It can't be just luck, can it?

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by Denis79, Mar 1, 2018.

  1. Mar 1, 2018
    #1

    Denis79 Full Member

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    Litsening to the pundits, reading the newspapers, bloggers and at times even the Cafe you would think we're in shambles. I'm no tactical genius, nor do I see what the problems are at times. I know I've been frustrated at the poor, boring football we've played many times this season but then I got thinking, If we are as poor as the pundits, media etc say. If our players are as poor as some say. How come we're second in the league, still in the CL and the FA cup with less than a 1/4 of a season to go?

    OK we've been saved by De Gea at times but not as much as in the past, we haven't had a single player performing like mad the whole season but a couple in shorter patches. So if this us being bad with bad players, how good will we be if / when it all comes together? I think we've set our minds to failure and don't dare to hope anymore like we did in the last seasons after SAF, it simply hurts less to expect nothing. But it's impossible to just be lucky a whole season, right?
  2. Mar 1, 2018
    #2

    Halds New Member

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    Of course, you're not lucky. Everyone can have a bit of luck now and then, but the leauge position never lies. I truly believe that. You have a lot of quality in your team. The fact, that your best performer is your keeper, could maybe sometimes make it look like luck, but everyone knows that de Geas saves aren't luck. He is just very good.

    You haven't played very well as a team in large parts of the season, but still, you're the best of the rest. At least so far. I think that says a lot about the individual quality in your team, that you're second, without playing very well. You're very hard to beat, especially at home.

    The reason you get some stick, is because you should perform better as a team with the funds and the quality of the players you've got. Not because of the results.
  3. Mar 1, 2018
    #3

    Captain Obvious Banned

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    We're actually doing very well. I don't know what everyone is complaining about, some of them hare spoiled and blinded by Citys and Baldys success

    At this point of the season, for the past few years, most teams that were 1st in the table were on 59-66 points, so we'd be still in for the title by now or behind by 6 points. It's because of City's freak ass run that makes us look bad because we're so behind by almost 20 points. They have only drawn 3 times and lost once this season, that is pretty impressive considering most title winners have 3-4 losses at this point. Our goals against is the joint best in the league which means we are conceding the same amount as city, the runaway leaders. Now, where we drop off is the goals. 53, which is worse than city, liverpool and joint with Tottenham.

    All this points to is that we have only one issue and that is scoring when we need to. Sure, we have had quite a few 4-0 games but that is pointless when you lose 1-0 the next game or draw. So it's not luck. Our defense is actually playing well along with the usual De Gea heroics. We are being let down by our strikers, wingers and fullbacks for not providing good enough support for one of our players to actually put the ball away consistently.

    TLDR: We are pretty good. Not the best but good. We're not scoring as much as we should be. All down to mentality and players not stepping up.

    We need a leader like Ibra, someone who'll rise above and take us there when no one else will. At the moment we have no leaders.
  4. Mar 1, 2018
    #4

    bosnian_red Worst scout to ever exist

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    Our first 2 months was really good form and gave us a perfect start. 19 points from a possible 21 in 7 games. Also loads of goals for to give us a good goal difference... pretty much the main reason we're in 2nd. Since then, it has been up and down (40 points from 21 games, less then 2 per game). So that's been the main issue. Loss of form, inconsistent displays, grinding our way through the season instead of improving as the season goes on and our team looking like it's clicking. If a team has a great start, you can attribute it to a strong pre season preparations getting your team up to speed while others aren't there yet. If the team fades as the season goes along though and only looks like they're regressing, then I'd say that's due to the coaching and not managing to get your ideas across and not finding a system that works. You always want improvement, and we haven't seen that really throughout the season.

