Why United fans should be positive - Explaining recent decisions

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by Wumminator, Apr 17, 2019.

  1. Apr 17, 2019
    #1

    Wumminator The Special One!

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    Last night was a very sombre experience for United fans. We got battered and bruised by a team who are quite simply on another level to us. The fact is though we are on the way back and it was fecking great to just to get to this part of the competition. I notice that the posters around here are starting to turn on Ole and it is absolutely madness in my eyes. I thought I'd make a sane thread to cancel out all the nonsense.

    1) The Young situation - There was no better choice than starting Ashley Young last night.
    It's as simple as it says. Now that doesn't mean that Ashley Young played well or that Ashley Young didn't make a mistake, it just simply means that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer made the logical choice. He couldn't play Eric Bailly at right back. We have seen how that turns out. Luke Shaw was gone. Valencia is on his way out. Darmian has played six times total this year and hasn't been seen for months. Rojo just got torn to shreds against West Ham. The only viable alternative is Dalot and realistically he has shown less defensively than Young. Ole could do nothing about this situation.

    2) Our recent contract extensions - Jones/Young will feature next year.
    I see a lot of posts complaining about these two having their contracts extended. Well the simple fact is, while they are no longer good enough for United, they are better than their alternatives. Behind them in the pecking order are: Darmian, Rojo, Bailly and Valencia. At least three of them will leave next summer. Realistically our defensive options without these two contract extensions could be: Lindelof, Smalling, Shaw and Dalot. We NEED more squad players than that, especially with our injury problems. Due to our deficiencies else where it would be madness to sign 3/4 defenders. So Young/Jones getting a contract makes sense.

    3.) If we are going to play like this we should have kept Mourinho
    I am seeing more and more of these types of posts. Mourinho was done. He had just got battered by Liverpool and had fallen out with the squad. The key here is though is that Pogba and Rashford weren't performing for Mourinho. They were our best players and Pogba had been dropped. It is evident that Mourinho had a toxic relationship with the players and we can't just get rid of the whole squad (some of you may wish this was possible)

    4.) Ed Woodwood hasn't backed us in the transfer market
    When Mourinho took over at United, we had been spending just over 210 million on the wages of our players. We've just announced we have wages of 296 million without Sanchez being here for a full year) Mourinho spent over 400 million. He recouped around 100 million. So on average every year he was here had had a 100 million net spend while increasing the wage bill by about 30 million a year. For those figures we have Fred, Dalot, Sanchez, Lukaku, Lindelof, Bailly and Pogba to show for it. Are those players worth the money? No. Now we hear rumours (nothing confirmed) that Mourinho wanted Maguire, Perisic et al. Would these have improved us? Woodwood was in the unenviable position of making more signings that wouldn't have improved us or dismissing a manager who had just finished second. Either one might have put us in a worst position than we are now.

    5.) We will spend a feckton this summer.
    Not really a decision but important to say. Just as important as net spend is the wage bill. We are looking at reducing this massively. Players who aren't contributing enough are going, Mata, Herrera, Valencia are pretty certain to leave. Rojo, Darmian, Periera will likely follow them out the door. We've already recouped money for Fellaini. We are for the first time in ages have a proper clear out. You might think you hear this every year, but this time we know that contracts are expiring. This should clear out our wage bill massively. Furthermore with our relative lack of spend this past summer and the clear deficiencies in our squad it is obvious where we need to buy. I expect a 200+ million pound summer. The Glazers have been shown to back new managers when they need it.

    6.) Giving Ole the job.
    This is a no brainer. When he was hired no-one expected us to be challenging for the top four or get past PSG. He accomplished both and the players and fans loved him. There was no other option. Some people keep talking about waiting till summer.. what would this have accomplished? There will be no big name managers leaving their post this summer and Ole might rightly have told us to feck off if we waited. So what benefit would that have done? Since he took the job he has us pretty much top of the premier league. Our recent form isn't great but we've player Barcelona twice, Wolves twice and Arsenal away. They are all games that ANY manager would struggle with.

    We have to be positive. We are in a much better position now than we have been for the last four/five years as far as I can see. We have a manager who has already done a great job. We have money available and we have space in our squad. Even though watching City/Liverpool push on is galling, this is not Ole's fault and we just need to put everything into preparing for next year now.
  2. Apr 17, 2019
    #2

    GazTheLegend Full Member

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    Great post and echoes my feelings to be honest.

    You know you’ve got squad problems when Ashley Young is your starting left back - that’s not solskjaers fault

    Tactically I think he got it right. We edged both games I thought, ironically - it was the lack of quality that cost us up front.

