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I'm less and less certain that United's issues lies with the players. Don't get me wrong, United's squad is far from title contenders with competition being at the level this high, but last summer they signed Cristiano Ronaldo, Varane and Sancho. On paper, City squad would be improved by that and yet United imploded on every level. Club is at a state of total disarray and I don't think that signing any player, as great as Casemiro is (or as great as Varane, Sancho and Cristiano were), would fix that.

Other than that, I find reading other people's private correspondence to be in extremely poor taste, especially when the purpose for doing so is public mockery. I'm not a fan of Giggs by any stretch of the imagination but it's a matter of principle.

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Consigliere's said it in the past, but I think the biggest problem last season apart from the mental collapse was that the coaching was clearly not up to standard. We changed managers but not the coaching team. Now we have, but it'll take time before we can know whether it's had an effect.

Or at least whether it's had a good effect because as bad as the results were you could clearly see the players were committing, and in some areas successful, at a different style. Obviously dominating possession is no help if we concede four goals, but time will tell if it's growing pains or an unfixable issue in the squad not being to play that way at all.

Casemiro at least should be a signing that makes the former more likely. Not just as a defensive presence, but positionally he should be able to help with those moments our defenders ended up with no options trying to pass out. 

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There's even a chance, that Maguire will look less shambolic with a proper DM shielding him.

42 minutes ago, baxus said:

but last summer they signed Cristiano Ronaldo, Varane and Sancho. On paper, City squad would be improved by that and yet United imploded on every level.

None of those players addressed the most urgent need in their squad. I was joking back then in the old thread, when they signed Ronaldo, that bringing in him as a luxury signing didn't make much sense, unless he could play DM. Sancho is brilliant at what he does, but he is playing on a totally different area of the pitch. Varane made sense, as he should'Ve (in theory) been able to cover the biggest flaw in Maguire's game, his lack of pace. But that didn't fix the giant hole in front of their CBs.  If Casemiro flops or picks up an injury they are back to McFred.

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23 minutes ago, A Horse Named Stranger said:

There's even a chance, that Maguire will look less shambolic with a proper DM shielding him.

I'm enjoying the rumour that Chelsea want to swap him for Pulisic. That's too insane even for Man United.

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36 minutes ago, Consigliere said:

Wait…there's a rumour Chelsea want to swap Pulisic for Maguire? Do you guys get your transfer news from The Sun or the Daily Mail?

 LOL, now I want to see it happening.

1 hour ago, A Horse Named Stranger said:

There's even a chance, that Maguire will look less shambolic with a proper DM shielding him.

 

Like I said, Fred performs better for Brazil than with Utd precisely because Casemiro is around (still, no one can figure out why he starts most games when Brazil has Fabinho, Gérson, Bruno Guimarães and Paquetá that can play in that position, but that's another discussion)

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What is it about Wolves that makes every game they’re involved in a real grind to watch? They’re doing fine away to Spurs here, which is a decent effort, but, Jesus, it’s boring.

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16 minutes ago, A Horse Named Stranger said:

There's even a chance, that Maguire will look less shambolic with a proper DM shielding him.

None of those players addressed the most urgent need in their squad. I was joking back then in the old thread, when they signed Ronaldo, that bringing in him as a luxury signing didn't make much sense, unless he could play DM. Sancho is brilliant at what he does, but he is playing on a totally different area of the pitch. Varane made sense, as he should'Ve (in theory) been able to cover the biggest flaw in Maguire's game, his lack of pace. But that didn't fix the giant hole in front of their CBs.  If Casemiro flops or picks up an injury they are back to McFred.

And that's one of the things that is NOT players' fault.

All the hate aside, Fred is a Brazilian international and McTominay was a part of Scottish national team that got to the Euros after 24 years. Sure, they underperform for United, but so does the whole team. It's also reasonable to assume that the whole squad, McFred included, would benefit from better coaching and management.

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I don't really think stating that Fred & McTominay representing their national team is a particularly convincing argument about anything.

Also, big fan of seeing Lampard trying and fit in *all the wingers* in his team.

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Fred and McTominay only look decent in a compact, low block counterattacking system – the less possession the team has, the better they look. In a possession oriented system both struggle because neither possesses the technical ability to effectively transition play and break lines with either passing or dribbling. This impacts Maguire too since he's had to do too much i.e. pushing into midfield far too often to do the job that midfielders are supposed to do. Maguire is not a top class player but he's a better player than the memes will have you believe. Casemiro fills a big hole but we are still missing a midfielder with the ability to effectively transition play and with good passing range – maybe Eriksen can fill that role (if we don't make another midfield signing) and it might work with a specialist DM next to him.

Edited by Consigliere
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I struggle to understand a midfield of Iwobi and Davies. Iwobi works as a 10, Davies works ... sometimes. But putting them alongside each other means that both may be the rear one, and neither are a fit for that. Plus Davies doesn't really advance with the ball at his feet, so it becomes very static.

Static also very well describes Salomon Rondon.

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Casemiro and Eriksen are both very good players and help the biggest weakness of that squad.  Similarly Ronaldo, Varane and Sancho were all very good players too.  The real issue is whether United can stop being less than the sum of their parts.  And their major weakness is that their ambition is pushing their style beyond the ceiling (so far) of their coaching and players.

Victory in top level football is generally shaped by who has more weak points to exploit because scoring is much harder than defending once teams are well organized.  It’s much easier to play defensively and counterattack —which United’s players can manage well — but that has a limited potential for league points for any title-challengers or entertainers because smaller opponents can use it too.  Yes, Leicester won a title that way, but usually the title winner carries the burden of taking the initiative against defensive, counterattacking opponents every week and that is much, much more difficult to do successfully.  Only City and Liverpool have been capable over the past five years of playing that way.  Arsenal are trying to get there and making progress, United have tried and flailed so far, while Spurs and Chelsea are both trying to eke as much as they can from the easier defense + counterattack model.

United are trying to jump to a whole new level of technical difficulty in tactics, positioning, passing, movement, timing, etc.  Each time they add more technical players and more technical coaching they move a bit closer, but it’s fragile while they still have so many exploitable weaknesses.

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That was very meh.

Underscores (yet again) that we need a striker. We cannot rely on DCL to be fit and ready the whole season, and Rondon simply isn't good enough anymore. And we don't have anyone else.

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