Rooney, Van Persie, and De Gea Getting Headlines for Manchester United - a Fan's Take

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It is not unusual for Manchester United players to make the news, but this week three players got to see their names in the headlines for some terrific reasons. Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie were nominated with a slew of other players for the FIFA Ballon d'Or, according to, and keeper David de Gea was named Man of the Match for his role in a big victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on October 28, 2012, according to All three players deserve some nice recognition for their contributions so far this season, and for Rooney and van Persie a fine job for last season as well.

Rooney and van Persie had stellar scoring campaigns last season, with Rooney netting 34 goals in 44 appearances for the Red Devils and RVP hitting 37 in 48 appearances for Arsenal, according to MUFClatest. The good news for United fans is that both players have regularly figured into the mix lately, although van Persie has seen his name on the score sheet a bit more often. Still, for both players to get nominated for the FIFA Ballon d'Or is a nice honor, and frankly it is about time Manchester United players, and not former players, get some headlines for a major honor. Still, I think it is unlikely either will win, because they are not named Messi or Ronaldo.

Being perfectly honest, David de Gea makes me nervous sometimes as keeper. Whether he lacks confidence in the penalty area or still needs to adjust to the physical nature of English football is something of a mystery to me. The saves against Chelsea with his feet brought to mind something I'm used to seeing in the National Hockey League and not the Barclays Premier League. Still, he kept the ball out of the net enough to warrant a victory, and his role definitely prevented Chelsea from salvaging a draw. I'm not sure if de Gea will continue to grow in me, but I think I was spoiled by Edwin Vandersar's solid performances for so many years.

All things considered, thinks are looking good for Manchester United in the Premiership and the Champions League, and the return to Stamford Bridge in the Capital One Cup would be the icing on the cupcake for a squad that had so much disappointment last season. Sir Alex seems to have the entire lineup finely tuned, and he better because a tricky tie with Arsenal looms for the weekend.

Jason Gallagher is a long-time Manchester United fan, following the performances of the Red Devils since the days of Eric Cantona and David Beckham.

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