Tag Archives: Manchester united

Ryan Giggs Gives His Prediction on Chelsea’s Fate Next Season

Ryan Giggs says he doesn’t expect Chelsea to defend their Premier League title next season.

The Blues enjoyed a sparkling debut campaign under Antonio Conte last term as they lifted the Premier League title after having won a record 30 top-flight games.

However, Chelsea were able to win the title last term without the distraction of European football after they missed out on a place in the Champions League last season.

Chelsea are now preparing for their return to European football as they look to compete for honours on four fronts in Conte’s second season in charge at the club.

And former Manchester United star Giggs feels that Chelsea may not be as strong next season because of their inflated fixture list.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Giggs said: 

“You can’t ignore Chelsea because of their quality, but have they got the squad to balance defending the Premier League and European football? I’m not sure.”

Manchester United are also preparing for a return to the Champions League next season after the Red Devils won the Europa League last term under Jose Mourinho.

Chelsea missed out on the chance to win a domestic double last term when they were beaten by Arsenal in the FA Cup final back in May.

However, Conte’s men will have the chance to gain revenge on the Gunners when they take on the north London side in the Community Shield on Sunday.

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Manchester United v Chelsea Revealed: How Jose Mourinho beat Antonio Conte

How else to interpret Mourinho’s team selection other than a tacit admission from the Manchester United manager that Thursday’s Europa League second-leg tie with Anderlecht was of more importance than this league game and, therefore, required the resting of tired veteran Zlatan Ibrahimovic?

Of course, what that analysis failed to take into account was a tactical masterstroke by Mourinho.

Having injected much-needed pace into the United forward line by pushing up Jesse Lingard to partner Marcus Rashford, Mourinho also mirrored Chelsea’s three-man back line, allowing the speedy Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young to take up advanced positions and add even more energy to his team’s recently moribund attacking play.

That also served to bolster United’s midfield and allowed Mourinho to unleash his tactical piece de resistance, with Ander Herrera performing a man-marking job on Eden Hazard that was so complete that the Chelsea playmaker must have expected his opponent would sit next to him in the visitors’ dressing room at half-time.

Mourinho finally got one over on Conte

The fact that Herrera scored the decisive second goal early in the second half merely underlined that this was, even more than the League Cup final win over Southampton, Mourinho’s finest hour as United manager to date.

Apart from the sheer football acumen Mourinho brought to bear on proceedings, his recent handling of his young forwards also proved significant.

The United manager has taken the unusual step of calling out Rashford, Lingard and Anthony Martial by name, pointing out their dreadful ratio of chances to goals and Frenchman Martial, poor again in the trip to Anderlecht on Thursday, did not even merit a place on the bench yesterday.

But if Mourinho’s desired effect was to provide the remaining two young local forwards with the proverbial kick up the rear, then his man management has been magnificent based on their respective displays against a Chelsea defence that has been virtually impregnable for large parts of this season.

Manchester United gave Chelsea a game for the ages at Old Trafford

Pacy and direct, Lingard and Rashford troubled Chelsea’s back three from the off and, even allowing for the loss and disruption caused by the injury of Marcos Alonso in the pre-game warm-up, there was no excuse for the terrified manner in which David Luiz and Gary Cahill failed to cope with their opponents.

Nor should Mourinho’s own considerable ego be underestimated. After losing his first two meetings with his former employers this season, this was simply not a game Mourinho was prepared to lose and it brought the very best out of him.

Chelsea may not agree but the Premier League – and the title race – is a better place this morning for that fact.

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Jose Mourinho leads Manchester United to cup glory

​Southampton twice came from behind in a 3 – 2 defeat for the Saints.
Manolo Gabbiadini and Zlatan Ibrahimovic traded two goals each with Lingard getting the other goal for United.
A controversial and thrilling match saw Manolo Gabbiadini’s strike wrongly ruled out for offside before Ibrahimovic struck with an impressive free-kick at the other end to open the scoring.

Man Utd players celebrating a goal against Southampton

Jesse Lingard got the second, finding the bottom-right corner after a neat team move to net on his third consecutive Wembley appearance for United.
Gabbiadini however gave the Saints hope with a goal in the first-half stoppage time.
Gabbiadini made it five goals in three Saints matches with a magnificent finish early in the second half, blocking Smalling to volley past De Gea.
Ibrahimovic scored the winner with three minutes to go and his 26th goal of the season converting with a header from Herrera’s cross.

Gabbiadini in action against Man Utd

This is Mourinho’s first major trophy as United manager and his fourth EFL Cup glory following the three he won with Chelsea.

Mourinho lifts the EFL trophy

The cup win also means United are now the most successful team in England with 42 major honours ahead of Liverpool who have 41 major honours.

