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Moyes: Set-pieces have cost United this season

ESPN staff
November 25, 2013 « Baines facing month on sidelines with fractured toe | Chartbeat test »
Moyes: we should've won

David Moyes believes Manchester United's set-piece frailties have cost them four points already this season after Cardiff snatched a draw against the defending champions on Sunday.

City's South Korean substitute Kim Bo-Kyung headed a late leveller from Peter Whittingham's injury-time free kick.

And it reminded manager Moyes of October's draw against Southampton at Old Trafford when Adam Lallana equalised in the 89th minute after United failed to defend Luke Shaw's corner.

Moyes said: "I'm disappointed. It's similar to Southampton where we had the game in our control with a minute to go and conceded from a set-piece. It's cost us, ultimately."

He then told the BBC: "We don't defend it well enough and the boy Whittingham puts in a really good ball. We were close but it's now happened in two games, Southampton and this game, where we have lost points in the last minute."

If United, who had a reputation for scoring late goals under Sir Alex Ferguson, had hung on to win both games, they would be second in the Premier League table.

Instead they are sixth and Moyes added: "We've been on a pretty good run but that's a blow because we can't keep dropping points, two points in games when you're where we are. We should have won it. I know we can play better but we should have won the game."

Meanwhile, Phil Jones could make a quicker-than-expected recovery from a groin injury to play against Bayer Leverkusen on Wednesday.

And Moyes is hopeful that captain Nemanja Vidic and top scorer Robin van Persie, who both missed the Cardiff clash, will also be able to return in Germany.

But Jones' comeback could be particularly timely for Moyes, who will definitely be without midfielders Marouane Fellaini, who is suspended after being sent-off in the 0-0 draw at Real Sociedad, and Michael Carrick, who has an achilles injury.

The 21-year-old's last start for United was in the centre of midfield against Arsenal before he was hurt playing for England against Chile and sat out their friendly against Germany and the Cardiff game amid reports he could be sidelined for up to three weeks.

But Moyes revealed in his post-match news conference that the former Blackburn player might be fit for the Champions League game.

"Possibly," he said. "I don't think he is as bad as we first thought. He's not too far away. It's a groin injury, right up his hip."

Van Persie has struggled with groin and toe injuries this season and was not fit enough for the game in Wales while Vidic was substituted against Arsenal after suffering concussion in a collision with goalkeeper David de Gea.

Moyes added: "Robin's groin is the problem at the moment; his toes are much better. We are hoping to get both Nemanja and Robin back as soon as we can.

"I hope they'll be in contention for Wednesday but I couldn't give a definitive answer."

Shinji Kagawa was another absentee for the Cardiff game, with Adnan Januzaj deputising on the left wing, and Moyes said the former Borussia Dortmund midfielder was hurt on international duty.

He explained: "Kagawa got injured playing for Japan. It's an injury to his foot; there's some bruising there, but it's not too bad."

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