Now that the curtain has come down on the 2018/19 season, everyone seems to have an opinion on who Manchester United should be signing, how the team should be changing and so on. In the know accounts are working overtime to link United with nearly every world class player on the planet.
The squad will jet off on their summer holidays now, leaving behind the manager and his coaching staff, to pick the bones out of this less than impressive campaign. Be sure that they will leave no stone un-turned, before the reported 1st of July pre season return.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has issued a stark warning to his players that they should be returning after the break already in decent shape.
“The players have all got their programmes to do over the summer. We expect them to be ready to go on July 1 when we start,”
“We’re not going to use the first 10 days to build them up. They should be ready to go. We’ve got a longer summer break than any of the other challengers and we need to use that as an advantage.
“It’s not like a threat, but whoever is not ready on July 1 will probably stay here and not travel with us because we only want players we can use over there.” – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
With United needing major changes on and off the pitch, I decided to throw my penneth worth, into the mix. These are what should be the start of which OGS can build his United legacy.
Get Pogba Firing
Paul Pogba is undoubtedly a world class player. Never before in all my time as a United fan, has a player split opinion so much. For me though, I believe that the manager should look at building his side around him. People have criticised him for his attitude and application. He was never like this at Juventus or with France on the way to winning the World Cup. My thinking behind this is that at both Juve and France, Pogba was/is surrounded by world class players. At United though, a midfield which is often shuffled about, undermines his confidence to play with the freedom that he clearly craves. Find the key to the Frenchman and behold a world of riches. Failing that if the price is right and he clearly doesn’t want to stay, then cash in!
Find A Leader
What do Bryan Robson, Steve Bruce, Eric Cantona, Roy Keane, Gary Neville, Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra all have in common? Well apart from all being Premier League winners and playing for Manchester United, they were all leaders of men. Players who could grab team mates by the scruff of the neck and drag them through games kicking and screaming. United are clearly lacking a motivator on the pitch. Someone that when the chips are down and the backs are against the wall, can bang their chest and say ” come on lads, we are Man United, lets pull our fingers out “. At the moment, United are seriously lacking in this department. Ashley Young, David De Gea, Tony Valencia and Chris Smalling have all shared the armband. None of which I would class as an ideal candidate. This needs to be addressed.
Sort The Defence
With United leaking the most amount of goals this season since the 1978-79 season, its clear to see that what used to be the linchpin of title campaigns, is now a rickety creaking door in what we would call a defence. The Red Devils conceded 54 goals in a 38 game season, culminating in only two clean sheets at home, the worst home defensive record since 1962-63. OGS needs to invest in some new blood as another season with Smalling, Jones and Young at the back will mean another season of pain and misery. Dalot impressed in his debut season and now needs to be given the right full back berth on a regular occasion. Luke Shaw, Players player and Player of the Year, is a steady eddy on the left. Will also be interesting to see how the summer plays out in regards to the David De Gea saga. United will need to act swiftly in either tying him down or letting him go.
Play With Freedom
When OGS was made interim manger in December 2018, United’s form took an upward turn. Goals galore followed in the next five games with impressive wins coming around the christmas and new year period. Defeat away at Arsenal in the league would signal the end of the free flowing football in which the manager had looked to bring in, thus returning back to the playing ethos of former manager, Jose Mourinho. Towards the end of the season, United were ending games having had little to no shots on target. A worrying statistic. Be brave. Fans will forgive you for losing games with an attacking verve, but they wont forgive you for losing by parking the bus.
Ditch The Black Shorts
This never really sat right with me. The kit for the season had far too much black in it for my liking. I understand that on the rare occasion when United play in red that we will have to wear black shorts, but to wear them all the time, now come on! We are red shirts, white shorts, black socks. Can we go back to this please. I am blaming this design on a terrible season. Its the only thing I have left.
Ole’s at the wheel!