Having a settled and functioning front three

Tarrou

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when was the last time we had this? Seems like forever.

It’s very early days but Martial, Rashford and James are starting to look like a combination that could work really well for us.
 

Marcelinho87

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Yeah and I am glad James is looking settled on the right, people initially thought he couldn't do it but he looks fine.
 

Red_toad

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Stick a fit again Pogba in at the top of the midfield behind them and we’ll actually have a good team. Fred, McTommy and Pogba should actually be a good unit.
 

The United

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Stick a fit again Pogba in at the top of the midfield behind them and we’ll actually have a good team. Fred, McTommy and Pogba should actually be a good unit.
If he actually gets his mind to it, yes.

If we get some lazy version of Pogba, it might ruin our good form instead.
 

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when was the last time we had this? Seems like forever.

It’s very early days but Martial, Rashford and James are starting to look like a combination that could work really well for us.
It was Greenwood for James the other day so I think it's more about the qualities they offer blending rather than the specific players.
 

2 man midfield

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Stick a fit again Pogba in at the top of the midfield behind them and we’ll actually have a good team. Fred, McTommy and Pogba should actually be a good unit.
To be fair I think you could’ve put Pogba in that team today and absolutely nothing would’ve changed. We seemed to transition quickly and attack with speed, I’m not sure how he’d have improved us.
 

Tarrou

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It was Greenwood for James the other day so I think it's more about the qualities they offer blending rather than the specific players.
Only because it was the Europa though. But yeah it’s great to have options.

All the good sides seem to have a settled front three though, and we haven’t had one for yonks!
 

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This might be a dumb question, but is Pogba actually good playing that high up the pitch (#10) or is he more comfortable sitting a bit deeper?

I've moaned a lot about the 4231, but it has looked a lot better with Martial back.
 

Red_toad

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To be fair I think you could’ve put Pogba in that team today and absolutely nothing would’ve changed. We seemed to transition quickly and attack with speed, I’m not sure how he’d have improved us.
Are you implying Pereira is anywhere near as good a player?

Not sure how ‘absolutely nothing would have changed’ as it’s completely unprovable. It’s also highly unlikely that a real world class player wouldn’t have a greater impact than a back up player who’s never gotten close to Pogba’s performance levels.
 

AaronRedDevil

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This might be a dumb question, but is Pogba actually good playing that high up the pitch (#10) or is he more comfortable sitting a bit deeper?

I've moaned a lot about the 4231, but it has looked a lot better with Martial back.
He's far better up the front. Sitting deep is killing him to be honest. He's intelligent in attacking and has a good shot on him.
 

KeanoMagicHat

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If he actually gets his mind to it, yes.

If we get some lazy version of Pogba, it might ruin our good form instead.
Let's not get carried away, just beat Partizan and Brighton at home. The idea that we are an all-conquering team that can't be tinkered with is ridiculous, Pogba is clearly a few levels above the current midfielders.
 

The United

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Let's not get carried away, just beat Partizan and Brighton at home. The idea that we are an all-conquering team that can't be tinkered with is ridiculous, Pogba is clearly a few levels above the current midfielders.
I am not the one who is getting away here. People who think Pogba would improve the team right away might be.
 

Jericholyte2

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The whole game is about stability, and it’s not just the front three. Look at midfield; Fred and McT have played most of the last 8-10 matches, lo-and-behold they get better.

This settled 7-9 (DDG, AWB, Maguire, Lindelof, McT, Fred, Rashford, Martial, James) is what United need, a settled, stable core.
 
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2 man midfield

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Are you implying Pereira is anywhere near as good a player?

Not sure how ‘absolutely nothing would have changed’ as it’s completely unprovable. It’s also highly unlikely that a real world class player wouldn’t have a greater impact than a back up player who’s never gotten close to Pogba’s performance levels.
Of course not. But I don’t think the game missed Pogba, that’s all I’m saying. I doubt if he’d played today we’d have won 5-1 for instance.
 

Sparky Rhiwabon

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DAM that's good.
 

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This might be a dumb question, but is Pogba actually good playing that high up the pitch (#10) or is he more comfortable sitting a bit deeper?

