1985 United vs 2018 United

Josh 76

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Yep re: the strikers, amazing that we had a gap from George Best (in 1968) and Brian McClair (in 1988) between 20 goal strikers!

Lineker clearly would have been a very good signing.
I'm sure Big Ron let Peter Beardsley leave. Did he actually make a first team appearance?
 

BigRon1985

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I love this thread! I chose to study at Manchester Polytechnic for the simple reason I could watch United between 1983-86 - the Atkinson years! Never ever dull or boring like today, all out attack from start to finish and always with 2 wingers.

£2.20 to stand on the Stretford End - best value for money ever!

Give me a fit Bryan Robson over Pogba any day.
 

Red_Ramirez

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Pogba aint fit to lace Robbo's boots tbh
I'm sure Big Ron let Peter Beardsley leave. Did he actually make a first team appearance?
Racist Ron let go of David Platt and Peter Beardsley the fool

If you weren't in his 'magic circle' of first teamers he didnt give a feck

Let Hughsie go as well:rolleyes:
 

grahamo

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Its a funny old game
We won the first 10 games of the season in 1985 then blew it. I blame the OT pitch because we struggled through January/ February then started to play well again towards the end of the season. Some great memories of great players Whiteside, McGrath, Robson, Hughes etc. We could beat Liverpool one week then lose to Luton the next week. Never ever boring like this season
 

SadlerMUFC

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Even though I'm old enough, I can't really speak about the club before the 90's. We didn't start getting regular televised matches in Canada until the SAF era...But I do enjoy watching old Youtube clips
 

Paul the Wolf

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The 1985 side was a cup side and were inconsistent. If Robson was injured our performance level seemed to drop considerably. If Hughes hadn't been distracted by the transfer to Barcelona the team may have done better. But we attacked.

What if Mourinho was in charge of the 1985 side and Atkinson was in charge of the 2018 team?
 

Adisa

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Was before my time but I've heard stories about how exciting we were to watch.
 

Web of Bissaka

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1985 team
+ way more attacking.
+ more exciting fun to watch.
+ more steel/physical/fight/bite to their game.
+ have genuine leaders.
+ Robson is a key big different, but then there's also Whiteside, Hughes, McGrath, and some more.
- games can be frustrating, but usually fun.

2018 team (2014-18)
+ More youth. I think (haven't checked with the 1985) this team have more youth players in the first team squad, and more younger in comparison.
- to be frank, no genuine leaders. Tbf, I can see some players have leader potential there, but not developed enough yet(?).
- a lot more frustrating boring to watch, tough to focus spectating even to the point of falling asleep.
- few games is fun, but mostly boring.

Both
+ both squad is exciting (in terms of individual qualities and potential), there are exciting players.
+ okay challenging cups, continue winning cups (imo europa league is like a cup eventhough the name says otherwise).
? questionable manager.
? questionable mentality of team. To be honest, some players of both are suspicious.
- winning league is way off, not even close, let alone CL.
- too inconsistent performances.
- results and match performances can be so frustrating.
- injury prone players.
 

Moriarty

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The 1985 side was a cup side and were inconsistent. If Robson was injured our performance level seemed to drop considerably. If Hughes hadn't been distracted by the transfer to Barcelona the team may have done better. But we attacked.

What if Mourinho was in charge of the 1985 side and Atkinson was in charge of the 2018 team?
Robbo was the key to that side. When he was on form, the team was buzzing. When he was out injured, there was nobody to step in a take his place as everyone looked up to him; even the senior pros like Macari. Mo would have won the league with the 1985 side. Big Ron would do well with the current lot. He'd tell them to go out and express themselves, come back, and have a bevvy or three.
 

Revaulx

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In 1985 Ron Atkinson was coming towards the end of his spell in charge. The team started the 1985/6 season with 10 wins in a row then fell to pieces as injuries to key players hurt performance levels then confidence.
That 10 win run always felt fragile. We seemed to be able to score for fun without ever really dominating games.
We were generally an exciting team but not a competent one. The style of football was fine. Defeats away at teams near the bottom of the table were a common feature of the Atkinson era.
Indeed. I went to a lot of them!
We were missing a 20 goal a season striker (instead of Stapleton's regular 13 goals in 42 starts)
Spunking a hefty fee on Alan Brazil, who was obviously crocked, was complete lunacy.
and needed more professionalism, fewer crazy drinking sessions led by captain Robson, training that was more detailed that Atkinson's 5 a side games. Our results against Liverpool were typically good throughout that period, showing that we could perform when we wanted to.
Agree on the lack of professionalism, but I’m not sure there was a lot wrong with the coaching. I always felt that Ron did well with the players he had, but he was unable to build a cohesive and balanced squad. He signed plenty of decent players; the only big-money failure was Brazil. But it was all very scattergun, and the inability to come up with a half-decent Plan B to cover Robson’s frequent unavailability didn’t help.[/QUOTE]
The difference between then and now, is the quality of football being played on the pitch. We are simply miles off the top sides and have been for nearly all the post-Ferguson era.
The football was generally pleasing to the eye, even in the depths of winter when the Old Trafford pitch was a quagmire; probably the worst playing surface in the First Division. Maybe I was already jaded by then, but it never seemed as magical as in the Doc’s Red Army days.
 

