Former AmaZulu striker and 1992 Coca Cola Cup champion George Dearnaley shares his thoughts on Usuthu’s match against Manchester United.
What does it mean for Usuthu to play against a world renowned team like Manchester United?
Fantastic opportunity for the players, playing against one of the most famous football teams in the World. Really an unbelievable opportunity and one I’m sure they are relishing, some of the players might not sleep before the match.
I hope they do themselves proud and enjoy the experience. And if anyone wants to get me a Paul Scholes’ jersey....
What do they have to do to get a result against this particular Red Devils side?
Well, a ‘result’ might be not losing too much, or getting a draw! Both teams are still doing pre-season, and United have not brought a full squad, there are a lot of youngsters who will be keen to impress Sir Alex.
Usuthu will want to keep the ball as much as possible, they will want to close United down in the building-up phase and not allow them too much space to play.
We can expect players on both sides to be rusty, not in peak physical condition, so I am not expecting a high technical quality. Usuthu will also use some new players, so they will be learning about their teammates during a very high pressure match.
Which United players do they need to watch the most to get something from this game?
New signing Shinji Kagawa will be keen to start his United career off at a high level, so you can expect him to make things happen in the build-up and in the attacking phase for United. Rio Ferdinand has had some personal issues to deal with, including missing out on the Euro 2012 tournament, so I am looking forward to seeing him play and get himself focussed on the season.
Then the likes of Paul Scholes, Michael Carrick, Antonio Valencia and Chicharito are all experienced high quality professionals, so they will all need watching!
United will also give game time to some of the new crop of stars – the youngsters like new signing up front Nick Powell and defender Scott Wooton – who will be keen to impress the boss, and who will sweat blood for the badge. So I don’t think it will be a bunch of highly paid superstars walking around the pitch like we owe them a favour – they will be here to start their business, and they will be here to win their matches.
Which Usuthu players are you tipping to cause problems for Sir Alex Ferguson’s side?
Actually, the key to Usuthu doing well against United, will be if every player understands that he has to play for the team, and has to do what is best for the team.
If individual players think it is an opportunity for them to stand out and be noticed, they will try too hard, they will do things that are best for them and not best for the team, and that won’t help Usuthu.
I like Ayanda Dlamini – he plays with great passion for the team – so I hope he gets a goal!