Archive for the ‘Managers’ Category

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…)

ogs

He’s back! Having failed in Cardiff to which the general reaction was “so what?”, the Norwegian returns to Manchester United as caretaker manager until the end of the season at which stage the seat will be judged to have been sufficiently warmed for the derrière of Mauricio Pochettino, (unless, of course, Solskjær can win the Champion’s League, the FA cup and finish in the top four).

He will be assisted by Mike Phelan who has the undoubted experience of having assisted Sir Alex Ferguson but the dubious experience of having failed in any managerial role he has taken on, (much like the vast majority of Ferguson’s assistants). (more…)

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Paul Pogba wants Manchester United to attack teams. He doesn’t think it is acceptable, particularly at Old Trafford, to sit back and play a “we may win with a decent counter-attack, but at least we shouldn’t lose” kind of mentality.

More than 70,000 match-going United fans agree with him every home game. Millions more, plastic and otherwise, also agree with him from the comfort of their armchairs, sofas or local pubs.

In fact, the only person in the world, or so it would seem, who disagrees with him, is José Mourinho. (more…)

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With Chelsea and Liverpool setting the pace at the top of the Premier League and Manchester City only two points behind them the questions now become two which are; can they maintain their standards and what can Tottenham, Arsenal and United do about it?

In fourth and fifth place respectively sit Bournemouth and Watford who have done well to climb the ladder to such a giddy height this early in the season. Realistically though, they can both be expected to find a snake down which to descend in the not-too-distant future as neither are particularly well equipped squad-wise for a sustained tilt at the top six. (more…)

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Firstly, we have to start this little monologue with the assertion that we think José Mourinho is doing an OK job at Manchester United. It isn’t perfect but we don’t think we could have reasonably expected much more out of the first two seasons in charge.

We were happy with the three trophies in his first season, even if none of them were “A list”. We appreciated that the team would slide down the table somewhat in their quest for Europa League glory so the sixth place finish was acceptable, particularly as the winning of Big Vase meant automatic qualification for The Champion’s League.

The following season saw an improvement in league form and finish but very little, if anything, else. Second place was a decent ending to the season but didn’t mask the fact that United were 19 points behind City. (more…)

mandk

Liverpool sit proudly at the top of the Premier League. For the moment. Jürgen Klopp, despite being a serial cup final attendee is also a serial cup final loser. He has now been in charge of Liverpool for three years and has won……NOTHING!

Is he under pressure? No. Why not? Nobody really knows. He has spent much more in the last two seasons than his counterpart at Old Trafford and yet José Mourinho, who has won three trophies in his time at United as well as finishing runner-up in the Premier League, is under scrutiny EVERY day. (more…)

jm

Having sat through Manchester City’s 6-1 demolition of Huddersfield Town, a team who managed to stop them scoring at The Etihad in last season’s record-breaking campaign, the early conclusion is that City are even better this year! So far anyway.

So it was with some trepidation that we watched Manchester United away at Brighton. This was a game they lost last season without appearing to even turn up.

They haven’t changed and managed to lose again without appearing to turn up.

So the whingeing and whining about new signings, the pre-season tour and the World Cup have had no effect whatsoever and this team is as bad, if not worse, than last term. (more…)

jm

When he was first appointed, José Mourinho was not universally accepted as being the “right man for the job” at Old Trafford. Some supporters, bored almost lifeless with the type of football served up by David Moyes and then Louis van Gaal, thought that Mourinho was just more of the same.

The majority, however, just wanted van Gaal out and Mourinho in based on the fact he was a proven winner with every club he had managed and United, having been starved of any serious success, (with van Gaal’s FA Cup win being the only exception), since Sir Alex Ferguson retired, were happy to oblige. (more…)