Man United vs Stoke Player Ratings

It was the Wayne Rooney show as Manchester United survived an early scare to clinch a comfortable 4-2 victory over Stoke at Old Trafford.

What a relief for him....

Man United

David De Gea - 7
Was clearly dreaming when the free-kick was taken, which eventually led to Stoke's first goal. That was a wake up call for him as he heroically kept the scores at 1-0 till Rooney equalized. There was nothing he could have done to prevent the Kightly goal though. 

Rafael - 6.5 
His no nonsense defending and ensured no Stoke player had a clear opportunity on goal, even if it meant he could not venture forward as much. 

Patrice Evra - 6.5 
Another steady performance to left-back for the Red Devils, rampaging forward whenever he could and to good effect. 

Rio Ferdinand - 7 
While everyone was focused on his reluctance to put on the "Kick It Out" shirt, his on field performance was immaculate and kept a close eye on the big man Peter Crouch. 

Jonathan Evans - 6
Came close to scoring but Begovic pulled off an instinctive save from point blank range. A steady figure at the back for United in the absence of Nemanja Vidic, although Kightly's goal had an element of farcical defending about it.

Antonio Valencia (74' off) - 7.5
A very effective wide player who consistently troubled the Stoke defence with his direct running and crosses. Picked out Van Persie well for United's second goal. 

Michael Carrick - 6.5
Not a flair player by nature but very productive in the middle of the park. Another flawless midfield display from Carrick. 

Paul Scholes (70' off) - 6.5 
Pulled the strings from midfield with his trademark long range passes but made clumsy tackles all over the pitch and got booked after testing the referee's patience. 

Wayne Rooney - 9
A perfect set piece goal from a header early on in the game. If only it had been at the right end of the pitch. Fortunately for Rooney, he managed to make amends later on with a more impressive headed goal to level the scores. Surely would have left the pitch with the match ball, with an assist for Welbeck and a simplest of tap-ins for United's fourth goal.

Danny Welbeck - 7
His finishing was dreadful in the first half but somehow managed to clip the top of the crossbar before half time. Was a changed man after the restart though, getting into pockets of space and got on the scoresheet seconds after the restart. Sir Alex Ferguson's attacking trio is slowly but surely starting to gel. 

Robin Van Persie - 7.5
The Dutchman whipped in a beautiful cross from the wing to set up Rooney for the equalizer. He was later unmarked in the Stoke penalty box with no defender in sight and punished the visitors mere seconds before half time with a really neat finish. Showing the world he is worth every cent Fergie paid for him. 

Substitutions

Anderson (70' on) - 6.5
Provided plenty of energy and added the extra bite in midfield to protect United's two goal advantage. 

Nani (74' on) - 5.5
Did not do anything worth mentioning in the short time he was on which means his time on the bench would be an extended one especially with Valencia in red hot form. 

Javier Hernandez (78' on)
N/A

Stoke

Asmir Begovic - 6
Commanded his penalty area well but could only watch United put four goals past him. His entire defence was totally outclassed by the quality of United's passing and finishing. 

Geoff Cameron - 6
A calm and reliable right back who made himself available in the wider areas of the field but allowed Van Persie too much time on the ball

Robert Huth - 5.5 
Could not handle United's swift passing movement and did not use his physique to cause his opposition problems. A disappointing game for the German. 

Marc Wilson - 5 
His forward runs usually amounted to nothing and the left back struggled to cope with the likes of Valencia in the 74 minutes he was on the pitch. Should not have been so adventurous going forward and focused more on shackling the dangerous United winger.

Ryan Shawcross - 7 
Made a nuisance of himself in the United penalty box and it paid off, forcing an error from Rooney 10 minutes into the game. Strong in the air and did not allow any aerial ball past him all game. 

Steven Nzonzi - 6.5 
An impressive midfield display from the former Blackburn man. Tried his best to destroy every United attack. 

Dean Whitehead - 4
Helplessly chased shadows and was not effective at either end of the pitch. There was no way he deserved to play the full 90 minutes. 

Charlie Adam - 7
Silenced his critics with a sparkling display - especially in the opening 45 minutes.  Seemed like the only one in a Stoke shirt who could properly put the ball into United box. The outcome of the match could have been very different if he had more time on the ball. 

Michael Kightly (74' off) - 7
Powered his way past the entire United midfield and defence when he learnt he was going to be substituted and scored a goal from nothing. Judging by the body language of his teammates, he was probably one of the few who played with a belief that his side could get something from this game.

Jonathan Walters (77' off) - 6.5 
Too defensive minded at times, which was a real waste for Stoke as he always has that awereness to be at the right place at the right time.

Peter Crouch - 6.5 
Crouch was his usual self, winning majority of the balls targeted at him but could not get the better of Ferdinand who made it a point to give his fellow Englishman a hard time. 

Substitutions

Michael Owen (74' on) - 6 
Surprisingly played in a deeper role and not the fox in the box like before, probably due to his fitness and age but offered little in the short time he was on.

Matthew Etherington (77' on)
N/A

Wilson Palacios (86' on)
N/A



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