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Is this one of van Gaal’s must-win games? I’ve lost track now!

Anyway, before the game starts I just want to let off a bit of steam about his ridiculous statement that he occasionally gets bored watching United. So this is to him:

Dear Louis,

Please come down off your pedestal and don’t bother with the condescending, supercilious remarks. You are being paid an absolute fortune to watch Manchester United whereas the fans are paying an absolute fortune to watch them. So for you to say that YOU get bored watching them is an insult to the supporter’s intelligence.

If you think they are boring then DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! You are the coach, it is up to you to train the team, set the tactics and ensure that your instructions are being followed. If the team is boring it is because YOU ARE BORING! A team is a reflection of the manager.

If you set up the team to attack and play exciting football and they don’t follow your instructions then try GETTING OFF YOUR FAT BACKSIDE, GOING TO THE TOUCHLINE AND YELLING AT THEM UNTIL THEY GET IT RIGHT! It may not be your favourite coaching method, but it has been proven to work. If you don’t believe me just ask Sir Alex Ferguson, Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho. You can walk across Manchester and speak to Manuel Pellegrini, it works for him as well. Even Mr Cool, Arsene Wenger uses this method to get instructions to his players!

Still, I suppose you think they are all wrong and that your way is best. That would be the typically arrogant approach I would expect from you.

Not to worry, your days are numbered, whether the number be high or low there won’t be too many more of them.

Yours sincerely,
on behalf of United fans nearly everywhere

The whysayanything team

So to the game where the United team again featured a winger at wing back, a right back at left back and a defensive midfielder at centre back yet, as far as the transfer market goes, there is no mention of cover for the full back positions or a decent centre back.

Fellaini was played as a holding midfielder which he definitely isn’t. He took his position literally and gave away plenty of free kicks by holding the opposition every time they came near him.

Rooney, who can only score against inferior opposition such as Bruges and Sheffield United, was again selected up front along with Anthony Martial who, in fairness, nearly always looks good. Up to now the transfer rumours at Old Trafford don’t include a striker either. They are, for some reason, being linked with midfielders which they certainly don’t need if they would only play the ones they have in their natural positions.

United managed to take the lead after ten minutes through a penalty that was fortuitous but a penalty nevertheless. Rooney scored even though it should have been Herrera who took it.

Lingard got a good second and Manchester United were playing very well. A defensive lapse then let Newcastle in and Wijnaldum scored to make it 1-2 at half time.

So a good, entertaining game and it begged the question as to how well United could play if everybody was allocated their preferred position, or new players were brought in for the problem positions, (which are not in midfield, Louis). Even Paul Scholes was enjoying it!

Second half and the excitement continued apace. Newcastle equalised when Smalling did what he does every week, in every game. He turned into a rugby player and embraced Mitrovic, then wrestled him to the ground. The difference this time was that the referee saw it and, more importantly, gave the penalty.

Rooney then scored a cracker to put United in front but, right at the death, Dummett scored another equaliser to give Newcastle a deserved point.

So the aftermatch thoughts are that Manchester United played very well but do not have a great defence, despite what they may think. Van Gaal’s substitutions leave something to be desired given that he took off Lingard and Herrera who were both playing very well at the time. Finally, I think he may have read this article before the match as he appeared on the touchline, albeit very briefly, during the second half!

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