27/06/2009 09:00,
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08/09 Review: Kuszczak

There are few jobs in football as frustrating as being a goalkeeper's understudy.

Tomasz Kuszczak may have spent more time on the bench than on the pitch in 2008/09, but the Pole never grumbled and always looked enthusiastic when handed a chance to shine.

That said, 2008/09 was a difficult season for Tomasz. Sir Alex insists the Polish international remains part of his plans, but Kuszczak was largely a spectator as his colleagues collected silverware and finished the campaign having played just a handful of games.

Start to finish: Tomasz never really got started. He played half a game against Chelsea, enjoyed outings in Europe against Aalborg and Villarreal and got the nod on just a smattering of other occasions, often against sides that barely mustered a threat.

In position: The Pole benefitted from a United back four setting new standards in miserliness. Rio, Vida, Jonny… the faces changed slightly, but the threat to the United goal remained minimal.

Vital contribution: On as a first-half sub for van der Sar at Stamford Bridge in September, Tomasz kept his head as the Blues gathered a head of steam late on; there was little he could do to prevent Salomon Kalou’s leveller, and he was smartly off his line to deny Joe Cole.

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Quote unquote

"Top keepers are hard to find. I believe we have three of the best and by securing Tomasz’s future we can consolidate ours." - Sir Alex

How do you rate Kuszczak's 08/09 contribution? And what do you think the future holds for the Polish stopper? Have your say on Talking Reds.


Premier League