SAF this season

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by marjen, Dec 26, 2011.

  1. Mar 9, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    Scholsey wouldn't have come back if part of him wasn't yerning for it, but even with him, we don't really have a fuctional midfield if Carrick's not in there.

    What I really don't get is this idea Fergie seems to have that you can just bung any busy body into midfield and they'll do a job for you without being found out...he keeps doing it when we have actual midfielders available, and he seems to like picking teams with very clever midfields to do it against. We struggle enough in midfield when we put our fecking midfielders in there! How many times do you need to be stung before you stop sticking your hand in the wasps nest?
  2. Mar 9, 2012

    Maplered Full Member

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    I think you need to blame the 11 who started and the subs for not playing to a reasonable level only De Gea had a positive game Rooney was next to useless but scored twice. If players dont perform in an individual game it happens
  3. Mar 9, 2012

    ArmchairCritic You got pets me too mines are dead

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    The Blackburn game springs to mind, I think SAF will do something this close season especially if Pogba leaves. Every other area of the field is more or less sorted for the next 4-5 years but we just need to acknowledge the elephant in the room. This team has come in for a lot of criticism this year but for me with experience and a midfield it's an excellent team. Hopefully players like Herrera will open his eyes and make him appreciate there are good midfielders out there, he's been uncharacteristically passive in regards to midfield.

    You're right about Scholes but I can imagine SAF twisting his arm in light of Cleverley's injuries and Anderson's inability to step up, I can understand the reluctance in buying in January and bringing Scholes back has boosted us. We need control in the middle, at this moment in time I reckon we need two midfielders. One as a young understudy to Carrick and another to come in and control the game, difficult job to find them but they are out there.
  4. Mar 9, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    You can't shove someone (Jones) into a position they don't understand and expect them to "perform" against a very good team who's main strength lies in that area of the pitch. Doubly so when you only put one person alongside him to help...and that person happens to be 38 years old and unreliable positionally.

    The only way Jones should ever be in midfield atm is alongside Carrick, and even then not against someone like Bilboa.

    and you can't expect the rest of the team's performance not to suffer as a result of making yourself second best by such a huge distance in the middle of the pitch...the players were being worked tirelessly all night just to chase shadows, and when that happens you invariably get big lapses in concentration and confidence.

    Basicaly they were quite a bit better than us, but all of the problems stemmed from us being uncompetitive in midfield. They just sensed it and swarmed all over us there. Exactly the same as Ajax did a few weeks ago.
  5. Mar 9, 2012

    Maplered Full Member

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    I think it is the performancer on the day, we raved about Jones in midfield earlier in the season> Bilbao stepped up their game by 200% for 90 minutes, United could score 5 in the return. Its more about motivation than tactics
  6. Mar 9, 2012

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    For once, I'm broadly in agreement with noodles about our team selection.

    It's all very well going 442 and imposing our game on the opposition but it's a big ask of our central midfielders. They need to be right on top of their game.

    Expecting a young, inexperienced (and let's be honest, not very good) central midfielder like Phil Jones to come in and form half of an out-numbered midfield pair was a recipe for disaster. And a disaster it turned out to be.

    Of course, it would be churlish to complain. Fergie's decision to give Carrick the evening off showed where his priorities are. Which is winning the league, rather than competing in a competition which - this time last year - every single caftard was slagging off relentlessly.
  7. Mar 9, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    Did we?

    I can only remember Jones having two semi decent games in midfield, and both of those were games Carrick was alongside him and easily MOTM in...and this was against QPR and Wolves.

    Bilboa didn't step up their game by 200%. From what I've seen they play like that against everyone. We just didn't set up or cope with it very well
  8. Mar 9, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    Yes, I think he wanted to win but he wasn't going to do anything that puts our chances in the league at risk. Still, I thought Anderson would start, and that we'd maybe even play three across the middle and look to kill them then pick the game off. It's what we usually revert to against sides who can play the ball like Bilboa do.

