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4,828 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For those of you who think I am negative, I was absolutely sure we would win the PL last year - even when we were 8 points down to l'arse.

OK - I have taken a lot of stick for the 'transitional season' thread (particularly from Jazz who didn't like the word franchise?), so I might as well say what I really think.

If the present attitude and work rate we have seen from this team does not improve significantly, we will not win the premier league or champions league this season. For those of you who would cite last year 's slow start as reason for optimism, I beg to differ. We completely dominated the first three games last year (redding, portsmouth, cidee) and deserved to win all three by a large margin.
In fact, we were never dominated in a game until the CL tactics changed late last season. And if you would like to cite injuries - Rooney was out for a month, harg didn't play until september (and then not much), saha - nuff said, and cr was suspended after the portsmouth game.

My humble evaluation this season? (and I am talking EFFORT and ATTITUDE here)

newc - brutal (won 6-0 last season)
postmouth - ok
zenit - brutal til were down 2-0
liverpool - brutal after we scored
villareal - brutal
chelsea - brutal after we scored
boro - good mostly because of the young energy
bolton - lucky pen, probably just deserved to win (won 4-0 last season)
aalborg - good, youngsters and bad opposition
blackburn - good at times

That's 10 games that mattered and we really only brought the right attitude for 3 or 4 of them. Yes, we may only be 3 points behind chelski and 'pool (should we win our game in hand) BUT, although we have improved somewhat in the last few games, we are not playing anywhere close to the level that we did last season.

Get rid of ronaldo and anyone else who wants to leave when SAF retires during the January transfer window, play the youngsters as much as possible and RELOAD. Who knows, we might even win the PL that way.

We always have a slow start to the season, I don't know why you're worried.
Like you said, we're only 3 points off the pace if we win our game in hand and
we've got ourselves in that position by playing poorly. Imagine what we will achieve
when we click into gear and start playing well again.

3,242 Posts
well i have been the negative person on the forum , my mates tell me its because i dont go gobbing off to other fans about ,we are going to win this and win that and secrectly i am very confident.
To a point they are correct i hate fellow fans who get carried away and think we will walk the league every year that is arrogance and being spoilt in my book.
I like to think i am level headed and keep my feet on the ground and get taken in by all the hype , or as my wife says your glass is always half empty and not half full.
I must admit being this way when the success come along its all the better and i celebrate more , i still think united will win the champions league i have a gut feeling ( i had it last season too) but might get pipped to the league

2,303 Posts
i totally agree that utd have been really poor so far this season , although the signs are looking better over the last 3 games.
but this is probabley down to the negative attitude shown by ronaldo in the summer plus ronaldo is by far utds mainstream player and he has not been playing until of late and is still trying to find his match sharpness , things are looking better and remember that if we win that game in hand we are only 3 points behind and have already been to chelsea ,liverpool ,portsmouth and blackburn which aint bad when you think about it ,beat chelsea and liverpool at home and we will take some catching.

1,262 Posts
Wait untill you hear what i think...well i think Liverpool have a good chance of winning it this year if they continue to play like what they did so far..:eek:


the journey is still very long...its not even half the season yet so as a united fan for now, im going to stand rooted with the team. There is still injuries, international, European football somewhere in the middle which of course could affect the performance of a team. From what i know till this point, even hull have a fair chance of winning it. We will have a clearer view comes December for sure. By now i know it too well that with United, we can never know.

25,467 Posts
moondog said:
OK - I have taken a lot of stick for the 'transitional season' thread (particularly from Jazz who didn't like the word franchise?), so I might as well say what I really think.

:confused: huh?

Back to the thread:
Yoru right that we havent started well and we haev been 'brutal' as you put it
in certain games. Maybe the hunger isnt there as much as it was last year?
That could be a possibility.

I still think we will easily come in the top 2 in the Prem. Chelsea are a huge threat
but besides them I dont see anyone who can really worry us.

I know we will get better and we have seen the signs of that recently.
We have won the last 4 games in all comps, which is hardly 'brutal' now is it?

Berbatov is starting to click with his new team-mates and is beginning to look the
real deal. Rooney is a new man who is being played in his best position which
is behind the front man (Berba).

