So when are we going to get off our backsides and challenge this City/Liverpool dominance of winning trophies?

Globule

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A statement of intent in the transfer market would be welcome, but we have to find the right balance and make sure it's the right players rather than just targeting the biggest names. That's where we've gone wrong in the past.

Under Ole we look to be making the right signings, so the perfect reaction to watching our rivals win trophy after trophy is to continue with the same policy but on a more aggressive scale. That means spending on young, hungry players who buy into the club's ambition and that address weaknesses in the squad. Not just buying for the sake of being able to say we've spent a lot of money.
 

Mainoldo

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A statement of intent in the transfer market would be welcome, but we have to find the right balance and make sure it's the right players rather than just targeting the biggest names. That's where we've gone wrong in the past.

Under Ole we look to be making the right signings, so the perfect reaction to watching our rivals win trophy after trophy is to continue with the same policy but on a more aggressive scale. That means spending on young, hungry players who buy into the club's ambition and that address weaknesses in the squad. Not just buying for the sake of being able to say we've spent a lot of money.
When have we ever signed the best biggest names for it to be a point of where we have gone wrong? Maybe if we tried to sign the biggest names we would be successful?
 

MancFanFromManc

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We absolutely must mount a title challenge next season :devil:. Surely seeing Liverpool win it will be a huge motivator. Even without Sancho and/or a CB, from the way we've been playing this should be possible. We're lacking cover in a few positions which would be my major worry re a long campaign, but we certainly have enough quality, just need consistency (and I'm hoping Bruno has already brought that extra edge we needed - still love how pissed off he was when we 'only' drew against Everton - love that reaction and haven't seen it for too long!). If they need any additional pushing, hire Keano to do the half time team talks :p
 

Nikelesh Reddy

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Now this isn't me criticizing Ole or the players or anything but seeing Liverpool ending their 30 year title drought tonight and watching the likes of SkySports and BT wanking over them has really got me thinking about our current standing. Now tonight hurts, I'm not going to lie I think seeing Liverpool win the league is one of the things I probably wanted to avoid as much as possible in my life, it hurts and I hope the United board and Woodward (Highly unlikely that they care) and Ole and the players (bit more likely) are hurting from this. We have watched possibly the greatest Manchester City team of all time win numerous trophies, one after the other and god forbid they have a Champions League that they are still going for in August and we now seen arguably one of Liverpool's finest sides win not only a title but won a Champions League and Club World Championship in the past 12 months.

So anyways what I'm trying to ask, with the current rebuilding job happening at United. When does it become a stage when we can't keep making excuses that we are rebuilding and keep watching the likes of Liverpool and City win trophy after trophy. I totally understand that there's alot of problems with deadwood in our squad but with three or four new signings who slot into the team, I think we possibly have a team that can get to that level of where City and Liverpool are and it needs to start fast.

We are too big of a football club to watch our biggest rivals win the trophies we now crave for. I'm not saying we have to go out and win the Premier League next season or challenge for the Champions League but we really need now to start seeing progress where we can beat and challenge for trophies again. It's grand rebuilding now to bigger and better things but it's been nearly 12 months now and I do think Ole has a fair idea of what we need and hopefully he can get the players in, If not him, then someone else who can do what the likes of Klopp and Pep have to do their respective teams.
We have improved as a team over the last 4-5 months but I”m still not sure if Ole is the right man to take us back to the top.But if we can qualify for next seasons CL,and if we can have another good transfer window in the summer,then we can significantly reduce the gap next season.But one step at a time first,let’s get CL football for next season...
 

RedCoffee

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This will hopefully give the club and players the biggest kick up the arse since Fergie left. We certainly have the ambition. Let's hope the players have the belief.
 

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We'll see if the club are serious in investing now to get us back. The ambition will be obvious if it's get 4th or challenge.
 