    Messi was the difference. People may forget this but Messi was the difference against Alex Ferguson’s Man Utd too.

    I have faith in Solskjaer to get it right.
  3. Apr 17, 2019
    #3

    Hawks2008 Full Member

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    The Young situation is not excusable. He is playing because he is one of Ole's favourites, if performances had any weight in the decision he wouldn't be playing. Extending his contract and the contract of jones is just rewarding mediocrity.

    Beyond that I'll give Ole the benefit of the doubt for now.
  4. Apr 17, 2019
    #4

    NoLogo Full Member

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    I'm sorry Wumminator but this is exactly why I'm not at all positive because we still have to have a player of Young's caliber cover every position on the field possible and that has been the case for at least 4 or 5 years now. Why are we still in this state, or rather why is our squad still in this state? I'm not blaming Ole for it, he hasn't even been at the club for half a year of course it's not his problem. The biggest problem at our club is the CEO who his so out of his depth that it's not even funny anymore. I was calling for his head after the LvG disaster and he has changed nothing in a way that I would say "oh yeah he is starting to turn the clubs fortune around".

    Are you sure about that? You know that a feck ton in the current market is 500M, what Real is planning to spend, not 200M what is rumored that we will spend. In today's market 150-200M is a normal transfer window for an elite club. And it's not only about having money to burn it's also about making the right choices when assembling the squad in the long run and I just don't see a coherent plan or strategy in place in that regard, again all we do now is we trust Ole with the money and hope he will last long enough to make that squad work. What happens if he fails top 4 next season and Woody decides he now wants Poch instead, another rebuild? We can't keep going on like this in terms of squad building and leadership at this club.

    I know you mean well but there is little to nothing positive I can see as long as the cancer called Woodward is in charge of this club.
  5. Apr 17, 2019
    #5

    Wumminator The Special One!

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    I’m sorry I can’t accept posts like this.

    What should the team have done instead? Who else should have played who is obviously better than Young? Do we just release every defender at once and sign new ones? Please explain what they should have done instead.
  6. Apr 17, 2019
    #6

    Robbo's Shoulder Full Member

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    Great op, a bit of realism for a change.
  7. Apr 17, 2019
    #7

    Wumminator The Special One!

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    If it goes wrong then yes we get a new manager. That’s been happening with big clubs for years now unfortunately. How does our management rotation compare with Madrid’s/Barce/Chelsea/City over similar years?

    We don’t know how much we’ll spend but I am certain it will be enough. They’d be stupid not to.
  8. Apr 17, 2019
    #8

    Ban Full Member

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    Good thread but. As long as Ed is deciding which players are improving us which don't we are in for a trouble. Ok he didn't give Jose players he wanted but why did he renew his contract. Who's to say he won't block some of Ole's wishes?
  9. Apr 17, 2019
    #9

    Suedesi Full Member

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    We have the second highest wage bill in world football and we've spent a feckton in the last 6 years with mediocre results as shown by our position in the league and performances in Europe. What makes you think throwing more money will solve that problem? We don't know how to buy, we don't know how to sell, we don't know how to build a winning team and we don't know how to hire the right manager that would accomplish the above. So, unless there are drastic changes at how the club is run football wise, I expect feckall in the next 3-4 years or as long as Woodward/Arnold/Glazers remain in charge.

    Nice fluff piece btw.
  10. Apr 17, 2019
    #10

    roonster09 Correctly predicted France to win World Cup 2018 Scout

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    Very good OP.

    Ole has done very good job, he has done well in PL, CL and FA cup.
  11. Apr 17, 2019
    #11

    Wumminator The Special One!

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    We have bought poorly. That shit happens. It happens at every club. I’m hoping with a change in manager we can put that right. I place the last three years of mediocrity on Mourinho and his team.
  12. Apr 17, 2019
    #12

    Hawks2008 Full Member

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    Dalot should have played. I understand he is raw but he isn't going to learn from the bench watching the bird poop coinessuer. Even if he is poor defensively he isn't a coward on the ball and we struggle immensely when pressed in deeper areas because of how shit Young and others are in possession. Ole isn't stupid, I cannot see how he would allow young continue to play unless it's favouritism or a LVG-esque "my captain shall always play" thing.

    Jones is as bad as Bailly and Rojo and all 3 are not up to par. I still think there's a player in Bailly but his form is so erratic he is unreliable. Jones maybe has a place as a 4th or 5th choice player but he's just bang average and the fact we keep such players on board is indicative of where our standards are as a club.
  13. Apr 17, 2019
    #13

    Vanya Full Member

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    Couldn't agree more.
  14. Apr 17, 2019
    #14

    anant Full Member

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    Great post @Wumminator. Completely agree with everything here
  15. Apr 17, 2019
    #15

    Suedesi Full Member

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    Ignoring the Moyes and LVG disaster years and just focusing on Jose Mourinho seems like an easy out, but I'll play along.

