Glory, Glory Man United?
Last season Manchester United won the Community Shield, the League Cup and the Europa League to the delight of Jose Mourinho and United fans. However not so long ago a season like this would have been ‘beneath’ United fans, and referred to as a ‘Scouse Treble’. Despite their incredible outlay on players, the Red Devils finished a lowly 6th in the Premier League last year. What are their chances of returning to their former glory this term?
888sport currently have United as outsiders for both the Champions League and the Premier League, and whilst the likes of Barca, Chelsea and Man City might seem more tempting, United could offer the best value in the long-run.
Since Alex Ferguson retired there has barely been a season gone by without Manchester United spending unbelievable amounts of money. In fact, since the legendary Scot retired the club have actually spent more than they did during his entire 27 year reign.
This season has been no different, whilst Wayne Rooney and Bastian Schweinsteiger have headed for the exit, Romelu Lukaku, Nemanja Matić and Victor Lindelöf have come in for a combined total of £146 million. The transfer juggernaut shows no signs of slowing with United targeting another winger before the transfer window slams shut.
The Frenchman joined United last year in an eye-watering deal, rumoured to be worth £90 million. However he failed to make the desired impact, often being asked to play in a deeper role. With the arrival of Nemanja Matić, Pogba should be allowed more freedom this term and could prove an influential attacking threat.
The powerful Belgian was reunited with Jose Mourinho for £75 million this summer as United seek to fill the void left by Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Despite being called a ‘pussy cat’ by Martin Keown, Lukaku was top scorer in the league last season. With the right supply he could repeat that feat this year and help United turn disappointing draws into victories.
Last year United were incredibly disjointed, with round pegs in square holes there was no link between defence and attack. The £40 million Serbian will provide that link for United this term, allowing a more fluid approach from the Red Devils.
In 2008 at the Stadion Luzhniki in Moscow, United sealed a Premier League and Champions League double, defeating Chelsea 6-5 on penalties. That squad included the likes of Rio Ferdinand, Wayne Rooney, Paul Scholes and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Considering the financial outlay during Mourinho’s tenure, the club should firmly have their eyes set on claiming top prize in both of these competitions. Whilst the current crop lack the mentality of their 2008 counterparts, they do not lack the talent. With one or two more additions before the end of the transfer window they could find themselves very close to bringing back the glory days of Manchester United.