Unpopular Opinion: United and Chelsea can challenge next year

sp_107

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Genrally Klopp teams run off the gas after 1 or 2 season so I am curious to see what happens to them next seson, probably this covid break might have helped them to recover.

If Chelsea can add players like Kai I am sure they will be in a good shout too.

Depends on what kind of players we sign we will be in a touching distance with top team. Looking forward to see landscape changing signings of 1 or 2 for us.
 

wolvored

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I can't see utd or chelsea really challenging to win the league next season. I think the aim will be 3rd and get much closer points wise . This will then hopefully set a springboard to have a go the season after. We are a top striker RW DM CB away and this won't all be addressed this summer. If Pogba leaves we will need a CM as well.
 

Red_Aaron

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They're capable of beating the top 2 in one off games but they've shown nothing close to the consistency required to rack up 100pts.
Both are still at least another season away from challenging for me.
I expect a Europe-less city to win at a canter next season
 

OleBoiii

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It's not impossible. The keyword in the title is "can".

Title retention is hard and Liverpool's luck(?) with injuries could change at any moment. City, while great, is not the same team anymore. It all depends on consistency. We know that Chelsea and us can beat any team in the top 6, but consistently beating sides that park the bus is what separates champions from the rest.
 

NewGlory

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Because neither are elite managers, and it’s going to take an elite manager to beat City & Liverpool.
Mourinho was an elite manager. Much good that did us, or is doing Spurs...

Pep wasnt an elite manager once, as well
 

Sandikan

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We're starting to drill teams again, so we've already improved a lot on early season United.

But proper progress needs big signings this summer.
 

NewGlory

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Why would this be an unpopular opinion on a Utd forum.
Did you get a chance to read the responses? :) Basically: way too many "Ole isn't proven-enough manager" fans on this forum. Despite the fact that any manager needs a great squad to challenge for a title. I doubt Pep would have done much better with the crap of a squad Ole inherited, but...

Anyway, what gives me hope is: quality of signings (even if Bruno's could have been earlier), improvement in those who can improve (AWB, Shaw, Greenwood are a delight to watch), and that Ole clearly holds his own with top teams (takes a good tactician when it happens consistently), and after Bruno's arrival we have been much more consistent. The squad is still not finished, we need couple key signings, some more cleaning and some more depth, but a lot of it could happen in the summer, if Ole is backed properly.

p.s. Today's game against Brighton was amazing!
 

Andycoleno9

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It will sound strange but i am worried after today's game. Our first 11 are top class and on lets say tournament could get title. But i am not so sure anymore that we can challenge for next season's title. Our depth is awful.
Fred, Romero and Baily. And that is it. We have 14 players. Ighalo can be useful for smaller games and McT can be useful in some big games where want to sit back.
So we are on 16 players basically.
 

Siorac

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I mean, you never know. The last seven years taught me that United can be safely ruled out of contention so there's that.

But apart from my traumatised self, the PL does tend to change rapidly. Liverpool improved 21 points from 2018 to 2019. Everyone knows Leicester's story. But there's also Chelsea, getting 93 points in 2017 and then nowhere near the next year... so you never know.

I don't think either team will challenge.
 

RedNed77

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I’d be happy with 75-80 points and a solid third place finish next season. Ideally if we can look like we’re challenging at times and then followed the next season with a proper challenge where we’re in it to the end.
We still need a couple of seasons before our younger lads really hit their stride and also to bed in a couple of summer windows of transfers. 2 this summer, with 3 or 4 the year after.
Slowly does it in my opinion, no need to go ruining the chemistry that seems to be developing by going mad in the market this year.
 

Josep Dowling

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We are on a good run but the pressure is well and truly off this entire time. Everytime we are close to making top 4 we bottle it. I understand the positive vibes, we are playing good football but let’s not get carried away. Our squad depth isn’t good enough to challenge Liverpool or City at the moment. If we got Sancho, kept Pogba and replaced Shaw I would say there is a chance of the title. Liverpool look like a machine and I think they will be difficult to stop.
 

