Showing posts from April, 2019

Manchester United vs. Chelsea Player Ratings

United and Chelsea draw today as De Gea's mistake allows Alonso to equalize Mata's earlier goal. The game ended 1-1, and top four hopes are all but gone.
Here are the player ratings:
David De Gea (4/10): At a loss for words really. David De Gea hasn't been himself lately and hasn't show any signs of getting better. Other than the mistake fielding Rudiger's shot, allowing Alonso to score, he actually had a decent game, looking unnerved throughout the rest of the match. We can't blame him for the loss, though. United had a whole other 45 minutes to get another goal and couldn't do it.
Ashley Young (6/10):  Despite recent form, Ashley Young played surprisingly well today, making some good tackles and even some intelligent runs. Still can't cross if his life depended on it, but other than that the 34 year-old impressed.
Luke Shaw (7/10): The pattern with Luke Shaw is becoming more and more apparent. For the majority of the first half, he's attack, attack,…

Manchester United vs. Chelsea - Match Analysis

Manchester United fail to get a grip on the top four battle yet again — this time in a deflated second half performance in a 1-1 draw against Chelsea. 
United were extremely lucky to still be in the top four conversation with three games remaining, but despite the Reds recent slump, other teams around them also struggled to put together results. 
The top four feels almost like a repellent at this stage of the season, as all four teams that are fighting for third and fourth places have been wasting their opportunities to secure Champions League berth for next season. 
United continued their wasteful ways against Chelsea, as despite a promising first half, Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s men were unable to prevail after the break. 
The Reds got off to a lively start, playing some encouraging football at times — resulting in some very good build up play that led to the opening goal in the 11th minute. 
Romelu Lukaku, Luke Shaw, and Juan Mata linked up coming in off the left-hand side, with the U…

Manchester United vs Chelsea Preview

A season-defining match tomorrow. Manchester United host Chelsea in a make-it-or-break-it match for the race for Top Four with three games to go. Both teams need a win or face Europa League football next season. Here's all you need to know:

Teams: Manchester United vs Chelsea
Location: Old Trafford
KO: Sunday 28th April 16:30 GMT (Live on Sky Sports)
Managers: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Mauricio Sarri
Referee: Martin Atkinson

What form do both teams go into this game in?
As every United knows, Ole's team has a very poor run of form after being dumped out of the FA Cup by Wolves, the Champions League by Barcelona and dealt humbling back-to-back losses to Everton (4-0) and Manchester City (0-2). Not ideal form going into a pressurised run in.

Chelsea go into this game in a relatively poor run of form with their last win in the Premier League at the beginning of the month after an Eden Hazard masterclass against West Ham. Since then they have narrowly beaten Slavia Pragu…

Manchester United vs Chelsea Combined XI

Well, after a bitter defeat to Manchester City, the race for Top Four is now requiring Manchester United to win all three of their remaining games and hope for both Chelsea and Arsenal to drop points along the way. In doing so, they must beat Chelsea at Old Trafford and get the happiness and passion flowing through the club, as it did when Ole first joined. Both teams have struggled this season and have truly not accomplished what they were expected to, but both teams have quality that can shine brightly and both teams will need it on Sunday. Here's the combined XI:

Back the man who has saved us time and time again. Back the vice-captain of the squad who everyone can see is screaming at his players to wake up every time a mistake happens. His form may have dipped this season but no doubt that he is the best in the world and will hopefully get out of this poor run he is in.

No shock here. Young was better against Man City but …

Manchester United vs. Manchester City - Match Analysis

Manchester United found themselves on the wrong side of a potential title decider on Wednesday night, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men suffered a 0-2 defeat in a derby clash against Manchester City at Old Trafford. 
United were going to have a major say in the title race coming into this game, as whatever the result may have been, either City or Liverpool were going to be left in the driver’s seat with three games remaining. 

The hosts went on to record their seventh loss in nine games in all competitions, and handed their noisy neighbours the pole position to secure back-to-back league titles. 
Coming off the 4-0 thrashing away to Everton, United fans approached the derby fixture with even more mixed emotions than expected. All of a sudden, the issue was a lot deeper than gifting Liverpool the title with a win. The players commitment to the badge was in question and there was fear of another 6-1 being on the horizon.

The manager and the fans desperately needed to see a response fro…

Manchester United vs. Manchester City - Player Ratings

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's first Manchester Derby didn't go as planned, as City scored two second half goals to beat United 2-0 at Old Trafford.