I've moaned a lot about the 4231, but it has looked a lot better with Martial back.
I say play a 433 with Pogba the more advanced midfield from the left. Initial worries to play that was because of lack of midfield players but now with Fred fin ally coming into his own(well if he keeps improving or at least maintain what he's shown today) then a 433 is once again possible.

Pogba himself isn't that great in that 10 role but he's great playing in a midfield 3
 

marktan

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This might be a dumb question, but is Pogba actually good playing that high up the pitch (#10) or is he more comfortable sitting a bit deeper?

I've moaned a lot about the 4231, but it has looked a lot better with Martial back.
Definitely further forward, like he did with Juventus. He can beat a man, bang a shot and pick assists. Essentially get him to play more like De Bruyne. The only worry is that he doesn't work as hard as Perreira, but a good coach should drill the work ethic in to him.

Personally I think he's wasted deep. Coaches like to do it because he has a killer long pass on him, but he's not all action enough to get up and down and he ends up doing risky things in the wrong third of the pitch.
 

Leftback99

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This might be a dumb question, but is Pogba actually good playing that high up the pitch (#10) or is he more comfortable sitting a bit deeper?

I've moaned a lot about the 4231, but it has looked a lot better with Martial back.
I don't think he's ideal for it as he's not a particularly agile, quick pass and move type, we'd also lose Pereira's work rate and pressing. However he has far more quality on the ball. I'd rather lose what Pereira brings to the table rather than Fred who despite his lack of quality on the ball offers something with his high workrate off it.
 

wolvored

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If we had a great goalscorer we wouldnt be 7th. The chances created that Rashford misses is a joke. If we had have brought Aubamayeng for example he would have easily been in double figures in the Premier by now.
 

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On the counter, they are breathtaking. The touches, the link-up, pace and movement. They would be much better with an attacking midfielder who can keep the ball under pressure and create. Fred was very good with plenty of slide-rule passes.
 

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Seems Ole wanted to ‘do the defence first’ and then move on to another section. The front 3 we have seems balanced though and will only improve as the players are still improving. Oddly enough, despite the investment, I think the defence still probably needs more work than the front line. I’m not convinced on Lindelöf at all, he has no physical attributes. And the full backs offer nothing going forward, we barely get goals from a full back cross. The front 3 will link up, but as a team, we have very poor service from wide areas, and I think this is a full back issue. I think we need a proper left-footed left back who can provide consistent quality delivery.

Of course, the middle 3 is the area that needs the most obvious improvement, we’re pretty much just managing in that area of the pitch.
 

flappyjay

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Now that we have qualified for the round of 32 and face colchester at home I hope to not see them start any cup games. Come off the bench if necessary
 

Sandikan

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Yeah and I am glad James is looking settled on the right, people initially thought he couldn't do it but he looks fine.
He looks like he can actually cross it, so suits the right a lot more than Rashford who can't really.

James seems a top guy, super likeable, great work ethic, and can actually adapt to a new position
 

Sandikan

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Now that we have qualified for the round of 32 and face colchester at home I hope to not see them start any cup games. Come off the bench if necessary
The further in we go, the MORE they'll play, as the league isn't far off a write off in terms of top 4.

Who on earth would you start if you benched those 3?! Greenwood and...
 

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The whole game is about stability, and it’s not just the front three. Look at midfield; Fred and McT have played most of the last 8-10 matches, lo-and-behold they get better.

This settled 6-8 (AWB, Maguire, Lindelof, McT, Fred, Rashford, Martial, James) is what United need, a settled, stable core.
True. Fred and McTominay consistently playing together has been a boon for us. Fred has started 8 of the last 9 matches (rested in Belgrade) and of course the result is him looking a lot better. Compare that to last season where he was on the pitch sporadically throughout the season playing only 33% of the total minutes.
 

Alemar

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With Rashford and James as wingers and Martial up top, Pogba may be deadly with his precision passing - something that Pereira is not. And he has better technique and ball control as well.
 

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The whole game is about stability, and it’s not just the front three. Look at midfield; Fred and McT have played most of the last 8-10 matches, lo-and-behold they get better.

This settled 6-8 (AWB, Maguire, Lindelof, McT, Fred, Rashford, Martial, James) is what United need, a settled, stable core.
This post cannot be stressed enough and this is a problem we’ve had for years for one reason or another to get a settled side
 

manunited1919

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The whole game is about stability, and it’s not just the front three. Look at midfield; Fred and McT have played most of the last 8-10 matches, lo-and-behold they get better.

