Jake Humphrey Exclusive: “United Will Challenge”

BT Sport is where the best in domestic and European football go head to head, and Manchester United could be one of the best this season after extensive summer spending.

Jose Mourinho’s summer business has impressed BT Sport presenter Jake Humphrey, who believes that United have a strong spine, typical of a Mourinho team.

Talking exclusively to Man United UK at BT Sport’s media day, Humphrey said.

“I think that Man United are looking more like a Jose Mourinho team all the time.

“They have that spine down the middle of David de Gea, who it looks like they’ll keep for one more season, Nemanja Matic in the middle who’s been brilliant in pre-season and Romelu Lukaku who we know is a proven goal scorer at this level.”

However, while Humphrey is impressed, he also has his concerns.

He believes the players in front of Matic, bar Lukaku, need to step up this season if United want to challenge for the Premier League title, especially the Paul Pogba, formerly the world’s most expensive player.

Humphrey said.

“The big question mark has to be over the players in front of Matic.

“Paul Pogba has to deliver now because he’s got Matic holding behind him which leaves him free to go and do what he wants, so there’s no excuse.

“Also the players in the wide areas, you are looking at Juan Mata, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Jesse Lingard. They are fighting for three places across the front and I think they are all of a level but three of them have to step up and start delivering.

“If they can do that then I honestly think they can challenge for the league this season. They’ve got enough there to do that if those players can deliver.”

A number of pundits have been critical of Victor Lindelof’s pre-season performances.

The £35 million signing from Benfica has not convinced many in pre-season but Humphrey thinks he will be okay.

The presenter also believes that while United look weak in the left-back spot, Luke Shaw should be given a chance.

“People have been critical of Lindelof which amazes me.

“He is 22, coming into a new team, it takes a massive amount of mental strength and time just to get used to playing in a new league, so he’ll be fine.

“I think the only area they have to question is at left-back. They looked a bit vulnerable there in the Super Cup but, if they can get Luke Shaw fit and firing he could become a world-class footballer.”

So is there a title challenge on the cards?

Humphrey certainly thinks so.

“I think Man United will challenge for the Premier League. That has to be aim this season. They’ve had a year under Jose, they’ve spent an awful lot of money. They’ve strengthened in all the areas they have to.”