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Checkout the shocking revelation Jose Mourinho gave about Ashley Young and Memphis Depay

​Jose Mourinho admits he has a ‘bad feeling’ over Memphis Depay and Ashley Young for not giving the two players more time on the pitch with Manchester United.

Jose Mourinho admits he feels guilty for not giving Memphis Depay and Ashley Young more game time.

Both Depay and Young have been linked with moves away from Old Trafford in the upcoming transfer window having failed to secure a regular role under Mourinho.

But the United manager admits he feels guilty that the pair were not given a chance to prove themselves in the same way as Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo in recent weeks.

‘I still have some bad feelings towards myself because I didn’t give a real chance to everyone, there are some positions in our squad where we have overbooked,’ Mourinho told Sky Sports.

Depay hasn’t started in the Premier League this season

Young made only four League appearances this season

‘To be honest, people like Ashley Young and Memphis Depay, I didn’t really give them a run of matches to play, to prove. So I have this little bad feeling.

‘In relation to Marcos and Phil Jones, I’m really pleased with both. Marcos, he was a player considered by many as someone without the quality to be a Manchester United player.

‘Phil was [seen as] a stampede, injury-prone player without the conditions to be back to the good Phil Jones of the past, so I was very happy for them.’

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Man City join Man United and Liverpool in £30m battle for Premier League star

​The Dutchman has become a key figure at the heart of Claude Puel’s defence since singing from Celtic last summer.

His performances for club and country have prompted the likes of Manchester United and Liverpool to show interest.

And according to the Daily Star, Pep Guardiola also wants him as a replacement for Vincent Kompany.

The club captain has struggled for fitness in recent seasons with his latest injury coming against Crystal Palace last weekend, ruling him out for six weeks with ligament damage.

Virgil van Dijk is attracting interest from three Premier League clubs

Guardiola believes Van Dijk would be an ideal partner alongside John Stones, but he faces tough competition from his Premier League rivals if he is to land his signature.

Despite Van Dijk only signing a five-year contract when he joined from Celtic, that has not deterred Manchester United and Liverpool.

Jose Mourinho has outlined the £30m-rated defender as a priority target as he looks to bolster his defence.

Meanwhile, Jurgen Klopp also has the 25-year-old in his sights with the German keen to address his defensive concerns as they go in search of their maiden Premier League title.

Virgil van Dijk signed a five-year deal with Southampton last year

Southampton are keen to keep hold of their star man but Puel knows it will difficult to keep him at St Mary’s with big clubs monitoring him.

Pep Guardiola is keen to bring the Southampton defender to Manchester City

He said last week: “We will see for the future.

“For now he is with us and I am enjoying having this player with the squad and I hope for the future also.

“The club want to keep a good ambition on this league and for the future. We will see.”

 Van Dijk is expected to start for Southampton today when Everton make the trip down south (4.30pm).

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Wayne Rooney: Enough Is Enough

​Wayne Rooney has slammed his treatment following his England hotel drinking controversy as “disgraceful”.
Rooney issued a public apology after pictures emerged of him apparently the worse for wear at the England team hotel at 5am, the morning after their 3-0 win over Scotland.  

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Many of his team-mates had gone into London to celebrate but no pictures of them were published.
Speaking after Manchester United’s 1-1 draw with Arsenal, in which he came on as a substitute, he told newspaper reporters: “It feels as if the media are trying to write my obituary and I won’t let that happen. What’s been going on is disgraceful.

Rooney in action during the World Cup 2018 qualififier against Scotland

“I’m proud to play for my country and I’m proud of my achievements. It’s not finished yet. I think what’s been going on is disgraceful.
“It shows a lack of respect and I think enough is enough. That’s all I want to say.”

Wayne Rooney’s behaviour was tame compared to that of older generations of footballers, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said on Friday

On Friday, United boss Jose Mourinho accused the Football Association of failing to protect the England captain.
Mourinho said: “When the player goes to the national team, he belongs to the national team and when, as I learned since I was a kid, if someone lends me something I have to take even better care of it than if it was mine.”

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Paul Pogba to be used differently by Manchester United at Chelsea?

​Jose Mourinho returns to Stamford Bridge with Manchester United on Sunday and Danny Higginbotham expects Paul Pogba to be used in a different role to the one he occupied on Monday against Liverpool…

Danny Higginbotham on how Jose Mourinho can get the best out of Paul Pogba

Paul Pogba came in for criticism for his performance against Liverpool but showed his quality against Fenerbahce in the Europa League on Thursday.


Sky Sports’ tactics experts Danny Higginbotham believes there were specific reasons for Pogba’s role at Anfield and expects the Frenchman to be used differently on Sunday.

“Paul Pogba was playing as a No 10 because of the way Liverpool set up,” says Higginbotham, the former Manchester United defender.

“They are a high pressing team and what that meant is that when Manchester United got the ball they would have to beat the press, so they’d look to go long themselves.