Ronaldo missed all the games at the start and without him (arguably best player
in the world) we struggled. Any team would struggle if they didnt have their 42
goal man in there from the start. He is still rusty now but give him a few weeks
and he will be on fire again.

Our defence is a strong as ever-no worries there and we have struggled with
injuries and fitness in the centre of the park, where games have been won and
lost. No Carrick, Hargo and now Scholes........Anderson fatigued from the Olympics.

There are reasons we have not been at our best, but to suggest we wont win
anything IS very pesimistic.

I am an optimist by nature and I know we will win one of the CL or the Prem this year,
though a lot of luck is needed in both, just like we saw last season.

The signs have been more promising recently and there is a lot to look forward to.

We have the easier fixture come the new year, lots of players to come back
from injury (Carrick, Hargo, Foster)
and others to start hitting a bit of form (Ronaldo, Nani and Anderson for eg.)

We have a 2 week international break to get some of these players fit
and then we start with an 'easy' game at home to WBA. and the season will
kick on from there.

Im happy that we will be there and there abouts when they hand out the trophies
come May, and I think you are being premature in slating the team.
Give them a chance to shine cos by God they will :)

3,242 Posts
The good thing about the break is it might break chelsea and liverpools momentum , when you are at the top of your game you want to keep it going.
The plus factor is we might get some of our top players near to fitness along with chelsea as well though.
We have not hit top gear yet , i think some one is going to get a 6 to 7-0 pasting of us very shortly at old trafford and i cannot wait to see all our top strikers on top form at the same time , it will happen soon

There is no Noxiousd, only ZUUL
16,031 Posts
Your worrying far too much...

Were the only top 4 club to have played the other top 4's twice, and we were unlucky not to win both...

Chelsea have dropped points equal to us other than top 4 matches, Liverpool more and Arsenal already are falling apart...

Not to mention we played Chelsea and Pool away, we still have to play all 3 of the big 4 at OT, where we rarely drop points...

To me the season looks good, provided we dont slipup to Hull

1,814 Posts
I was rather worried until I saw us demolish Blackburn and put on a real show!

The thing is you dont get away with much in the Premier League anymore, and it can be argued we won the league last year cos arsenal ****ed it away and Chelsea didn put on a fight til it was too late...

the previous season we were out of the blocks on a mission and were so good no1 could ever catch us...

Soooo this season I was a little worried with our start, because I dont see Chelsea ****ing away a lead like the inexperienced Arsenal did last year...

Rooney is in lightning form right now and with Berba and Ronaldo to raise their games in the weeks/months to come I have renewed optimism! I think Rooney can lead us to glory this year... I can see a 10/12/15 match unbeaten run now that we've gotten going!

Luckily we have w brom after the international break (which can often be a tricky time to play one of the better sides) so 3 points there and we'll be off and running again!

After our game in hand and a few results going our way I expect we'll be top after the tough Xmas campaign in which we are always second to none

HEY we're Champions of England and Europe... why all the pessimism, we got our sticky patch behind us now, have the advantage that we've got some v difficult away fixtures out of the way... i'll see you in ROME !!!

1,766 Posts
we are not the best of starters...but we are good enough finishers.....we just need time to get moving.......
we started not too good against newcastle but they played quite well but im not making excuses.....
against pool we had the worst game i believe after we scored the goal...we didnt get the bal and even riera played well!! :eek:
against chelsea we could have got a win but they played well too........
we have to start improving in the second half of games...way better......

last season we had a few bad results and scraped a few and then we started going....i think it will be the same case again...
we are having a few easy prem games so i think this is the time to get back our form.....and now berba is also starting to setlle its all coming together for us...

hopefully we will be the one holding the prem league cup at the end!!!!

23,699 Posts
I really think we are so fortunate to have Tevez and Rooney, yet perhaps too dependent on them due at least partly to our weakest link being the CM, followed by the LB (should Evra be injured; touch wood)...

Our goalkeeping position is still currently alright, with VDS being our No. 1 and largely reliable despite some 'strange' performances and growing signs of an inevitable downhill to come since last season. Only when PIG and Foster are injured as of now that it can be a little uncomfortable to see a young Heaton on the bench as backup.

