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Manchester United: season player ratings
Published : 17 May 2010 07:39:27
Stuart Mathieson sees United just fail to make it four Premier League titles on the trot and pinpoints areas where they failed in his season player ratings... EDWIN VAN DER SAR: At 39 he still proved agile, cool and dominant. No substitute for experience and the Dutchman steadied the ship superbly 8 BEN FOSTER: Had the world in his hands and he blew his opportunity. Could have been United and England No1 but error-strewn period wrecked it 5 TOMASZ KUSZCZAK: The Pole benefited from Foster's disappointing effort and produced some decent form but still not good enough to keep out Van der Sar 6 GARY NEVILLE: His illustrious Old Trafford career looked set to come to an end. Struggled with injury. Low point against Leeds in FA Cup but hit back strongly to justifiably win new deal 7 RAFAEL: Injury hit right-back position allowed him to develop. Measured progress but the young Brazilian suffered in the Champions League quarter-final at Old Trafford when he looked vulnerable 7 WES BROWN: Late 2009 form won him a place for England and deservedly so but the Mancunian's susceptibility to injury reared ugly head again 6 JOHN O'SHEA: Stared season at right-back commandingly but dead leg injury playing for Ireland in November ruined his campaign 5 RIO FERDINAND: When he has played he has looked the business as one of the world's best but back and groin injuries have cost him dearly. 20 appearances is not a good return 7 NEMANJA VIDIC: Disappointing follow-up to his club Player of Year campaign in the previous term. Constant rumours of an exit. Has recaptured his solid form in the spring 7 JONNY EVANS: Started well then injury knocked him off track. When he returned he picked up decently then had some inconsistent displays 6 PATRICE EVRA: An outstanding consistent season. More appearances than anyone and during traumatic injury time for defence he was a stable factor 8 ANTONIO VALENCIA: The unassuming Ecuadorian had big boots to fill on right but his steady progress has impressed. Not a circus act but a straightforward winger. A solid start to a promising United career 7 DARREN FLETCHER: Has been the mainstay and first choice central midfield selection. The willing worker has been a dominant engine room force for the Reds 8 PAUL SCHOLES: Seven goals from 37 appearances couldn't have asked more from the veteran. Can't do it every week but he had a damn good go at it 8 DARRON GIBSON: A mini breakthrough for the Irishman. Sir Alex Ferguson has given him a few decent chances and he hasn't let him down. Provided a goal threat 6 MICHAEL CARRICK: Had a decent winter but in the spring has been criticised for too many giveaway passes and has slipped from the first choice XI 6 ANDERSON: Disappointing progress from the Brazilian. Eastlands semi-final was a let down and when he finally got back in injury wrecked it 5 JI-SUNG PARK: Cannot fault his effort and had a purple patch scoring goals against Arsenal, Milan and Liverpool but hasn't done enough to make him a regular 6 RYAN GIGGS: Not as good as he was last season but in patches the 36-year-old has justified his selection and you cannot argue with another 12-month contract 7 NANI: Typically frustrating early on but in 2010 he has been transformed. Suddenly we are seeing a dangerous more consistent winger 8 GABRIEL OBERTAN: New recruit last summer and hasn't had a great look in. Hit-and-miss but has the potential to become very useful addition 6 DIMITAR BERBATOV: Divides the Reds support. Occasionally brilliant but too often a peripheral and off-colour figure. Led line well on occasion but still an enigma 6 WAYNE ROONEY: Took up the Ronaldo-Tevez mantle fantastically and United would have been nowhere near runners-up without him and his 34 goals and inspiration. What a pity injury struck against Bayern Munich and his campaign faded 9 MICHAEL OWEN: Nine goals wasn't a bad return from 20 appearances but the gamble hasn't really paid dividends and cannot shake off his injury prone tag 6 Agree with the ratings? Have your say.