“All the players had the same idea. They wanted to play the ball up to Zlatan Ibrahimovic and to Pogba so they could beat that high press from Liverpool.”

Higginbotham explains how United players looked to hit Pogba with long passes

With Chelsea setting up in a 3-4-3 formation and less likely to press United, Jose Mourinho could consider playing Pogba deeper – a move that Higginbotham believes is for the best.

“I look at the Liverpool game and he played with his back to goal a lot because of the tactical side of things and Jose Mourinho wanting to beat the press,” he explains.

“The Chelsea game will be different because Pogba will play in a slightly deeper role and I believe that suits him more.

“Pogba is at his best when he has the freedom to go forwards, a little bit like Yaya Toure when he was at his best. For me, that’s the best role for Pogba.

Paul Pogba struggled to make an impact at Anfield

“With the energy that he’s got he needs that room for him to move into because when he gets into his stride there aren’t many who can keep up with him.


“We’ve seen in his recent performances where he plays deeper, he can be very instrumental in the performances of Manchester United.”

Higginbotham feels Pogba would be better coming onto the ball from deep

Against Chelsea, Higginbotham feels that’s where the space could be – particularly given that Ibrahimovic could occupy the home team’s back three.

“What you’ll find is that a lot of the Chelsea defenders will be tied up by Ibrahimovic because of the physical threat that he brings,” adds Higginbotham.

Paul Pogba celebrates with Jesse Lingard after finishing a fine team move against Fenerbahce

“So what you’ll see then is that Pogba will try to get into the spaces around Nemanja Matic and N’Golo Kante to go and support Ibrahimovic. So he’s running on the opposition goal.”

If that happens then, as Fenerbahce found out on Thursday, Pogba is more than capable of causing major problems for the opposition.


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Angry Manchester United player reveals club’s crisis

​Famous Manchester United playmaker states that Mourinho’s side must not let their frustrating performance stop them believing.

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho in contract talks with midfielder Juan Mata. Despite having two years left on his current deal United he is ready to extend it. However, it should be recalled that Mata previously was sold by Mourinho from Chelsea. And probably the coach has already made a decision.

Media reports claimed Mourinho was looking to sell Mata when he arrived at Old Trafford in the summer. However, the midfielder has been a regular in the side, scoring twice in six games.
United recovered after a tough eight-day spell with three consecutive defeats  with victories over Northampton Town, Leicester and Zorya prior to last weekend’s EPL encounter.

And Mata reacted: “I’m feeling angry because the team played really well but we didn’t win. It was a pity, that’s the truth. My perception from the pitch was that we were playing a good game, creating chances, passing the ball effectively, but we couldn’t complete our job. We have to take the positive aspects and know that if we keep playing like this, we will definitely get good results.”

He continued: “Against Stoke, the team was full of confidence and we wanted to keep the good streak. We did it in terms of football and the way we played, but not in the score. With only one point instead of three we are not in the best mood to take the international break, but we are aware that, at our level, everything is possible this season.” .

Mourinho and Mata

He added: “We have five games in October that are very important and we will give our best to make it a good month. Manchester United has always had challenges and the one we have this season is still there. Many times in sport you must learn to accept those games when, even if you do many things well, you don’t win. That is football, and that’s why it’s such a nice and exciting sport.”

Mata concluded: “We’ll be back to the competition in two weeks [against Liverpool] in Anfield. It’s a massive game and we are looking forward to start working on it.”



​It easily could have been a case of mistaken identity as a very familiar looking pitch invader met his doppelganger during the Red Devils’ clash with Leicester City

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho may have made headlines for dropping Wayne Rooney, but at one stage during his side’s clash with Leicester City, he had two Zlatan Ibrahimovics on the pitch!
While pitch invaders are nothing new at Premier League grounds, the supporter who broke onto the Old Trafford turf had a certain resemblance to a particular Sweden international striker.

In fact, the pitch invader even made it all the way over to long lost twin Ibrahimovic, trying to embrace the United striker before stewards were forced to intervene and escort him from the pitch.
United are no stranger to pitch invaders, most notably back in 2001 when Karl Power dressed in the full kit to take his part in the team photograph for a UEFA Champions League game with Bayern Munich.
With Rooney benched and Mourinho exploring other options in attack for Manchester United, perhaps the Red Devils could go for a double Ibrahimovic strikeforce in future games?

Source:  goal.com

League Cup: Manchester United survives

​The remainder of the round three games of the English League Cup were played on Wednesday night, September 21, with Manchester United and Manchester City advancing.
A rejigged Manchester United came into their game against Northampton Town having lost three consecutive matches, and there were nerves when a Micheal Carrick opener was cancelled out by Alexander Revell’s penalty just three minutes to half-time.

United came out in the second half with all the intensity and that finally paid off when Ander Herrera put United in front with Marcus Rashford adding a third with just 12 minutes to go.