There’s nothing quite like a good shouting match to kick-start a derby.
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Manchester United were woeful in the first half of their 1-0 rivalry win over Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday, but the Red Devils looked much better in the second half. There’s a reason for that.
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According to French international midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin, who was talking to MUTV, a good old vocal lashing at half time in the changing room helped sort things out.
“In the first half, we didn’t win enough second balls. Sometimes we won the first ball but not the second ball,” Schneiderlin said. “When we came into the dressing room after the first half, there was some screaming and shouting but of course that is normal because in a derby you cannot lose the battle. Liverpool are a very high-pressing team and we knew if we kept a clean sheet we would have a chance to win the game. In the second half we did what we had to do. We scored one goal, stayed strong and, at the end, it is three points which is amazing.”
Schneiderlin, 26, has now won two out of two Manchester United-Liverpool derbies and his manager, Louis Van Gaal, has now prevailed in all four of the Premier League matches he has played against Liverpool.
With the win on Sunday — a game which Liverpool dominated but failed to put away several clear-cut chances with an inspired David De Gea saving United — the Red Devils are now just two points off the top four, with Liverpool is languishing eight points off the final UEFA Champions League spot.
When we look back at United’s overall performance at the end of the season, that half time screaming match could be pivotal in helping them regain confidence and secure at least a top four finish.
They haven’t been at their best in recent months with the manager under-fire but you can’t deny the passion isn’t there.