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Manchester United - Theatre of Dreams - Part 35

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Old 20-08-2019, 09:35 PM   #5131
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Ole learned well from SAF......

https://twitter.com/R_o_M/status/1163708101054423041
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Old 20-08-2019, 09:42 PM   #5132
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the fuss over this is getting ridiculous
Ole learned well from SAF......

https://twitter.com/R_o_M/status/1163708101054423041
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Old 20-08-2019, 09:58 PM   #5133
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s a way of inspiring a particular motivation in a player who is said to respond better to carrot than stick, returning the No 9 shirt to Anthony Martial was a shrewd move by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Martial was known to be seriously disheartened when Zlatan Ibrahimovic swept into Old Trafford and seized that symbolic jersey for himself in July 2016 and it is not hard to imagine a brooding sense of longing as Romelu Lukaku wore it for the last two seasons.

It is true that after a debut season of 17 goals, Martial was ready to launch his AM9 brand — he had the logo stitched into his boots — and Ibrahimovic’s announcement on Instagram took the wind from those commercial sails. But more importantly, the switch pushed Martial to the side, both metaphorically and positionally. It told him he was secondary to a man with an ego the size of Sweden and also meant he now had to play left wing.

Gerard Bonneau, who scouted Martial for Lyon as a 13-year-old before he moved to Monaco in 2013, is adamant his best position is through the middle. “I think the No 9 is better for him,” Bonneau told The Athletic. “When he was younger he played with No 9 and scored a lot of goals. I think it is very important for his personal motivation that he becomes first-choice in this position.”

Having been No 11 for three years, Martial’s restoration to No 9, once it became vacant, was swift. Manchester United confirmed Lukaku’s departure to Inter on August 8, 4.23pm and revealed the Martial news at 5.12pm the next day. Sources say Solskjaer, attuned to Martial’s preference, was conscious of the boost it would provide his player 48 hours before the curtain-raiser against Chelsea at Old Trafford.

It was notable how Martial celebrated scoring by running to the corner, turning away from the crowd, and pointing two thumbs down at the digit on his back. Point made, Martial settled for slapping the badge on the front of his shirt after lashing the ball into the roof of the Wolves net for his 50th United goal.

It was a finish of real quality, gliding on to Marcus Rashford’s slipped pass and striking the ball with zero backlift. Martial could have had one even earlier of course, but failed to throw everything at Rashford’s cross after the England man had sat Ryan Bennett down with a double chop. It would have been the kind of bundled finish that Solskjaer wants to see from his forwards and was a missed opportunity.

Martial had another chance on the stroke of half-time, seizing on a loose pass by Bennett to go clear but standing on the ball at just the wrong moment. So ultimately, after Ruben Neves’s wonder goal and Paul Pogba’s missed penalty, it was not the result United wanted. Martial acknowledged as much as he walked slowly from the dressing room to the team bus after the final whistle. “Ah ****,” he said with a rueful smile. He did not stop to expand his thoughts to assembled media.

Despite the frustration it was another performance of promise from Martial as No 9. He linked well with Rashford, who was superb, pressed the Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio into conceding possession on two occasions, and with his speed managed to force Wolves defenders to drop deeper than usual. His activity map at Molineux illustrates his place high up the pitch, with seven touches coming inside the box (see image below).

Conor Coady, the Wolves centre back who said United “pressed us high and pressed us quick”, admitted Martial presented a difficult problem for an accomplished backline to solve.

“We tried to stop that pace in behind,” Coady told The Athletic. “It happened for the goal and once you switch off he can hurt you, because it was a great finish. We needed to make sure we dropped with him because he is a fast boy in behind, that’s what he does. But I thought we did it quite well.”

For Martial, there are obviously areas to improve, and at times Rashford moved centrally to good effect, but the 23-year-old has so far made a strong claim for a run as United’s main striker. And the No 9 shirt is a recognition of that. Such a detail might appear superficial but can actually be quite sensitive, as the tale of the last United striker to have the jersey taken off him testifies.

Sir Alex Ferguson had broken the British transfer record by signing Andy Cole from Newcastle United in January 1995 but their first full season together was not spectacular. In a bid to instil confidence Ferguson decided to hand Cole the No 9 but that meant a delicate conversation with Brian McClair, who had worn the shirt with distinction since signing from Celtic in 1987.

Ferguson was said to feel a certain sense of awkwardness as he phoned McClair and by way of softening the blow told his fellow Scot he could instead pick any free number he wanted. McClair considered his options then, with mischief, said, “Okay, 69. Thank you” and ended the call. Ferguson, of course, said no but this duel of wills lasted a few days of comic negotiation before McClair eventually settled for No 13, his sense of humour still prevalent. From getting lucky, to getting unlucky.

In that case, an ageing striker was passing on the baton to the next in line — a palatable exchange. In Martial’s situation it always seemed an unnecessary concession to a 34-year-old in Ibrahimovic who was clearly passing through. Martial, brimming with potential at 20, became collateral as Jose Mourinho structured his team around a readymade star.