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When have we ever signed the best biggest names for it to be a point of where we have gone wrong? Maybe if we tried to sign the biggest names we would be successful?
You're kidding right? Remember Di Maria and Falcao? Unless you literally mean Messi Di Maria was the biggest and best name available then.
 

jamesjimmybyrondean

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To go back to dominace we need:

1) Very solid defense and goalkeeper
2) World class striker
3) Squad depth
4) World class coach
 

VeevaVee

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Shaw needs competition for his spot too, he's complacent... good but not a title winning player, as much as Shaw was touted to be something special, his potential was cut short by his injury which is sad but that's football.
I feel it’s him as much as his injury. His attitude has rightly been questioned at key points in his development, by both fans and manager, only for a sob story to be fed to the media for what is in my opinion PR purposes.

Breaking your leg and ‘almost losing it’ doesn’t justify coming back from the break overweight for 3 seasons after. If that was his attitude on his off season I’d suggest he wasn’t that dedicated during the rest of it, and as much of a cock Jose is for making it public, his ultimatum would suggest there was something not to like there too.

He does seem like he’s knuckled down more recently, but it might be a bit too late to reach his potential.
 

Giggsy13

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Luckhurst really hit it home this morning with his article about how this all happened. That summer of 2018 was the turning point. Jose demanding defensive reinforcements, a net spend of £72.5 million and watching the dippers go and break records on VVD and Allison. You are deluded if you think Woodward and the Glazers are good for our club and the 2018 summer demonstrates their incompetence perfectly.

It’s been cited once here already but if we’re a club that truly cared about winning and our status we would look at Madrid’s summer of 2009 as the benchmark. Barca win the treble and Perez goes out and has the greatest summer window I’ve seen any club have. Getting Sancho is the bare minimum. All of you Covid apologists can get bent, we need to show our true intentions or it will be 21-20 very soon.
 
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Mainoldo

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You're kidding right? Remember Di Maria and Falcao? Unless you literally mean Messi Di Maria was the biggest and best name available then.
Falcao had a major injury hence why we got him on loan. Di Maria was a big signing.. but it’s hardly like getting C.Ron from Manchester United or Kaka from AC Milan was it.
 

Rish Sawhney

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Falcao had a major injury hence why we got him on loan. Di Maria was a big signing.. but it’s hardly like getting C.Ron from Manchester United or Kaka from AC Milan was it.
It was petty much on that level. Ronaldo and Messi aside he was probably the biggest name at the time.
 

Globule

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When have we ever signed the best biggest names for it to be a point of where we have gone wrong? Maybe if we tried to sign the biggest names we would be successful?
I mean the likes of Falcao, Di Maria, Schweinsteiger etc. The players with big names but not the right player at the right time.
 

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Its just consistency. Title winning teams perform week in week out. We have proven we can beat anyone. Bar Liverpool, Man City and Chelsea we should be capable of maximum points from the rest. That should be 96 points. Sure its not that clear cut you will loose to lesser sides but maybe win against a top team. But just theoretically there is no reason why we cant do it right now.
But that's the thing though: top teams always used to be able to beat everyone bar their direct competitors on every single occasion, yet no-one used to reach the points totals that we've seen the last few seasons. That's not just injuries or some other form of luck. And considering Liverpool's squad, is not just a matter of getting the best player in every single position either.
 

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I really like us as a cup team next year and would happily put some money on United in the CL if we make it. We can beat anyone on our day but we are still building the squad and the manager is still figuring out who he can trust. To be fair he’s being methodical and not shipping out half the squad at a time which would inevitably mean another transitional season. It’s probably the right call but it’s painfully slow progress. What I will say is if we fail to sign a RW and some quality squad depth this summer then we will be struggling for 4th again. Yes our starting 11 is solid enough but we need better players to push our starters hard and rotate. Liverpool have won the CL and the league with very solid recruitment and coaching and it feels like we’ve finally learned that doesn’t mean just going out and buying a big name just because he’s available. With stats and all that other stuff it’s about developing an effective system, getting the best players for that system and having quality backup. You also don’t need superstars for a system. Unfortunately I think if they keep the core of this team they’ll probably win it again next year and then start to decline and hopefully lose a few players to the Spanish clubs. It’s a perfect storm for them at the moment of them being very good and everyone else being in transition. You gotta give it to them for raising the bar on the pitch and finding some value in the market especially while every club in the league is loaded. They also play good football. The absolute Wankers.
 

