It's not the manager, it's the players

bosnian_red

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I'm still not seeing what everyone is freaking out about. Our squad is pretty much anywhere from 3rd to 6th. Mourinho had us performing at 6th place pace (if not lower). Ole has us above the other 3 but just behind top 2. We dont have some massive problem. We need a few signings to fix a few problem positions, as you would expect, and then hopefully we can push for the top with some time.

Not entirely sure what the point of this thread is. Did anyone actually think a manager could instantly come in and win the title with this squad? This squad should be in the top 4, Ole has us playing to that level (if not a bit higher). Signings are obviously needed if we want to improve. That's literally common sense. Nobody looks at our squad and thinks even if we had Sir Alex in charge, we'd be able to beat Pep's City to the title.
 

Hedgehog72

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having Ole in for the long term has at least given us hope of rebuilding an attacking team. He will need time to get the players he needs to achieve this, because there is 5 or 6 at the club and mostly in the starting XI that need to go and be replaced.

We cant play the kind of football we want with Lukaku up front, without a right sided winger who can deliver service and without a much improved central defence. There's no issue at LB, a fit and confident Shaw is one of the best in the PL, we desperately need to change Young and Bailly, Smalling, Jones at the back. Look at the huge difference van Dyke has made for Liverpool. Lingard, Sanchez and Fred probably need to go too. Its a big rebuild needed, but we do have a core of genuine world class and young players that give us a platform for a rebuild. I have much more confidence that Ole can do that and that he will be backed than i ever had with Mourinho. Its not the end of the world if we don't make top 4, but the summer transfer window is one that we have to get right finally.
 

USREDEVIL

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With the exception of a few games, why is it that every time i watch us play it seems that the other team is more dangerous in the attacking third when not in transition, our midfielders and defenders back up past the keeper's box and then any cross or shot is going to be dangerous. On the other hand, when not in transition we have very little movement and afraid to go towards the keeper's box for fear of losing the ball. From that position any cross is often easily dealt with and any shot is going to need to be pretty amazing (like MCT's shot last night). I think it's down to the lack of technical ability of a lot of the squad. In transition we can be deadly but that's a fairly low % of the match.
 

NinjaZombie

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I have high hopes of Ole fixing the squad. The only thing I'm worried about is the lack of CL might limit the calibre of players we can get in next season.

Getting 4th has never been as important for us as it will be this season. This loss is a big blow. It's out of our hands now. The only positive I can see is that Spurs and Chelsea are sputtering as well.
 

JPRouve

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I'm still not seeing what everyone is freaking out about. Our squad is pretty much anywhere from 3rd to 6th. Mourinho had us performing at 6th place pace (if not lower). Ole has us above the other 3 but just behind top 2. We dont have some massive problem. We need a few signings to fix a few problem positions, as you would expect, and then hopefully we can push for the top with some time.

Not entirely sure what the point of this thread is. Did anyone actually think a manager could instantly come in and win the title with this squad? This squad should be in the top 4, Ole has us playing to that level (if not a bit higher). Signings are obviously needed if we want to improve. That's literally common sense. Nobody looks at our squad and thinks even if we had Sir Alex in charge, we'd be able to beat Pep's City to the title.
Lunacy is the word that I have in mind. Even if you ignore the fact that we have been generally good in 2019, we are currently not fielding the best first eleven because of recent injuries and the manager has to do with squad players that don't really fit his apparent preferences. Common sense would dictate to put things into context and show a minimum of patience.
 

KrasHammerhand

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We didn’t finish well, couple of great saves and 2 critical errors at the back. We need to make some changes, I think we have the right manager, however there is quite a bit of work to be done.

We need to be ruthless with the squad, moving players who do not have the right attributes, skills or desire to be here. We also need to drastically fix the wage issues that have risen up. This will mean moving some popular players.

We can afford to pay anyone but there has to be a plan on and off the pitch.
 

sp_107

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This is turning out to be a good thread. I believe people started coming into terms and realised the reality. If anyone thinks this thread is an over reaction to our loss against Wolves they must think how many of our players can walk into other 10 TOP teams in Europe? Hardly two or max three and that is the problem.

To fix any problem first step is to realise there is a problem and OLE is not that daft unable to see through things, If not he too will end up like previous 3 managers, As simple as that

I would say get rid of some deadwood and bring in 5/6 top players unlike 9/10 players suggested by others and once they are settled try to replace other 4/5 players. This has to be done

Couthino, Sancho, Bissika, Tanguy Ndombele(Lyon), Manolas, Koulibaly are few can improve us. I feel a player with a fighting character whose heart is really set on playing for UTD is a better option than a superior player with inferior/half-arsed mentality. At that time I was angry that SAF missed few good players, Now I realised he might not have seen that mentality in those players he missed and some could be hard to get as other places were more appealing. After spending more than half a billion it is really sad to see we dont have at least 4 top class players who can walk into top teams in England let alone Europe
 

ROFLUTION

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If its the player material, then its ultimately on Woodward and Glazers.

They get off too easy. There's not enough quality in our team, and there's not enough quality in width/competition for players to develop into that extra 10-20%
 

RooneyLegend

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Of course it's the players. Van Gaal and his protégé wasted 700 million of club funds. Outside of DDG, Pogba, Shaw, Martial, Rashford and Lukaku there is very little in this squad. Certainly not enough to compete at the highest level.
 

nore1975

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The managers sign the players. They make judgment calls on signings and selling of players. There has been a lack of strategy in terms of signings since 2013.
 

simplyared

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With respect the title of this thread and what it is implying is not far off ridiculous imv. We can't start blaming the players and saying it's not down to the manager. Example: Ole picks the team and he put Fred in it yesterday so that's his call and anyone who knows anything about football can see Fred is far too big a risk to put in our starting eleven in such a crucial game.
 

Chairman Steve

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The recruitment by all the managers since SAF has been awful in hindsight. Moyes dithered then panic bought two players who didn’t fit, LVG got rid of some dross but then replaced them mostly with different dross, Jose bought some then either fell out with them or never played them.

The Sanchez deal should have been the straw that broke the camels back with the club, and realised how fecked the policy is. Find a DoF, settle on a style of play with them, set the criteria for players you want against that style and keep tabs on them. If you find a given player who is flat out amazing and will work for any manager then buy them if we end up in another situation where we don’t have a permanent manager. LVG from memory has alluded to this type of system already existing in the past where I think he said Herrera and Shaw had already been scouted for the club and he merely thumbs upped it, and Martial was bought mainly for the manager who came after him.
 

roonster09

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I'm still not seeing what everyone is freaking out about. Our squad is pretty much anywhere from 3rd to 6th. Mourinho had us performing at 6th place pace (if not lower). Ole has us above the other 3 but just behind top 2. We dont have some massive problem. We need a few signings to fix a few problem positions, as you would expect, and then hopefully we can push for the top with some time.

Not entirely sure what the point of this thread is. Did anyone actually think a manager could instantly come in and win the title with this squad? This squad should be in the top 4, Ole has us playing to that level (if not a bit higher). Signings are obviously needed if we want to improve. That's literally common sense. Nobody looks at our squad and thinks even if we had Sir Alex in charge, we'd be able to beat Pep's City to the title.
Lunacy is the word that I have in mind. Even if you ignore the fact that we have been generally good in 2019, we are currently not fielding the best first eleven because of recent injuries and the manager has to do with squad players that don't really fit his apparent preferences. Common sense would dictate to put things into context and show a minimum of patience.
Agree with both posts. We don't have title winning squad for various reasons but we have good players, need few more signings to take us to next level.
 

Dr Fink

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Do you think pep would get a tune out of this squad? Personally I'd say yes.
I'd say - no. Too many are uncomfortable in possession. Some struggle to get it under control, never mind run or turn with it (Lukaku). A lot are too slow in acting/reacting (Matic). Some struggle to pass (Smalling). Pep would struggle with this lot.
 

kps88

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I'd say - no. Too many are uncomfortable in possession. some struggle to get it under control, never mind run or turn with it (Lukaku). Pep would struggle with this lot.
The thing people keep ignoring when answering this question is Pep would never let himself get stuck with a squad like this. He would have prioritized upgrading our back four so we could play out from the back. We probably would not have been able to spend the same as City but there are players they signed in the same period that we could have competed for. This is where the manager has to be given credit/blamed over the players.
 

Dr Fink

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The thing people keep ignoring when answering this question is Pep would never let himself get stuck with a squad like this. He would have prioritized upgrading our back four so we could play out from the back. We probably would not have been able to spend the same as City but there are players they signed in the same period that we could have competed for. This is where the manager has to be given credit/blamed over the players.
Bang on.
 

cyril C

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I reckon it'd be similar to his first season at City where there was a clear imprint of his tactics on the team, but still too inconsistent and suffered some bad results.
Let me think. City won the league in 13/14, Pep joined in 16, inherited Hart, Clichy, Sagna, Aguero, KDB, Silva, Toure, Kompany, Sane, Jesus. He got rid of Hart and the 2x fullbacks, not exactly revamping the squad, right?
 

TRUERED89

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Let me think. City won the league in 13/14, Pep joined in 16, inherited Hart, Clichy, Sagna, Aguero, KDB, Silva, Toure, Kompany, Sane, Jesus. He got rid of Hart and the 2x fullbacks, not exactly revamping the squad, right?
He bought Jesus, B. Silva, Sane, Walker, Stones, Mendy, Danilo, Gundogan, Nolito, Zinchenko, Bravo, Ederson, LaPorte, Mahrez. Got rid off Yaya and a shit load of others. So tell me how that isn't a revamp? :lol:
 

Raw

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Let me think. City won the league in 13/14, Pep joined in 16, inherited Hart, Clichy, Sagna, Aguero, KDB, Silva, Toure, Kompany, Sane, Jesus. He got rid of Hart and the 2x fullbacks, not exactly revamping the squad, right?
It was said by everyone how City would need major revamping as they still relied on their core of great players, and everyone else was shite or old. They still had a decent team sure, but their squad depth was shite. With the amount Pep spent, they've basically got a 2nd team that could still challenge for the title. If that's not revamping then I don't know what is.

It was similar to ours, except our core of players isn't as great (but still pretty decent). Our squad is just full of deadwood and other shite.
 

breakout67

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Player recruitment not players. Rojo got a new contract to try to get sell on value, Jones got a long new contract, Shaw got a bumper new contract after a handful of good games, Martial got a new contract despite binning off a whole season because of drama with his missus, Darmian is still on the books, Young got a new contract, we are getting held to ransom by a work horse midfielder, a tree tried to hold us ransom but no one wanted him.

Have a look in threads about the higher ups, and still there are some defending them. They let the manager be the fall guy, while lining their pockets, and moving us down the pecking order.
 

Kemizee

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You make some very good points. It's plain as day our build up is shite and has been for years, the issue with Smalling has been creeping its way into the room for a while. He's a very good defender but he really hampers the way we want to play, not just because he can't distribute very well but also because he forces the best CB distributor we have out of position. The difference between Shaw and Young is night and day, one's capable of carrying the ball 50 yards and offering a defence splitting pass, the other has no idea what to do when he gets the ball and regularly concedes possession with his aimless clearances.

Another thing that stops our transitions is Matic, he's just not very good anymore. He's slow, casual and immobile, his lazy recycling of possession is thoughtless and lacks direction. The amount of counter attacks he's cost us this season borders on frightening. The issue we're having with Pogba at the moment is that under Solskjaer he needs Herrera to have a good game, so we can push him further forward. That's when we've played our best football.

The width issues are worrying. Dalot has been a breath of fresh air in that regard. However, he's still not a true winger and like you mentioned we lack an actual winger in the squad. The one we do have is currently playing at full back. Something else worth touching in is the lack of movement we have in the final third. If you look at City, they usually play the game in the opponent's final third but they're constantly looking for one-two's and the overlap to create space and therefore chances. When we're in possession in the opponent's final third we tend to take that as an invitation to remain static, when we do actually overlap and offer movement we create some good chances.

From where I'm sitting we still look like a team trying to understand what it is, sometimes we look like we want to be a possession team, sometimes we look like we want to be a counter attacking team and sometimes we look like we want to be a high pressing team (occasionally even a mixture of all three). We need to settle on a style then sign the players who would allow us to play that way, much like Liverpool and City have in recent years. When everyone's fit and at their best I still think we have the makings of a very good team in there, but there are some very tough personnel decisions to make in the coming windows, we really can't afford to mess this summer window up.
Great post. My thoughts too.
 

