Posts Tagged ‘Arsenal’

 

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This should not come as a major surprise to supporters of the two clubs. If they both stick to their original schedule Manchester United will have played five “warm-up” games and City three.

United will have faced Wigan Athletic, Borussia Dortmund, Galatasaray, Everton and Leicester City.

City will have played Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Arsenal.

In the past United have been known to organise another friendly prior to the start of the season, usually in the week leading up to the Community Shield. Given that their derby in China was cancelled they may still choose to fit in another game before the big kick off. It seems that United’s players have not yet reached the required level of fitness demanded by a Premier League title contender. (more…)

 

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Antonio Valencia:

He has never regained full confidence since breaking his leg against Rangers a few years ago. At one stage he was a marauding winger who was never afraid to take defenders on and beat them, usually with pace rather than trickery. Since recovering from his injury he has always either passed the ball or tried a cross instead of attempting to beat the full back. His crosses invariably hit the defender he doesn’t try to beat and either go out for a corner or possession is lost.

Sir Alex Ferguson was the first to think he may be a decent wingback. Louis van Gaal also played him in that position and Jose Mourinho as well. Well, not wishing to try and advise these three luminaries, but Valencia IS NOT a wingback. He CANNOT defend. He is regularly playing the opposition onside, and is a complete liability in his own area. (more…)

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There now exists, more than ever before, a two-team competition in oneupmanship in Manchester. No sooner have Manchester City appointed Pep Guardiola then Manchester United are appointing Jose Mourinho.

City sign Ilkay Gundogan and United sign Henrikh Mhkitaryan, both from Borussia Dortmund and neither of whom will have the fans singing their names for a while, certainly not if they have to learn to spell them first!

United are reportedly looking to sign Paul Pogba so City are immediately linked with Luis Suarez.

United will break the world transfer record, but only if City don’t! (more…)

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The short answer is no, not at the moment. One or two further additions to the squad, however, may change things around somewhat.

The full back positions do not need urgent surgery as, with a fully fit Luke Shaw along with Darmian and Varela, there should be sufficient cover although Jose does not seem totally convinced about Darmian so don’t be too surprised to see a replacement brought in. I can’t see Mourinho persisting with Antonio Valencia at full back as he has proven, on a few occasions, that he can’t play the position and Ashley Young is nothing short of a joke at full back.

At present Mourinho has addressed one of the centre back positions by bringing in Eric Bailly. I assume this will mean that United will be listening to offers for Marcus Rojo, who hasn’t convinced at either centre back or left back. This does not solve the problem of the other centre back. (more…)

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He must have, you only need to read the amount of players he is going to buy and look at the total cost.

All this talk of United giving him a kitty of £250 million to spend on transfers is obviously a smokescreen so that clubs are not aware of how much is really available.

Ed seems to have learnt his lesson! Gone are the days when he would brag that United could afford any player in the world because money is no object. Maybe he realised, shortly after making his stupid statement, that any player in whom United expressed an interest suddenly experienced a sharp hike in price. When you add that to the fact that, thanks to Ed’s propensity for dithering, they also paid £4 million more for Fellaini than they needed to, then it is understandable that their budget is being kept a closely guarded secret and that a completely false figure has been circulated. Only the really intrepid football journalists have figured out the truth.

So, following the arrival of Eric Bailly, Zlatan Ibrahimovic will come riding into town on his white horse. (more…)

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Recently I have been reading that the last three results have turned Louis van Gaal into such a good manager that Manchester United couldn’t bear to see him leave at the end of the season and would like him to stay on for his contracted final year.

The last three results have been the Europa League win over FC Midtjylland, who would just about survive the first division in England, followed by a good 3-2 win over Arsenal, who were abysmal and ending in a very fortuitous 1-0 win over Watford, a game in which they were lucky Watford didn’t score three.

With the exception of the Arsenal game, the other two again papered over the cracks and certainly made van Gaal look a lot better than he really is. The problem when this happens is that some people actually believe he is good, only for a short while, but long enough for the damage to be done.