Niall

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We can still win more trophies than Liverpool this season. Plenty of glory for us still to win in the coming weeks :devil:
 

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A newbie talking sense! Lets keep this one.

I think you're right in principal; Klopp and Pep are the best tactical managers in the world, and are the main reasons behind their side's respective dominance. If I hear another idiot telling me that tactics don't mean that much in modern football I'm going to pull my hair out.

Investment is important though. The signings of Van Dijk, Allison and Fabinho turned Liverpool from a very good team into a world class one. Same for Pep with the investment he made in his second season. The trick is targeted signings; being really careful in terms of picking the players you want, and doing your due diligence to be certain they have the character, the ability, and style to fit in with what you have, and add what you don't have. The mistake (or one of the mistakes) we've made in previous seasons in the transfer window is feeling like we have to spend on a player, any player, to fill the gaps. If you're 5 players down your shortlist, maybe its better to just not spend, and wait for a better opportunity. But when you do have an opportunity to get your first choice, you go for it, and you pay what it takes, because if you have a coherent transfer strategy, you know you'll be confident you'll be getting quality in the long-term, rather than wasting slightly less money on a player who will give you a poorer return, who you might have to replace again in 2 years.
Sorry, I had missed your post. I totally agree. I think targeted recruitment also goes back to the idea that you don't need superstars in every position. Nobody saw Wijnaldum as a great buy for Liverpool, but he is doing a perfect job playing the role required of him in Liverpool's machinery.

It's almost like Moneyball in US baseball: you get players that excel at very specific things to just play that one role. It doesn't really work that way in football, because tactical functions aren't as singular and isolated and stats are more muddled (but it's getting better quickly); but it's the same kind of principle: figure out what you want (which is hopefully a potential 90+ points approach), figure out what's missing in the current squad to achieve that, and fill that hole very specifically - including all the considerations you're listing in your post.
 
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Slysi17

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We could go for VdB, I am sure Ole is keen, unless Kai Havertz is somehow available. I don't see Ole being shy about it, I think the English thing is what he said once to explain that we want to be Manchester United located in England, not Russia, but beyond that? He's looking for all type of talent. We took Bruno, right? We are thinking of Kai or VdB. Those are players Ole seem to like. Let's not worry too much about this English stuff, with Sancho, our starting 11 will have Rashford, Sancho, Maguire, AWB and Shaw for now. That's 5 players. It's a lot. Let's imagine Greenwood comes in, it's even better, etc... but I am sure we have the will to get great players, whatever the nationality.
Well put. Hopefully he sees what Sir Alex did and has a mixture of foriegn talent and English players providing they are at a high level like a Jadon Sancho.
 

Slysi17

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Fernandes is top drawer, but Maguire is extremely average and we need better. £85 million for him, even in today's transfer market, is bonkers.
Funnily enough I think Harry Maguire ain't that good and certainly worth nowhere near 80 million pounds. Don't think he wins you titles.Mark Goldbridge from the United Stand raves about him and thinks he's great. Think he has been average and has no pace whatsoever. Should of spent an extra 10 million and got Koulibally. Think the same about Dan James but to be fair he come from the championship so will give him some leeway and see what he does next season.
 

RedSky

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Liverpool are still several tiers above us. They only lost 1 PL game in calendar year of 2019. They went on a 44 game unbeaten PL run from 12th January 2019 to 24th February 2020. That level of consistency is incredibly difficult to replicate.

