Manchester City And Manchester United Are Already Looking To Next Season

Posted: April 30, 2017 in Arsenal, Chelsea, European Football, Football, Jose Mourinho, Manchester City, Manchester United, Opinion, Pep Guardiola
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The result was fitting, if not entirely fair. City, to be honest, were the better team on the night and certainly looked the more likely winners. However theirs is a problem similar to that of Manchester United in that they don’t turn enough chances into goals.

It could be argued that Manchester United deserved the point if only for their stout defending, no mean achievement given that three of their four first choice centre backs are out injured.

So City failed to score, Fellaini was deservedly sent off and the game petered out into a result that does no real damage to either side and keeps them both in with a chance of overtaking Liverpool providing they win their games in hand.

On the subject of the red card, if a player could be sent off for being totally stupid then Fellaini is that player. He wasn’t guilty of doing any particular damage to Sergio Agüero. In fact it is doubtful if he even registered an “ouch” with the Argentinian who must have been laughing all the way home when thinking back on the incident.

This City team bore a striking resemblance to a Manuel Pellegrini team and even set up in a very similar way, so at least Pep is learning that he has to adapt to the different opposition in the Premier League. This is something which never happened with his previous two clubs because the opposition were rarely of the calibre he meets on a regular basis in the Premier League.

The United team bore a striking resemblance to a José Mourinho team, so no real surprise there then. Mourinho has proven this term that he can be the man for all seasons. Irrespective of the opposition he is prepared to change tactically in an attempt to secure a result, whether that be a win or a “not lose“.

He has had the team playing exciting, attacking football when it has been the right thing to do and can hardly be held responsible for the failings in front of goal, something which he will no doubt attempt to correct in the next transfer window.

So the game wasn’t the spectacle that Sky Sports were trying to convince us that it would be. In truth, derbies are rarely exciting end-to-end stuff simply because there is too much pride at stake so, unfortunately, caution tends to be the stand-out tactic. There have been exceptions of course, there always are, but these have been few and far between.

The caution this time was because neither club wanted to lose which would have been good news for Liverpool. That isn’t to suggest that there was any collusion beforehand, even though Mourinho and Guardiola appear to be the best of friends again. No, it just didn’t make sense to hand an advantage to Liverpool on a plate.

As it turned out both teams gained a point on Liverpool and, as mentioned earlier, both can overtake them by winning their game in hand.

It would be a shame if Liverpool failed to finish in the top four and we would much prefer it if either Chelsea or Tottenham were to join Arsenal in the Europa League next season, but it just isn’t going to happen.

Next season could see the emergence of Everton as top four contenders and, with the inevitable improvement of the Manchester clubs and Liverpool strengthening as well, the London clubs need to be on their game otherwise there will be none of them in the top four next time out.

Now wouldn’t that be a refreshing change!

NB This article was written before the United-Swansea game which we stupidly thought United would win. Playing at home, against a team fighting relegation, they displayed an ineptitude and a failure to pass and control the ball which was startling. Surely even José Mourinho must know that clowns like Rooney, Young and Lingard have to go!


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