Introduction to the blog...

Hi, my name's Toby Wildgoose. I'm a 20 year old who's obsessed by sport, so much so, that I am looking to become a sports journalist/media officer in later life.

I've set up this blog not only so that I can improve and refine my writing skills, but also to provide a platform for potential employers to view my work.

I have already developed a small portfolio of my work, with my experience in the industry including: written match reports for junior football teams, published work at numerous EFL clubs in a variety of formats, and work experience placements at Chesterfield FC and Rotherham United Community Sports Trust - to see my full portfolio click here:

I hope to post as often as possible on this blog about anything that is sport related. Please find the time to read any of my posts.

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Start Date: 11/12/12 (Aged 15)

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Match Report: Bayer Leverkusen 0-5 Manchester United

Manchester United booked their place in the last-16 of the Champions League with a convincing 5-0 victory over Bayer Leverkusen in Germany.

Goals from Antonio Valencia, Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling and Nani were more than enough to sink the Bundesliga side and all but secure top spot in Group A.

Following Sunday’s 2-2 draw with Cardiff, David Moyes made four changes to the United side, including the return of Ryan Giggs who made his 138th European appearance just days before his 40th birthday.

Phil Jones and Shinji Kagawa also came back into the starting XI to play alongside Giggs, and were looking to impress after missing recent games in the Premier League.  

The visitors were not injury free though, and both Robin van Persie and Nemanja Vidic were deemed unfit to play.

The game started in a good manor for United, and it appeared Wayne Rooney was in on goal after a brilliant through ball from Shinji Kagawa left him one-on-one with Leverkusen ‘keeper Bernd Leno. The chance was not to be though, and the linesman correctly raised his flag to signify offside against the United number 10.

The away side weren’t disheartened though, and they continued to press during the first 15 minutes of the match.

As the pressure continued to build, a chance soon fell to Nani on the inside of the 18-yard box. The Portuguese winger stepped onto his favoured right foot before firing a dipping effort just over the crossbar - much to the agony of the away crowd.

Minutes later, it was the home side who were on the front foot, as Stefan Kiebling pushed forward into the United area. A last ditch tackle from Jonny Evans, however, ensured the score would stay level for a little longer.

The deadlock was eventually broken in the 22nd minute though, as Antonio Valencia slotted home his second goal of the group stage.

Wayne Rooney again lofted a dangerous ball into the box and, after dipping over Shinji Kagawa, the cross fell perfectly for Valencia to side foot against the post and into the back of the net.

The first-half scoring wasn’t done here though, and bang on the half-an-hour mark, United doubled their lead over the Bundesliga side.

A free-kick was won on the edge of the Leverkusen box, and Rooney yet again fired a swirling cross into the box for Chris Smalling to attack. The right-back was beaten to the ball by Leverkusen defender Emir Spahic though, who agonisingly watched his header fly into the top corner of his own net.

A number more chances followed for the away side, however, the score stayed at 2-0 going into the break.

Half-time: Bayer Leverkusen 0-2 Manchester United

The second-half was a far more one sided affair, and it only took 20 minutes for the visitors to all but end Leverkusen hopes of a comeback.

From a United corner, Patrice Evra rose highest to nod the ball down to the feet of Wayne Rooney. The forward couldn’t quite force the ball home though, and the chance instead fell to Jonny Evans. The defender simply couldn’t miss and the ball was scrambled home to make the score 3-0 in favour of the Red Devils.

The scoring wasn’t done here though, and as the game looked to be fizzling out, Wayne Rooney was once again involved in a United goal.

This time, the England international picked up the ball just outside Leverkusen’s six yard box after a wonderful pass from Shinji Kagawa. Unselfishly, he played the ball back across the box and through the keepers’ outstretched arms for Chris Smalling to tap home.

The scoring was finally completed in the 88th minute, when 27-year-old Nani rounded Bernd Leno before audaciously chipping home to add extra gloss to an already emphatic scoreline.

The win sees United secure qualification to the knockout round and tightens their grip on top spot in Group A.

Full-time: Bayer Leverkusen 0-5 Manchester United

Bayer Leverkusen: Leno, Spahic, Omer Toprak, Donati, Reinartz (Hegeler 70), Rolfes, Bender (Kohr 81), Can, Castro, Son (Derdiyok 70), Kiessling

Unused: Lomb, Stafylidis, Wollscheid, Kruse

Manchester United: De Gea, Smalling, Ferdinand, Evans, Evra (B├╝ttner 70), Giggs, Jones, Valencia (Young 80), Kagawa, Nani, Rooney (Anderson 80)

Unused: Lindegaard, Cleverley, Hernandez, Welbeck

Attendance: N/A

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