Premier League

November 19, 2011

Full-time

Swansea City

0 - 1

Manchester United

Premier League

17:30 +00:00, November 19, 2011

Liberty Stadium, Wales

Referee: Mike Dean

  •  

    So United stay in touch at the top, and Swansea still look capable of achieving Premier League survival. Little learned about either side, in reality. A boring game and one that changes little in the league's landscape.

  •  

    They were ultimately let-down by a brief lapse of concentration and poor defending which created Hernandez's goal. The truth, however, is that United probably wouldn't have sat back so soon had they not scored such an early goal and so a different outcome wouldn't have been that likely.

  •  

    Rodgers can still be pleased with Swansea, though. Despite an obvious disadvantage in terms of playing personnel, they kept the ball down and played their passing game.

  •  

    Feel free to send any comments on the game to @ESPNsoccernet...

  •  

    A poor game for the neutral, but an important win for United to keep in touch with Manchester City at the top in the table. Ferguson happy to bide his time - probably for the traditional new year title push - and continue to stabilise following a brief loss of form.

  • 90'

    Full-time! Swansea City 0-1 Manchester United

  • 90'

    Nani just wide! A surprise chance is created before he cuts inside and curls an effort just beyond the post. Decent effort.

  • 90'

    Fletcher, Valencia and Jones combining to keep the ball and run down any remaining time...

  • 90'

    Good performance today from the ex-Blackburn man.

  • 90'

    Before an excellent tackle from Jones.

  • 90'

    Sinclair trying to spearhead a final attack..

  • 90'

    Foul on Fabio...

  • 90'

    That Jones effort probably being the most exciting event in an otherwise dour fixture.

  • 90'

    3 minutes of stoppage time to be played.

  • 90'

    Impressive stamina from Jones! Exchanging with Valencia before getting just inside the Swansea box and firing against the post.

  • 90'

    Jones hits the post! That would have been game over!

  • 90'

    Closing stages of the game, now.

  • 89'

    United creating chances even when their intention is to retain the ball and little else.

  • 88'

    Rooney, with a deft chip following a rebound, sends the ball just over.

  • 87'

    Nice play from Rooney, exchanging the ball with Valencia before United win a corner.

  • 86'

    Park's cross to Rooney wasted as the England striker doesn't read the winger's intention.

  • 86'

    And another throw...

  • 86'

    Williams clears for a United throw-in as Jones tries to create an opening.

  • 85'

    De Gea's goal-kick sent long...

  • 84'

    Ferguson turns to Valencia's energy and industry to retain the lead. Rooney now the lone striker - United will obviously try to keep the ball and run the ball down.

  • 84'

    Hernandez off, Valencia on.

  • 84'

    Fabio run, initially promising, ends up being overhit and out for a goal-kick.

  • 83'

    United exchanging possession comfortably, plenty of space in the areas they're playing the ball.

  • 82'

    Long pass bounces in front of Dyer and out for a throw-in.

  • 81'

    Swansea passing through midfield again until Jones intercepts.

  • 81'

    Goal-kick to Swansea...

  • 80'

    United fans chant: "Premier League, you're having a laugh". Seems harsh - United haven't been far better from Swansea at all and the Welsh side have held their shape and discipline impressively. Far from certain relegation candidates.

  • 79'

    Gower off, Dobbie on.

  • 78'

    Carrick withdraws from midfield to join Vidic and Ferdinand to pass the ball. Good, efficient performance by him, so far - deserves to keep his place.

  • 78'

    De Gea collects Swansea ball into the box.

  • 77'

    Hernandez caught offside, again showing signs of rust.

  • 77'

    Giggs just short of his 38th birthday, for those interested...

  • 76'

    Giggs off, Fletcher on.

  • 75'

    Ball now back with Ferdinand with United resuming their patient approach.

  • 74'

    Giggs looking for an opening to play a pass.

  • 74'

    Poor cross from Jones, easily dealt with by Swansea.

  • 74'

    Darren Fletcher ready to come on..

  • 73'

    Stat: Possession in last 5 mins, 80% Swansea, 20% United.

  • 73'

    Graham and Williams shots blocked! Good pressure from Swansea, good defending from United.

  • 72'

    Gower curls in for a cross but United head clear.

  • 71'

    Free-kick to Swansea on edge of the box. Shooting range.

