The international break has been and gone, along with this confusing and pointless Nations League which, like a lot of Man United’s play is a good idea with poor execution (More on that later). Firstly, I must make a hearty apology for missing last weeks round of games plus the Champions League but, much the same as their league, the wifi connection in Italy is as good a quality as their League! But here we go, it’s week 6 and there are BAGS of things to talk about, so let’s get started….
City Come Back With A Performance Of Champions
So far this season, I’ve been watching City and, if you remember, they’re my Champions-elect. However, after a 1-1 draw against Wolves, a scrappy 2-1 win against Newcastle and a thoroughly disappointing performance against Lyon in midweek, I really thought that City have been looking a little scrappy this season in parts and sometimes haven’t played their fluent best that they did so beautifully last season. This weekend gave them a prize opportunity to change that, playing against lowly Cardiff who have a poor team, and a poor manager to boot, it meant they had a golden opportunity to maybe send out a message to their rivals that they are still 100% IN this title race and my Lord, did they jump on that chance.
I myself predicted them to put four in on a poor Cardiff side who still have yet to win, but they took that even one better and put in a huge performance that I’m sure meant Klopp’s Liverpool undoubtedly kept their feet on the ground and ensured they didn’t get carried away with their impressive start. As the rain came down, the goals flew in and the Blues were absolutely powerless to stop a rampaging City side on an absolute mission to prove they’re not going to suffer any post-title blues. One player who impressed me was Mahrez, who put in his league goals, as he is a guy we know has unstoppable amounts of quality in his locker but hadn’t really hit the ground running before yesterdays game. What I’m going to be looking forward to now is seeing him press on, maybe get some more starts under his belt and get some more goals because, when he plays like we know he can, he looked tasty in a Leicester shirt, let alone playing for maybe the most dazzling side in the League.
United Fail To Keep Results Flowing
The last time I wrote something, United were in dire straits, the results weren’t going their way, they didn’t look like a team and off-field problems seemed to be hanging over them. However, after a good win away against a Watford side with a 100% record, plus a strong away win against an admittedly weak Young Boys, I was feeling a lot cheerier about the upcoming fixture at home to Wolves. Wolves have been rather impressive this season so far, they’re ambitious and may well still achieve a top half finish based on current impressions, but still I thought that United could press on and maybe put themselves on a bit of a streak. After a very open first half where both teams had chances, United took the lead after a rather lovely touch from Pogba set up a rather nice goal from Fred. At this point, United started to take the initiative and play a little more dominantly and should’ve taken the lead just before half time with a free kick that was only just kept from flying into the corner, again from Fred. So, going into the break I was still feeling rather positive, it was 1-0 at Old Trafford, a place United famously don’t concede a lot.
You can imagine then my dismay, when Moutinho (who I picked out as their buy of the season) curled an absolute beauty into the top corner that even a keeper of De Gea’s quality could only watch soar in. This was at a time, as well, when United were probably the team on the front foot and, with our beloved Fergie back in the stands, I naively thought that maybe they could have pushed on and got that all-important second goal to put them clear. As it happened, it wasn’t to be and Wolves left Manchester still unbeaten against both Manchester teams so far, a ludicrous takeaway that not many people would’ve had their money on at the start of the season. Clunky is not a word I use every day of my life, but here I believe it perfectly sums up United’s current play – the fluidity is just not there, there’s no free-flowingness to their play and Lukaku can look quite lonely at times as he was a little absent in this game. I’m just wondering whether maybe we might need to shake things up a little, maybe give big Rom a little break that I’m sure he could probably use to revitalise himself, maybe get Martial starting and get Rashford on as soon as he’s back. This would bring some real pace to our attack, and may mean that we could try something different because right now United’s play is just too predictable.
If you’re Wolves, however, keep doing what you’re doing because right now you’re going absolutely fine!
Burnley Express Rolls Through Bournemouth
Eddie Eddie Howe…..what happened? Burnley have put so much into their Europa League campaign this season that their league form has been nothing less than thoroughly disappointing up until yesterday. Bournemouth had been the total opposite, playing attacking football and putting a push on to be the new Burnley, maybe going one better and getting Champions League (Could it happen?! If so, you probably heard it here first).
Yesterday, then, was one for the Turf Moor crowd to savour (those not in the away stand) as they steamrolled Howe’s side, putting 4 in on them in the process and making me wish I’d put Joe Hart on for my fantasy team rather than De Gea! I hope that this result won’t put them down too much and that they’ll be able to put this game to bed by bringing it back against Palace next week. Before the game, I’d picked Burnley to lose 3-1 to the cherries and they proved me wrong completely, so much so that I texted a mate that was waiting til the evening to watch his beloved Cherries, only to have it ruined by me! (Again, sorry mate!)
On the other side of things, Burnley will hopefully now have put their European disappointment behind them and maybe kick themselves into a bit of form that could get them away from the drop. I’ve said this many times before, but these two teams play with a lot of heart, winning over affection from mine and, while Bournemouth are currently well away from relegation fears, Burnley before this game only had a point of which to speak, along with many poor performances. Now, I fully expect them to get a few more points in the kitty and push on up the table, here’s to the Burnely Express, top job lads!
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