Louis van Gaal has, basically, had his day. He cannot live with the modern game, particularly in the Premier League where he has never managed before. He is far too arrogant to admit it and prefers to rely completely on excuses when his team loses. (more…)

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To be honest, this was a very decent performance by Manchester United. Despite going a goal down in the first half and missing a penalty they played with enough purpose and resolve to score five good goals.

To add to the reasons for slight celebration, two of the goals were scored by Marcus Rashford, making his debut after Anthony Martial had decided that David De Gea shouldn’t have the monopoly on pulling up with an injury just before kick-off. What further added to the feel-good factor was the fact that Memphis Depay was the man-of-the-match.

To continue with the honesty, though, this was always a game that a Manchester United team should expect to win. They are in the Europa League playing teams who weren’t good enough for the Champion’s League. The fact that they have now fallen into this category is their own fault, but they should still be good enough to win it, even though they probably won’t.

Staying with “honesty is the best policy”, the young lads who won the game tonight were not playing because van Gaal gives young lads a chance, no, they were playing because injuries give young lads a chance. (more…)

 

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So, Louis van Gaal would feel betrayed if Manchester United were speaking to Jose Mourinho about the manager’s position at United, would he? He has just led United to a defeat at Sunderland which leaves them six points away from the top four who all now have a game in hand. The chances of finishing in the top four are now very remote so, therefore, his spending of £258 million on new players was both wasteful and unwise.

As a United supporter of more than fifty years I would feel completely betrayed if United WEREN’T talking to Jose Mourinho, I couldn’t care less what van Gaal thinks! He is not the man for Manchester United and the only people who don’t understand this are van Gaal himself and Ed Woodward.

Just to be straight, I have absolutely no time for Ed Woodward who, since amazingly being placed in charge of football matters, has overseen one disaster after another.

Starting with the appointment of David Moyes, a man with no big club experience and no trophy winning experience, through the purchase of Marouane Fellaini for £4 million more than was necessary due to a missed release clause, it continued with the joke that was the Angel Di Maria transfer, the sacking of Moyes AFTER it became mathematically impossible to finish fourth or better, giving the next manager no chance of a relatively successful start. (more…)

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I read a rather silly article in the Daily Mail, which you may read here, if you so wish,which claims that, because Pep Guardiola has gone to Manchester City, this immediately makes them the biggest club in Manchester and, therefore, the Premier League.

Obviously written by a deluded City supporter, this claim is based on potential, nothing more.

They are certainly the wealthiest club in the division and they now probably have the best training facilities and the best youth set-up. How does any of that elevate them to the status of “biggest in the league?”

I will agree that if, over the next thirty or so years, they build their global fanbase to a size larger than that of Manchester United, which they will only do by beginning to match the on-the-pitch success of United, then they have a chance.

Manchester United have won the First Division/Premier League title on twenty occasions, the European Cup/Champion’s League on three and the FA Cup eleven times. Their Old Trafford ground has a capacity of 75,653 and is regularly full on matchdays. They claim a global fanbase of 659 million people but I am not sure that this figure has ever been ratified. (more…)

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(I make no apologies for writing yet another article on the desperate duo responsible for the demise of my football club. My logic is that the more that can be written about how they are destroying the great name of Manchester United, then the more chance that something will be done about it. So here goes.)

Is this another no-lose game in Louis van Gaal’s match-by-match scenario? I’ve lost track! Stoke aren’t a team I would choose for a must-win game but, as Louis doesn’t appear to have to be a beggar, then he must be able to choose the games for which he comes under the mildest possible scrutiny.

What I do know is that while all this messing around has been going on with van Gaal, who should have been sacked weeks ago, Manchester City have agreed the departure of a better manager than he is and the arrival of a much better manager than he is.

This all leaves Ed Woodward as the chief Ostrich with his head so deep in the sand that only his feet can be seen sticking out. (more…)