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(single word yields best result)

02 Jan 2018 19:29:33
Good result yesterday and a good 2nd half performace in particular.
As expected and what many of us have called for a 3 man midfield brought out the best in pogba. When he has the freedom to run ahead of the ball he looks a diffetent player much more like the pogba we saw at juve.

If fellaini leaves in Jan we will need another midfielder to come into the squad as we only have those 3 plus fellaini and mctominay.

My hope is that come helll or high water that jose sticks to this shape for 90% of our games and says this is us this is the way we play and we're coming to beat you. You will have to adapt to our style and shape.
Our own players will know and be more comfortable I believe.
Then it will expose those players who are not up to it or don't fit in or just don't want to be a part of it.
That's exactly what pep did last season. He knew his players were not good enough to play as he wanted them to but he told them all this is the way we are going to play so either make a positive contribution or ill sell you. So he dumped his keeper 4 full backs a few squad fillers like nasari and fernando and a couple of wingers after they proved they can't do it.

Jose on the other hand imo has been putting results 1st and trying to adapt and find a way to win with this squad on a game by game basis. He doesn't trust enogh of his players to play his preferred way or that's how it appears to me.

I think shaw has done well when he has been asked. Not great but solid and improving with more games, but will it be enough to earn his trust is anyone's guess it may be too late.

Agree7 Disagree1

02 Jan 2018 20:10:40
Good post Ken, I would also like to see a bit more decisiveness from the manager. If the fans and players can see a direction then both key parts will fully back it, at the minute it's a hodge-podge and appears very messy.

The key word we need to see from the players and the manager is "Commitment", to the club, the fans, an ideology, a system etc. Everything has a very temporary feel and that has to be changed by the manager, he needs to fully commit and everything will follow I believe - until then it's hard for people like me to fully back him because I give to receive like most people.

02 Jan 2018 21:07:09
We looked good with 3 at the back a month ago where did that go.
Pogba done well second half, first half?
Great 45 minutes from the lad tho showed his potential.

02 Jan 2018 20:46:49
Our squad isn't as good as some people make out. We're like a ship that's taking on water, we have to prioritise what we need to fix first because we don't have an unlimited bank account.

Full backs are a big issue. I like Young and Valencia but for cover only. We need to improve these areas and we'll have a very good defense in the making.

We need another top quality midfielder I think that's an obvious one. Savic is been mentioned. Iv never seen him play but from the list of clubs that are interested He must be a serious baller. From what Ed002 has said the price for him would be enormous. I'm guessing £100 million plus. And here lies the problem. This squad has to be improved over the next few windows because we won't be able to bring in two fullbacks, one central midfielder, a right sided winger and maybe a striker with the prices being banded about.

In 2017 Rashford was our top goal scorer with 16 goals. That's not good enough. We've too many players putting in consistent 6/ 10 performances. The manager and the players need to improve if we want to compete but I think we'll have to be a little bit more patient while Jose overhauls the squad. If he's giving the money, history proves he will win. If he's not giving the money, he will walk and we're back to square one again.

02 Jan 2018 21:26:44
I thought pogba was the only one capable in the first half, only one who really managed to get in their box. Maybe I was watching a different game. 3 at the back worked, good to have options.

02 Jan 2018 21:34:02
Meant to say great post Ken. It's obvious Jose doesn't entirely trust what he has at his disposal.

02 Jan 2018 21:35:50
Beast I understand your point of view.
I think when played right pogba is a match winner. He is the best player in our squad. To get the best from him we need to play 3 in midfield.
That allows matic to play behind 2 midfielders. At the moment the choice is herrera fellaini or mctominay to be the 3rd. Herrera did it well yesterday and to be fair fellaini did it well in the first 8 games.
The front 3 then becomes the issue as we have no natural winger. Too many players that want to play centre forward lukaku rash martial and ibra all really wanting 1 spot. Mata and miki want to play the traditional 10 but that system doesn't need one.
Jessie and mata can olay the wide role and they rove about and are busy. But neither put many crosses in which nullifies lukaku and or ibra. Our full backs have not been getting crosses in either.
So I understand why jose is compromising the squad is totally unbalanced and trying to find solutions on the hoof.