Paul the Wolf

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Robbo was the key to that side. When he was on form, the team was buzzing. When he was out injured, there was nobody to step in a take his place as everyone looked up to him; even the senior pros like Macari. Mo would have won the league with the 1985 side. Big Ron would do well with the current lot. He'd tell them to go out and express themselves, come back, and have a bevvy or three.
Yes , I think you've got it spot on.
 

nore1975

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Cracking side players like Strachan, Olsen, Robson, Hughes, Stapleton, McGrath, Whiteside, Moran and Bailey. Add Lineker and that side surely wins the league. Crazy to think Ferguson had to take the mallet to that side, bar Hughes and Robson, to construct a serial winning side.
 

vidic blood & sand

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The 85 Vs 99 team would be interesting. York & Cole Vs Hughes and Stapleton. Robbo & Whiteside Vs Keane & Scholes. Mcgrath and Stam, and Olsen & Giggs. It'd be one one hell of a game, and Ron knew how to get people up for it, as we found out in a couple league cup finals..
 

Denis79

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Thanks for that..

I only started supported in 1987 when I was 7yrs old.

So only remember the tough first few years under Fergie onwards

Although my first football memory was watching the FA Cup Final in 85
Crazy, first memory of United as well. Was 6 at the time. Watched it with my father, still have memories of him screaming like a madman when Whiteside scored.
 

Charlie Foley

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Don't think Bayern are known for having a special tradition of playing attractive football. Just a tradition of winning.
I agree. One of the reasons Bayern brought in Pep was to create an identity or tradition of playing
 

Eyepopper

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Back then we had players who, while limited, knew what it was to play for Man Utd and a team.

Now we have, what City used to have, a bunch of individuals, who think the whole thing is about their "profile".
 

The Brown Bull

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Have been a United fan since 68 ( yep I’m a bandwagoner!) and I still have fond memories of that 83 / 85 side.A fine bunch of players who were good enough to win a title but had no luck with injuries.
Won FA Cups in83 & 85, in 85 against a top Everton side
And played some great footie doing it, epic semi win in 83
V Arsenal and in 85 after a replay against European champions Liverpool.
Bailey, McGrath , Robson, Moran, Oleson, Whiteside, Wilkins ( R.I.P)
Stapleton , Muhren were all top players who would eat our current side without salt.
Won their first 10 league games of 85/86 but an injury to Robson robbed them of a great leader and talisman .
Ps almost forgot Remi Moses, teak tough midfielder, wish we had him today.
 

Ali Dia

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@Strachans Cigar That replay was some match. The noise was deafening in Maine Road that night. Liverpool looked deflated at the end, which was something you rarely saw. I still can't fathom why we never made a bid for Paul Walsh when he was at Charlton or Luton. Always thought he'd have been a great addition to the side.

I love these clips. Robson, what a player!
 

Robbo's Shoulder

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The 85 Vs 99 team would be interesting. York & Cole Vs Hughes and Stapleton. Robbo & Whiteside Vs Keane & Scholes. Mcgrath and Stam, and Olsen & Giggs. It'd be one one hell of a game, and Ron knew how to get people up for it, as we found out in a couple league cup finals..
A full blooded 50/50 between Robbo and Keano would come with an x-rated certificate. Certainly an a hands over the eyes moment.
 

SAred

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The 85 team would spank these gutless wonders. Robbo, hughes, whiteside, olson, stapleton, moran etc would breeze past this lot.
There's not a single pair of balls between the current squad.
Your posts sums everything up that is wrong with this current United Team, although I do like our mad Argie and Herrera both mad dogs but that is it. That 85 team would put fear into this lot and win easily. Plenty of mad inconsistent dogs in that 85 team.
 