This settled 7-9 (DDG, AWB, Maguire, Lindelof, McT, Fred, Rashford, Martial, James) is what United need, a settled, stable core.
I’m not sure Lindelof deserves to be part of that stable core, he is our weak link. I would rather we had Tuanzabee or even Rojo (!) instead of him as part of the stable core. Even today, we had some set plays against us where our defense looked weak, and on another day or another team they would take those easy chances.
 

Jericholyte2

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I’m not sure Lindelof deserves to be part of that stable core, he is our weak link. I would rather we had Tuanzabee or even Rojo (!) instead of him as part of the stable core. Even today, we had some set plays against us where our defense looked weak, and on another day or another team they would take those easy chances.
I appreciate that, and believe it myself, but the fact is they’re better for having played together consistently.
 

lysglimt

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To be fair I think you could’ve put Pogba in that team today and absolutely nothing would’ve changed. We seemed to transition quickly and attack with speed, I’m not sure how he’d have improved us.
Those paces and runs that Pogba had against Chelsea in the second half, I can't see too many in our team doing that.
 

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Those paces and runs that Pogba had against Chelsea in the second half, I can't see too many in our team doing that.
Maybe not, but I don't think we missed him. What does he normally contribute on a good day? Bringing the ball out of midfield, through balls, turning defence into attack quickly and countering with speed. We managed all of that fairly well. I'm not saying he shouldn't win his place back, he's still one of our best players. I just don't think he would've added anything drastically new to what we saw earlier is all.
 

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Let's not get carried away, just beat Partizan and Brighton at home. The idea that we are an all-conquering team that can't be tinkered with is ridiculous, Pogba is clearly a few levels above the current midfielders.
These are the games that we have been struggling at. If we could beat teams like Brighton regularly we would be in the hunt for the title right now considering our record against the top 6 is 2 wins (Chelsea and Leicester) and 2 ties (Arsenal and Liverpool)...
 

JPRouve

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He's far better up the front. Sitting deep is killing him to be honest. He's intelligent in attacking and has a good shot on him.
He has actually been generally bad in that role, he is good when he has the game in front of him and can run forward not when he starts high.
 

VP89

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Just hope we avoid injuries now. They all have a good connection with one another, especially Rashford and Martial when they operate centrally together.
 

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These are the games that we have been struggling at. If we could beat teams like Brighton regularly we would be in the hunt for the title right now considering our record against the top 6 is 2 wins (Chelsea and Leicester) and 2 ties (Arsenal and Liverpool)...
Not quite, it's more the teams that sit and park the bus we struggle against. We've got a good run were we don't play many teams like that until the end of the year now.

Watford, Newcastle and Burnley all around the Xmas period will tell us if we've moved on and can break deep defences down.
 

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I’m not sure Lindelof deserves to be part of that stable core, he is our weak link. I would rather we had Tuanzabee or even Rojo (!) instead of him as part of the stable core. Even today, we had some set plays against us where our defense looked weak, and on another day or another team they would take those easy chances.
Rojo is many things, stable is not one of them!
 

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Just hope we avoid injuries now. They all have a good connection with one another, especially Rashford and Martial when they operate centrally together.
That's the key here.

Our best eleven is comparable to any team in the prem bar the top two, but the squad overall is less than impressive. That makes us fragile. Either we make a couple of signings in the January window from the slim-pickings available at that of the year or hold out for the summer window and pray to the heavens we avoid another injury crisis.
 

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He has actually been generally bad in that role, he is good when he has the game in front of him and can run forward not when he starts high.
Yep. Pogba is at his best when he can pretty much do whatever he wants. That's why he's tended to be at his best in a three man midfield where the other two midfielders play the more structured roles. He can sit deep and control the team around when he wants but he also has the freedom to charge up field and take more risks knowing that he's got two others covering for him.

When he's actually played as an out-and-out #10 for us he's been quite easily marked out of the game. He hasn't played it all that often, but when he has he tends to play more with his back to goal and waiting for the ball so he doesn't get as involved. Maybe with a bit more game time it'll start working but I wouldn't say I'm confident about it.