One game, one assist - Did Moyes make a mistake freezing United winger out?

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Wilfried Zaha needed just 11 minutes to get his first assist for Cardiff on Saturday. Should David Moyes have given him more of a chance at Manchester United?

It hasn't been the best of weekends so far for Manchester United boss David Moyes.

His side's 2-1 defeat at Stoke City was their eighth of the season, as two goals from Charlie Adam brought United fans crashing down from the euphoria of signing Juan Mata in January.

Champions League qualification now looks a distant dream for the Scot, with fourth-placed Liverpool able to move nine points clear of United if they beat West Brom on Sunday.

But it wasn't just events involving Moyes' current squad that seemed to conspire against him on Saturday. Indeed, another one of the 50-year-old's decisions in recent months has been called into question after just one game.

That decision was freezing Wilfried Zaha out of the first-team picture at Old Trafford, with the 21-year-old needing just 11 minutes to register his first assist for Cardiff after joining them on loan.

At United this season, Zaha has not been given any kind of chance by Moyes, the winger having made just four appearances all season.

As soon as Bluebirds boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer threw him on against Norwich, however, Zaha responded - in some style.

"Zaha came on and made the difference," Solskjaer told reporters. "He has pace, power and technique. We just have to teach him defending."

"It was a decision I had to make there and then. I was hoping we'd be in a better position but I felt we needed some spark - and that's what we got from Zaha."

Meanwhile, Moyes watched on as his side struggled to break down a team that were only four points off bottom heading into this weekend.

The Scot tried to enforce change, bringing on Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez - but no change in fortune was forthcoming. Perhaps a confident, on-form Zaha could have made the difference.

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Did Moyes make a mistake freezing Zaha out at Old Trafford?

image: © Tom Brogan

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