  • 71'

    Who in turn passes to Rooney who fires at Vorm. His best effort yet, however.

  • 70'

    Giggs finds Nani with a long ball...

  • 69'

    Swansea excellently pass the ball out from defence amidst some pressure from United. Impressive that they're so intent on playing the way they see fit. Credit to Rodgers.

  • 68'

    De Gea collects a poor cross from Williams. Kicks clear looking for Hernandez but Swansea are back in possession.

  • 68'

    Corner headed clear by Giggs, before another Gower cross is cleared by Vidic.

  • 67'

    Sinclair on the wing for Swansea., sends in a cross which results in Fabio clearing for a corner.

  • 67'

    Game declining back into the poor entertaining it provided in the first-half.

  • 66'

    ...before receiving the ball back and wasting it. Park intercepts.

  • 65'

    Gower playing the ball nicely and finding Taylor.

  • 65'

    Swansea just keeping the ball for now. Their best progress has been through their wingers and full-backs by dragging United out of position, and targeting Evra who has looked vulberable so far.

  • 64'

    Wasteful from Rooney and shoots tamely at Vorm.

  • 63'

    Vorm now in possession - kicks the ball clear.

  • 63'

    Inswinging Park cross headed clear.

  • 62'

    United passing the ball around, but with the intention of finding an opening instead of just retaining the ball.

  • 61'

    Good catch from De Gea after a Swansea cross. Under pressure from Graham. The 'keeper's already looking very settled - whoever said he wouldn't make it in the Premier League?

  • 61'

    Swansea now passing the ball around in defence.

  • 60'

    Giggs gives the ball away which Jones wins back with a good, forceful tackle.

  • 60'

    Foul on Park. Free-kick given.

  • 59'

    Through-ball to Taylor overhit, but Swansea are trying to stretch United and create some space.

  • 58'

    But he's back up again. Foul given against the striker and Swansea take the free-kick.

  • 58'

    Giggs cross met by Vorm who collides with Rooney. The striker is down on the floor and seems in pain.

  • 57'

    Ashley Young warming up on the touchline. He's missed their last four, but coming on suggests Ferguson detects another goal is necessary.

  • 56'

    Through ball to Hernandez threatens but Vorm rushes out to clear.

  • 55'

    Jones takes to Giggs..

  • 54'

    Wasted and out for a United throw-in.

  • 54'

    Next corner to Swansea...

  • 53'

    Swansea corner headed goalwards by Gsry Monk, but Vidic heads clear!

  • 52'

    Nice from Rooney: bends down very low to meet a Michael Carrick pass with a header.

  • 52'

    Swansea throw-in in the United half taken quickly with purpose. Long ball forward dealt with by United's defence but the intent's there.

  • 51'

    United now in possession in midfield.

  • 51'

    Swansea again pressing and probing - it may be their downfall but credit where it's due, they're not content to accept defeat.

  • 50'

    United on the counter but the chance is wasted by Hernandez! Lovely ball from Rooney but terrible control from the Mexican. Seems rusty at the moment.

  • 49'

    Swansea go straight up the other end and produce a good save from De Gea. Corner to Swansea.

  • 48'

    Hernandez caught well offside when in a good position.

  • 48'

    Evra pass blocked. United throw-in.

  • 47'

    Evra booked for foul on Dyer, who has trouble him all game.

  • 46'

    Swansea already appearing to have more energy and urgency. Looking to move forward with possession.

  • 46'

    Second-half back underway...

  •  

    Constructive by Rodgers, even if he's removed one of his so-called dangermen. Routledge has done absolutely nothing, while other managers would have played for a 1-0 defeat.

  •  

    Routledge off, Allen on.

  •  

    Answer is yes.

  •  

    Sides back out for the second half... Crucially, any changes?

  •  

    Ferguson likely to be pleased with the game so far. Little threat on United's goal and a goal in front. His priority will be keeping up with Manchester City so the win is everything - boring is fine.

  •  

    Feel free to send any comments or thoughts on the game to @ESPNsoccernet

  •  

  •  

    The obvious guess is neither, although Rodgers and Swansea will have to improve something because the same tactics would basically write the game off and be an exercise in damage limitation.

  •  

    ...That, or a Harry Redknapp-esque "go and get at 'em, lads" to produce some old fashioned blood and thunder.

