Archive for the ‘Managers’ Category

We here at WSA are all for modernity. We live for the now, not the then or the was. Just because most of our life is in the past does not mean that we choose to live there although, to be fair, it is often a much better alternative to what we have nowadays.

What we have nowadays, for example, are words and expressions attached to the game of football which would have drawn a more than quizzical look if used in the not too distant past.

Take Manchester United, (we wish somebody would take it, at least off the Glazers), for example. A massive club with millions of fans/supporters worldwide.

It is now very easy, through social media, for these fans/supporters to “talk” to each other and boy, do they talk to each other!

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It would appear that Manchester City are now the team looking most likely to lift the Premier League title in May. Put another way, anyone finishing above them will almost certainly win it!

The major difference between City and United, if we overlook the fact that one is managed by a serial winner and the other by a relative novice, is in their players.

Manchester City can look excellent even without their best player which is what they will have to do for probably around 4 more weeks whilst Kevin De Bruyne recovers from a hamstring injury. In their recent game at West Bromwich Albion it was difficult to believe that he wasn’t on the pitch as City took a 4-0 lead into the half-time break.

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No doubt there will be some supporters of the lesser clubs which reside outside Manchester who will disagree with our selection here but we are not really the type of publication which cares too much about what others think! Don’t get us wrong, we appreciate your comments and views on all topics and will always publish the sensible ones, we just don’t have the time to be overly concerned about them!

We have narrowed our list of ‘best midfielders in the Premier League’ down to two! Those two both, coincidentally of course, play for a Manchester club. First up to the podium amid rapturous applause is Manchester City’s Kevin de Bruyne, who scores as follows:

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Ole’s at the wheel, although the ‘L’ plates are still firmly attached and if any of the backroom staff are his instructor then it is unlikely he will pass the test.

An average ex-player who became a below average manager, Mike Phelan would have to be regarded as the senior figure on the team although quite what he brings to the table given his lack of expertise in anything of relevance is beyond this meagre publication.

He is aided and abetted in his aiding and abetting of the manager by Michael Carrick. Another ex-player but, in his case, a very good one. That’s really where the good news ends. With absolutely no experience of coaching at any level, he was given a job coaching at United, despite the fact that Nicky Butt was already at the club and already had a few years coaching experience.

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After losing at home to Arsenal then away to Basaksehir Manchester United went on to record four wins on the bounce with victories over Everton away, Basaksehir at home, West Bromwich Albion at home and Southampton away.

Performance-wise there were ups and downs. For example, the defeat to Arsenal was poor and the defeat in Istanbul even poorer. The Everton win showed spirit and a determination which had seemed missing in the previous two games but then it was back to a poor showing against West Brom which at least resulted in a win this time.

The Southampton game, apart from a twenty minutes spell when the hosts scored two goals, was an example of how well they can play and how good a player Edinson Cavani is.

But with all these inconsistencies, can United challenge for any of the trophies this season?

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ogs

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s latest excuse for Manchester United not scoring goals is because they are tired! The lack of goals is not being attributed to Marcus Rashford’s injury, nor is it blamed on the fact that Anthony Martial is playing like a sloth who has been told to take it easy. It is not the fault of Andreas Pereira or Jesse Lingard, two attacking midfielders who have four goals between them this season nor is it down to the sheer lack of quality in the team. No, it is because they are tired. (more…)

FINLAND SWAMP SOCCER

And so, dear readers, we reach that time of the year yet again! T’is the season to be jolly and all that unless, of course, you are the manager of a top English Premier League football club.

For those elite few t’is the season to have a moan about the amount of games there are in modern football and how it’s much harder than it used to be blah, blah, blah….and on and on and on.

If you think you have heard it all before that would be because you have, unless you are just coming up to your first birthday that is. (more…)

oandp

One gets the distinct impression that some Tottenham Hotspur fans would not be too disappointed if Mauricio Pochettino left for Manchester United in the Summer. One also gets the distinct impression that, if Spurs could get Ole Gunnar Solskjær to make the reverse trip, these same fans would be very pleased indeed.

The Argentinean has very recently fallen foul of a few of the faithful by stating that trophies are not important, that they are just “ego-boosters” and don’t necessarily reflect a team’s long-term success. That may be true but his “ambition” to finish in the top four of the Premier League in preference to winning a trophy is hardly likely to endear him to those Tottenham supporters who shell out their hard-earned cash to go and watch the team every week and will shell out even more in the coming years if the club ever move to their new stadium. (more…)

ogs

Ed Woodward likes a superstar. He likes to associate with them and he likes, whenever possible, to buy one for the club. He is typical of one suffering from “little man” syndrome. He has power at Old Trafford, of that there is no doubt, but he wields it as many little men have done over the course of history, just without the violence.

He tends to be dictatorial as was shown by his immediate rush to recruit firstly Louis van Gaal and then José Mourinho after proving, to himself anyway, that following Sir Alex Ferguson’s advice with David Moyes wasn’t the way to go. (more…)

ogs

Having won his first five games in charge, albeit against opposition even one of Fergie’s first three replacements may have expected to beat, expectations are high at Old Trafford.

The fans, the real ones and the plastic, are starting to feel a sense of optimism about the future. It is not only the five wins which, as we said, weren’t achieved against the highest quality opponents, but it is the way in which they were achieved particularly the style of attacking football in the first four of those victories.

In beating Reading in the FA Cup after making nine changes and fielding a team who had never played a competitive game together, Solskjær showed he also has the knack of being able to find a winning team when selecting from a hotch-potch of players. (more…)