    What specific examples in Ole's managing career can you point out to that would seem to suggest that Ole can buy well in the market and Ole can build a winning team?
  16. Apr 17, 2019
    #16

    Wumminator The Special One!

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    None at all.
  17. Apr 17, 2019
    #17

    SteveW Full Member

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    Good post. People need to get a grip. Ole's done way better than anyone could have expected. Needs time to sort out the squad
  18. Apr 17, 2019
    #18

    Buster15 Full Member

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    No doubt it is extremely difficult to find any positives at the moment so well done for trying.
    Not everything is doom and gloom but yet again our deficiencies are being exposed and it is crystal clear how far we have dropped.

    We still have the opportunity to salvage something from this awful season. Beating City and a top 4 finish.
    However, in the context of the PL, a top 4 finish should be the absolute minimum and to stand any chance we have to beat City.

    Beyond that the transfer window must be a turning point. Both in terms of selling and buying.
    Our leaders cannot and must not let this unacceptable situation continue any longer.
  19. Apr 17, 2019
    #19

    Acquire Me Full Member

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    Good post. I agree with everything.

    Some people should learn from this post.
  20. Apr 17, 2019
    #20

    LInkash Full Member

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    Well, he built a league winning team. It was in the Norwegian league but resources are relative. He also had the Manchester United mindset all the time, he said he had it in his mind that he was managing a mini Man United.
  21. Apr 17, 2019
    #21

    Suedesi Full Member

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    Thank you.
  22. Apr 17, 2019
    #22

    Mart1974 harbours delusions of insignificance

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    I like a nice well thought out response to a bad result. There are lots of things to be positive about and if people thought that Ole didn't have a big job to do then they were mistaken.
  23. Apr 17, 2019
    #23

    ROFLUTION New Member

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    I agree on most points. There's too much moaning on Ole compared to the options he have.

    Only (big) thing to not be positive about is: We haven't spent wisely. We haven't hired a DoF before spunking all the millions. We put all of our trust in Ole getting it right with a (limited?) budget, who has no experience on this level. Woodward seems afraid to let go of power, and that is simply a dangerous thing, when he doesn't get footballing things right. Its also incredibly naive to think that the players we need are available and we han just buy 5 world class players and fix it. Thats why maintaining the squad every year is so important.

    Ive been working for a similar setup, where the founder of a company wanted to be involved in everything. Many things he knows nothing about, instead of trusting the professional guys he'd hire. Its terrible, and you end up with half-way results. The job for a leader is like being a general in an army. You're supposed to oversee the things going on in the battlefield and delegate from the top of your hill - if you jump into the war yourself, you lose sight, ability to lead, and then you're losing with no one to truly lead.

    We've basically learned close to nothing of last years failings. Let's face it. Ole might not be the next manager with a project for the next 10 years. A new project every 3 years is costly. Its the setup behind him and the next ones that is flawed.
  24. Apr 17, 2019
    #24

    midnightmare Full Member

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    Agree with just about every point on that OP. Well articulated too. Another thing for me is the whole "We have not spent wisely" part. It's easy to say this in hindsight, but I feel that this too should be seen with the right context. The appointments of both LvG and Jose were seen as the right decisions by the majority of the fanbase (I said majority, so let's not quibble) and both managers came in wanting their own players and with their own vision. I don't think anyone can argue that they were given their targets even when some were puzzling. From Schneiderlin, Schweinsteiger and Memphis to Mkhi, Lukaku and Pogba, virtually all our purchasing was done to meet the manager's demands. In hindsight, it's easy to say that this was wrong and that we should have had a DoF who decided on our style and who to sign - but the question that remains is whether the managers in question would ever have accepted a role where they were (as Jose put it) just "coaches" and not "managers". Both wanted control and both got it.

    With Ole, I am more hopeful of seeing a good summer. I'll reserve judgment on Ed and his transfer market work to after the summer, but right now, I'm more positive than I've been in years, which is shocking given our recent form!
  25. Apr 17, 2019
    #25

    NoPace Full Member

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    Ole is doing pretty well and we have money but do you expect us to make the right signings?

    There's no reason to think this post-Ferguson malaise is going to be over anytime soon.

    Sure we have money and 7-8 talented players in their early or mid 20s (Pogba, De Gea 28 but a keeper Shaw, Lindelof, Rashford, Martial, Lukaku, Fred) and some youth to be excited about (Greenwood, Dalot, Gomez), so in theory we could make 5-6 great signings and have a good squad of 16 or so core players like you need, at minimum, to be good.

    But we'll probably go like 2/4 with our signings this summer and still be badly short of quality at multiple positions.

    But the other English teams are improving.

    City and Liverpool are well ahead of us and there's no reason to think that should change for the next few years with City's depth, Pep and their spending and Liverpool having a team with only one major player over 29 (Milner) and only Winaljdum looking like a potential early dropoff type but Keita and Fabinho signed to replace them and the 2nd best AOC coming back.

    So we're still probably looking at fighting it out with Chelsea, Arsenal and Spurs again next season. Chelsea are probably behind us in the short-term but ahead in the longer-term, because they have way too many first XI players about to drop off due to age, but exciting youth. Conversely, Arsenal I think can be much better next year as their worst players have been horrid enough that regression to the mean and a couple decent signings could really help their good strikers and decent CMs produce better results, but long-term they don't have a ton of proven young talent anywhere but CM. Spurs have age on their side mostly (CBs are older but Foyth and Sanchez being 21 and 22 should be able to replace them) but who knows if Pochettino and Eriksen will stay and also they seem to manage not to play consistent football for more than 1 month in a row.

    I'd put us down for 4th next season with one of the North London clubs ahead of us and one below, with Chelsea in 6th as Hazard leaves and new players they have to bring in to replace him (and I guess Diego Costa if we're honest) acclimate to the Prem.
  26. Apr 17, 2019
    #26

    AgentP Full Member

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    I agree with the sentiment. I think we will start behaving like a proper club from this summer. Right now, we just need to do the best we can with the resources we have at hand.

    I don't know how much we'll spend but it will be spent well on players that are actually worth it. We'll also let go of most of our deadwood.

    Overall, we'll be much more clear about our future strategy and target the right players. I hope we get a DoF soon but if we have to wait a bit longer for the right person then so be it.
  27. Apr 17, 2019
    #27

    TMDaines Full Member

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    1. Somewhat agree, and the shock horror of reactions to team news in match day threads is wearing. Only thing I don’t get is marginalisation of Darmian. He’s a useful if unremarkable player.

    2. Agree. You don’t want to spend your summer wasting your time on trying to secure squad players and wasting resources on them. The summer should be focussed on securing three elite signings and renewing our WC players. Five average players out and a few elites joining will make a massive difference.

    3. Agree. Mourinho made his position untenable.

    4. & 5. Somewhat agree. Money isn’t the issue. We have the financial resources to sign players, but we don’t have the structure to enable better business in the transfer market. Bayern, Real, Juventus and Barca have all already done business and are likely to do more whilst remaining more attractive. Without CL, we won’t be in the top 10 most attractive clubs for most players next season. Money will compensate somewhat, but wages are already hindering our squad management. Competing for the league is unlikely, CL football is about at 50% likelihood season by season currently, and our manager isn’t a pull in the same way Mourinho would have been when joining. Worst thing we can do is chase unobtainable players all summer. Be ambitious, but be humble and read the signs.

    6. Not sure I agree with this one. I think there would have been several alternatives. The timing of the appointment was just weird and it increasingly feels like they wanted him to get the job, and there were concerns about him being unappointable after our next run of games. There’s nothing wrong with still thinking he is the right man long term, but as Bilic said in an interview on BT, he now needs to be empowered, as he looks like a lame duck right now.
  28. Apr 17, 2019
    #28

    TMDaines Full Member

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    If elements of this forum had their way, we would sell most of our players, spend the summer failing to get others, panic and fill the squad close to the deadline, only to realise that we can’t even register them as we don’t meet our homegrown quotas.
  29. Apr 17, 2019
    #29

    Nytram Shakes Full Member

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    When Mourinho was fired I was feeling properly positive about the direction of our club for the first time in years. All the sounds coming out of Old Trafford were what you'd hope, We were going to hire a director of football and with him in place we would scour the world for the next manager, taking our time and making sure we got the right decision. In the mean time we would have a United legend (possibly my favourite united player) who would play some swashbuckling football till the end of the season.

    It was a great plan, its the plan we should have gone with. Instead, we had a great run of results with Ole, and so we throw what was the correct plan of action out the window, and fell into trap countless teams have who hire their caretaker managers, and we did it when the results where already starting to go bad and the attacking football had already stopped. Whats worse is the whole director of football idea seems to have gone out the window, so we are going into another window when the decisions are going to be made by the same people who hired Mourinho, who gave Sanchez that ridiculous contract, who've spent 100's of millions to get an unbalanced squad. And who seem to have given a 3 year contract to a manager, who we all love, but who already seemed to have lost his shine and was struggling.