Fitchett

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It will sound strange but i am worried after today's game. Our first 11 are top class and on lets say tournament could get title. But i am not so sure anymore that we can challenge for next season's title. Our depth is awful.
Fred, Romero and Baily. And that is it. We have 14 players. Ighalo can be useful for smaller games and McT can be useful in some big games where want to sit back.
So we are on 16 players basically.
I'd add Williams to your list of decent back up. If we sign Sancho or Grealish, that brings our squad up to 18, which is a fair amount for rotation.
 

RedRob

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If this two-year Europe ban gets upheld, then City have lost a lot of their purchasing power. It's bad enough for us, who have to rely on wheedling players to join us by saying they're the missing link who'll take us to Europe. City could have a lot of players (and a manager) pushing to leave this summer, because careers are only so long and not many will feel an affinity to City, which will just make buying all the harder for them. It's not quite a transfer ban, but if they want to avoid downgrading their squad with players of Lingard's calibre, then it's not quite not.

Chelsea and us both have both had the same problem this season: good first team, weak squad options. Chelsea have acted quickly to bring in attacking players, but I'm really unsure about their defence; they've conceded 41 goals which is closer to the team who have conceded most (Villa) than the team who've conceded least (Liverpool). It's the same number as Arsenal, whose defence has been a laughing stock all season. Despite how much we claim to have a crap goalkeeper and defenders, the fact that only Liverpool and Leicester have conceded more than us shows we don't. Our record in front of goal is what appears to be slowing us down - although having brought Fernandes in, that appears to now be significantly less of an issue. Sancho is still an absolute must and I would convert Ighalo's loan into a permanent move, giving Greenwood the opportunities that he has shown he deserves.

Klopp has committed to not spending big money this summer. If you've ever read Keane's autobiography, he tears into United for not going after the biggest players in world football after the Treble to consolidate the place atop Europe. If Liverpool take the same approach with their fairly thin squad, they won't find next season as easy. If they do build appropriately, they will be incredibly difficult to stop.
 

11101

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Liverpool are not the team they were last year and City are not poised to capitalise on that, but they're both comfortably 80-90 point teams and we're still some way off that. There is a question mark over where our goals come from vs. park the bus teams, and our defence whilst generally solid is prone to conceding stupid goals.
 

paulscholes18

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I don’t think the bench is there for us to challenge. 4 signings away and a fair amount of deadwood needs shifting
 

Fletchageddon

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I think Wolves will be up there too. They have completely matched our run point for point but nobody is talking about them because of Pogba and Fernandes. They are flying under the radar. I think Wolves, Chelsea and United will all be more prepared next season. This season especially for Chelsea and United has been transition with the bonus of CL (hopefully).
 

JB08

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I can’t help but see a bump of this thread coming in November when we’re already 17 points off top :lol: hopefully I’m wrong though :wenger:
 

Glorio

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So I notice the arguments seem to centre around squad/bench strength. I actually agree with them that we need a stronger bench, however, just a thought: How good is Liverpool's bench really though?

Just asking because outside that front 3, you basically get Origi, and if VVD and/or Trent is injured, that defense suddenly looks a lot weaker. What you have is a team that has had an unusually good injury record, rather than quality throughout.

It's only in midfield that I'd say the drop in quality with the starters vs the subs is not massive, and that's simply because they are all mostly very good players and work well as a unit without many individual superstars (would you swap any for Bruno or Pogba?).
With that said though, they did hit a bit of a snag when Henderson was out.

Not saying we'll challenge, or we won't. Was just something that came to mind when reading through. It would be really interesting of Liverpool got the same sort of injuries to their big hitters that we did earlier in the season.
 

Coleyoscar

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It would be really interesting of Liverpool got the same sort of injuries to their big hitters that we did earlier in the season.
Really good point. Losing Pogba for so long and Rashford and Martial for long periods were big blows. As I recall the Liverpool front three were practically injury free for the season. With a couple of shrewd acquisitions and a bit of luck (always required) I think we'll be closer than some people think. (Of course I confess I've had 50 years practice saying this).
 

Lynty

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If we have successful transfer window (at least Sancho), keep Pogba and avoid lengthy injuries - yes I think we can challenge. City without Champions League football will be hungry though.
 

NewGlory

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I can’t help but see a bump of this thread coming in November when we’re already 17 points off top :lol: hopefully I’m wrong though :wenger:
Could happen, but currently we also over-appreciate our competition. City right now is 23 points behind Liverpool at just 63. Really not any better than when we finished 2nd behind City, under Jose.

As for us vs. Pool, not saying we are currently doing better, but for what it's worth, this numbers show that we shouldn't think we can't get there, fairly quickly (especially if they experience the very likely and highly expected dip in the form):

 

Rish Sawhney

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Us challenging is very dependent on recruitment this summer IMO. If Pogba leaves we've taken a massive step back and I fear it almost rules out a title challenge next season. But if we get a couple of key players in I think we can.
 

TheLord

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Having watched yesterday's match, I am convinced Chelsea will not compete for the title next season if they fail to buy a proper CB and a LB. Their defence is in shambles atm.
 

Strelok

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Yes if by some miracle we would have our full first XI injury free the entire season. Liverpool had that the last two years. Feck Klopp, just steal their entire medical staff :wenger:
 

Lentwood

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Chelsea won’t challenge. They can’t defend.

United COULD maybe finish top two but only if we get lucky with injuries. In reality, I expect our standard 8 injuries by the end of September and our lack of depth will scupper us and we will probably finish 4th.

That being said, add Grealish and Sancho and it’s a different story
 

Roane

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I've always said that the Ole 3 year contract was about making major changes to the way we functioned post SAF.

Tbf some of that blame is ln SAF too in that we have needed a MF since scholes and Keane. His genius meant we still won trophies.

Back to Ole, I always felt his role was to get us to a point where someone like Pochettino would could come in and take a decent squad to the next level. I think the LVG and Jose years showed how much damage there was and how much work needed doing.

Now the first team is looking good I think the next window or two will see us looking at the squad as a whole. Ole keeping likes of Lingard etc wasn't through choice imo but necessity, but we will see some of those move on.

I still hold the view that Ole is a 3 year appointment but his success may surprise us all and he has the chance to talk himself into a long term role
 
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Womp

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Get Sancho and a midfielder who can operate deeper and as a CM eg. Zakaria in, sign T.Silva on a free and have a proper go at it next season.
 

Relfy

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I think next season would be too much of a gap to bridge for United and Chelsea. City and Liverpool have shown levels of consistency which are unheard of over the past 2-3 years combined. I do think that both United and Chelsea will shorten the gap and quite significantly so, as well as having a major say in who does run out as the eventual winners.

If United can be aggressive in the transfer market and plug a couple of holes, and then do the same in Jan or next summer then I think we can make a major challenge. We still need someone for RW, I think we need a new starting CB and a DM (despite Matic's recent resurgence it won't last forever) all of first XI quality. The squad needs some fresh faces too as we will be shipping some lads out, and we need a bench which allows us to change things in game.

Chelsea similarly also have to make some changes. LB, CB look like they need strengthening for them. They have entered this summer market strongly however so I expect an improvement next season from them.

City have some ageing stars in their team, namely Aguero, as well as Silva leaving and Kompany already departed. They need to make some moves and upgrade a few options of their own.

For Liverpool it is a question of whether they can maintain this consistency and pace of play. They haven't been too active last summer and I have a feeling they won't do too much this summer either. I can see their front thee staying next season but with an eye on moving one out the following year.

All being well United can strengthen this summer, form a solid starting XI with some good bench options, and get off and running early next season. If we can maintain this present form for the rest of the campaign, we should be going into next season full of belief in our ability.
 

romufc

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I think the talk for challenging is a bit premature. We need top 4.

If we win 6/6 remaining games, that will give the team and coaches confidence that they can go next season and challenge. 8/9 wins would be a good way to take momentum into next season.

We lack the winning mentality, I can see this coming if we win the next few games, get into FA cup Final and EL final.

The next 2 months are crucial in the development in this team. If we end up with no top 4, No cups, no chance we challenge next year.
 

Pav1878

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I think the talk for challenging is a bit premature. We need top 4.

