though Swansea came into the game on the back of successive defeats against Norwich and Tottenham, they were certainly not short on confidence.

Still, United might have taken the lead in the 14th minute when Michel Vorm, back in the Swansea goal after a two month injury lay off, beat away Rooney’s 25 yard strike. Two minutes later, the visitors were ahead. Evra rose above Davies to head home van Persie’s near post corner.

In a bid to kill off the Swans, United might have added to their lead. Van Persie and Valencia were the main source of Swansea’s problems though Rooney almost latched onto Young’s crisp centre after van Persie had torn a hole in the home midfield. Then, as United dropped their guard Swansea struck. Routledge sent in Jonathan de Guzman and though de Guzman’s shot was kept out by David de Gea, Michu arrived in the nick of time to convert the rebound from five yards.

Swansea were good value for the goal and though they turned around level, De Guzman and Michu both had opportunities to send the hosts in at half time with a lead.

United were strangely careless in the second half with Rooney the worst offender.

The introduction of Javier Hernandez gave United a little more bite with Rooney dropping back into the visitors’ four man midfield. From that juncture, United began to dominate possession with Swansea needing all of their resolve to keep the leaders at bay.

Van Persie, who was booked with Williams after the incident which so angered Ferguson, struck the crossbar with a volley from Rooney’s centre and Vorm pulled off a smart save from Hernandez shortly before Ryan Giggs entered the fray at the expense of Rooney.

Carrick was also denied by Vorm and Swansea twice had to clear off the line from Young as United turned the screw. However, Laudrup’s side held on and they will surely be the more satisfied of the two sides going into Christmas.

SWANSEA CITY (4-5-1): Vorm 7; Tiendalli 6, Williams 7, Flores 7, Davies 6;Dyer 7, Britton 6, Agustien 6, De Guzman 7, Routledge 6 Michu 7.

Subs: Ki (Britton 61) 5, Moore (De Guzman 70) 6, Shechter (Agustien 87) 5

MANCHESTER UNITED (4-4-2): De Gea 7 Jones 6, Evans 6, Vidic 6, Evra 7; Valencia 6, Carrick 7, Cleverley 6, Young 6; Rooney 5, Van Persie 7

Subs: Hernandez (Valencia 61) 6, Giggs (Rooney 74) 6, Scholes (Cleverley 85) 5

Referee: M Oliver.

More in this section


Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox