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21 Aug 2017 13:19:44
Is it me or does everyone else feel like man utd are disliked by the pundits? By no means do I expect us to be this dominate throughout the season and our real tests will come when we play the stronger sides, but I think that some so called pundits don't give us enough credit.

Each season there's a strong starter, this could be arsenal, man city, Chelsea, even Liverpool and the pundits go mental, almost categorically admitting that who ever that team is, they will win the league.

I've watched a few different channels, granted these pundits where the likes of Steve Mcmanaman, Stevie g, Jermaine Jenas, Alan Shearer, Martin Keown, Stevie Nichol, Shaka Hislop so I don't expect a lot of man utd love, but not one has stated how we have improved.

It might just be me, with my rose tinted glasses on, but I know we are not perfect and we could use decent wingers as Jermaine Jenas implied. However, the one thing these pundits don't seem to be reiterating is that we are scoring goals. Defending was never are issue, it was scoring more than one goal. We look a more free flowing, counter attacking team that doesn't sit on a one nil anymore.

I'm just a bit aggrieved because I definitely remember years gone by when Chelsea or City had steam rolled what was put out in front of them at the start of the season and pundits had gone wild over them.

The Bear Maximum

1.) 21 Aug 2017 14:00:21
Bear, While I agree this is frustrating. isn't this exactly what Jose would want? He'll be sat in his office laughing his head off at this. They're building on the siege mentality that he absolutely craves, what more could he want? "They don't think you've got it in you" is all he'll have to say to them!

Yes we've only beaten the teams in front of us and we've done well but who gives a stuff what all the scousers on the highlights show think?


2.) 21 Aug 2017 14:05:55
You'll get used to it BM.

It's been like this for many years and will continue to do so.


3.) 21 Aug 2017 14:14:02
I think we've had quite a bit of praise to be honest. Henry was very complimentary when speaking over the past couple of games, obviously Neville, Andy Gray and even Souness (through gritted teeth) managed to say we looked a lot better. We also get talked about far more than pretty much every side. So we will see a lot of negativity simply because of the amount of air time given to us. I'd also say we've probably had more praise than any side over the last 20 years.

I would however like to see pundits be a bit more consistent with their criticism. For example, while Conte didn't have much of a choice yesterday can you imagine how many times the phrase "park the bus" would have been used if a Mourinho team set up that defensively?


4.) 21 Aug 2017 15:34:31
Shearer preficted us to win the league.


5.) 21 Aug 2017 18:31:35
To be fair, Martin Samuel gave us a good write up, today, and even that illiterate buffoon Jamie Redknapp, was singing our praises. I don't think they're all saying anything that any of us aren't saying on here - that we've looked very good against two weaker teams, and that while there's been a huge improvement, it's still early days.


6.) 21 Aug 2017 18:31:54
Every so called pundit loves to have a dig. Merson is probably the worst culprit whenever he has his predictions it always seems to start I think united could struggle in this game. maybe he lost a few bets on us over the years. I think its sour grapes as never got to pull on a united shirt and we have been a dominate side for the beat part of the pl era . average players terrible pundits.


 

 

16 Aug 2017 10:47:42
Is anyone else as excited as me for our next game? I can't remember the last time I was this optimistic about watching us play.

I don't think we have enough to win the premier league this year, but I most certainly think we can come close and if as previous seasons have taught us you can never rely on the favourites to walk of with the title.

I was just so impressed with the performance on Sunday, I'm itching to see us play again.

The Bear Maximum

1.) 16 Aug 2017 12:23:43
I feel we have more than enough to win the EPL this year. We have genuine competition for places in nearly all positions on the pitch.

We won't play great football every week, but I don't see any team being able to walk over us.

We will lose games, but they will be close hard fought games. I'm confident that this team will be able to turn nearly all those draws from last season into wins this season.

Also from the opening weekend I didn't see another team that is yet as good as we were.

City will run us close, and Spurs might depending on what Levy can do in the final weeks of the transfer window.

Arsenal look like Arsenal, great going forward but soft in the middle and no fight.

