[PLAYER RATINGS] Man Utd 4 Schalke 1: How The Reds Got On…
Manchester United booked their place in the 2011 UEFA Champions League Final with a thoroughly convincing 4-1 victory over Schalke 04 at Old Trafford.
The Reds used a goal from Antonio Valencia and Darron Gibson and two goals from Anderson offset a well-taken strike by Jurado to secure a 6-1 aggregate win to advance to this season’s final at Wembley.
Three Reds got on the score sheet but did any of them do more than those who did not to earn Man of the Match for United?
Edwin van der Sar – 6
No chance of saving Jurado’s shot, and other than that it was a night as a spectator for van der Sar, who became the player with the most appearances in European semifinals.
Rafael – 7
After spending the last couple of matches on the sidelines, Rafael – the other da Silva twin – put in one of his very energetic, enthusiastic displays at right-back.
Chris Smalling – 7
Having become used to the pressure of playing in Europe this season, Smalling put in a very solid outing doing his part keeping Raul from being the danger man he has always been in this competition.
Jonny Evans – 7
A shock inclusion for such a huge game, but Evans, even though he had a couple of nervy moments, did not disappoint and can be proud of his performance.
John O’Shea – 7
Made captain for the semifinal shows just how valuable Sir Alex Ferguson thinks O’Shea is, and he played at both left and right-back.
Antonio Valencia – 8
Fantastic movement on and off the ball, Valencia is showing just how much he has been missed, and popped in with a goal and an assist.
Paul Scholes – 7
Gave the supporters a lump in their throat with an early booking, but Scholes put in a typical performance stroking balls majestically short and long.
Darron Gibson – 8 (Man of the Match)
Constantly criticized for being a shrinking violet in big games, but Gibson showed grit, determination and elegance throughout.
Anderson – 8
Scored two more European goals, which doubled his all-time tally for United, Anderson put in a robust display and deservedly got his goals.
Nani – 7
Has not been the same kind of player since Valencia has returned, but Nani was very impressive against the lesser Schalke full-backs.
Dimitar Berbatov – 8
Although he did not break his Champions League duck, Berbatov lead line very well on his own and did even better getting his teammates involved in the attack.
Patrice Evra – 5
Came on to shore up the defense, but Evra could have added to Schalke’s misery if he made the proper connection on his shot
Michael Owen – 5
Denied by a very good save by Manuel Neuer that would have been the cherry on the top, but Owen was deployed more as a winger than playing up top on his own.
Darren Fletcher – 5
Great to see him back after along spell on the sidelines with a mysterious illness, and Fletcher should be ready to go for the rest of the season.
Overall – 8
All things considered, this team that Ferguson put out did everyone involved with Manchester United proud by not only staying to their tasks but to convincingly see off a very dangerous Schalke team with complete ease and comfort.
Submitted by The United Religion
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