As i said my preferred option would be to set his stall out and play his system and take the hits when they come when he has to field too many of the ' misfits' too often. While i think we would be better to watch at times I think we would be a lot worse off in terms of league position at tbis stage of the season.

02 Jan 2018 21:47:14
The squad is good, to me it just lacks the final bit of world class, if we intend to go 433 if we stick two names more of proven class in things begin to look strong, in that system kroos for midfield and a fit bale right side attack and u then think now we really are in business but add your own names as each to there own, my point was 2 quality signings and things look good . Maybe that could be said to most teams in the top six . I'm not trying to brush over other areas will need addressing I'm just trying to say a couple of class players and it can look so much stronger . The last few year we have got a fair few signings wrong I hope we get the next few right as the leap to being much better could be breachable imo.

02 Jan 2018 21:57:08
Cheers angel.
Couldn't agree more mumbles. It's taking longer than I would ideally like but there are between 7 / 10 players in the squad that are either coasting ir making little or no contribution I would like to see them all sold and 5 players signed tuanzabe Perriera mctominay promoted.
The players must be the fight fit the name and price is irrelevant. Back jose and he will get it right if the club commit to him and him to the club he will win and he will produce a team we all are proud of imo.

02 Jan 2018 22:21:06
Your right jred we had a couple if games where we looked good with 3 at the back. It's a system that imo can get the most out of our existing squad. For a few teams we are top heavy with centre backs rojo smalling bailly blind Jones lindelof.
We don't have 2 high quality full backs but 2 or 3 that suit wing backs.
We can still play 3 in the middle getting best out of pogba and matic and we can play 2 up front where we currently have 4 looking for 1 spot in rash lukaku martial and ibra.
Also with 3 at the back the 3rd midfielder can also be a free runner like pogba so it suits not only herrera but also jessie or mata.

But again I think when we played that it was a case of jose experimenting to see ehat fits best with the players he has. It's not a system he has played too often throughout his career.

03 Jan 2018 02:02:26
Much of the game it just looked like same old 4231 to me, with Pogba wide left, Jesse centre and Mata right.

What looked good was lots of movement from all the players, Martial was roaming too far away from C. F. and and all players seem reluctant to commit to attacking the 6 year box when the ball is wide, but a big improvement on what we have been seeing.

03 Jan 2018 07:11:04
Good post Ken and I also agree with the other posters. As I've said before, we're the only team in the top 6 who go into matches with 2 in midfield. It is madness and mourinho has to recognise that it simply does not work.
I'm in agreement with jred that 3 at the back can afford us an extra midfielder, which will be very important playing against the top teams. But our midfield is low on numbers and apart from pogba and matic and possibly hererra, is low on quality. We definitely need one if not two midfielders.
In addition, the key is Lingard who seems to have found an extra gear and is contributing with goals and assists. When played alongside martial Or Rashford and pogba our team looks completely different. My worry is that as soon as lukaku is fit, then mourinho will revert to type.
But I completely agree with Ken that we must stay at 433 and establish an identity and set out to beat the opposition.

03 Jan 2018 11:10:46
My take on this is that any of the formations are ok but the way we play from the back is causing a lot of the problems. I'm going to say something controversial here but I think DDG is a great shot stopper but sits too deep. On many occasions he doesn't even come off of his line for 60/ 40 balls. This means the defence also sits too deep which invites more pressure.
Also it seems that we very rarely play out from the back, preferring to hoof it clear, even when there is not much pressure, which largely results in the ball coming straight back at us.
If we play further up the pitch, with more composure, we can transition more quickly from defence into attack and cause the opposition problems - This is what happened in the second half against Everton.



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