Manchester United Message Board
- dsteer_lfc_68 dsteer_lfc_68 Nov 5, 2013 17:00 Flag
It does seem like yahoo wants to cut of the oxygen to these boards and let them die a slow death. However still drop in a couple times a week hoping it will pick up. I visit another forum pretty regularly which is very good, but as it's almost all reds I do miss the banter and differing point of views these boards used to have.
On the match, got to say the better team did take the points, and deservedly so. I don't think we played at our best, and missing Johnson was a huge blow, but even full strength and on form this was always going to be a tough fixture.
Seems to me Arsenal are firing on all cylinders right now, while others whom you'd expect to be challenging are still trying to find consistency. I like others still have my doubts whether Arsenal can stay the course, but think it comes down to whether your lot can maintain the current form throughout the season, which will be tough. A drop in form, or injury to key players could really be telling.
However I'm of the mind that falling out the league cup might have been the best thing for you. One it reduces the strain on the squad right now, second it tempers expectations, and third it really highlights the depth in squad issue, but in plenty of time for action to be taken. Replace Bendtner with some quality (little Mexican Manc might be available!), and get some decent cover for Falmini in the holding position and I think you've got a real shot.
The return fixture will be interesting, and I don't think we disgraced ourselves, so I'd expect a very close match when you come to Anfield. Just do us a favor and take care of business next weekend, so we can have one less serious contender for the top 4!
- dsteer_lfc_68 dsteer_lfc_68 Oct 28, 2013 13:26 Flag
Hi Jason, I agree with almost everything here. For me we looked fluid and in control for almost the entire match, never took the foot off the gas, and played as well if not better in the second half as we did in the first. I think some credit has to go to Henderson and Gerrard who really rotated that attacking midfield role and really knitted together the midfield and the front line. And, of course we were solid in the back, and like you think the only thing that spoiled the match was the penalty call which looked soft at best..
I'd agree with Colyn also that pulling Moses out of that advanced central role may have been the key move. However I really do rate the lad, but think his best role is really to be wide in an attacking 3 where his pace ability to take on a player and be direct is his best asset.
I'd also discount anyone saying its just WBA. Yes they are not a likely top 4 contender so we'll know more next week when we match up with Arsenal, but Brom are a solid top half team, who've had our number recently, and as you said have found a way to get results against the top clubs.
The only thing I'd question is the formation for next week. To be honest I'm not sure what is best, and have advocated we go back to a back 4 for a couple weeks and have been wrong. But looking at the threat from Arsenal, if we can keep their full backs occupied (and wing backs maybe the best way of doing that) I see everything coming through the center. They'll have Giroud up top on his own, who is a handful but I think Skrtel in the center can handle him, so the threat is the midfielders coming from deep, and either denying them the ball, or clogging things up I think maybe the best way to frustrate them. So long as we can then transition the ball through the midfield to the attackers I think we have a good chance of getting a result.
One final thought, good shout out on Borini. Not sure the lad would make it to our bench right now, but good to see him in action.
- dsteer_lfc_68 dsteer_lfc_68 Oct 23, 2013 15:52 Flag
I was not aware that Moses had not traveled, but for me the bigger disappointment was Hendo who should have had no excuse for playing flat.
To be honest I understand what you mean to a point. The last several games we've not played with the fluidity I'd expect. There is quality up front, and we've been solid in the back, but we've not always been able to knit it all together, which is where the bad pass comment I think comes from.
But I've not seen this is all our games, and in fact think it stems from Philippe being out. For me he's been a big loss, not so much for his play making ability in creating chances (we've still created chances without him) but for his ability to control the tempo of the games. In his absence I see Joe Allen as the natural deputy (I know some are down on him but I think he can regain his form from early last season), but with him out as well we have a more workman midfield.
But with both either back or close to being back I do think, or at least hope that things actually bode well for the future. We've got some big tests coming up, and if we can keep up the pace of a top 4 team going into the Holiday period, when the schedule looks very tough for us, I feel we'll be in very good shape. Not a title chasing season (let's not get carried away) but on pace for a top 4 finish.
- dsteer_lfc_68 dsteer_lfc_68 Oct 21, 2013 21:37 Flag
I'd agree with almost all of that except the last paragraph. For me we looked off the pace, lacking in focus, and just a step behind. There was just no spark, invention or energy to our play. It could be argued that this was due to players being away, but that was the case with many around the league, but we saw energy from other teams. Besides, that might be a fair excuse for players who traveled to South America, or Africa like Moses, but harder to apply to those who stayed in Europe, and especially the English lads who only went down to the capital.
But I'd not say it was a typical performance. For me while I've been disappointed when we've shrunk away in the second half of games, for the most part I think we've shown much higher levels of performance, energy and creativity in most games this season so far. Which is why i'd not get overly concerned over this result (and performance) Yes a bad day at the office, but to expect perfection throughout the season is asking too much. But how we react when things don't go to plan, that is what imo will define our season.