Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Irrespective of Bayern result, Fergie needs at least three new players this summer..

Ahead of tonight's Champions League second-leg quarter final at Old Trafford with Bayern Munich, Fergie told the media that there's no need for a wholesale buying spree. Irrespective of the outcome of the Bayern tie, many will beg to differ.

United have lost seven league games this season to date; in many a season gone by the club would not still be involved in the title race, but amazingly we are. The champions were knocked out of the FA Cup by a third division side. Last week we faced Bayern Munich and United were devoid of ideas in midfield - the performance has been described as bad as last season's Champions League final, in which we were pretty much out-played following the opening ten minutes.

Aside from winning the Carling Cup - a trophy that none of the 'big clubs' give two hoots about - it has been a disappointing season. Wayne Rooney's goal-scoring transformation has been one of the few highlights.

The problems within the squad are obvious and many. United are short on genuine star quality up front. Berbatov was brought to the club at great expense, but he has failed to consistently live up to expectations. Ferguson needs at least one new striker.

Fergie is too reliant on Scholes, Neville and Giggs; how much longer can the manager keep on going back to the well, before it is empty? The problem was highlighted last week when the manager started with Neville and Scholes in the last three games; that decision back-fired as Neville was guilty of giving away a free-kick, when he inexplicably handled the ball (a sign of fatigue perhaps?). Neville's mistake led directly to Bayern equalising. In midfield, United were very much second-best and this was against a weakened Bayern side; Scholes, Carrick and Fletcher were totally ineffective.

Fergie might well argue injuries have played their part this season, but that argument is only partly true, because many of the problems have been brewing for a number of seasons.

It's true to say Hargreaves and Anderson have both suffered long-term injuries. But Fergie cannot wait forever as far as Hargreaves in concerned, that much is clear and you do wonder if the end is nigh for the England star. As far as Anderson in concerned, he has been given enough opportunities and like Berbatov he has failed as far as consistency is concerned.

Players like Carrick (axed several times this season) Fletcher and Park lack genuine star quality: all three have weaknesses in their respective games. Fergie can call upon the likes of Darron Gibson and John O'Shea, but they will not provide the answer.

United need a new midfield general - a world-class player - someone who can replace Scholes. Fergie argues that transfer fees are inflated - he's only partly right on that assertion. Fergie has made some big mistakes over the last couple of seasons. The United manager could have tried to sign Sneijder from Real Madrid; United had the perfect opportunity when we were negotiating the Ronaldo deal. In the end, Mourinho snapped up the Dutch star and he has steered Inter Milan to the Champions League semi finals for the first time in seven years. Sneijder was sold for just 15 million Euros - which is hardly an inflated fee.

United also have problems in defence. Rio Ferdinand has been troubled with back problems over the last 12 months. There are doubts about Vidic's future. Without raking over his antics, the Serbian has let himself and the club down over the course of this season. Ferguson needs at least one new central defender.

Fergie had the answer to his central defensive problems in the form of Pique - who now looks to be the finest central defender in the whole of Europe. Allowing Pique to leave and failing to realise his true potential was a criminal act and one that could have saved United £30m. Fergie could have made a bid to sign Lucio who Inter bought for just 5million Euros - again this was not an inflated transfer fee.

Finally, we come to the goalkeeping department; Edwin van der Sar isn't under any pressure for his place in the starting eleven, and here again the manager is relying on another veteran. With no obvious heir apparent, it looks like Fergie will have to spend to replace Edwin sooner or later.

Contrary to the publicly expressed views of the manager, clearly, the current squad needs new blood. When Fergie says he doesn't need wholesale changes, he is kidding no one. The spine of his team needs to be significantly strengthened, and the sooner the better.

IF Ferguson decides to retire at the season's end, it may well yet turn out to be in yet another blaze of glory, because as things stand, United are still in the hunt for the big prizes. However, looking at the current squad, you wonder how many would be retained if someone like Mourinho came in to replace Fergie.

Given what Fergie has achieved and being a near impossible act to follow, it is questionable if someone like Mourinho would take the job; not unless he was given pots of money to spend, because there's much work to be done and you can guarantee his list of player requirements would be based on the issues contained within this post, because they are so obvious.

Ferguson has been a great manager, everyone knows it, but if he did retire tomorrow his legacy for any incoming manager wouldn't be a great one. United do not have a young emerging team; we have a team that needs major rebuilding in every department.

4 comments:

  1. well am sorry to say but i boldly deny your last paragraph and i can deny wat yu said united have no team coming up, wic is don't agree with

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  2. Well, that's fine, but I disagree strongly...

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  3. I disagree with only 1 thing... Anderson has largely not disappointed. Yes he has been inconsistent to date, but that can be attributed to the fact that he has yet to learn his role in the team. You can't expect a young player like him to live up to the billing of "Paul Scholes' successor" at 20 when he's never played that position before. The fact of the matter is that Carrick has been absolutely dreadful, Fletcher is tired and can not play day in day out with Carrick and other aging midfield counterparts. We NEEDED Anderson.

    Rafael and Carrick are to be blamed for this one. That was a piss poor effort from Carrick. Rafael played a terrific game against Ribery with the exception of the stupidity in getting himself sent off.

    We NEED Anderson to come back strong next season. And we need to sign at least 1 striker, 1 midfielder, and 2 defenders.

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  4. I believe we need one creative and strong central midfield who can create and conquer the area to replace Scholes. Another midfielder to replace Giggs. If we can buy one of these players, it could be fine. Another area to improve is the attacking area. Berbatov has to go. We need a forward who constantly a threat and looking at goals. 2-3 players has to come in. I believe Goalkeeper area has another to solved so there is not hurry. The central and forward area is the most important ones.

    ReplyDelete

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