Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Manchester United - News & Views

The Contenders –Over the next few weeks we will analyze the teams challenging for the title, the usual suspects referred to as the big four might well expand to a big six with the emergence of Man City & Spurs. Both teams can be giants in Europe if they break into the Champions League given the quality players they’ve brought in & current form. Let’s start with the Arsenal since it’s the first clash between a pair of big four. United will host the Gunners at home this Saturday. You have to admire Wenger for the way he has kept the Arsenal fire-ring over the last 10 years. No silverware in the last 4 years or so but his shrewd footballing acumen has kept the Gunners out of the red financially & allowed a constant influx of young talented players to make their mark at the Emirates. On their day their fluent passing game is a pleasure to watch. Unfortunately a lack of wise experienced heads has been there downfall in their quest for consistency. Upfront they have lost some quality in Adebayor.
Bendtner will struggle to fill those boots. Eduardo & Walcott if they stays injury free can do some damage. Arsene’s squad looks to have plenty in reserve with youngsters like Wilshere, Vela & Gibbs. Arshavin would be more dangerous if they played him in a striking berth instead of wide left. They suffered an extensive goal drought last term & the Russian could answer a lot of questions in their title pursuit. United will need a stable defense for this game or else there would be a mountain to climb very early on in the title race. We have the experience to see off Arsenal but will it come together on the day? Vidic could be suspended due to an off the ball incident in the Wigan game whilst Fabregas might be out with a hamstring problem.

Games Burnley (0-1). This game exposed United’s frailties which I suspect could flare up a lot this season. Fergie needs to stabilize his midfield anchors of Fletcher, Carrick & Valencia. Who need not be subject to rotation! Anderson & Park should be used to prove their worth in domestic cup games. Anderson has failed to live up to the expectation that seen him cap a promising debut season. At times he looks like a great driving force going forward but just tends to disappear when the going gets tough? He may be looking for a move after a bust up with Ferguson. Park seems more of a marketing tactic for the hordes of fans in the Far East. He is absolutely woeful in front of goal. Evra’s suspect performances starting from the end of last term has somewhat destabilized the back four. This guy’s priority is to overlap & attack, not to defend, he could easily have headed that ball out for a corner but chose to setup Burnleys goal, a great goal by Blake.

Wigan (5-0). The first half looked very nervy, United were keen not to concede & were flat at times. Defensively Vidic was outstanding he made some crunching tackles & thwarted Wigans forwards on several occasions. Upfront a 5 star second half performance with Rooney bagging his century for United. His clever combination play with Valencia opened the scoring. Berbatov’s composure & balance - stunning for the second. Whilst Owen & Nani opened their premier league accounts in fine style.

Looking Ahead
We’ve only just started the season & already panic talk regarding United’s firepower. Basically Ronaldo in his 6 seasons with United netted 118 goals. So that’s roughly 19 goals a season & a nice target for Michael Owen if he wants to break into the England squad. Given the current form of Jermaine Defoe, it is a make or break season for Owen in terms of World Cup 2010. Berbatov surely will improve on his 14 goal tally from last season, I prefer this guy playing in a deeper role, he rarely looses possession, has a cool head under pressure & an eye for that killer pass. Which is exactly what we lack in midfield.

Worrying reports about Vidic leaving is sure to bother most mancs. His advisor Paolo Fabbri was reported to have told Spanish press that the Serb was looking for a move to Barca but later stated he was misquoted. Vidic has since come out & stated clearly he want to stay. Just reeks of the Ronaldo saga, rumors’ starting in the Spanish press destabilizes the player & the problems start. United will look to extend his current contract with an improved deal running till 2013. Adding to Red Devils defensive problems Ferdinand has been sidelined for up to 4 weeks & Evans might need ankle surgery. Elsewhere & inevitably player discontent has started at Madrid & SAF is keeping tabs on Arjen Robben. Another man on the radar is the Croatian Luka Modric. With Arsenal, Spurs & City coming up we definitely will need something special!.



  1. Good article, very fair. Keep it up Redman. Hopefully you will be decorating the blog when the Manc's take the double this season also(CL & EPL).

  2. I'm not sure about the double but theres talk of a move for Arjen Robben. We need some class in midfield this guy could be the answer.


  3. I don't see where Robben would fit in though. Nani looks like he's comin good. If he plays less he will go back to the player he was last year and Robben wont be happy to sit bench either. We also have Obertan to play on the left.

    We need a more solid central midfield player. Madrid want to sell Sneijder and he would be a perfect signing.
    Modric is class but Spurs won't sell and he has said he doesnt wanna move.

    I was watching Kun Aguerro last nite. The man is class and we should sign him at any cost I feel. SAF on the other hand aint gonna splash that kinda money though. 42 million pounds is wat it would take. Add another 15 million for Wes Sneijder and we lookin in great shape again.
    Scholesy's gettin on a bit and Sneijder is a perfect replacement. Reminds of a young Scholes.

    Great article Redman. Keep em coming.


  4. Nani still needs to prove himself on the left there have been glimpses of potential, he holds the ball up too much, doesnt put in the early cross, wants to do too much sometimes & messes up. Robben would be a great addition, given his scoring ability & experience in the EPL.

    Richie de Laet

  5. How can he prove himself if he's not given a chance? I say we should show faith in the lad. He will get rid of his bad habbits that way. Ronaldo did the same. We also have Tosic in that position. He tormented Bafana a few weeks ago.


  6. That is an interesting point Shakes Tosic is still playing reserve team football for UNited but makes the Serb National team.

    Nani was given plenty of chances. Last season towards the end he was pulled off at half time in one of the games for a total no show & chose to go home. It caused problems with Fergie. Just a point he doesnt have the right attitude.
    What annoys me is his long range shooting when players are available in advanced positions. Maybe in time he will get better but for Europe we might need an established guy like Robben.

    Richie de Laet

  7. still very early days. no use complaining about our defense & injuries. this is our best start to the campaign as compared to the past 2 seasons.

    remember, we still waiting for hargreaves to get back. i think we have a decent enough squad with alot of depth.i think this is where gibson will come good.

    surely we have lost a great in ronaldo & a good player in tevez, but i think that this is where fergie will throw his new batch of fledglings in & give them the responsibility, rafel, fabio, tosic, macheda, obetan, welbeck , gibson , evans etc


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