It's unlikely they can continue at this level of form, but even if they did drop down a level they'd still be very, very hard to catch. It's going to take us a while to build that consistency, it's not something that occurs over night, the objective for next season should be finishing 3rd and pushing the top 2. That would be a decent step up, once that's been achieved then we can think about stepping up that final notch and challenging Liverpool/City for the title.
 

el3mel

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They did, but the signings of Ronaldo, Benzema and Alonso eventually proved critical in Real Madrid’s rise from 2011-2014.
Most of their success was in Europe. However they won only 2 leagues in the next 9 years, one under Mourinho the other under Zidane. Barca still dominated the majority of seasons in Spain, and even Atletico Madrid won one. This tweet makes it like this market ended Barca's dominance or something
 

TheNewEra

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Liverpool are still several tiers above us. They only lost 1 PL game in calendar year of 2019. They went on a 44 game unbeaten PL run from 12th January 2019 to 24th February 2020. That level of consistency is incredibly difficult to replicate.

It's unlikely they can continue at this level of form, but even if they did drop down a level they'd still be very, very hard to catch. It's going to take us a while to build that consistency, it's not something that occurs over night, the objective for next season should be finishing 3rd and pushing the top 2. That would be a decent step up, once that's been achieved then we can think about stepping up that final notch and challenging Liverpool/City for the title.
The problem is though if you play the same squad frequently without rest you eventually get injuries, especially given some of the ages of the players now. Not all players can play 2 games a week at 28+ without rest and any injury to Firminho, Mane or Salah really changes the dynamic of the team.

If you have just one of them injured you can man mark the runner easier than you can if you have all three fit.

Liverpool although they have had a brilliant season one thing they got in that run was incredibly lucky too with injuries and plenty of last minute goals.

If that squad was a year or two older, although they're in their peak late in games they won't have the same stamina, intensity and they'll also be more prone to injuries.

Also other teams like City will strengthen their squads.

I honestly think next season it won't be a 20 point gap, it'll be 5-8 between the top teams and of course they'll need to routinely rotate the squad in coming years.

SAF was a master of rotation and rebuilding squads, I think one reason that SAF had such a good time in terms of a trophy haul is he had a mix of youth and senior experienced players (Giggs/Scholes well into their 30s) they perhaps weren't winning leagues by 20 points, but they had long term success over a decade versus one year challenging, the following year rebuilding.

United won 3 in a row some years, that is harder to replicate than winning a single title by 20 points.
 

TheNewEra

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Most of their success was in Europe. However they won only 2 leagues in the next 9 years, one under Mourinho the other under Zidane. Barca still dominated the majority of seasons in Spain, and even Atletico Madrid won one. This tweet makes it like this market ended Barca's dominance or something
The difference in that case is money can't buy a team like Barcas, Barca literally had one of the best club sides ever assembled in that times, with the best midfield ever assembled with GOAT too.

When you have Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Messi, Alves, Alba, Pique (pique to a lesser extent) in a team, it doesn't matter if you spent 1 billion on players in a transfer window (not possible but for context) you still won't catch them in the league.

Barca played the perfect system with the best squad imaginable, you can't buy that.

Liverpool and City hardly have the best teams ever assembled, their system is good but they certainly don't have players close to prime Messi, Xavi, Iniesta, Busquets.
 

Giggsy13

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This scouser team is very good but let’s be honest, they’ve benefited from the historic decline of United and Arsenal, and to a lesser extent Chelsea. Our 07/08 team had to deal with a much tougher title race than the scousers had to face this year. Chelsea will be well placed to make a real title challenge in the next few years and have shown that their serious about this transfer window. We have a mouthpiece in Woodward who likes to tell everyone we’re serious but let’s see if the commitment is there this summer. Next year the bare minimum goal should be putting in a more credible title challenge and guaranteeing a top 3 place.
 

el3mel

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The difference in that case is money can't buy a team like Barcas, Barca literally had one of the best club sides ever assembled in that times, with the best midfield ever assembled with GOAT too.