There were also ideological differences. Martial, a master of improvisation, was never the type of player Mourinho would have signed himself — he actually seemed open to a sale each window — and when acting as a Sky pundit at Old Trafford for the Chelsea game the former United manager could not resist aiming a dig over the Frenchman’s reluctance to track back.

Solskjaer has recognised this himself but will instead focus on what Martial is good at and enjoys. “Now I’ve taken the No 9 shirt once again, all Ole has said to me is that I have a lot of responsibility and I have to score goals, so that’s what I’m trying to do,” Martial said.

The Frenchman started as striker against Chelsea and responded by getting a poacher’s goal. Although he appeared momentarily despondent as Rashford went right to Jesse Lingard rather than left to him, Martial stayed alert and got into the six-yard box ready to scramble home Andreas Pereira’s cross.


Solskjaer knows the value of scoring in that way. “He got himself in a good position and even though he might have mishit it, it went in. You can get five extra goals like this every season,” the United manager said.

His average position on the pitch against Chelsea was the most central, attacking-wise, of any of the United players. The last time that happened was 18 months ago, in January 2018 when Lukaku was injured for the trip to Everton. Martial started up front and scored in a 2-0 win.

According to transfermarkt.co.uk, Martial appeared for United as centre forward 27 times in his debut 2015-16 campaign but has done so on only 25 occasions in the three-and-a-bit seasons since, including the Wolves match. Less than a third of his 176 games have come in the role he was originally bought for, at a cost that currently stands at £43.2 million. He operated as a striker at Monaco in all but a few games.

So this strategy by Solskjaer is a significant shift, even if there is fluidity to his frontline. For the Chelsea game the touch maps for Martial (below left) and Rashford, the nominal left winger (below right) are remarkably similar. Martial peppered the flank and one such involvement was the immaculately timed backheel that enabled Pogba to gallop into Chelsea’s half for the Dan James goal.

Asked about this by The Athletic, Solskjaer said: “Anthony’s had spells when he’s played No 9 as a centre forward under Louis van Gaal, then he’s played on the left the last few years. I think both him and Marcus are capable of playing both positions. Sometimes it will be Marcus through the middle and Anthony on the left, or Dan James on the left and maybe one of them on the right.

“But of course, the goals are scored from between the posts and not necessarily the worldies that we’ve seen them score, both Marcus and Anthony with curlers into the top corner or after dribbles. I want both of them to be scoring more easy goals because you don’t have to work too hard to get them, just a little bit of movement.”

Both Rashford’s goals against Chelsea came from running through the middle, as did James’s, and Solskjaer will be happy as long as there is joined-up thinking. That did not always seem the case with Lukaku. During the 1-1 draw with Chelsea at home last season, Lukaku and Rashford exchanged four passes (below left). In that fixture this campaign Martial and Rashford exchanged eight passes, in more dangerous areas, as shown in the Opta graph (below right).

Martial sounds emboldened by the encouragement to get in the box. “Since I was a young kid, I’ve always played as a striker. I’m fine with playing more out wide as it’s a position that I enjoy. But it’s a real pleasure to find myself back in that more central role.”

The question has always been over whether Martial has the ruthless streak of the very best centre-forwards. Dimitar Berbatov, who was impressed by Martial at Monaco, believes he may need a little more time to grow into United’s main striker, while in November 2015 Paul Scholes said, “he doesn’t look bothered if he misses a chance”. Profligacy has been a criticism.

However, United sources say the sullen character Martial sometimes conveys is misleading. He is said to have a very dry sense of humour, often pretending not to understand English then bursting into laughter when the victim of his joke fails to clock on. And he is popular among team-mates.

Bonneau also insists appearances can be deceiving and Martial does possess an innate desire for goals. The regained No 9 role, combined with greater experience, gives him licence to truly show it.

Bonneau says: “We have a false impression of him, because everybody thinks he sleeps. He doesn’t sleep. He listens. He is quiet but I think this year he can become a killer. He has learnt maturity. It is his time is now.”

https://theathletic.co.uk/1146842/20...ady-to-thrive/
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Old 20-08-2019, 10:18 PM   #5134
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if OGS knows how to manage it, martial & rashford can be the future yorke–cole combo but now still too far fetched
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Old 21-08-2019, 07:03 AM   #5135
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During post match conference, he said whoever is more coincidence can take the penalty.

But behind close door, he went quack quack.
Should be fake news..
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/fo...aul-Pogba.html
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Old 21-08-2019, 08:37 AM   #5136
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Man Utd drawing with Wolves shows Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs two January signings

But Solskjaer needs two signings. Upgrades, on both Luke Shaw and Jesse Lingard.

https://www.express.co.uk/sport/foot...-news-signings

These 2 players are not good enough for Man Utd. They are now Man Utd weak link when they played. Man Utd will have to sign new players if Dalot is unable to replace Shaw & Angel Gomes, Mason Greenwood, Andreas Pereira or Fred is unable to replace Lingard.
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Old 21-08-2019, 08:47 AM   #5137
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Jose Mourinho fires dig at Luke Shaw and issues warning to Harry Maguire during Manchester United’s clash vs Chelsea

Jose Mourinho has aimed a dig at Luke Shaw by claiming that Harry Maguire will need to cover the left-back ‘a lot of times’ during Manchester United’s defensive situations this season.