  •  

    A largely unentertaining, boring half. Faint hopes are that Ferguson will get bored enough to encourage his side to abandon their prudent tactics, or that Simon Rodgers is in fact a tactical genius and will send his side out ready to change the game...

  • 45'

    Half-time: Swansea City 0-1 Manchester United

  • 45'

    They waste a great chance to score! Hernandez, in plenty of space, chooses not to shoot and instead passes poorly to Rooney who can't make it. Poor from the Mexican.

  • 45'

    United on the counter...

  • 45'

    Nice cross from Sinclair but Vidic sends clear...

  • 45'

    Ball back in midfield.

  • 45'

    Nice cross from Taylor had but no-one to meet it until Evra deals with it terribly and almost creates danger for United.

  • 45'

    Now a Swansea free-kick. Largely innocuous challenge. Time for Swansea to create a last chance of the half?

  • 44'

    United throw-in. First-half almost at an end (hopefully minimal stoppage time).

  • 42'

    Shot from Sinclair blocked. Little threat in the build-up as he'd ran out of ideas. United crowding their penalty area and making it hard for Swansea to create anything substantial.

  • 41'

    Swansea give the ball away in midfield to United before winning it back. Sinclair looks to attack. He and Dyer alone playing with some urgency and impetus.

  • 40'

    Nani with a shot that's so bad it went out for a throw in. As entertaining as this game has so far been. Did well to create the space for the shot, though.

  • 40'

    United regain possession and now look to build. Evra cross from the left cleared, Rooney now with the ball.

  • 39'

    Swansea free-kick after foul by Giggs...

  • 38'

    Swansea corner... Evra caught out of position again by Dyer. Not been a good start to the season from the Frenchman - a permanent decline or a temporary dip?

  • 37'

    Rooney with an ambitious effort from long range the goes harmlessly wide. A big waste, with Giggs, Park, Nani and Hernandez there for support.

  • 36'

    Giggs curls the ball over the wall but it also curls wide. Decent effort.

  • 35'

    Giggs and Rooney lining up..

  • 35'

    Foul on Hernandez on the edge of the box after Rooney tried to put him through. Free-kick from shooting distance - rare promise of some excitement.

  • 34'

    Dyer again trying to probe down the right. The one player attempting a different approach for Swansea.

  • 34'

    Very much like watching a Serie A fixture.

  • 33'

    United clearly content to retain possession in unthreatening areas, and for Swansea to have the ball as long as it's in their own half.

  • 32'

    Rooney ball to Nani - similar to earlier - again not controlled by Nani. Not a superb cross, however.

  • 31'

    United, through Rooney and Park, threatening the Swansea defence but, as yet, no-one prepared to shoot.

  • 30'

    Swansea now content to keep possession. Rather uninspiring play since the goal, but Swansea naturally won't want to expose themselves in pursuit of an equaliser given the quality of their opposition. Patient approach is understandable.

  • 30'

    Evra defender well from Nathan Dyer, De Gea kicks clear.

  • 30'

    Stat: Swansea pass completion at 89%, United's at 90%.

  • 30'

    Giggs attempts a chip over the Swansea defence but ball headed clear and back in midfield with United.

  • 29'

    Ball back in midfield with Carrick and Giggs exchanging possession.

  • 28'

    Good challenge by Taylor on Nani. United throw-in deep in Swansea half.

  • 28'

    Swansea with the ball in defence, pressure from Rooney stopping them from building as they'd please.

  • 26'

    Selecting Giggs and Carrick so far paying off for United with ball retention so far being a big part of the game.

  • 26'

    Low Giggs cross, after pass from Park, cleared. Ball back in United's defence.

  • 25'

    Shot from Neil Taylor sent effortlessly over.

  • 24'

    Pressure very much on the declining Ferdinand this season. Pressure on him from Smalling, and threat that he'll miss Euro 2012.

  • 24'

    Ball back in defence with Swansea.

  • 23'

    Dyer cross easily dealt with by Ferdinand and cleared.

  • 22'

    Routledge and Graham combine to leave Sinclair with what would have been a simple tap-in, but he fails to connect with De Gea exposed. May not get another chance as good as that.

  • 21'

    Swansea waste a glorious chance to equalise through Sinclair!

  • 20'

    Nani and Giggs with some nice touches until Giggs fails to control the ball. Swansea with the ball in midfield.

  • 20'

    Long ball forward sees Hernandez caught offside.

