SAF this season

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

  1. May 1, 2012

    Adebesi Full Member

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    Sanctity, like a cat, abhors filth.
    I disagree strongly with that statement. Look at our squad. Look at City's. We have the same number of points with two games to go. How do you think we have managed to do that?

    To dispel any ambiguity: man for man City are way ahead of us. Yet we have run them close and itll come down to the last game of the season. SAF deserves credit for that. (Though also criticism for the fact that we have an inferior squad - if we need better players it is his responsibility to bring them in.)
  2. May 1, 2012

    moses control

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    I have no idea either, yet.
    It didn't work, but 'struggling to fathom'? We are a naturally wide team who make the pitch big. City do all their damage through the middle so we tried to make this difficult for them. Higher up than usual because with City's power and pace the last thing we needed was for them to build up a head of steam. It has worked to stifle games in the past but didn't work last night. The only bit I struggle with in a game that was need discipline was Nani's inclusion over Valencia. Especially in light of Nani being, IMO, a better impact player. Our substitutions did little to influence the game.

    But it didn't work, and highlighted more than ever the lack of dynamism in the engine room.
  3. May 1, 2012

    amolbhatia100 Barbiturates ain't got nothin' on me

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    To be honest, he's had some proper 'mares when it comes to tactics this season.
  4. May 1, 2012

    moses control

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    I have no idea either, yet.
    But every season there are games like that?
  5. May 1, 2012

    africanspur Full Member

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    Its because of Ferguson that you're still in with a very reasonable shout of winning the league with 2 games to go. The Man City first 11 and squad is better than yours. Ferguson sets you apart from every other team in the league. The man is ridiculous.

    Had Ferguson been managing Man City, they'd have already wrapped up the league quite a while ago imo.
  6. May 1, 2012

    noodlehair "It's like..."

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    I agree with the part about City's strengths...but three things

    a) If you're supposed to be better than the other team, you don't sacrifice your own strengths to try and contain theirs...that instantly sends out the wrong message to both sets of players. Extremely daft in a game with so much riding on it.

    b) We don't have the personell to play like that for 90 minutes, so it was completely pointless. We don't really have the personel to play like that full stop. We're weak in the middle of the park either way. Sticking more bodies in there at the expense of other areas doesn't seem to serve much purpose other than making us even more vulnerable.

    c) Even discounting the above two points, he could have selected a better team than he did to do what he was trying to do. Valencia should have played, Cleverley would have done Park's job better than Park, Giggs managed to be completely pointless despite playing well, which tells you something...he also put a centreback at fullback yet again (were both of the twins injured?)
  7. May 1, 2012

    amolbhatia100 Barbiturates ain't got nothin' on me

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    I don't think before this season there have been too many occasions when I've looked at how we've set and scratched my head wondering why. Park and Giggs have been really poor of late. Why play your most off form players in the biggest match of the season? It was quite easy to predict that we'd have a tough time stringing passes together when those two are in bad form up against a quality side and with a 38 year old Scholes as well which overall leads to a lack of physicality and legs against a very physically dominant side. All of this considering Rooney was alone up front with little support against Kompany and Lescott. It makes no sense whatsoever.
  8. May 1, 2012

    Adebesi Full Member

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    Sanctity, like a cat, abhors filth.
    THIS.

    Man for man City are way ahead. SAF versus Mancini is one of the very few exceptions to that.
  9. May 1, 2012

    amolbhatia100 Barbiturates ain't got nothin' on me

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    Exactly. It's one thing not going to take them on completely and being a little conservative in how you set up. It's another to choose personnel that was always going to struggle to create chances. We chose players that were off form. We chose an old and physically frail team. It was very poor.
  10. May 1, 2012

    Rednails Full Member

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    I am wondering what the Glazers reaction to a (most likely) trophy- less season will be. It's bound to affect the balance sheet sooner or later and that's all they care about.
  11. May 1, 2012

    amolbhatia100 Barbiturates ain't got nothin' on me

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    No doubt about it. The man is a freak of nature. But in some games this season and all very important he's made some bizarre tactical choices. Noone is perfect.
  12. May 1, 2012

    Cheesy Full Member

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    I hate criticising Fergie at times like this because I know the club wouldn't have been in positions like we were in last night without the great man at the helm. He's done so much over his long career as well, so I feel hesitant on throwing any criticism his way. After last night though, it has to be done.

    Like I said in my own thread, his approach for the game was just all wrong in my opinion. We looked like a side who were playing for the draw. Not only was it wrong tactically; it was wrong mentally as well. Our setup was giving the impression that we feared this City side; that we felt they were better than us and that we were willing to take whatever we could possibly get from this game. Now, while it would be stupid just to go all out for the win, we should've been more balanced in an attempt to at least look like we wanted to win it.

    I would've been very interested to see what his pre-match talk in the dressing room was like. What was he saying to the players? I am sure he wouldn't have told them to aim for the draw, but was he giving that sort of impression? If so, I don't think it really helped us at all in the end.
  13. May 1, 2012

    Feed Me I'm hungry

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    He's had some poor moments on tactics and team selections. But on the flip side, would any other manager have taken this crop of players so close? Indeed, it's not actually over yet.

    He took a calculated gamble regarding the midfield at the start of the season, based on having Fletcher, Anderson and Cleverley being more regularly available to him. Our season could have panned out a lot differently had this trio played more. He's going to have to look at the situation seriously now though, because we look patchy in that area of the field.

    Furthermore, we have had to re-work our defence to cope with the absence of our captain and defensive organiser.
  14. May 1, 2012

    amolbhatia100 Barbiturates ain't got nothin' on me

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    Also, I don't know if the stats back it up but City come across as a team that's very hard to get the better off when they're a goal ahead. It's a dangerous tactic to set up so defensively with the wrong players to boot because if they score how do you get back in the game when you've been doing feck all with the ball all game? At least if you set up positively and concede it's much easier to get the next goal because you're used to attacking. I just didn't see how we were going to score once they did.
  15. May 1, 2012

    Cinja el Shagawa Not into French ticklers

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    Bit of an understatement.
  16. May 1, 2012

    Commadus Banned

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    The problem is SAF is too much of a gambler with his team selections.

    Before he had players who could grab a goal even when the team was off colour. Now who do we have that can do that?
  17. May 1, 2012

    wr8_utd :'(

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    Starting Park in a game of this magnitude some 3 months after his previous disastrous match is just unreal.
  18. May 1, 2012

    amolbhatia100 Barbiturates ain't got nothin' on me

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    Agree on both counts. But to be fair, I think most of us know noone else would have gotten this team so far this season but the tactical mistakes do warrant criticism at the same time. Especially in such crucial games as well.
  19. May 1, 2012

    Ramshock Banned

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    Some of you people must not be watching United under Ferguson for long. Fergies man management skills have always been better than his tactics. You could probably highlight maybe at the most half a dozen games a year where United have won purely down to tactics. This isnt a criticism its just how he is. He does get it wrong yes but the man is only human. My biggest disappointment with last night was how he didnt go for it with a similar team that went there in Jan and went 3-0 up.
  20. May 1, 2012

    Cinja el Shagawa Not into French ticklers

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    Indeed, it's a catch 22 I guess. Without him we wouldn't have been in a title derby last night, but his tactics in the game itself were quite frankly, awful.

    I don't know if it's him or the Glazers or our scouting staff that should take the blame, but ultimately, not sorting out the midfield is what has cost us trophies this year. Hopefully that won't be the case next year.
  21. May 1, 2012

    Red Indian Chief Torn Rubber Thus says Kemo

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    He took a team with a weak midfield as far as he could.
  22. May 1, 2012

    Fletcher's Jilted Lover He's the man!

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    when it comes to big one off games, hes a bit clueless with the tactics. Hes goes to his usual, stick a five man midfield and we'll hopefully hit them on the break with Nani and Rooney. The big thing that went against him last night was that he left form players out, Valencia and even Young who can produce.
  23. May 1, 2012

    Cinja el Shagawa Not into French ticklers

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    Sorry but that's total nonsense.
  24. May 1, 2012

    Feed Me I'm hungry

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    I agree that the criticism of tactics in certain games warrants criticism. It's just that we have to temper that criticism, because this is a bit of a transitional phase for the team.
  25. May 1, 2012

    Adebesi Full Member

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    Sanctity, like a cat, abhors filth.
    Id love to know his logic for leaving Valencia out. It is truly the most baffling thing about the whole evening. I assumed he'd be one of the first players down on the team sheet in a game like that one.
  26. May 1, 2012

    amolbhatia100 Barbiturates ain't got nothin' on me

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    I guess it's not really a catch 22 situation in the sense that without him even if someone did employ better tactics in those select games there's no way our points total would be the same. Despite those howlers he's simply the best.

    However, we do have to acknowledge that he made them, of course. And yes, not strengthening the midfield has had a huge impact on our season. It has effectively played a huge role in City winning the title. And I'm not sure it's the Glazers fault. We did spend 50 million in the summer.
  27. May 1, 2012

    Drifter American

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    He was going for a draw, despite him saying other wise.
  28. May 1, 2012

    Adebesi Full Member

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    Sanctity, like a cat, abhors filth.
    Even so, Valencia defends well. If you want a solid midfield, Valencia is your man. Id have thought he would play him but instruct him not to commit himself forward too much.
  29. May 1, 2012

    Feed Me I'm hungry

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    It looks bad, but it just needs a few breaks to go our way.

    People felt similarly underwhelmed at the end of the 05/06 season - then we signed Carrick and Fletcher began to step up to the plate.

    We have Carrick at the peak of his powers and in form. We need to build from there. Scholes and Giggs could/will play on, but we need to reduce our dependance on them.

    We need to make a decision as to whether Fletcher and Anderson are going to be fit for purpose. Same with Cleverley to an extent.

    I'd say we need two central midfielders irrespective.

