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SPORT: Mangala Mishaps, Wild Rooney, Sale Sharks

Week 7: United and City wobble to wins, Sale turned over by Saracens and Giants launch season

Written by . Published on September 29th 2014.

SPORT: Mangala Mishaps, Wild Rooney, Sale Sharks

Manchester United 

Leading 2-0 at Old Trafford in the middle of the first half, all talk should have been in the direction of how many goals would United win by, but it was startling to see the vulnerability of the side, even before they went down to 10 men, as West Ham looked not for damage limitation but for a way back into the match.

It was hoped that the days of wild lunging tackles and childlike indiscipline may have been left behind as Rooney took on the responsibility of being both the England and United captain, but his red for a crude and needless tackle on Stuart Downing put the points in jeopardy.

Van Gaal was only prepared to call the tackle “too unfriendly” in public, with harsher words surely to follow in private. Kevin Nolan's ruled-out late equalising goal by a marginal offside decision meant that United held on to claim an important but scrappy victory.

Manchester City

When City let Negredo go on transfer deadline day, there was some worry that his 26 pre-January goals from last season had been undervalued. Step in Edin Dzeko, with Jovetic out for the last five weeks with a hamstring injury, Dzecko's brace and first league goals against Hull this weekend will proved a relief for the Bosnian and Pellegrini.

Early goals from Dzeko and Aguero seemed to have set City on course for a comfortable away day at the KC Stadium, but through the help of expensive summer recruit Eliaquim Mangala, Hull were gifted a way back into the match. Mangala, in only his third appearance for the club, headed past his own goalkeeper before clumsily bringing down Hernandez to gift a resurgent Hull a penalty to equalise.

As the second half passed the possibility of dropped points increased, until Dzeko finished off fine work from David Silva and new city super-sub Frank Lampard came on to score his fourth goal in three games.

City now turn their attention back to the Champions League with Roma heading to the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday, with City needing to bounce back after their opening defeat.



Sale Sharks were hoping to carry momentum from their London Welsh victory into a trip to unbeaten Saracens. Sarries were missing England golden boy Owen Farrell but you wouldn’t have known as wanderlust Sale old-boy Charlie Hodgson slipped seamlessly in to their number 10 shirt.

An early Alex Goode try set the tone for a strong Saracen’s display with the boot of Hodgson continually keeping the score board ticking. Sale did fight back with winger Brady continuing his good run of form and two tries from driving mauls will have regained the pack some pride. Ultimately, the result was never in doubt for Saracens as four tries gave them a 40-19 victory.

Steve Diamond could seek solace in scoring three tries and a strong second half performance but he’ll know that giving a team like Saracens a large first half lead would always leave Sale with a near impossible task.

Manchester Giants Basketball 

The Giants launched their 2014-15 campaign against two of the leagues strongest sides in Leicester Riders and Sheffield Sharks. Played on consecutive days on the opening weekend, Jeff Jones’ team led at half time against Leicester on Saturday before the game erupted like a volcano in the third quarter with Leicester taking it 35-13, eventually running out 104-82 victors.

The following night The Giants were able to bounce back to victory at home against Sheffield in a match that saw the lead change hands nine times. Played in their new home at the Trafford Sportsdome the Giants overcame a Sheffield side that had knocked them out of the previous year’s end of season playoffs, eventually winning 76-72 thanks to Stefan Gill scoring 24 points.

Manchester GiantsManchester Giants

Manchester City Ladies

On a day that saw Everton Ladies relegated and thus ending a 21 year stay in the top flight of Women’s Football, Manchester City Ladies were beaten 1-0 by Bristol Academy.

City dominated the first half and really should have been ahead as midfielder Jill Scott missed numerous chances, but City were made to pay on the stroke of half time as Bristol left back Corrine Yorston's header won the tie.

British Cycling National Track Championships 

The National Track championship ended on a high for both Callum Skinner and Jess Varnish at the Manchester Velodrome with both riders claiming their fourth gold medals of the competition. Varnish successfully retained all four titles she had won the previous year as she won the keirin on Sunday afternoon to go with the 500m time trial, sprint and team sprint, whilst Skinner won the team sprint alongside Bolton’s Jason Kenny.


On their return  to the highest tier of English hockey, Brooklands HC lost 5-2 to East Grinstead as goals from England duo Ashley Jackson and Mark Gleghorne proved too much for Brooklands despite two goals from Richard Slater.

Didsbury Northern continued their winning start to the season with victory over neighbours Bramhall thanks to a last minute goal to win 4-3. With Didsbury camped in the oppositions half for the majority of the game they finally made their chances count to carry the three points off down the A34.

The first round of the MH Cup saw the Didsbury lose out on penalty flicks to Alderley Edge after playing out an entertaining 3-3 draw.

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AnonymousOctober 1st 2014.

Empty seats at the Etihad for prestigious football games; pitiful attendances at Sale Shark rugby union games; woeful attendances at Salford Red Devils rugby league games; poor attendances at Old Trafford for international cricket matches; empty seats at the Arena for prestigious NBA basketball matches etc etc. Apathetic Manchester, so unlike merry London now eh? What happened to Manchester's reputation as a city of sport then???

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