  • 20'

    United content to keep the ball at the back. De Gea, Vidic, Jones and Ferdinand exchanging possession.

  • 20'

    Evra with a decent long range effort, saved by Vorm.

  • 19'

    Nani wasted possession with a poor touch. Taylor looks to play forward from the back.

  • 19'

    Nathan Dyer with an ambitious run that's thwarted by Ferdinand. Positive play.

  • 18'

    Giggs showing again that he retains the ability to pick out a pass and release United's dangermen.

  • 17'

    And now in midfield, as Giggs looks to release Nani.

  • 17'

    United passing the ball around at the back.

  • 16'

    De Gea punches clear. Authoritative goalkeeping.

  • 16'

    Jones again with the tackle on Sinclair, who so far has a very direct approach. Corner to Swansea.

  • 15'

    Ball lost and Swansea launch their own attack. Intention to use Sinclair's pace currently nullified by Jones'.

  • 14'

    Giggs and Nani exchanging possession as United edge forward..

  • 14'

    United passing the ball around at the back again. It seems they'll resume the same plan.

  • 13'

    Long range effort from Sinclair is very ambitious and unthreatening. Goal-kick to United.

  • 12'

    Rodgers will be very disappointed to conceded such a poor goal. Onus on Swansea now to pick themselves back up but, of course, that could leave them vulnerable on the counter.

  • 12'

    United now firmly in the driving seat as it was crucial Swansea avoided conceding an early opener.

  • 11'

    Giggs wins the ball after some lethargic, sloppy passing from Swansea who provides Hernandez with a simple tap in.

  • 11'

    GOAL Swansea 0-1 United!

  • 10'

    Swansea looking for a crossing opportunity down the right hand side but United intercept.

  • 9'

    Swansea now probing United's defence (which hasn't looked as solid this season as it has in previous years)...

  • 8'

    Rooney appears to be playing in the hole behind the striker, with Hernandez the lone out-and-out striker.

  • 8'

    United again being patient and waiting for any openings as Swansea hold their shape.

  • 7'

    Sinclair and Graham linking up results in a stray pass from Graham. Potential threat posed by Sinclair, however.

  • 6'

    Lovely ball from Rooney that Nani fails to control. Throw-in to United.

  • 6'

    ...and now defence...

  • 6'

    United patiently passing the ball around in midfield.

  • 5'

    Low Nani cross collected by Vorm. Well dealt with as could have been dangerous.

  • 5'

    Decent pace to the start of the game, both teams using the ball positively. Foul by Monk on Hernandez.

  • 4'

    Rooney, looking for Nani with a cross-field pass, gives the ball away.

  • 3'

    Shot from Gower sent wide after failing to make a clean connection. United goal-kick.

  • 3'

    Early chance for Swansea dealt with well by Phil Jones after a cross found Scott Sinclar in the area. Danger cleared, United now with the ball.

  • 2'

    Ferguson will be pleased with the chance to build some stability in defence after an uncertain start to the season.

  • 2'

    United now in possession in defence, with Carrick instantly looking to move the ball forward.

  • 1'

    Swansea looking to build from the left...

  • 1'

    Game kicks-off...

  •  

    And how Michael Vorm deals with Hernandez-Rooney well be both crucial and entertaining...

  •  

    Question marks remain over Ferdinand and Vidic...

  •  

    As for on-field battles... How Swansea's five-man midfield deals with United's midfield is crucial.

  •  

    Teams walking out onto the pitch...

  •  

    Swansea are a good side at home, of course. But Ferguson has paired the potentially prolific Hernandez-Rooney strike force together. United should be favourites, of course, and an early goal for them could make all of the difference...

  •  

    Giggs and Carrick are starting for United, which suggests Ferguson wants to retain possession and keep the ball down.

  •  

    After rivals Manchester City beat Newcastle United 3-1 earlier, the pressure is on United to win all three points here.

  •  

    Sir Alex Ferguson pre-match: "Swansea are a good footballing side. It should be a good match".

  •  

    Evening all, we're minutes away from kick-off here...

  •  

    ESPN UK pundit Kevin Keegan says Swansea have plenty of players hungry to prove themselves against Manchester United today.

  •  


    Ryan Giggs makes only his second Premier League start of the season for Man Utd.

  •  

    Join Dec Warrington from 1715 for build up to and live text commentary of Swansea v Manchester United at the Liberty Stadium.