Mourinho was working as a pundit for Sky Sports for United’s Premier League opener against Chelsea on Sunday and during the half-time break, the Portuguese highlighted one situation where Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side had been left exposed down Shaw’s left flank.

‘When a player is attracted to the inside and then Magurie is the one who has to jump on the outside, the United midfielders are not closing the space in the box,’ said Mourinho. ‘When Maguire is attracted to cover Luke Shaw, and he has to learn that he has to do this a lot of times, during the season he will learn he needs to do that.

https://metro.co.uk/2019/08/11/jose-...lsea-10554186/
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Old 21-08-2019, 08:52 AM   #5138
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Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer identifies rising star to provide a threat to Luke Shaw

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has identified academy product Brandon Williams as the man to offer Manchester United's Player of the Year Luke Shaw with competition

https://www.dailystar.co.uk/sport/fo...unnar-18957571
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Old 21-08-2019, 09:14 AM   #5139
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Rashford : “We still have things to work on, but it was a decent performance, but yeah, [we were] unlucky to come away with a point. It feels like we’ve lost the game. I’ve compared it to last time we were here and it’s a million miles off that performance."

https://www.manutd.com/en/news/detai...om-wolves-draw
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Old 21-08-2019, 11:09 AM   #5140
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Man Utd drawing with Wolves shows Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs two January signings

But Solskjaer needs two signings. Upgrades, on both Luke Shaw and Jesse Lingard.

https://www.express.co.uk/sport/foot...-news-signings

These 2 players are not good enough for Man Utd. They are now Man Utd weak link when they played. Man Utd will have to sign new players if Dalot is unable to replace Shaw & Angel Gomes, Mason Greenwood, Andreas Pereira or Fred is unable to replace Lingard.
wah, Lingard not good enough?? He is English darling eh. English prospect and maybe is England's hope of landing the Ballon D'Or eh
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Old 21-08-2019, 11:31 AM   #5141
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Jesse Lingard is the 3rd player to have scored in FA Cup Final, League Cup Final and Charity Shield at Wembley. The other 2 are Mark Hughes and Ian Rush.
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Old 21-08-2019, 12:05 PM   #5142
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Jose Mourinho fires dig at Luke Shaw and issues warning to Harry Maguire during Manchester United’s clash vs Chelsea

Jose Mourinho has aimed a dig at Luke Shaw by claiming that Harry Maguire will need to cover the left-back ‘a lot of times’ during Manchester United’s defensive situations this season.

Mourinho was working as a pundit for Sky Sports for United’s Premier League opener against Chelsea on Sunday and during the half-time break, the Portuguese highlighted one situation where Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side had been left exposed down Shaw’s left flank.

‘When a player is attracted to the inside and then Magurie is the one who has to jump on the outside, the United midfielders are not closing the space in the box,’ said Mourinho. ‘When Maguire is attracted to cover Luke Shaw, and he has to learn that he has to do this a lot of times, during the season he will learn he needs to do that.

https://metro.co.uk/2019/08/11/jose-...lsea-10554186/
He's not wrong though.

Look at how rarely Lindelof needs to cover for AWB. Compare it to Maguire-Shaw. Attacking wise, AWB doesn't offer alot lesser than what Shaw did recently.

If I'm the opposing team, I will ask my players focus attack on Shaw's flank too
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Old 21-08-2019, 12:08 PM   #5143
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From lvg to mourinho and now to ole, all these managers likes to play him when he is available. I don't know why a Player with poor first touch, poor finishing, poor passing can start whereas Mata, a much better Player struggled to have a new contract, cannot start every game.
OGS plays high pressing & among the front players, Lingard presses the best in terms of intensity and quickness. We all can't deny this. He's one of the reasons why we can get possession back in the middle of the park quickly in Wolves game. He presses the defense line, the midfielders, pressure them to misplace their pass.

But he bobo shooter.. and rarely plays the telling pass for our strikers to score, unlike Pogba or Mata.
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Old 21-08-2019, 12:53 PM   #5144
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FPL private league of ManUtd players?
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Old 21-08-2019, 01:13 PM   #5145
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Wolves VS Top 6 18/19 season.

✅Wolves 1-1 Man City
✅Man Utd 1-1 Wolves
❌Wolves 2-3 Spurs
✅Arsenal 1-1 Wolves
✅Wolves 2-1 Chelsea
❌Wolves 0-2 Liverpool
✅Spurs 1-3 Wolves
✅Wolves 2-1 Liverpool
❌Man City 3-0 Wolves
✅Chelsea 1-1 Wolves
✅Wolves 3-1 Arsenal
✅Wolves 2-1 Man Utd


Seriously quite decent arent they.
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