Here are United's player ratings:

David De Gea (4/10):
DaveSaves has been on quite the cold streak as of late, looking more mortal than ever in the past three games. Another error from the great David de Gea in this one, giving up the goal that took United out of the game. He just doesn't look himself out there lately, and with each error, he seems to get more and more nervous. Us as United fans need to rally behind our great goalkeeper in his time of struggle, because lord knows where United would be without him these past ten years.

Matteo Darmian (6/10):
One of the few bright spots in the game, Matteo Darmian impressed in his first start in the Premier League since Jose Mourinho's final game. Some sloppy positioning is what keeps the Italian defender from a higher rating.

Chris Smalling (5/10):
Nothing spectacular, but very c…

Manchester United vs Manchester City Preview

Normally I would have done a combined XI before this article, but to be honest I don't have it in me at the moment to put eight City players into a combined team. After what can only be called a horror-show at Goodison Park, Manchester United host Pep's Man City side in what is clealy going to be the title-deciding game. If United don't lose, then City have it all to do and Liverpool will be set to win their first Premier League title and if City beat United, the Red Devils will almost certainly be handing their noisy neighbours their second consecutive title and the chance to win the domestic treble. A dreary set of predictions for anyone supporting United. Nevertheless, here is all you need to know:

Teams: Manchester United vs Manchester City
Location: Old Trafford
KO: Wednesday 24th April 20:00 GMT (Live on Sky Sports)
Managers: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Pep Guardiola
Referee: Andre Marriner

What form are both teams in?
Both Manchester teams suffered European setbacks after U…

Everton vs Manchester United Match Analysis

After the 3-0 defeat at Camp Nou in the midweek, Manchester United needed to make amends yesterday. A trip to Goodison is never an easy one but 5 losses out of 7 games was a rut that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was desperate to get out of. What transpired for the next 90 minutes was probably the worst Manchester United performance since the David Moyes era, although I'm not sure it ever got this bad even under the Scotsman.

Right from the first whistle, Everton looked like the only team which had come to play and win. They were winning every duel, intercepting passes and causing trouble to United's defense in the opening stages of the game. David De Gea thwarted Richarlison with a good save but the Brazilian got better of the Spaniard a few minutes later and gave the lead to the Toffees. A long throw from Lucas Digne was not all dealt with purpose by United players. Both Chris Smalling and Paul Pogba jumped for the ball but somehow Calvert-Lewin won the header and Richarlison scored f…

Everton vs. Manchester United - Player Ratings

Manchester United suffer their sixth defeat in eight games, as top four hopes seem all but gone after a 0-4 loss away to Everton.

Here are the player ratings:

David de Gea - 4
Not much he could have done for the first and third goal, suspect for the second. Hasn't looked himself in recent weeks, and that has continued through his body language in this game.

Victor Lindelof - 4
Forced to play out of position in the first 45 minutes, and still looked like the most competent United defender. The best out of a bad bunch.

Chris Smalling - 3
The scoreline speaks for the collective as well as the individual effort. While not particularly at fault for any of the goals, overall performance just not good enough.

Phil Jones - 3
Subbed off at half-time due to an injury which he picked up with his only positive contribution, a 50/50 tackle.

Diogo Dalot - 3
Like Lindelof, he also had to play out of position. Lost track of Richarlison for Everton's opener, and often looked lost in defence. Didn&…

Everton vs Manchester United Preview

Here we go again. After a disappointing display in the Nou Camp on Tuesday, Manchester United travel to Merseyside to face Everton in a crucial game to reach the Top Four. Here is all you need to know:
Teams: Everton vs Manchester United Location: Goodison Park KO: Sunday 21st April 13:30 GMT (Live on Sky Sports) Managers: Marco Silva and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Referee: Paul Tierney
What form do both teams have currently? Manchester United have had a pitiful run of form since the stunning comeback in Paris in which they have lost five games out of seven with two wins coming against Watford and West Ham, both 2-1 home victories, both relatively undeserved. This run has included a 2-0 humbling at the Emirates, Wolves dumping United out of the FA Cup at the Molineux Stadium, a stale 1-0 loss at home to Barcelona and then a very poor defeat at the hands of Messi and Coutinho in Barcelona. You would hope for a reaction against Everton as now the Premier League run in is the only way for United to…