    As for the cups.... well we had a pretty favorable group tbf, nd haven't had any tough games in the FA cup yet. Pretty kind draws actually. But you can only beat what's in front of you (which we failed to do in the efl cup).
  5. Mar 2, 2018
    #5

    OldTrevil Full Member

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    Definitely not luck, we're good for second behind a rare near-perfect league performance from City. We're Man United so anything less than a title challenge is disappointing, granted, but anyone saying any of the other top six have a better team is veritably chatting shit. Personally I don't bother listening/reading the nonsense about us this season. I've been frustrated by some games of course, but so far I've enjoyed far more.
  6. Mar 2, 2018
    #6

    Vialli_92 Full Member

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    When City set the bar so high it just makes it look worse at United

    If City were having a season like last season there wouldn't even be half the criticism that United are getting this season in my opinion
  7. Mar 2, 2018
    #7

    Sky1981 Fending off the urge

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    The difference between us and city is a match and a 1 mth slump
  8. Mar 2, 2018
    #8

    Red Royal New Member

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    Luck is nothing to do with it. It's just the Mourhinho way of grinding out success is less media loved then Guardiola's free-spirits. (Most fans would love United to Attack, Attack, Attack) but that just isn't going to happen with Jose. However, with last seasons Cups I can live with that as it is an upward trend. The fact that Jose is so Grumpy (which I believe is a deflection technique from our sides struggles) means the media enjoy any negative story coming out of Old Trafford (Lukaku sulks, Martial contracts, Pogba doesn't fit etc). It's all blown out of proportion. Compare it to the media love for Pochetino and Klopp and you see it's an agenda. The fact that we had ~20 years of success under Fergie means 'neutrals' will enjoy putting the knife in. I'd still rather our squad then any of the others (bar City's). Embrace the Jose way, just imagine; we could have sunk even further after Moyes and LVG.
  9. Mar 2, 2018
    #9

    Smores Full Member

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    Hasn't this always been the case? Our valid problems aside we've forever been called lucky and our successes downplayed and I'm sure it's nearly always been a case of envy. Not really sure whats behind it now, the comparison to city perhaps.

    Only in retrospect do we ever really get the credit deserved.
  10. Mar 2, 2018
    #10

    shaky Full Member

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    This is completely the case. Because the media favourites Liverpool, & Spurs to a lesser extent, are scoring lots of goals and generally being involved in more "thrillers", they've declare this the only acceptable way to play, and supporters of these clubs are happy to agree with this narrative since it excuses themselves from the fact that they don't actually win any trophies. The only reason it's managed to gain traction is because City are scoring loads and winning. If it was Chelsea romping the league again like last season, it would expose the flaws in the logic. I remember the Tika-Taka era with Barca. They won everything with it and it was heralded at the time as the right way to play football, yet it was really dull to watch most of the time. So pretty much, the correct way to play is whatever way the current top team is playing, and fans of other more unsuccessful teams playing vaguely similar styles will jump on the coat-tails and try to claim some moral superiority out of playing sort of the same way.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2018
  11. Mar 2, 2018
    #11

    balaks Full Member

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    It's not luck - your team is tough to beat and you have enough quality in the attacking areas to score goals against most teams - it's not very pretty and is more about grinding out results rather than free flowing attacking football but thats Jose for you.
  12. Mar 2, 2018
    #12

    Zlatattack Full Member

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    We're not a bad team, we're just not the team everyone wants us to be.

    It's nothing big, it's the little things that are causing fans to be disgruntled at times.

    Our football is not fluid, even teams that play very defensively have a structure and a calmness on the ball, sometimes i don't think we have that. More often than not we look like bambi-esque with our play - but at times this season we've looked superb.

    We drop silly points. We've lost/drew to our local rivals (City and Liverpool) and nobody likes that, but can accept it because Derby matches are extra intense. But the likes of Newcastle and Huddersfield, and those careless draws, those are a lot more infuriating. Most fans (under 40) have grown up watching us take those points as gifts. It's frustrating when a team as clearly talented as ours doesn't do that. The 4-0's were never going to last, but we should have 9-12 more points than we do now.

    City doing exceptionally well makes it worse. it's childish, but it is what it is. I cannot wait to knock them back down a peg or two.

    Also for me there is a feeling of regret, seasons wasted with Moyes and LvG. Should have gone for Mourinho from day 1. It was never going to be pretty but at least right now, we'd be back on top.
  13. Mar 2, 2018
    #13

    United never give up Banned

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    Put a peak Wayne Rooney in this team and we'd be within 6-7 points of City
  14. Mar 2, 2018
    #14

    Hephaestus Full Member

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    This is spot on. Our great start is what's keeping us ahead in the top 4 race but that shouldn't be put down to luck. The rest of the season hasn't been lucky or unlucky, it's just been kind of ok. It's the lack of cohesiveness that disappointing me most but it's also not currently anything to panic over.
  15. Mar 2, 2018
    #15

