Posts Tagged ‘Memphis Depay’


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…)



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…)


If José Mourinho is serious about winning the Premier League then he has to take a long look at the squad and, mainly, at some of the players he has inherited.

Quite simply there are some who are just not good enough to wear the shirt. Whether this is a case of having grown older and become, naturally, slower of mind and body, or a case of just not being good enough in the first place, it is time for a little cleansing. (more…)


Although José Mourinho was disappointed to lose to Feyenoord in Rotterdam, it was quite difficult to detect it in his post-match interview.

Stating that the team played better in the second half and that a few of the players were tasting their first minutes of football this season didn’t really tell us anything that we didn’t already know.

The conclusions drawn from the team selection and, consequently, the result is that, despite what he says to the press, José Mourinho doesn’t really care about this competition. (more…)


He doesn’t look the shy, retiring type. Gold lamé backpacks and matching trainers certainly make Paul Pogba stand out in the crowd, even in America. He is also nearly as well known for his hairstyles as his football so what can Manchester United fans expect on the pitch?

Well there will be a few who already know what to expect as he only left the club four years ago having been a youth and reserve team player there. In fact it was his perceived lack of opportunity which resulted in him leaving for Juventus when only nineteen years of age.

Now, unless he suffers a dramatic loss of form, he will be a regular and one of the first, if not the first, names on the teamsheet. He will be able to thumb his nose at Sir Alex Ferguson, the manager responsible for his leaving the club in the first place. This, however would be unlikely as Pogba appears to be bigger than that sort of behaviour. (more…)



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…)



A step in the right direction was certainly taken when Manchester United sacked Louis van Gaal and appointed Jose Mourinho.

Employing a world class manager, however, is not the end of the matter. Players need to be brought in and other players need to be shipped out.

At the time of writing, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Eric Bailly have been confirmed and Henrikh Mhkitaryan, whilst not yet confirmed, has also joined. Rumours are rife about other potential arrivals.

As I have stated in a previous post, Ibrahimovic appears to have been signed to generate income more than anything else. His age, failure to score any goals in the Euros and being given a one year contract all point to this as the reason for his being there. Hopefully, as he has probably been promised a starting berth next season, he will chip in with a few goals. (more…)


So yet again Louis van Gaal has one game to save his job. I’m starting to doubt this ultimatum business as this is now about the fourth or fifth time he has had one game to save his job and he certainly hasn’t won many of them.

Against Shrewsbury they played reasonably well although Memphis Depay showed, yet again, how moving to Manchester United can be a nightmare just as easily as it can be a dream.

He had two shots which were both closer to going out of the ground than they were to threatening the Shrewsbury goal.

When United took the lead it was very fortuitous. Smalling had gone up for a corner, without anybody really knowing why. His last header from a corner had gone miles over the bar! As is usually the case with Smalling, once the corner had been wasted he forgot to run back to his defensive position. In fact, had Shrewsbury been a little more awake they could have mounted a decent counter-attack. They didn’t, in fact not only didn’t they mount the counter-attack, they forgot all about Smalling, who had turned invisible. Anyway, the ball arrived at Smalling’s feet and, with a trademark swing, he whacked it straight into the ground in an attempt to put it over the bar and the bounce took it over the keeper and into the net, much to the amazement of Smalling and everybody else in the ground. (more…)

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal

(Louis adopts the pose which would immediately endear him to the majority of  Manchester United fans!)

He’s a card is old Louis! You have to admire him really. After all, once his fleeting visit to these shores is over, who will fill the void left by his departure? Is there any other self-confessed genius who could step into the role? Well actually, yes there is, there’s Jose Mourinho but that’s another story.

Fresh from snatching a draw from the jaws of victory against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, Louis was immediately looking for scapegoats. Was it HIS team selection? Never! What about HIS tactics? No chance, perish the thought! How about players not following HIS instructions? Now, there’s a possibility. And, if the players don’t follow the manager’s instructions who’s fault is that? The players of course, according to King Louis. He is the manager, he can do no wrong, he can only do right!

Having taken off Marouane Fellaini, who had chugged his way through the game like a Belgian Thomas The Tank Engine and replacing him with Morgan Schneiderlin, the United players set about trying to defend their one goal lead. They did this by the further substitutions of Memphis Depay, on for Lingard and Ander herrera, who came on for Juan Mata.

The substitutions had a very negative effect in that United immediately started giving the ball back to Chelsea as soon as they won it. (more…)


A win is a win, but don’t be fooled into thinking that this was a good performance from United. They were second best for 75% of this match and only Liverpool’s inability to finish kept the scoreline at 0-0 for so long.

Yet again van Gaal infuriated with his selection. Ashley Young, a winger, playing at wing back. Matteo Darmian, a right back, playing at left back and Daley Blind , a defensive midfielder, playing at centre back. Marouane Fellaini was selected, inexplicably , ahead of Juan Mata and he actually managed to last the ninety minutes.

If anybody wonders why this type of selection always annoys me then imagine Manchester City doing it. Jesus Navas playing at wing back, Fernandinho at centre back and Pablo Zabaleta as left back. Pellegrini would never play these players out of their natural positions which goes a long way to explaining why City are challenging for the title and United aren’t even in the top four!

United were totally disjointed and looked completely out of sorts for the vast majority of the game.

Daley Blind seemed to have his own game plan whereby he kept firing long high balls towards Wayne Rooney. As was to be expected every single one of these was easily won by either Sakho or Toure. (more…)