Barcelona vs Manchester United Player Ratings

Image taken from 

David De Gea - 4.0 A very poor performance from the keeper, his error for the second goal seemed to set the tone for the disappointing performance from the whole team. David is one of the very few world class players United have and these are the games he needs to perform in and last night he wasn’t at the races.
Ashley Young - 3.0 Another very abject display from Ashley, completely to blame for Barcelona's first goal as he in fact made four errors in the space of fifteen seconds in the build-up. He is simply not good enough for these games and only emphasised the need for new full backs in the summer.
Phil Jones - 5.5 Did his best against an in-form Barcelona attack and Leo Messi in particular. He showed courage to bring the ball out of defence at times but the brutal truth is, just like Young, he is not good enough to take United forward.
Chris Smalling - 5.0 Like Jones, Chris is not good enough to deal with the Barcelona attackers in that form. Four of the …

FC Barcelona vs. Manchester United - Match Analysis

The fairytale is over — individual errors prove costly yet again as Manchester United crash out of the Champions League at the quarter-finals stage after losing 0-3 to FC Barcelona (0-4 agg.)
The same defensive mistakes that have hurt United time and time again this season came back to haunt them again on Tuesday night as Barca pounced, and all but ended the tie in the first half. 
Despite a promising start and a couple of half chances for Marcus Rashford and Scott McTominay early on, the gulf in class was exposed moments later as Lionel Messi converted the first half chance that fell at his feet. 
An unnecessary loss of possession deep inside United’s half by Ashley Young gifted the Argentine the ball on the edge of the box, and you just knew what was coming next. Messi controlled the ball, shook off a desperate tackle from Young, before gliding past Fred and unloading his signature left foot strike into David De Gea’s bottom right corner.
As unstoppable as that finish was, it could…

4 Key Players for United's 2nd Leg Clash Against Barcelona

On April 16th, Manchester United will travel to the Nou Camp in Barcelona to try and beat the Spanish giants in their own home to advance to the Champions League semi-finals. Already being down 1-0, it will be a difficult task but as our newly-appointed gaffer, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, said, "Mountains are there to be climbed". United were the better team in the first leg, only giving up a sloppy goal in the beginning stages. Nevertheless, the players showed that they are more than capable of beating this Barcelona side, and I believe they can do it.

Winning this match will have to be a team effort by United, but there are four players who, if they perform Tuesday night, will make the victory that much easier to achieve. 
Paul Pogba 
La Pioche will have to be at the top of his game and nothing less come Tuesday night. The Red Devils need every last bit of Pogba's superstar talent to help propel them to victory -- because as we all know, when Pogba is clicking, it opens so ma…

Barcelona vs Manchester United Preview

The Champions League Quarter Finals second leg games begin tomorrow and none bigger than Barcelona vs Manchester United at the Nou Camp. Manchester United have a monster task to overcome their 1-0 home loss last Wednesday against a team who has not lost at home in the Champions League since 2013 but if anyone can do it, Manchester United can. Here's all you need to know:
Teams: Barcelona vs Manchester United KO: 16th April 20:00 Location: Nou Camp Managers: Ernesto Valverde and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Referee: Felix Brych
How have both teams fared since the first leg? Both teams played on the Saturday and made many changes to the teams that played mid-week. Barcelona made ten changes with only Marc-Andre Ter Stegen left in the lineup. Despite having Ousmane Dembele, Malcom and Arturo Vidal, the Catalan giants drew a blank against bottom-of-the-table side Huesca despite sending on Philippe Coutinho, Arthur and Jordi Alba to make an impact. Manchester United barely fared better as Ole made …

Player ratings vs West Ham United

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David De Gea - 6.5 A mixed day for Dave, he will be disappointed to not have saved West Ham’s equaliser, as well as giving the ball away on occasions prior to the goal. However he made some good stops, including a world class save to prevent The Hammers going 2-1 up.
Diogo Dalot - 6.5 Back in his preferred position at right-back. He was getting forward at every opportunity and getting balls into the box. In the second half, he contributed to a nervy defensive effort from the team with some poor distribution and rash clearances.
Phil Jones - 6.0 A typically brave performance from the Englishman but could not gain any control of United’s defence when required.
Chris Smalling- 6.0  Like Jones, Smalling wasn’t able to organise a shaky United defence. However he was on hand to make some important interceptions.
Marcus Rojo - 4.5 In fairness to Marcus, he’s just not a left-back. This was a real rusty performance having missed much of this season. His positional sense was ve…