If we win 6/6 remaining games, that will give the team and coaches confidence that they can go next season and challenge. 8/9 wins would be a good way to take momentum into next season.

We lack the winning mentality, I can see this coming if we win the next few games, get into FA cup Final and EL final.

The next 2 months are crucial in the development in this team. If we end up with no top 4, No cups, no chance we challenge next year.
I kind of feel this way too. Just feels like a pivotal few months for this team. If we can achieve top four, and win a cup or two, would be a great springboard into next season.

The unbeaten run is great and long may it continue (it has to for us to get top four in all reality), but having seen Emery's Arsenal 22 match unbeaten run and how it all unravelled there, I dont think we can read too much into that and makes me nervous to start talking of challenging at this stage.

Let's hit our targets for this season and be positive going into the next.

As much as I dislike Klopp, he said it best when he stated Liverpool will not be defending their title but attacking the next one. This is how we should approach it. No fear of losing games, but hunger to win games. That's the difference between a title winning team and a challenger.
 

groovyalbert

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I think we can absolutely challenge is we bring in Sancho, a Grealish/someone similar and reliable cover for our CBs. We would then need our luck with injuries to completely turn around.

Keeping players fit/a regular starting group is key to any title challenge. It's what has allowed Liverpool to dominate the last couple of seasons. It's actually mad how little time out their key players have had.
 

DWelbz19

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Neither will “challenge”, but the gap will be a lot less than 30 odd points between third/fourth and first.

My guess:
Liverpool/City = 90+~ish points
Man United/Chelsea = 75-80~ish points
 

romufc

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I kind of feel this way too. Just feels like a pivotal few months for this team. If we can achieve top four, and win a cup or two, would be a great springboard into next season.

The unbeaten run is great and long may it continue (it has to for us to get top four in all reality), but having seen Emery's Arsenal 22 match unbeaten run and how it all unravelled there, I dont think we can read too much into that and makes me nervous to start talking of challenging at this stage.

Let's hit our targets for this season and be positive going into the next.

As much as I dislike Klopp, he said it best when he stated Liverpool will not be defending their title but attacking the next one. This is how we should approach it. No fear of losing games, but hunger to win games. That's the difference between a title winning team and a challenger.
This is why I think the next month is so crucial, it isnt just about top 4. Its about getting the winning mentality, getting CL, attracting 1/2 quality players, confidence into next season.

I do not take notice of this unbeaten run tbh, it makes no difference to me if we draw 2 games and maintain the unbeaten run and not finish top 4 it means feck all.

I think the team that we are building to Emry's one is totally different. We can say we have 2/3 genuinely WC players who can walk into most teams.
 

JJ12

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Depends how well we do in the transfer window but I can see us being the main challenger to Liverpool.
 

Pav1878

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Depends how well we do in the transfer window but I can see us being the main challenger to Liverpool.
I really hope so. How good would it be for Liverpool and United to be going for the title again? One trying to equal the record and us trying to keep our noses in front.

They are our rivals and we don't want them winning anything let alone a title. But their success these past two seasons could be good for us to kick on.
 

OnlyTwoDaSilvas

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I don't see why Liverpool can't win it again. They reached a CL final, won it the year after and came incredibly close to the title (and in normal circumstances, 97 pts wins you the league by a mile) and then won the league a year later. They're not a one-season wonder, and their squad is of a good age. They lack depth outside of their starting 11, but I think that is the case across the board now. Liverpool will be an attractive prospect this transfer window. I'm sure they'll be strong.

Chelsea have already made a statement with their incoming transfers, and the season hasn't even ended yet. But they still have a couple of key areas to fill in defence.

We're heading in the right direction, but I hope that doesn't mean Woodward and the owners get complacent. We still need a few players to challenge. Sancho would be the obvious one. I'd still be keen to improve our CB situation as I'm not fully convinced on Lindelof, and Matic has become incredibly important again with no one really capable of doing what he does. A good window could see us push. A bad window could see us fall behind if we don't build on these good few months. It would also be great if Pogba signed an extension and put to bed the constant rumour mill around him.