    Denis79 Full Member

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    A friend who supports Everton made a good point yesterday, that we have new players in many key positions and at times it's visible that they lack cohesion and even though we're limping, struggling at times we sit 2nd in the table. He asked me who I would bet on next season, the teams on fire at the moment or the team keeping the same pace as them even though it's not firing on all cylinders?
  16. Mar 2, 2018
    #16

    Josep Dowling Full Member

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    Well I've been thinking this for quite a few seasons that this side will finally 'click'. No such luck as yet. Still a couple of holes in the team but Mourinho has slowly reduced the gaps in the squad or upgraded.
  17. Mar 2, 2018
    #17

    lysglimt Full Member

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    No - we frequently have 11 very good individual players on the pitch - but we don't function as a team going forward,at least not good enough. Individually I would say we can almost match City - but they play brilliantly as a team, we perform brilliantly as individuals. That is why they are much better than us
  18. Mar 2, 2018
    #18

    Andycoleno9 Full Member

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    Personally it pisses me off when somebody say; " without de gea, you would be losing games". Ok then, can we say that liverpool and tottenham would be 10th if they don't have salah and kane? What about messi and barca? They can spin that ball around for hours but messi is the man who is winning games for them.
  19. Mar 2, 2018
    #19

    Infra-red Full Member

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    It's not luck. We're a good, rather than great, side, but that also applies to 5 of the top 6.

    I think we're second in the table in large part because of forward planning prior to last summer - we started preseason earlier than most, had by all accounts a very productive time training in the US, and hit the ground running in August, building up a bit of a lead over our rivals. Since then, Liverpool and Spurs have reined us in a bit and City have obviously left everyone for dead.

    Where we finish now is anyone's guess, but looking at the remaining fixtures for the top 5, I think Liverpool are marginal favourites for 2nd place (the game at OT may be crucial here - I think we'd need to win it) and then any two from us, Spurs, Chelsea.
  20. Mar 3, 2018
    #20

    Jonathan Brown New Member

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    You have a great (not a good) squad (as reflected in your transfer fees and wages). You could still finish second, win the FA cup and Champions league (not a bad season). The style is not great however. Does that matter?
    Us Newcastle fans never stop discussing this about the Keegan era and 'that season'.
  21. Mar 3, 2018
    #21

    Mozza It’s Carrick you know

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    The players are grinding out results
  22. Mar 3, 2018
    #22

    LoneStar Full Member

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    I think our defence is underrated. We have conceded just 6 goals at home in the PL this season. That is exceptional.
    Yes, they sometimes are prone to a mistake or two, but literally every other team will also face this issue.

    I feel that if we are more deadly in the counter, instead of just hoofing it up every time, we would have more goal. We are dull in attack. Hopefully, once Sanchez gets adjusted with his teammates, and if/once Jose finds a good system for the attackers, that issue will be solved too.
  23. Mar 3, 2018
    #23

    kouroux 45k posts to finally achieve this tagline

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    I honestly don't think that "luck" is attributed to our season so far. I don't hear pundits talking about United in this way. They are mostly mentioning how boring the team is when playing and that is hard to deny.
  24. Mar 3, 2018
    #24

    wolvored Full Member

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    Well said Capt. We have been poor upfront for a big team and chances created/scored. The 4-5 4-0/1s we had papered over a problem, especially with Lukaku, and I know he has scored 22 goals overall, but should have had more than that in the amount of games he didnt score in. Hopefully he seems bck on a bit of form, and next season can kick on
  25. Mar 3, 2018
    #25

    Regulus Arcturus Black Full Member

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    I disagree strongly that De Gea has been our best performer this season, far from it.
  26. Mar 3, 2018
    #26

    Pagh Wraith Full Member

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    United's defense isn't good at all. De Gea is the sole reason they have conceded so few goals.

