Manchester United Ride Two Early Goals To Halftime Lead

Stu Forster - Getty Images

All the joy in this one so far is with the Red Devils.

Newcastle United have taken a very strange tactic in this most recent fixture against Manchester United. Breaking from conventional wisdom, the Magpies decided to experiment with the idea of not covering corners and were duly punished with Jonny Evans and Patrice Evra scoring from such set pieces within the first quarter of an hour. On the back foot from kickoff somehow (Newcastle actually kicked the match off...), you would have been forgiven for mistaking Newcastle for Stoke City with the amount of hoof ball going on (well... Stoke City without the success rate on the offensive end, at least.).

Starting in a 4-4-2 shape, it kind of wnet down just like many of the previews said it would with Manchester United knfing through the middle of the park with ease. The HBA as RM in a 4-4-2 showed as poorly as it does on most occasions and Papiss Cisse often was being pinned down in the RM position as cover. Alan Pardew eventually shifted shape towards the 4-3-3 and (surprise!) things got better for Newcastle. There's still much to do, however, if Newcastle even want to salvage a point in this one.

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