When you have Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Messi, Alves, Alba, Pique (pique to a lesser extent) in a team, it doesn't matter if you spent 1 billion on players in a transfer window (not possible but for context) you still won't catch them in the league.

Barca played the perfect system with the best squad imaginable, you can't buy that.

Liverpool and City hardly have the best teams ever assembled, their system is good but they certainly don't have players close to prime Messi, Xavi, Iniesta, Busquets.
I don't disagree. I am actually optimistic about the core of the team we have at the moment. Just thought how this tweet about Madrid's market back then was worded in a hilarious way that's all. Didn't mean comparisons.
 

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I wonder what would have happened if Solskjaer took over from SAF in 2013 with the same backroom staff.
Interesting. It sounds like would have been ole with SAF and his back room team to assist him... I think we’d definitely have gone for Thiago and took it from there. I don’t think we’d have fallen quite so far behind either. One major positive of everything falling apart is there has been a modernising of the training ground, youth setup, data analysis and scouting. That will at least stand us in good stead for the future whoever comes in.
 

RedStarUnited

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Liverpool are still several tiers above us. They only lost 1 PL game in calendar year of 2019. They went on a 44 game unbeaten PL run from 12th January 2019 to 24th February 2020. That level of consistency is incredibly difficult to replicate.

It's unlikely they can continue at this level of form, but even if they did drop down a level they'd still be very, very hard to catch. It's going to take us a while to build that consistency, it's not something that occurs over night, the objective for next season should be finishing 3rd and pushing the top 2. That would be a decent step up, once that's been achieved then we can think about stepping up that final notch and challenging Liverpool/City for the title.
People always say things like this, Liverpool themselves finished 25 points behind City in 17/18. the very next year they lost a title by a point.
 

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I think the club are heading in the best direction they've been in so far since fergie left and it's down to Ole, the man deserves praise,

Ed's names seems to be mentioned less and less which, is also a good sign, the real test will come this summer, will we get our desired signings to improve this squad to the next level and will we get our business done in time for a full pre season , i wan't to be optimistic here but a leopard doesn't change it's spots and I think Ed is such a waffler and piss artist that he can't just get something done without drama, I really admire Chelsea when it comes to that, they just seem to get Business done so smoothly and quick,

Everyone says the Sancho deal will take time because it's a big deal, it's complex blah blah blah, if we really want the player, and the player really want's us and Dortmund are willing to sell, either pay what they want or move on now to other choices, not play hardball until the last day of the window and, dortmund again tell us to f*** off and we end up signing Ryan Fraser, we paid the price for Maguire after months of waffling, we paid for Bruno eventually after 6-8 months of waffling, imagine we had him for the start season if Ed didn't fanny about ...

There can't be anymore excuses for not signing players because we "want to work with what we have" , you sign world class players who will fit your team and surprise surprise you become better, the evidence is there with Bruno, we clearly need more bite in attack and Sancho would 110% elevate us, it would bring us up a tier, I also think we need an upgrade in CDM , we need a new LB who can go straight in there because Shaw is just not cutting it and ideally a better partner for Maguire, and then another attacker who can rotate with Bruno and Pogba such as Grealish or Donny VDK, now granted it might be difficult to fill all those positions in 1 window, however at a bare minimum get your priorities in, 3 players minimum.

The ball in Ed's court here, lets see how really ambitious he is, if the sight of Liverpool winning this year isn't enough to go hell fire on getting Ole's top choices, then my friend it's time you depart from that role.
 

londonredmaniac

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They spent what would probably be the equivalent of around £500m on 8 players and less than half of them turned out to be any good. Barca also continued to dominate for 3 years. I’m trying to imagine the meltdown on here if we did the same and ended up getting beaten 5-0 at Liverpool.
Indeed, great point.
 

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Dippers winning the league SHOULD absolutely be a huge kick in the pants. But the Glazers and their placeman Woodward only really care about the bottom line.