    Plus Ajax was the same with Park in a midfield two, and we had three central midfielders on the bench there...and then we played all three of them at the weekend and stuck one of them on the wing, and left two wingers on the bench. I didn't understand the logic in any of that at all. Just seemed to be needless headache creating. We ended up getting lucky results from both games.
  9. Mar 9, 2012

    Radamel FalCinao Shagawa Baby!

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    It's what we usually DID. Fergie almost never uses 4-3-3 anymore. Even in big games he prefers to put a 37 year old in a 2 man midfield. Whether that's by choice or limitations, I just don't know.
  10. Mar 9, 2012

    Radamel FalCinao Shagawa Baby!

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    This is all very incorrect.
  11. Mar 9, 2012

    Shimo Full Member

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    He needs to inject some urgency in our game. We wait too long every game to play at a high tempo, it's almost like we think we can take our time and worst case if things don't go our way, we'll just step it up a gear.

    Play at a high tempo from the go, kill teams off, not stop after up 1-0, keep going at least till at least 3 goals up.
  12. Mar 9, 2012

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    Anderson is clearly some way off being match-fit. The clue is in the size of his arse and the fact he pulled his hamstring after playing less than 45 minutes of football. Agree about the formation being a risk but Fergie seems to be determined to play 2 up top these days.

    Mind you, whenever he does play with a lone striker isn't this place full of people complaining about our negativity?

    The Ajax game wasn't a lucky result. That was a game in which we could afford to gamble and a late goal from them made it seem closer than it actually was. A poor performance but we did enough.

    Fergie's team selection for both those games shows how little he values the Europa Cup. Which is probably slightly more than most of us would have in any other season.
  13. Mar 9, 2012

    Radamel FalCinao Shagawa Baby!

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    Hmm, not sure I agree with this. At lots of stages this season we've played very well at the start but instead of killing teams off when 1 or 2 goals up we seem to go back a gear, get nervous and start completely losing control of the match. Blackburn and Newcastle spring to mind. City in the FA cup too
  14. Mar 9, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    I don't like 4-3-3 in general, but there are times when you need to acknowledge the opposition are good enough to pick you off if you leave yourself open, so times when I understood/agreed with why we reverted to it...I don't think we'd necessarily have gotten away with two in the middle against Bilboa even with all our players fit and naming our strongest team.

    I was half expecting something a bit like what we got last night tbh. I thought we'd rest players and Bilboa would prove too good for us to get away with it. It's just slightly depressing that our midfield has become that much of a weak spot. It was embarassingly one sided at times last night really. We couldn't have complained if they'd stuck four or five in.
  15. Mar 9, 2012

    Sarni nice guy, unassuming, objective United fan.

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    Actually, our league performances have been very good. We had some poor games but usually dropped points when we did and you can see it wasn't many by how many points we still have. We had average performances at Norwich, Everton, Villa and Swansea but they were solid enough to win by a goal on tough grounds so who could complain?
  16. Mar 9, 2012

    Shimo Full Member

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    That's the thing, we take our foot off the gas too soon. Maybe false comfort in our ability to defend well and also faith in just being United when we need to.

    It's been either a case of we start well and then slow down too much or we start slow and then try too late to inject urgency. We need more consistent pace to our game and that needs to come from the manager.
  17. Mar 9, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    Yeah, but much of that was because we'd occasionally go one up top against some vastly inferior side who we could easily just steamroll with an extra forward.

    I don't think anyone really complained when we'd do it against the likes of Arsenal (good Arsenal), or the decent European sides.

    Well, I probably complained, but that doesn't really count.


    I thought we had a team of Sports Scientists at Carrington these days measuring players work levels to make sure no one was allowed to be unfit? I'm inclining to agree about Anderson but if so why is the club allowing that to happen when they've got all the means neccessary not to?

    The Ajax game was very lucky I thought. We scored during the one tiny period of the game when we had any control over it...and for the rest of the night they spurned chance after chance to open us up after our midfield of Ji Sung Park and rusty Cleverley did its inevitable disappearing act.