The defence, our fortress, stands tall and proud as usual. Once a worrisome position, the RB, now boasts of having the most depth instead, with the exciting Rafael ready to step in for Gary and Brown. Another promising Evans can now be counted upon as a good backup for Rio and Vidic, together with Brown. The only concern is the LB. Yet to be able to see Fabio in action for the first team due to his shoulder operation and our jolly good fellow, JOS, is just good enough as a stop-gap measure and no more.

If there is any weakness, the CM must be our weakest link. May not be weak as of grave concern but definitely room for improvement. I think we lack a CM who can stamp his authority, impose himself in the middle of the park and with the necessary aggression as a no-nonsense ball winner. We also don't have somebody who is of a marauding mould since Scholes' legs are now too heavy to carry him through from box to box.... Wait a minute before you jump the gun. I honestly thought Hargreaves and Anderson could perform these two vital functions for us but we all know one has a bad knee and the other one has not yet really stepped up that one or two notches that we all expect him to. I really expected much from them in these two aspects but am still awaiting for different reasons.

Fletcher and JOS are just too lightweight. Carrick is too classy for dirty works but nonetheless has a fantastic sense of positioning to make up for it, good timely tackles and is of course, capable of good distribution like Scholes. Recently, Giggs has been recommended by the boss to play in this central role too. Not too bad from I saw with his cool head, experience and a fair amount of energy. But not good enough, I suppose, to impose or to last the franatic pace required for that. And of course, Scholes, still possesses the quality with his distribution but has been blowing hot and cold, lacking both in consistency and the necessary pace too. Last but not least, another promising youngster by the name of Possebon looks classy so far but is not what we missed as aforementioned and of course now out injured.

Think our wings are alright with Ronaldo now back in action plus a combination of Giggs/Nani/Park and Hargreaves/Fletcher if necessary. Not great for Nani currently but options are still available.

Finally, our pride, the forwards ie Berbatov, Rooney, Tevez and the when-will-we-ever-see-him-more-regularly Manucho.

Berbatov is shaping up better and better with each game, a class act with his control, touches and vision but yet to be convincing as an outright... goal poacher.

As for Rooney and Tevez, I feel we are so fortunate to have them with such extraordinary outputs, starting offensive moves, closing down on defenders, chasing for lost causes, hassling midfielders and even tracking back to help out in defensive works. At the same time, they are expected to contribute to the goal counts. But coming back to the beginning of this post, I suspect Rooney and Tevez are also doing a lot of leg works as tireless workhorses for us at least partly due to the qualities missing in our CM as mentioned. And have we grown to be too dependent on their work rate?!

Having said and done, I think we are certainly capable of winning major honours again this season,at least on paper. In fact, I may sound 'negative' at times but am actually ultra-positive because I always believe we are capable of beating anybody we play, should have beaten this team and that, and how the **** did we throw away the 3 points, what the **** was wrong etc. In short, a bad loser. Lol.

My biggest fear, however, has always been this, as Giggs mumbled and fumbled after the Derby loss to Citeh amidst the Munich commemorations: "We just didn't turn up". As I conclude here, I can feel a cold shiver running down my spine....

11,207 Posts
Good thread and valid points, but there are more mitigating circumstances than you allow for.

Besides the fact that we are traditional slow starter, I will add the fact that injury has robbed us some very important players early on in the season.

We started with Ronaldo, Hargreaves and Park being injured. Carrick out in the first game (and we should still have won against Newcastle albeit unconvincingly).

Anderson was coming back to fitness and Nani was suspended.

Without the energy of Ronaldo, Hargreaves or Anderson we look very static and you are right that the work rate went down, but when you look at the likes of Fletcher, O'Shea, Giggs and Scholes they are players who do not or no longer close down the opposition quickly and team mates take their queue.

Also, any team would miss their most important player or their proven goalscorer. Ronaldo and Rooney played over 50 games last season and I suspect that if they had both started the season we would have coped a lot better with the other injuries and suspension.

Now that they're back like against Aalborg and Blackburn, we'll hopefully get good momentum going and then even if the two of them are injured the team should still be able to maintain a high work rate.

Plus we still need Carrick to come back, who is the main distributor. He is so good at hitting beautiful passes into spaces where the attackers can get to. The other players don't have that vision or ability, so they just pass the ball sideways or hoof it into enemy territory, but not into space - straight at defenders.
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