Liverpool look like they don't have a single player who knows how to defend. Every set piece they look like conceeding.

Chelsea it is hard to judge, they obviously had a poor day at the office, but there team doesn't look any better on paper than last season. They got very lucky with injuries last season and will have an extra ten games and loads of traveling this season. Unless they add a few more quality players they may lack the squad depth. Plus I always feel it is harder to defend a title than to win it. Everyone will want the champions scalp this year and can Chelsea's players maintain the desire they showed last season?

I think we have every chance to win it. Ultimately what might decide the title this year is how much Pep has learned from last season.


2.) 16 Aug 2017 12:41:47
I maintain we need a quality goal scoring wide forward to win the league and a full back. Great to see optimism but it's one game. One injury to Lukaku and it changes everything.

{Ed004's Note - I agree. Shaw back fit, Aurier signed before window closes and either Griezmann or Ibrahimovic in January and I can't see why we couldn't compete for the title}


3.) 16 Aug 2017 13:14:23
I agree with you Red Man and that's the reason I feel we just may come up short. I really think we need that consistent attacking lb and if we get that and by some miracle go injury free throughout the season, we will certainly be in with a chance. However, you don't go the whole season without a couple of injuries or needing rest and I think up top is where we will struggle.

If lukaku gets injured, do we really feel comfortable with martial and rashford as are central strikers for a long period of time? Don't get me wrong, I like both of them, but you can't expect them to play on the wing every week and then all of a sudden expect them to be the target man because there's an injury. It would be uncomfortable for even the most experienced of players.

It would be nice to either get an out and out back up striker, but even buying a proper winger to improve the starting 11 would at least allow one of martial and rashford to become the out and out back up striker so that they can concentrate purely on that position.


4.) 16 Aug 2017 13:25:07
Martial has never been given a run of games up top as our only forward. He's always on the wing. He played there once last season and scored on the counter attack. It's not really far to pass comment on him or Rashford as being up top of Lukaku got injured.
It's more a case of who we we play in the wings instead as both Rashford and Martial offer a lot of pace on the wings.


5.) 16 Aug 2017 13:53:29
I agree on the back up out and out striker. Mainly due to our second choice strikers not proving to be clinical in front of goal (as yet - i hope they prove themselves with game time this season) .

I will be shot down for this but i think BEAST mentioned (or MAZE) about Vardy as our second striker and i still agree. whether he would even look to us is another thing but for me a back up striker to Rom needs to be EPL proven.


6.) 16 Aug 2017 13:58:14
Injuries can effect anyone. We could lose Lukaku or DDG to injury this season, of it could be Blind or Herrera, or Bailly or Valencia.

But that is also the same for all the other teams we are competing with. How would Spurs have faired in the last two seasons if Kane was out injured for the majority of the season? Or Hazard at Chelsea or Sanchez at Arsenal or Coutinho at Liverpool?

I too feel we could do with a special player such as Bale or Greizmann but we could sign such a player and they could be injured for most of the season.

I would like better competition and quality in the full back positions, but if Shaw can turn the corner and stay fit then we have one of the best young full backs in the league.

Maybe he can maybe he can't, typically if Mourinho doesn't think someone can do what he wants of them he is unsentimental and moves them on and brings in someone who can. Therefore if Shaw stays then maybe it's because Mourinho feels he can do what he wants him to this season. Valencia was one of the best RB's in the league last year, sure he'll need more rest this season but there is no reason to feel his performance level will drop that much compared to last season.

I don't see us giving away silly points this season, we look like a team that can grind out a result if outplaying the opposition isn't possible.

That's why I feel very confident this season.


7.) 16 Aug 2017 14:03:55
Nobody has the perfect team and every team will struggle if there best players are injured that's football.
I don't think the cob position is anywhere near as important as people make out, games won't be won or lost there .
I don't think a wide player is essential either we have a very good attacking unit .

Also just because you buy a player doesn't mean he is going to do great, look at lindelof and miki last year .
If Jose can get the players playing well and playing as a team we will be there or there about.