    We're clearly prioritising the league over Europe whilst putting out teams which we hope can still compete. It doesn't mean it isn't painful viewing watching our midfield get the spanking of a life time at the hands of one of the Spanish also rans. We're supposed to have a squad designed to cope with two demanding games in a week.
  18. Mar 9, 2012

    Godfather Full Member

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    We really should use the 4-3-3 formation more often. Especially now, that Hernandez has a slump in form and Welbeck isnt exactly firing from all cylindars neither. Put Rooney up front alone, he has done very well in that role in the past, although it might not be his preferred position. At least in games were the opposition CM is clearly better than ours.
  19. Mar 9, 2012

    gooDevil Worst scout ever

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    It does seems strange he seems so opposed to it, we played Nani, Chicharito and Welbeck as a front 3 against Sunderland at OT, with Rooney, Park and Fletcher in midfield earlier in the year. While we won, Rooney did have a poor game.

    The solution to me would be to play a front 3 of Nani, Rooney and Welbeck, then have 3 of Carrick, Giggs, Scholes, Cleverley, Anderson or Jones.

    Though we wouldn't need it that often, and I only wanted it against Bilbao because we had to rest Carrick and Scholes, Cleverley and Andseron aren't fit, and Jones really isn't ready to play a team that good in a 2 man midfield.
  20. Mar 10, 2012

    Epic Full Member

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    Watching Lyon-Lille tonight. casting an eye on Hazard? Mind you, Lyon's young cintre midfielder Clement Grenier having a great game.
  21. Mar 10, 2012

    Raoul Administrator

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    Hazard. He's probably sufficiently expensive to where Fergie wants to watch him in person before making a bid.
  22. Mar 10, 2012

    Raoul Administrator

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  23. May 1, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    Hate to bring this up again, but it's been Fergie's worst season since 2004 for me, and by a long distance.

    He made daft decisions before the season, and he's continuously made daft ones during it, compounded by the team selection tonight, which was feeble and cowardly.
  24. May 1, 2012

    charlenefan Far less insightful than the other Charley

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    First season in 7 without a trophy
    First season in 10 with no cup final

    Yes we're spoilt being United supporters but that doesn't detour from the fact that this has been one of Fergies worst seasons in charge in recent years one that surely can't go unaddressed in the summer with big decisions to be made.....
  25. May 1, 2012

    ArmchairCritic You got pets me too mines are dead

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    I don't think he's done that bad a job in the League all things considered, the last two games have been very un-United like. He's definitely made some errors though. I don't quite think he has the right squad mix but that's down to him at the end of the day, he had a chance to address the midfield issue and he didn't.
  26. May 1, 2012

    Theon Full Member

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    Nah he's not done bad at all.

    Tonight was a joke of a selection, but up till now he's done amazing to even keep us in the title race. It's not a great team compared to United teams of the past and losing Vidic for pretty much the entire season was a huge blow, yet we'll probably end up with 89 points.

    City have a far better starting 11 than us, to have kept up with them and be challenging for the league is a big achievement I think. Although to bottle it the way we have is fecking atrocious, but I suspect that has more to do with the inexperiance of some of our players.
  27. May 1, 2012

    ecantona7 Full Member

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    It could've worked if only park and giggs hadn't played. One of them should've been benched for valencia. We knew they were gonna attack so we went with 5 in the middle. Why didn't we go with our 2 pacy wingers in nani and valencia to hit them on the counter? That I didn't understand.
  28. May 1, 2012

    ha_rooney Full Member

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    I think at times his tactics have been a bit strange: playing Giggs against Wigan when he has been poor this season as a CM, playing Park today, rotating the GKs, failing to make substitutes when he probably should have and the disastrous European campaign.