    Overall point is that we'll be looking pretty in midfield come the opening day of next season.
  30. May 1, 2012

    Judge Red Don't Call Me Douglas

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    I find it hard to criticise him in the league. This team has not underachieved. We're 17 points ahead of Arsenal and 22 above Chelsea. We might not win the league but we have stood up to City's limitless spending and could end up losing our title on GD.

    Tactically, sure, there have been more disappointing nights than usual this year when we've looked hopeless but I wouldn't swap him with anyone when it comes to managing this bunch of players. No Vidic, a new young keeper and unable to afford a world class midfielder. The man has done everything he can with what he's got.
  31. May 1, 2012

    Transfer United Till I Die I am totally in the know, honest

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    I don't buy that. Our squad Is fine in comparison to city's except in centre midfield. Fergie has dropped far more bollocks this season than ever before.
  32. May 1, 2012

    adam118 Full Member

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    Going by how we started, Fergie planned to bring through Anderson and Cleverley to provide the creativity and have Fletcher to play in those really tight games such as the City game. Hindsights wonderful but he couldn't have guessed we would have to rely on Scholes and Carrick so much. He has done a great job with the injuries we have had. Would City be on the verge if Kompany, Nasri, Silva and Toure all been out for most of the season?
  33. May 1, 2012

    Skywarden Full Member

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    With shit tonnes of injuries to disrupt consistency, as well.

    People seem to forget all the injuries we've had.
  34. May 1, 2012

    Commadus Banned

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    Tactically weak always has been. Too many gambles in team selections. Over the course of a season they are fine but in a game that becomes a one off decider then no. He did it in the CL final and again yesterday.

    Park was not an enforced change. No disrespect to Park but he seems to have regressed. Carrick Scholes and Giggs is acceptable but not against the best sides.
  35. May 1, 2012

    Number7 Ret's Slave

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    I am very enjoy
  36. May 1, 2012

    Amir Full Member

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    The center of midfield is the dropped bollock. Everything evolves around that. It's the heart of the team and when the heart isn't pumping blood to the rest of the body, it will die. A lot of Fergie's attempted tactics - including last night - meant to try and mask the weakness in the center. But when a 38 year old Scholes is a sure starter and Park is probably the best third midfielder you've got, there's a limit to what you can do there.

    I remember that when Roy Keane signed one of his new contracts (Not the famous 1999 one, I think it was in 1996) Fergie said how important it was as he was the heart of the team. We've got nothing like that now.
  37. May 1, 2012

    africanspur Full Member

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    I don't agree at all tbh. In basically every position other than central defence (where you've had Vidic out for most of it and therefore lost your best defender) and wingers (because they have one and he's actually quite poor imo) they come out on top.

    Ferguson makes a huge difference, with the mentality and attitude he installs in his teams.
  38. May 1, 2012

    apotheosis O'Fortuna

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    He would have made more of a difference instilling 2 midfielders at the start of the season. He has done brilliantly at times this season, but there is no doubt he has left us woefully short in the middle.

    just one more DM would have made all the difference imo. Better protection for a defence clearly not as good as last year, and missing Vidic. Most importantly though, it would enable us to play more than 1 formation effectively.

    For me 4-2-3-1 is the best fit for our players. But with just one more DM, we would have been much more effective when we switched to a 4-3-3 or a 4-5-1. You cannot ever be effective in that system without being able to release a midfielder to regularly support the striker through the middle.

    Had we done that last night we would have been more open defensively, as it would have been only Scholes and Carrick in the centre which menas we may as well have gone 4-4-2. The lack of another Carrick type this season has cost us dear. Most especially in Europe, but too often in the PL recently too.
  39. May 1, 2012

    kf Full Member

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    I was worried when I saw the team selection last night, he'd done everything I didn't want him to do! Starting both Scholes and Giggs, dropping Wellbeck, I never imagined he would start Park and for me Jones shouldn't be in the team given recent form. For about 15 minutes it looked like he'd got it right again... Park was doing well and getting close to Rooney. But (unbeleiveable as it is) after that Park actually looked knackered or at best stopped believing in himself and the tide turned. Even so, City didn't really create anything until Smalling's inexplicable brain fart.

    I'm guessing the plan was to keep it tight, get City nervous enough to change shape and then unleash the pace on the subs bench. The ridiculous goal put an end to that plan and we couldn't find a way back. When we did create opportunities to put a good cross in, Nani and especially Jones lacked the composure to put a telling ball in. To be fair, Jones did manage to put one dangerous cross in which Lescott did well to cut out.

    Sometimes Sir Alex gets it wrong. It seems on this occasion there was no one on the staff willing to tell him that starting Park in central midfield was not a good idea. Young could have done that role, Cleverley could have done it, Giggs could have done it (with Valencia out wide).. Park was just about the worst possible option.
  40. May 1, 2012

    Rednails Full Member

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    Sorry but the mentality and attitude has not always been right this season.

    Also, just saw this quote on another forum, if its true it speaks volumes about the mentality at the top.

    When we were 4-2 up against Everton, Fergie was laughing and joking with the fourth official. Top professional lip reader Dr. Fred Davies said that Ferguson was saying to the 4th official "this game is won, the title is ours and I cannot wait to use the expression noisy neighbours once more".

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