FOOTBALL NEWS

31/12/2011 15:04, Report by Adam Marshall
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Ratings v Blackburn

Check out our individual assessments of each player's performance in the defeat to Blackburn..

David De Gea:  Will be disappointed with Grant Hanley's winner as the burly defender beat him in the air and he could do little about Yakubu's strikes. Assured with the ball at his feet, as usual.

Antonio Valencia: Displayed good distribution from the outset but really came to life when moved up to right wing in the second half. Set up Dimitar Berbatov's equaliser with a classic run past defenders and there is no doubt he is back to his best form.

Michael Carrick: Made some notable challenges and interceptions in his unfamiliar central defensive role but found Yakubu a difficult opponent all afternoon. Denied by Mark Bunn from a Nani corner and booked for a foul on Mauro Formica, he was unable to prevent Yakubu running on goal for his second strike, the ball unluckily deflecting off the Rovers striker and into his path.

Phil Jones: A rough challenge on Formica showed there was no time for sentiment against his old club and he almost scored on a couple of occasions, denied by inadvertant blocks by team-mates Javier Hernandez and Will Keane in each half. Also steered a header wide and switched play nicely during the second half.

Patrice Evra: Fouled on his first foray forward, he showed plenty of skill and also some great chest control during his raids down the left. One dangerous cross was kicked away by Bunn at his near post but he was unable to unlock the visiting defence.

Nani: Showed magical footwork and a desire to make things happen, even backheeling a free kick on one occasion to exude confidence. A couple of ambitious attempts were off target and

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