Sunday, 26 April 2015

Top 6 reasons why Man Utd are on the rise once again


Manchester United coach Louis van Gaal
Louis van Gaal (credit: Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Louis van Gaal has finally got Manchester United looking something like the force they have been for the last 20 years, and here are six reasons for the Old Trafford club's revival...

They won’t win the title, but there is a chance that United’s last Premier League home match of the season against Arsenal on May 17th could now be a second-place decider.

Is the famous Van Gaal philosophy bearing fruit or is the resurgence more by luck than judgement? The jury is still out on that. But whatever the cause, here are the top six reasons why things are looking up for the Red Devils:

1. Juan Mata is back in the team

Most United fans were baffled when the brilliant Spaniard was continually being left out only a couple of months ago, but he regained his place after Angel di Maria was sent off in the FA Cup tie against Arsenal and the team have never looked back since.

Juan Mata is back in the team
Juan Mata (Getty Images)
Mata is much more of a team player than the £60million Argentinian, keeps the ball better and scores goals – even though wide right is not his favoured position. Sorry, Di Maria, but you’re on the bench for a reason despite your huge price tag.

2. Marouane Fellaini is doing what he does best

David Moyes thought differently, but Fellaini was never going to make a holding midfielder for United. Now he is playing further forward, he is showing his Everton form.

The big afro-haired Belgian simply has to be in the opposition’s penalty area, using his height and strength. Now that’s what he is doing, he is even winning over the sceptical United fans – they even sung his name during the City game!

3. Much more assured defending

Although Manchester City unpicked them within eight minutes at Old Trafford recently, the United rearguard looks so much better than it did earlier in the campaign.

Phil Jones and Chris Smalling have become an accomplished central duo, Daley Blind has made an effective switch to left-back and Antonio Valencia no longer looks like a right winger filling in at right-back – he was superb against City.

4. Michael Carrick

Carrick’s influence in the United midfield simply cannot be underestimated. His composure, presence and ability to spot and deliver a pass are of huge importance and he has been badly missed when injured this term.

When he had to go off with a knock against City with all the substitutions made, United conceded within seconds and that was surely no coincidence. Van Gaal will hope his absence is restricted to those final few minutes and no further games this season.

5. Wayne Rooney is leading the line

When Rooney was deployed in midfield earlier this term, it looked plainly the wrong move and subsequent events have borne that out.

It may have taken the injury to Robin van Persie to prompt the switch back to a more suitable position for the United captain, but it has worked big time.

Van Persie cannot be confident of regaining his place when back to full fitness.

Two sub-points on this:

a) Rooney up front allows room for Ander Herrera to slot into midfield and he is also shining since being given Van Gaal’s trust

b) United clearly don’t need Radamel Falcao

6. Ashley Young is producing the goods

From looking a player on the decline, Young is back close to his best and an England recall cannot be far away.

Visibly someone whose performances hinge on confidence, the winger is oozing self-belief after some terrific displays and United are all the better for it.

No comments:

Post a comment