August 5 – Edwin van der Sar became a legend at Wembley where he singlehandedly won the Community shield for Manchester United.
The first half exploded with two great goals where the first goal was a classic with Evra collecting Ronaldo’s through ball, took it to the byline and then made a precision back pass to Giggs who drove a perfect shot to the top of the net. Malouda topped the act by muscling his way past Ferdinand and tapped the ball with the side of his right foot to put the ball beyond Van der Sar. In the second half, the match fell into a lull with both teams looking more like two boxers practising sparring in the ring so much so that it was a relief when Halsey blew the final whistle.
Van der Sar looked nervous and he tried to delay the penalty drama by taking his time drinking at the byline. The referee Halsey had to have a word with him to get him to the goal line. Claudio Pizarro took the first kick and he tried to a safe shot to the right of Van der Sar. Van der Sar guessed correctly and managed to palm off the shot. Ferdinand took the first kick for the Devils and put the ball out of Peter Cech’s reach even though he guessed correctly. Then Frank Lampard took the second for Chelsea and Van der Sar, who looked confident now after his first save, easily saved Lampard’s shot in the exact position where he saved Pizarro’s shot. Carrick then sent Cech the wrong way and got the second. Shawn Wright Philips tried shooting to the left instead but Van der Sar guessed correct again, dove to the left and blocked the shot perfectly. Some Chelsea fans were already leaving the stadium when Rooney took the third kick and he gave Cech no chance at all.
It is rare to see a goalkeeer making three consecutive saves and it was exhilirating to watch Van der Sar pull it off especially when it was against Chelsea. Great start for the new season.
Can’t wait to see Hargreaves, Anderson and Tevez in action. Would be an interesting season for Man U.