SirMattlives

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Oh, such memories -- loving this thread, thanks for the vids too.
I have high opinion of Big Ron and his teams -- I know people say we were one goalscorer from being top back then but we did have a number who were supposed to deliver those goals. I am not sure it was the players as much as the system. I recall Frank Stapleton remarking that he was always instructed to make runs to create space for Robbo to get in, rather. than being the typical target man. Might explain why some otherwise prolific scorers seemed to struggle goals-wise with us. Big Ron wanted to play a fast moving front line that allowed skillful players to score. But Robbo, what a player. I still remember him strolling on after being out injured as a second half sub in game against Luton. It was obvious to all in the stadium that as soon as he came on the whole team seemed to perk up and play better. He was a true leader, pity he had a body that could not quite tolerate his innate bravery - but I never witnessed any player have such an influence (and such a tolerance for pain). Pure gold is right.

And remember Moran going off injured in a game against Liverpool. As he was being stretchered off after getting stuck into some tackle, he gestured to the fans with his fist, an act of defiance that gave everyone a huge lift. Most of the current crop would be more concerned with their hair.
 

Foxbatt

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Robson, Whiteside, McGrath, Moran, Hughes, Olsen, Strachan. They'd all walk into today's team.
Even Wikins, Muhren, and Stapleton would get into the current side. Stapleton was very underrated. He lacked only pace. If he had pace he would have been devastating. I would say even the full backs of Duxbury and Albiston were much better than this lot we have here now.
I remember how Stapleton went to centre half (as it was called then) against Everton in the FA Cup Final after Moran was sent off. Stapleton was brilliant against Andy Gray the Everton striker and did not let him have a sniff.
 

BigRon1985

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Oh, such memories -- loving this thread, thanks for the vids too.
I have high opinion of Big Ron and his teams -- I know people say we were one goalscorer from being top back then but we did have a number who were supposed to deliver those goals. I am not sure it was the players as much as the system. I recall Frank Stapleton remarking that he was always instructed to make runs to create space for Robbo to get in, rather. than being the typical target man. Might explain why some otherwise prolific scorers seemed to struggle goals-wise with us. Big Ron wanted to play a fast moving front line that allowed skillful players to score. But Robbo, what a player. I still remember him strolling on after being out injured as a second half sub in game against Luton. It was obvious to all in the stadium that as soon as he came on the whole team seemed to perk up and play better. He was a true leader, pity he had a body that could not quite tolerate his innate bravery - but I never witnessed any player have such an influence (and such a tolerance for pain). Pure gold is right.

And remember Moran going off injured in a game against Liverpool. As he was being stretchered off after getting stuck into some tackle, he gestured to the fans with his fist, an act of defiance that gave everyone a huge lift. Most of the current crop would be more concerned with their hair.
Yes I’m loving this thread too - a real nostalgia fest! I remember Moran being stretchered off too and giving a fist pump to the fans - what a player! This lot would go off with a broken fingernail! Bryan Robson is my favourite United player of all time - he would literally win games on his own driving the team forward and scoring spectacular goals though to be fair the whole team chipped in with goals. Only problem was he was prone to dislocating his shoulder whilst exchanging handshakes with the opposing captain before kick off!

I remember nearly bumping into him in East Didsbury high street back in 1984 and was going to say hello but he was sporting an enormous black eye and looked pissed off so I thought better of it! :eek:
 
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Moriarty

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Wikins, Muhren, and Stapleton would get into the current side.
Even? Wilkins was a sublime player, and so was Arnie Muhren. They were a pair of artists. Big Ron calling Wilkins a 'crab' was really unfair. When Sexton bought him from Chelsea, he made a huge difference.
 

Darkhorsez

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Oh, such memories -- loving this thread, thanks for the vids too.
I have high opinion of Big Ron and his teams -- I know people say we were one goalscorer from being top back then but we did have a number who were supposed to deliver those goals. I am not sure it was the players as much as the system. I recall Frank Stapleton remarking that he was always instructed to make runs to create space for Robbo to get in, rather. than being the typical target man. Might explain why some otherwise prolific scorers seemed to struggle goals-wise with us. Big Ron wanted to play a fast moving front line that allowed skillful players to score. But Robbo, what a player. I still remember him strolling on after being out injured as a second half sub in game against Luton. It was obvious to all in the stadium that as soon as he came on the whole team seemed to perk up and play better. He was a true leader, pity he had a body that could not quite tolerate his innate bravery - but I never witnessed any player have such an influence (and such a tolerance for pain). Pure gold is right.