    Shots on target conceded (per game):

    1 Man City 67 (2.39)
    2 Liverpool 81 (2.89)
    2 Chelsea 81 (2.89)
    4 Tottenham 83 (2.96)
    5 Arsenal 102 (3.64)
    6 Man United 114 (4.07)

    Expected goals against (per game):

    1 Man City 19.13 (0.68)
    2 Tottenham 22.64 (0.81)
    3 Chelsea 24.93 (0.89)
    4 Liverpool 28.10 (1.00)
    5 Man United 33.43 (1.19)
    6 Arsenal 36.42 (1.30)

    This is where the whole notion of 'being lucky' or overachieving stems from.
  27. Mar 3, 2018
    #27

    Globule signature/tagline creator extraordinaire

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    This. He's pulled out some cracking saves recently, but for most of the first half of the season he was relatively anonymous.
  28. Mar 3, 2018
    #28

    Regulus Arcturus Black Full Member

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    Aye, as you say, people are blinded by his few wonderful performances.
  29. Mar 3, 2018
    #29

    Smores Full Member

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    Sheeple say this (lazily) but that would suggest we have players like Ronaldo who carry us through their own individual brilliance.

    That is clearly not the case 99% of the time, our goals come through team play and decent assists. We aren't anywhere near City in terms of constantly linking up but we do not rely on individual brilliance. No more so than we ever have.
  30. Mar 3, 2018
    #30

    Halds New Member

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    I fail to see, who has performed better in your squad than de Gea? Maybe you just got used to his high level?
  31. Mar 3, 2018
    #31

    Regulus Arcturus Black Full Member

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    Nar, you Liverpool fans want to think it's De Gea but he's generally been anonymous this season until the Arsenal away game and a few wonderful performances recently.

    De Gea had a good few years as easily United's best player and I was always happy to admit that, but not this season, not by a long shot.
  32. Mar 3, 2018
    #32

    wolvored Full Member

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    The other thing to look at is we have improved from the last 4 seasons position wise. This is down to buying better players for this season as well as last, not luck. these last 2 seasons tThe managers the same. His methods are the same. The fact they have gelled so far, but not good enough to challenge for the league is either lack of training/tactics/motivation, or just the fact Cities squad is better/tactics/training/motivation, not luck. Luck is getting a dodgy pen in the last 5 mins to win a game, or the other teams legitimate equalizer in the last minute is wrongly flagged offside.
  33. Mar 3, 2018
    #33

    Fully Fledged Full Member

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    At the end of the day the league doesn't lie. If you are second you deserve to be there. The problem is that 2nd-5th are too close to be sure we will still be there come 13th May. People have seen a couple of bad runs over the season and are scared that if we have another one we could be dumped out of the top 4.
  34. Mar 3, 2018
    #34

    wolvored Full Member

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    Im a Utd fan but fail to see who you think has performed better than de Gea overall. He has pulled off some world class saves again and saved us being in 5th position at least.
  35. Mar 3, 2018
    #35

    Pagh Wraith Full Member

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    Look at the stats I posted above. It's clearly down to De Gea who is saving shots way above the expectation of an average keeper. Without him United would be in 5th or 6th.
  36. Mar 3, 2018
    #36

    Adam-Utd Part of first caf team to complete Destiny raid

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    We obviously aren't bad, but I don't think we are a great "team". We are a bunch of good/excellent players slung on a pitch and told to get on with it.

    Sometimes that quality shines through, a Pogba pass or Martial/Lingard having a moment of magic.

    We rarely score good team goals in my eyes, the Lukaku goal against Chelsea is the first one I remember for a while where we've played some good interchange passes and scored.

    I just feel right now we are about 6.5/10. Just above average but there is a lot more to come from us, and I find that frustrating.

    We rarely dominate any matches, we don't have games where I think "wow this could be 6/7 today" like we used to. If anything we are on the rocks for portions of matches, so yeah things could be better.
  37. Mar 3, 2018
    #37

    Moonred Full Member

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    We have quality that compensates for cohesion.
  38. Mar 3, 2018
    #38

    Red Katie The least positive person in match threads ever

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    Imagine if we could actually play as a cohesive unit. That'd be great.
  39. Mar 3, 2018
    #39

    Fully Fledged Full Member

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    They wont look at that as it doesn't correlate with their opinion. The other option is they look at the stats and say they mean nothing. That they have watched the matches and what they have seen disproves the stats.

    DDG has kept us in many games this season and gave us a base to go on and win many of our matches. The thing is that I can't see why this is a problem because DDG is part of our team. Him keeping us in games is not a negative.
  40. Mar 3, 2018
    #40

    Regulus Arcturus Black Full Member

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    Hmm... show me which games we'd have dropped points without De Gea. Then do the same for Spurs and Chelsea please.