Ventura

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It's not black and white, it's not the manager or the players. It's the sum of everybody and everything at the club. We've been mostly unimpressive under 3 managers after SAF, with different styles and "philosophies". It's obvious that player recruitement has been pretty bad overall. A number of players are not quite as good as we need to challenge for the top trophies. Ole has to work with what he has for now, and taking us into the top 4 debate at all has been an astonishing achievement. But I think everybody knew it couldn't last for the entire rest of the season and that we would get some bad results. It has been partly the managers fault too (I'm looking at you in particular, Moyes). Results were not that bad under Mourinho until this season, but he's just a Major *** and had to go, after insulting club and players for a long time, creating an impossible atmosphere to work in. Now I don't know if Ole is a "better" manager than him or other candidates, but it's not always about who has the best CV, we should know that better than anyone by now.

But by far the most important factor in football is the players, and with the wrong ones, there's only so much a good manager can do.
 

cyril C

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It was said by everyone how City would need major revamping as they still relied on their core of great players, and everyone else was shite or old. They still had a decent team sure, but their squad depth was shite. With the amount Pep spent, they've basically got a 2nd team that could still challenge for the title. If that's not revamping then I don't know what is.

It was similar to ours, except our core of players isn't as great (but still pretty decent). Our squad is just full of deadwood and other shite.
Yes, City has 4x 50m fullback that is envy to every club. Pep has somehow managed to keep all happy but how long will this last? And do you think Ole would have the same charm and credibility this summer? 22 top players is not going to work for this club (or most other clubs IMO), 16-18 top players is a more realistic goal. 2 (extra) attacking players, 2 MF and 2 defenders, plus a few young players who may make it. For my definition, Fred is supposed to be a senior MF, McTom falls under the young player category, Perreira & Dalot fall somewhere between senior and young. Whether they are good enough is a separate debate.

If we do get a decent RW and let Mata go, there will be Lukaku/Rashford/Martial/RW/Lingard/Perreira 6 at front. Barely enough games (for 433) to keep 5 players happy and Perreira will have to fight for his chance.
 

cyril C

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He bought Jesus, B. Silva, Sane, Walker, Stones, Mendy, Danilo, Gundogan, Nolito, Zinchenko, Bravo, Ederson, LaPorte, Mahrez. Got rid off Yaya and a shit load of others. So tell me how that isn't a revamp? :lol:
How many of them starts week in week out?

I doubt Pep has heard of Jesus beforehand, may be he knows about B Silva and Sane so assume they were his inputs. Pep major changes was on the LW fullbacks, and goalkeepers.
 

bushyboy

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Do you think pep would get a tune out of this squad? Personally I'd say yes.
Not a chance. That's why he chose City over us. Not only did they have better players but knew the owner would back him to get the squad he wants. He has two quality players in every position.
 

Christie

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So we have wrongfully sacked Mourinho.

It's the players. If we have given Mou what he wanted, he wouldn't have downed tools and we can build on our second place finish.

Does anyone here still think we can do a title challenge next season?
 

roonster09

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So we have wrongfully sacked Mourinho.

It's the players. If we have given Mou what he wanted, he wouldn't have downed tools and we can build on our second place finish.

Does anyone here still think we can do a title challenge next season?
Oh dear.

Our results shows we should have sacked him lot earlier and if a manager down tools just because he didn't players then he should feck off and never manage again.
 

MoskvaRed

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Today Ole tried to rest a few players ahead of Tuesday and we saw the results. I think at full strength we have 2/3 of a good first XI (with glaring weaknesses on the right side, and underpowered at no.10) but the squad depth is very poor. People like Rojo and Mata should have been shown the door years ago.
 

AndyJ1985

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We have maybe half a dozen decent to good/very good players. Beyond that we have a handful of mediocre players. And beyond that we have some horrible, piss poor players who should be nowhere near this club. It's actually impressive how we've managed to build such a shit squad with so much money. If you handed someone £700m and they built a squad as shit as ours you'd accuse them of sabotage.
 

Di Maria's angel

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We have maybe half a dozen decent to good/very good players. Beyond that we have a handful of mediocre players. And beyond that we have some horrible, piss poor players who should be nowhere near this club. It's actually impressive how we've managed to build such a shit squad with so much money. If you handed someone £700m and they built a squad as shit as ours you'd accuse them of sabotage.
What doesn't make sense is how you get played by West Ham, or Southampton, or Reading? Or Huddersfield, or Derby, or Bristol City?

Seriously, there is something fecking wrong with this club.
 

podurban2

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We need a complete overhaul. Martial, Lingard, Mata, Lukaku. These players need to be replaced asap.
 

Jacob

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No surprise here, we have 2 or 3 (DDG, Pogba, maybe Lindelöf) players at most that could play for a PL winning team.