Would love to see a couple of real key signings. But will we be able to fully offload Sanchez and Rojo? Suspect if we end up with Sanchez back in the sick room with Phil Jones, his salary is going to be a major impediment to recruitment
 

Fussball13251

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People always say things like this, Liverpool themselves finished 25 points behind City in 17/18. the very next year they lost a title by a point.
Yeah but things has to change. He bought Virgil van Dijk, Fabinho & Andy Roberson. Losing 1 player Coutinho actually turned things around. They became much, much stronger defensively. It wasn't by magic.
 
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Sandikan

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I think we're definitely making major progress. The last 3 signings have gone very well with Bruno being an absolute game changer so far.

A Sancho level signing, and another quality centre back this summer, and we'll make even bigger strides.
We also obviously need Rashford, Martial and Pogba to play a lot more than they have this season, and all 3 to develop and perform at their best.

Shift a few of the Mata, Jones, Lingard, Rojo gang out, and promote a few more youngsters.
 

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I'm really hurting from all the commotion outside Anfield and wish it where outside OT. Anyway we need to follow a few steps to get back to the glory days and here they are-
1) Get the likes of Sancho, Grealish, Rice, Kalidou into the squad.
2) Get rid of Periera & Lingard.
3) Get the formation sorted according to our strongest XI and get the fringe players to sit in the places accordingly.
4) We need to understand that building from the back and going through the midfield and then through to the forward players with a pattern.
5) We need to put the players through a hard quick passing sessions and quicken the play X4 times.
6) The most important thing, Ole needs to bring in substitutions quicker and give players more of a chance to make an impact in the game.
We are a work in progress because our squad is very young but we can get there sooner than we think.

Next year is ours! Come on!
 

In Rainbows

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Yeah but things has to change. He bought Virgil van Dijk, Fabinho & Andy Roberson. Losing 1 player Coutinho actually turned things around.
If we get Sancho, it would mean we bought Bruno and Sancho. Surely that's an apt equivalent? Considering our form since Bruno was brought in and then adding Sancho to that...
 

Fussball13251

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If we get Sancho, it would mean we bought Bruno and Sancho. Surely that's an apt equivalent? Considering our form since Bruno was brought in and then adding Sancho to that...
Fabinho is their Fernandinho. He's the engine in midfield. Pitch awareness. Then behind him you have van Dijk. Then the always reliable Andy Roberson who never makes silly passes out of defence. They probably wouldn't be winning the league if it wasn't for the sale of Coutinho.

https://www.skysports.com/football/...w-the-premier-leagues-best-holding-midfielder
 
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tjb

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I don’t think the squad is a million miles away, certainly not the starting 11.

I don’t think player for player Liverpool or City are much better than us, but they have a system and style and a proven manager.

Look at that City side last night. Out of those that started for them I’d probably only have Ederson, KdB and Mahrez ahead of our lot.
I agree. The difference is we still have a few glaring weaknesses like the right flank that can hinder our play and the quality in depth they have allows them more consistency. We are guilty of overplaying our star players due to this
 

Maticmaker

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We are beginning to add better players, who also make others play, we have youngsters who are learning all the time, we have a manager who knows what is wanted and apart from Matic who is playing really well again now, but isn't long term, we have the nucleus of a really good squad. What encouraged me watching the Sheffield game was seeing Ole thump the seat or whatever was in front of him in frustration when Rashford missed his first sitter.

This is where we have to step up, Liverpool do not like losing.... and they don't, we have to get that feeling and spirit back. If Marcus wants to remain a top United player he just cannot miss two sitters like that in one game. He's not the only one, De Gea has given goals away even when he has saved them as well, Luke Shaw continues to give you a heart attack with his defending at times and even though he is probably our best defender going forward, his day job is to stop the opposition. We had four or five players with their rated performance between 8-10 against Sheffield, we need to be getting seven or eight players getting those kind of ratings, two out of every three games, then we can say we are on our way back.