And remember Moran going off injured in a game against Liverpool. As he was being stretchered off after getting stuck into some tackle, he gestured to the fans with his fist, an act of defiance that gave everyone a huge lift. Most of the current crop would be more concerned with their hair.
There was also a game I remember that Moran played on with a bandage around his head that had to be replaced a couple of times. Proper Utd player.
 
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Even? Wilkins was a sublime player, and so was Arnie Muhren. They were a pair of artists. Big Ron calling Wilkins a 'crab' was really unfair. When Sexton bought him from Chelsea, he made a huge difference.
I was just about to post the exact same thing, even starting the same.... "Even?!".

That midfield of Moses, Wilkins, Robson and Muhren was lovely to watch and (modern athleticism aside), would absolutely tear apart the current midfield.

In overall terms, the 85 side was much better than the current side .... ability, teamwork, the positive mental attitude and the way the important elements of the team gelled - McGrath/Moran as a CH partnership, the blend of abilities in midfield, etc.

They just couldn't maintain consistency (apart from first couple of months) though the title in 85 would always have been an ask against the Everton and Liverpool teams.... they definitely had an edge upfront.
 

vidic blood & sand

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Even? Wilkins was a sublime player, and so was Arnie Muhren. They were a pair of artists. Big Ron calling Wilkins a 'crab' was really unfair. When Sexton bought him from Chelsea, he made a huge difference.
Muhren was sensational, but strangely declined after his transfer to us. Free transfer as well I think. Amazing that!
Not sure if anyone remembers the 6:0 loss to Ipswich around 80/81. Muhren was just unplayable in that game. Gary Baily saving a couple of penalties as well I seem to remember.
 

Moriarty

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Muhren was sensational, but strangely declined after his transfer to us. Free transfer as well I think. Amazing that!
Not sure if anyone remembers the 6:0 loss to Ipswich around 80/81. Muhren was just unplayable in that game. Gary Baily saving a couple of penalties as well I seem to remember.
He saved three, but one of them was taken twice. Just think. We could have lost 0-8.
 

SirMattlives

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If I remember the Muhren story correctly (or even if not, it's a great story), we got him on a free cos he drove up to OT during the summer break, out of contract, and told the front desk he was here cos he wanted to play for us!
 

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If I remember the Muhren story correctly (or even if not, it's a great story), we got him on a free cos he drove up to OT during the summer break, out of contract, and told the front desk he was here cos he wanted to play for us!
Good times
 

Rory 7

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Even Wikins, Muhren, and Stapleton would get into the current side. Stapleton was very underrated. He lacked only pace. If he had pace he would have been devastating. I would say even the full backs of Duxbury and Albiston were much better than this lot we have here now.
I remember how Stapleton went to centre half (as it was called then) against Everton in the FA Cup Final after Moran was sent off. Stapleton was brilliant against Andy Gray the Everton striker and did not let him have a sniff.
Hard to disagree with you on any of that
 

Rory 7

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Oh, such memories -- loving this thread, thanks for the vids too.
I have high opinion of Big Ron and his teams -- I know people say we were one goalscorer from being top back then but we did have a number who were supposed to deliver those goals. I am not sure it was the players as much as the system. I recall Frank Stapleton remarking that he was always instructed to make runs to create space for Robbo to get in, rather. than being the typical target man. Might explain why some otherwise prolific scorers seemed to struggle goals-wise with us. Big Ron wanted to play a fast moving front line that allowed skillful players to score. But Robbo, what a player. I still remember him strolling on after being out injured as a second half sub in game against Luton. It was obvious to all in the stadium that as soon as he came on the whole team seemed to perk up and play better. He was a true leader, pity he had a body that could not quite tolerate his innate bravery - but I never witnessed any player have such an influence (and such a tolerance for pain). Pure gold is right.

And remember Moran going off injured in a game against Liverpool. As he was being stretchered off after getting stuck into some tackle, he gestured to the fans with his fist, an act of defiance that gave everyone a huge lift. Most of the current crop would be more concerned with their hair.
Was the Moran strecher thumbs up not against arsenal? Could be wrong.
 

marko goalo

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Robson was a beast of a player. I know nostalgia blurs the memory somewhat but what i'd give for Utd to unearth a player with his qualities now. I always wonder why he never seems to be mentioned on the world stage in more glowing terms? Absolute lion for us & you always felt/knew he was going to score in the big games.

In the same vein I used to idolise Whiteside as well. I know he had off the field issues/injuries and SAF knew what was best for Utd at the time but it was a sad day to see him shipped off to Everton
 
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golden_blunder

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I love the kits from those years - they symbolize free flowing, not a care in the world, football

Sad to see the fences though. Horrible things