    However, given the amount of injuries we have had over the season I think SAF has done a good job to get us where we are in the table. Bringing Scholes back has helped plug a problem we have of quality in midfield, but this needs to be addressed properly in the summer and significant investment into genuine central midfielders must be made. No more excuses of 'value'.
  29. May 1, 2012

    FreakyJim Full Member

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    89 points is great but the thing is this team doesn't inspire any confidence, at least in me. The way we're often being dominated even by much lesser teams, the epic title bottlejob, Europe...Every game I expect us to struggle, one way or another.
    Rarely playing for the fun of it, it's always how to get the result with minimum effort. It's getting a bit tiresome.

    This team needs a spark, a freshening up at some positions and overall a bit more hunger and desire to play.
  30. May 1, 2012

    lem8sh Full Member

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    As long as I live I'll never understand not starting Valencia today
  31. May 1, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    Scholes brought himself back, and in doing so saved SAF his biggest embarassment of all in ignoring the midfield situation...it could have quite possibly cost us a CL place if things had gone swrong (e.g. Carric injury) and Scholes hadn't changed his own mind.
  32. May 1, 2012

    JustAFan Red Yankee

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    The question is do you think last summer that SAF actually eyed a midfielder or two? If he did and the deals just did not work, then you can not say he ignored the situation.

    Tough season, we were due one honestly. No matter what happens the rest of the way it will be interesting to see what happens this summer and bring on next season
  33. May 1, 2012

    mariachi-19 Full Member

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    He needs to bring in somebody new or return a past coach like Carlos back. I don't give a feck how many times he's left us, we played our best football with Fergie and Queiroz. Something has to change because what ever we're doing, isn't working against good teams, and we have to deliver against good teams.
  34. May 1, 2012

    Sean_RedDevil Twitter bot

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    He has done a amazing job with our injury problems this season.

    But he has made too many wrong team-selections this season, 10-15 games are too much.

    We need another "Queiroz".
  35. May 1, 2012

    Theon Full Member

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    Queiroz is the answer... He will win us the title again.
  36. May 1, 2012

    manusteve Full Member

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    I guess we don't see Phelan day-to-day but I never get the impression he's a very tactical coach, certainly from his post-match interviews.
  37. May 1, 2012

    Beachryan Full Member

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    The thing about SAF this season is that so many decisions have just been mind boggling.

    Games where we were being overrun in midfield, he'd not make any changes.
    Games when Giggs had stopped running 20 minutes ago, he'd leave him on for the 90.
    Games when we needed a focal point, he'd refuse to stick on Berbatov.
    Games when we needed midfield control, he'd go 442 and we'd be overrun.
    Games when we needed XI players, he'd start Park (Ok cheap shot there).

    It's sad for me more than anything. It's almost like watching Giggs this year. The intent is there and the effort is there but it's just not coming off anymore.

    All I know is that we're in the midst of a transition, so it's great we are where we are, but that it's almost been in spite of Fergie's team selection and tactics this season.

    Also. We've been terrible when conceding the first goal. Our 'United will' at mounting come backs seems to be gone too.

    His decisions with regards to team selection almost make me wonder if there is some weird ulterior motive going on. I mean, come on, apparently we almost shut down Twitter when the team was announced with both Park and Giggs starting. It's not isolated fans screaming the bloody f*king obvious, it's every one of us.
  38. May 1, 2012

    bosnian_red Full Member

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    I noticed this too, apart from the community shield, we have not come back to win a game once this season. A few draws but that's it.
  39. May 1, 2012

    Sean_RedDevil Twitter bot

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    Great post!!

    Fergie's time isn't over but i hope he knows his mistakes and doesn't make the same mistakes next season.
  40. May 1, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    He's earnt the right to call it a day on his terms, but I don't see the point in not pointing out when he has a shocker, which has applied to a lot of things this season.

    I'm still struggling to fathom the thinking behind the team selection last night. The only thing I can think is he wanted to press high and control possession, like in the cup at Anfield, except it was obvious after 20 minutes that wasn't going to work, and yet he left it for an hour. He waited 75 minutes to bring on his best player!

    Also you can't do that with three 30+ players in midfield and Michael Carrick. It only worked at Anfeld because Liverpool were so poor...and it didn't actually work because despite them being utterly crap, we lost.

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