8.) 16 Aug 2017 14:42:03
You make some good points here Bear.


9.) 16 Aug 2017 16:55:09
Bear, out of interest who do you think is better placed to win the EPL this year than ourselves?


10.) 16 Aug 2017 17:40:34
Man City as much as it pains me to say. By no means do I think they will run away with it and Pep certainly has to improve on his first season, but in terms of squad depth I think they have enough to juggle the demands of the league and Europe.

The only really weak areas I see in their team is goalkeeper and centre back. They have strong full backs, while a midfield to match ours. Their strongest area is the attack, mainly due to the depth of it. I certainly think lukaku could easily walk into their team, however the thing they have over us is that they have a very good striker themselves, who could be replaced with a like for like in Jesus. Also with their style of play they could also play sane up top to interchange with their other attacking players.

I think Tottenham have the same problem as us, in only one strong target man, but they have a strong squad that has grew together. It's just, I don't think they have that leader or experienced stand out star to carry them over the line and win them the premier league.

Other than that no one, we are in a very good position, I just think we need two more signings to take us over the edge. Three if I'm greedy in a rb to challenge Valencia, but I don't think it's a definite need.


11.) 16 Aug 2017 18:17:57
So city have Jesus and we only have martial and rashford.
City look light in cm imo.


12.) 16 Aug 2017 18:30:56
We have areas to strengthen but we are strong enough to win the league now. If Jose does his job properly he should paper over the weaknesses. A lot of strong teams this year so points will be dropped all over the shop, if we lift it a gear from last year we stand a good chance (and we look like we have lifted it a couple of gears from the West Ham showing) . We have seen this before though, great start then back to tawdry stuff, so it's about gaining momentum now with easy-ish fixtures.

Maybe the top teams will exploit our weaknesses, but we have a lot of strengths for them to worry about. Ideally we should sign wingers and full backs, but if the right ones aren't available I can live with being patient and hope our young guys come good in the interim. All about the manager living up to his reputation.


13.) 16 Aug 2017 20:10:26
Bear, I think City look light in midfield and centre defence, while they could have issues in goal unless Ederson hits the ground running.

There CB options are Stones, Otamendi, Manuals and Kompany. Kompany is always injured and Mangala hasn't looked good when called upon.

There midfield options look even worse for me. Fernandinho is there best option and he has struggled at times. You're is getting old and isn't half the player he used to be. Gundogan will likely be scrapping with Kompany over the physio's table. That leave Foden, and young unproven player.

Let's compare our options to City's,

DDG and Romero or Ederson and Bravo?

Walker, Mendy, Danilo or Valencia, Shaw, Darmian, Blind?

Bailly, Jones, Lindelof, Smalling, Rojo or Kompany, Stones, Otamendi and Mangala?

Matic, Pogba, Herrera, Carrick, Fellaini or Yaya Toure, Fernandinho, Gundogan and Foden?

Martial, Mata, Mkhitaryan, Pereira and Lingard or Silva, De Bruyne, Sterling, Sane and Bernardo Silva?

Rashford and Lukaku or Gabriel Jesus and Aguero?

GK- United hands down.

FB- City

CB- United

CM- United

AM- City

ST- tied if I'm honest, although I suspect by the end of the season our strikers will have scored more than City's.

So that's 2 for City with FB and AM and three for United with GK, CB and CM.

For me our squad is stronger overall and more balanced.


14.) 17 Aug 2017 00:05:59
Bear,

Are you suggesting that Lukaku would keep Aguero out of the team? No way would Pep play Lukaku in that team. You would see Danilo in a false 9 position before he would put a player like Lukaku into the starting lineup!


 

 

09 Aug 2017 14:22:17
I think it's safe to say not many people are filled with confidence when it comes to Smalling?

This being said I have a question I want to ask. With the club having to many centre backs, would you rather get rid of Smalling or would you rather keep him and sell Jones and rojo?

