Posts Tagged ‘Chris Smalling’

IMG_1265

Eden Hazard is wanted by Real Madrid. Big deal. Real Madrid, like many other big clubs, has a scouting network which only seems capable of finding world class players after they have become world class.

Whether or not Hazard wants to go to Madrid is, to an extent, irrelevant. Usually when Real want a player they get that player. If Hazard does opt for the riches in Spain it should be seen as a cop out by the Chelsea fans. (more…)

IMG_1244

Manchester United’s problem is scoring goals, or rather, not scoring goals. Their total for the season would be abysmal if Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s tally were to be taken out of the equation.

When United signed the Swede along with Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Paul Pogba, it appeared to go a long way to addressing the goalscoring side of things. The fact that he only signed one defender, Eric Bailly, did not necessarily mean that he was happy with what he had, more that there was a shortage of world class defenders available. (more…)

IMG_1223

Get ready for the usual sting. If Manchester United can find a way to beat Chelsea, (which seems unlikely with two donkeys like Smalling and Young in the team), what is the betting that their next FA Cup game will be against Manchester City?

There is a force at work somewhere which endeavours to ensure that these two teams never meet in the final.

It may be that they want a London team in the final and one way of making sure of that is to have Tottenham play Arsenal in the semi-final. Guess what that would mean? Correct, City would play United in the other semi. (more…)

img_1338

It has always been a source of amazement and, occasionally, amusement, to see the quality, (or lack of), amongst the squads of the top clubs. Manchester City and United are no different and there are certainly players within those two sides who are nothing more than average.

This is one of the reasons why they are both behind Chelsea, who have less “below average” players than the rest. (more…)

img_1130

Bastian Schweinsteiger has managed to work his way back as far as the bench. Morgan Schneiderlin and Memphis Depay also reached that lofty height and Matteo Darmian has had a reasonable run in the first team, just not in his favoured position. That his best role has been filled by a winger who can’t defend says a lot about Darmian’s future in Mourinho’s team.

Marcos Rojo is almost a regular and Daley Blind flits in and out depending upon the opposition. Luke Shaw is yet to fully recover mentally from his injury and only time will tell if he is going to fulfill his potential and whether or not that will be at United. (more…)

img_1088

According to reports in the popular press, (does that mean the Sun and the Star?), José Mourinho has been so impressed with whoever plays in defence that he no longer feels the need to splash the cash on a new defender.

José Fonte may have asked for a transfer from Southampton in the vain hope that it would result in a move to Old Trafford but it isn’t going to happen. He may still get to play for a club with more to offer than the Saints, but it won’t be United. (more…)

img_1158

This is the latest incarnation in a fairly long history of the José Mourinho persecution complex. Nothing is his fault and the whole world is out to get him.

In truth this attitude helped to develop a siege mentality during his successful years at Chelsea and Real Madrid . He managed to convince his players that they were universally hated and nobody, except their own fans, wished them well.

It is not dissimilar to the way Sir Alex Ferguson used to motivate his teams. Proving to be the best was always, in his opinion, the only way to show those doubters and haters how wrong they were. (more…)

img_1038

(José Mourinho has a few things to think about before Sunday’s game with Swansea)

Manchester United have gone from being challengers to strugglers in a few short weeks.

Whether it is more surprising that they actually played well at the start of the season, or that they returned to their abject selves after a very short while is debatable.

What seems to have been missed by Moyes, van Gaal and now Mourinho, is that the United players appear to find it virtually impossible to pass the ball to each other. The amount of times a pass goes straight to an opposition player is now too numerous to be put down to bad luck or just erratic passing. (more…)

img_1021

Jesse Lingard back in the United team at the expense of Ashley Young. Talk about bitter sweet. On the one hand, Young being dropped is good news but, on the other, Lingard playing is not good news.

Having finally managed to make the Manchester United management see the error of their ways when continually selecting Wayne Rooney, it is now time for them to see who is Manchester United quality and who isn’t. Neither Young nor Lingard would get into a fully fit Manchester United team and it would not be too disappointing if they were both sold in January. (more…)

img_1126

For the first time in a long time, if not for the first time at all, I feel the need to add a little background to this article.

I have just watched Manchester United’s Europa League game against Fenerbahće in an Irish bar in Granada, Spain.

I mention this purely as an excuse for any inaccuracies you may spot while reading said article. It was, in fact, a very noisy music night where a quartet of Spanish musicians played Irish tunes, virtually non-stop, for the entire evening. There were only two of us in the entire bar interested in what was happening at Old Trafford! (more…)