    Its hard to be positive when our club is been run this badly.
  30. Apr 17, 2019
    #30

    MoskvaRed Full Member

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    You can’t put this all on Mourinho - we have bought badly for 10 years now under 4 managers (yes, even Fergie towards the end). I’m afraid I can’t just dismiss it as “shit happens” - it’s the one constant during our decline and indicates major structural problems around recruitment and squad management.
  31. Apr 17, 2019
    #31

    Eddy_JukeZ Full Member

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    I agree with this.

    It's really hard to be positive when you consider our history post SAF.
  32. Apr 17, 2019
    #32

    Raees Legal Guardian of the Football forums

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    Decent OP only disagree with the parts relating to Young. He’s been the one factor in the otherwise recent upturn in performance who has been a major major selection flaw on behalf of Ole.
  33. Apr 17, 2019
    #33

    settembrini Full Member

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    Solskjaer hasn't got much wrong up to now but his preferential treatment of Young is a mistake that has cost us multiple times in recent weeks. Based on form Dalot should have started ahead of him, this was pretty obvious from the first leg when Dalot performed fine while Young was by far our worst player (as he was again last night).

    The contract extensions for Jones and Young are another mistake but it's difficult to know how much blame to put on Solskjaer and how much on Woodward. I don't buy into the idea that we need them for depth, Jones cannot be relied upon to stay fit and Young looks completely finished nowadays. We should be signing one or two top level defenders in the summer anyway and I'd rather see young players with potential like Tuanzebe or Mitchell on the bench than the guys who have been given season after season of chances. Get that giant wage bill down a bit as well.

    I agree with you that Mourinho had to go, that he had wasted the huge backing he was given by the club and that Solskjaer deserved to be given a chance. I'm less optimistic about what will we do in the summer because of how ridiculously bad our transfer business has been post-Ferguson. Solskjaer does talk a good game about being ruthless and survival of the fittest so we'll have to see if his actions are equal to his rhetoric.
  34. Apr 17, 2019
    #34

    dove Full Member

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    tl;dr, no other options, not Ole's fault, quadruple next year.
  35. Apr 17, 2019
    #35

    Nytram Shakes Full Member

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    Even pre Fergie leaving, Fergie is the greatest manager of all time and held that team together, but in the final years the under investment was scary, clubs like Sunderland where regularly out spending us, players had stopped coming through the academy, we hadn't bought a first team centre midfielder in 1/2 a decade (something which i still can't believe happened), you look at when when Ronaldo and Tevez left and where replaced by Valencia and Owen. So when Fergie did retire we had an ageing squad basically on its last legs, look at the amount of that team that retired over the next couple of years.

    Really you just look at Old Trafford the pitch side looks great, but some of it is starting to look really tatty and needs some money and love spent on it. It needs a plan to maintain and rejuvenate it, the same can be said for the whole club.

    The rot has been going on for a very long time, and really when Mourinho left it sounded for the first time since late 2000's we had a plan to take the club forward and where going to due diligence in sorting out the structural issues at the club. Then that goes out the window...... really I don't get the positivity, is it just been positive for the sake of been positive. Personally I prefer the realistic route, and realistically we don't seem to be learning from our mistakes, we just keep making them.
  36. Apr 17, 2019
    #36

    Acquire Me Full Member

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    Young was our best choice. He is a better defender than Dalot. He is also more experienced.

    That said, he is not good enough. This says a lot more about our previous managers recruitment imo.
  37. Apr 17, 2019
    #37

    Trizy New Member

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    Positive this, positive that. Back this player, back this manager.. after the past 6 years of failure after failure we as fans are rightly sick and tired of the shite.
  38. Apr 17, 2019
    #38

    NoLogo Full Member

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    But then again they were stupid enough not to do that after we finished 19 points behind City last season and are likely to finish even further behind now. Of course now that we likely to finish outside the top 4 we might spend again but will it be enough? I'm not quite sure tbh.
  39. Apr 17, 2019
    #39

    page302 New Member

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    Great OP and I agree with the majority of it. We find ourselves in this position through poor (not lack of) investment and a not fit for purpose ‘corporate structure’. Unfortunately there is no short term solution so we should stop trying to find one. This is a 3-5 year rebuilding job so we should settle in for a tough couple of years whilst the changes take place.
  40. Apr 17, 2019
    #40

    Wumminator The Special One!

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    Imagine being an Arsenal fan. Or a Liverpool fan. Or a Spurs fan.

    Our “shite” years have seen us win a European Trophy, FA Cup, League Cup. Knock out stages of the CL.