Categories

Saturday, 14 December 2013

MANCHESTER UNITED TURMOIL

‘How can they play like this? It’s the same game, same players and they are playing with same teams.’ I frowned.
My best friend replied-‘Team management plays a big role’

He was assuring me after United drew against Cardiff City in Premier league three weeks ago. Cardiff City only qualified to play in Premier League this year and the champions of last season couldn’t beat them. More than sad, I was surprised. Then came equalizer with Tottenham Hotspur and subsequently, defeat against Everton and Newcastle (Unbelievable!). Now, things are critical. I don’t even look at league table anymore. With 23 more games to go and United playing like this, I worry they may not be qualified for Champions league next year. If that happens, they will miss Champions league for the first time since 1994.

Possible solutions for Manchester United now:

1.  Rooney-Van Persie Partnership
Since Van Persie moved to Old Trafford in summer 2012, he and Rooney started numerous games together. There was a rumour that Van Persie only came to Manchester United to win the trophy and he did. I don't blame him. Its every good player's dream to win matches and play in Manchester United. Let's look at Rooney-Van Persie Partnership record:

Season
Played
Won
Lost
Draw
2012/2013
21
17
1
3
2013/2014 so far
7
5
0
2


In season 2012/2013, out of 38 games, they started together in 21 games. They won 17 of them and lost once. So the success rate was 81% (approx.) with Rooney-Van Persie playing together. 
This year, out of 15 games played so far, they started together in 7 games and won 5 of them. Impressive again!. United lost almost every other games where duo didn't start together. Now, Van Persie is ruled out for one month due to injury, only God knows what happens next.

2.  Buy quality defenders
Manchester United is one of the most popular and successful clubs in the world. So, it’s normal for fans to expect bit too much from them. Looking at the team sheet, we have enough great strikers but looks like we are short of defenders. Although Vidić has an excellent record, he seems to have degraded recently and I don’t remember any recent quality performance of his. It must have been too long. Patrick Evra seems to be at wrong place all the time. Once I was talking to my friend –‘Isn’t he suppose to protect his own goal post rather than hurry down to score?’ 
He said- 'You need a new left-back'.
Its good he is scoring but that’s not his job. Most of the time we see mid-fielders doing defending job because defenders are busy scoring and strikers are left out. 

3.  Shuffle around the players
If I were asked to choose the player of the year for Manchester United from last season, I would have gone for Michael Carrick. He was amazing, doing great job and making stunning passes to strikers. Apart from him, Kagawa and Rafael should be given more chances. They have amazing stamina. Here is my personal favourite team:


Phil Jones fluctuates a lot. So, 90 minutes would be too much for him. Evans can replace him later. Chicharito and Januzaj can replace Van Persie or Rooney incase needed, and Cleverley can replace Kagawa. My personal favourites players are Valencia, Cleverly and Chicharito. They are the players whose ambition and hard work can be seen right through their eyes. From start to end, they are fully focused. 

4.  Invest in young players
When Sir Alex left, he received lots of criticism that he left the club in such a critical stage. Most of the main players such as: Ryan Giggs (age 40), Rio Ferdinand (age 35), Nemanja Vidić (age 32), Patrice Evra (age 32), Michael Carrick (age 32), Robin Van Persie (age 30) are in their 30s and in few years time, they will retire. At least Sir Alex should have invested and trained more young players and made them up to their level before leaving. Still, not to worry! January transfer window is opening soon.

5.  Believe in David Moyes
When David Moyes stood out to become Manager of Manchester United out of blue, everyone was stunned and started searching on him. Everyone was asking the same question- ‘Who actually is this man? And what Sir Alex saw in him?’ but since he had a great record in Everton, everyone assumed he would be great in Manchester United too but replacing legend like Sir Alex and managing the tough team while millions of fans are waiting and watching your each step is not easy. Media made a serious speculation that the players are finding it difficult to adapt to the new strategy training session, which resulted in consequent injuries to players. Vidić, Rooney, Nani, Young, Buttner and now, Van Perise: these all players are getting injured one by one. I guess David Moyes has just too much to do now: save Premier League title, try to get into Champion League next season, answer Manchester United owner and fans, Maintain good health of players and last but least, not to let Sir Alex down. However, in his defence, even Sir Alex took 6 years to win his first Premier League title. Just be patient! At the moment, I just hope we can make at least up to top four.