The reason I say this is, I don't think we should be bringing in a load of new players in at once, i.e bring two or three new centre backs in or fast track the youth, but I do think we have a lot of average players in this area. Taking away rojo's ability to play at Lb, because I certainly don't consider him the answer there. Would you not rather get rid of two injury prone players in Jones and rojo and keep someone who can give a bit more reassurance in terms of fitness or would you sell smalling as he has the potential to command more of a fee?

The Bear Maximum

1.) 09 Aug 2017 15:16:10
Rojo was very good last season. Solid CB, and good to have in the squad.

Jones is a good player, but is injured far too much to rely on. I would sell him.

Smalling is a liability. No positional sense, and no brain. Sell him to anyone willing to put up £10m.

I think having Baily and Lind as first choice, with Rojo, Tuanzabe and Blind in reserve is enough for this season. Carrick is a better CB than Smalling.


2.) 09 Aug 2017 18:21:23
Smalling needs to go. He is not reliable and makes it harder for the other CB. When we can play Bailly and Lindelof together for a prolonged period we will see improvements. Or if we go 3 at the back with either Rojo or Tanuzaub stepping in on left side.


 

 

 

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15 Aug 2017 11:09:16
Don't think that's the worst thing in the World. Is not a very bright man, that comes across very arrogant and disruptive. Decent enough player, but that doesn't make up for the baggage he comes with.

Lucky for us I don't think it's an area we are truly desperate to sort out. I think Valencia will be first choice and despite his critics I do like Darmian and rb is his best position. You can't beat having an Italian defender when you need to defend.

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20 Aug 2017 21:15:35
I also reckon we need a couple of players, but it has to be a left full back for me. Blind's doing OK at the minute, but the stronger teams will come to attack us and due to his physicality and lack of pace he will be caught out.

I also think we need a specialist in that position. We have saw what matic has and is doing. When you buy a specialist in a position they excel in that position and help the team. For many years we have failed at this, but sometimes you have to buy the player you need, not who you want. I hope Shaw gets fit and he will make a great understudy for whoever is brought in to be the consistent full back.

I was also on here a week ago saying how I think we needed a back up striker. However, martial is starting to force his way into the team and the improvement he has made deserves reward. Both him and rashford deserve their chance and if they continue this start then I won't be worried that we did not purchase a back up striker. I just don't want ibrahimovic to come in and disrupt the team.

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16 Aug 2017 17:40:34
Man City as much as it pains me to say. By no means do I think they will run away with it and Pep certainly has to improve on his first season, but in terms of squad depth I think they have enough to juggle the demands of the league and Europe.

The only really weak areas I see in their team is goalkeeper and centre back. They have strong full backs, while a midfield to match ours. Their strongest area is the attack, mainly due to the depth of it. I certainly think lukaku could easily walk into their team, however the thing they have over us is that they have a very good striker themselves, who could be replaced with a like for like in Jesus. Also with their style of play they could also play sane up top to interchange with their other attacking players.

I think Tottenham have the same problem as us, in only one strong target man, but they have a strong squad that has grew together. It's just, I don't think they have that leader or experienced stand out star to carry them over the line and win them the premier league.

Other than that no one, we are in a very good position, I just think we need two more signings to take us over the edge. Three if I'm greedy in a rb to challenge Valencia, but I don't think it's a definite need.

The Bear Maximum

 

 

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16 Aug 2017 13:14:23
I agree with you Red Man and that's the reason I feel we just may come up short. I really think we need that consistent attacking lb and if we get that and by some miracle go injury free throughout the season, we will certainly be in with a chance. However, you don't go the whole season without a couple of injuries or needing rest and I think up top is where we will struggle.

If lukaku gets injured, do we really feel comfortable with martial and rashford as are central strikers for a long period of time? Don't get me wrong, I like both of them, but you can't expect them to play on the wing every week and then all of a sudden expect them to be the target man because there's an injury. It would be uncomfortable for even the most experienced of players.

It would be nice to either get an out and out back up striker, but even buying a proper winger to improve the starting 11 would at least allow one of martial and rashford to become the out and out back up striker so that they can concentrate purely on that position.

The Bear Maximum