April 26, 2013 in Uncategorized
The way Manchester United reclaimed the Premier league title from Manchester City, was a true sign of the desire within the club and everyone involved, from Sir Alex right through to the reserve players. Wrestling the title out of Roberto Mancini’s hands with four games still left to play can and should be viewed as an empathic response from a side born with the never say die attitude instilled by Sir Alex Ferguson. But exactly what went wrong for Mancini and his team? What has Man United done differently this season compared to last season?
As soon as Aguero won City the title with virtually the last kick of the season that is when Mancini should have started to think about improving his squad. Knowing that Fergie would respond with some big name signings, it baffles me as to why Mancini settled for players such as Scott Sinclair, Jack Rodwell, Javi Garcia and the overrated Maicon instead of focusing on problematic areas. Any team aspiring to be the best must have versatility, clearly City is lacking in that department. With no recognized winger in their squad except for Scott Sinclair, I am mystified as to why Mancini did not go for an established winger, someone who knows the English game and has vast experience in the Champions League? Arjen Robben comes to mind, I am sure if City tried to they could have persuaded Bayern to sell. Samir Nasri has been a shade of what he was last season. The creativity in midfield is mainly placed on the shoulders of David Silva and Samir Nasri but since the latter failed miserably to create anything, it put more pressure on the likes of Yaya Toure to push forward. Yaya is in all honesty City’s most valuable player and what makes him such an outstanding player is his ability to read the game and break down potential threats around the penalty area. He is also an outstanding tackler but since he was forced to play the role of creator, City’s defence became vulnerable. Perhaps Mancini could have strengthened a key area by signing Arturo Vidal. By the time the January transfer market came around, Mancini already had a mountain to climb to get back into the title race and not to mention their dismal performance in Europe.
James Milner, Gareth Barry and Mario Balotelli should have been sold long before the season started, but in January it was only Balotelli who left and joined AC Milan. A good move on behalf of Mancini but failure to sign a replacement made no sense at all. Gonzalo Higuan has been on the brink of leaving Real Madrid for some time now, so why Mancini never made an attempt to sign him is beyond my understanding. As soon as Wesley Sneidjer became available City should have tried to sign him, especially with the abysmal performances of Nasri.
Sir Alex Ferguson made a huge statement when he announced the signing of Robin Van Persie and Shinji Kagawa. It was no secret that those two attacking players were signed with the sole purpose of scoring more goals than last season. The impact of Robin Van Persie was immediate and United showed just how good Van Persie really is. Ferguson finally had a squad of players with whom he could impose different formations and tactics without sacrificing the quality with which United play. Phil Jones and Michael Carrick played their parts to perfection and both can be viewed as unsung heroes. The emergence of Jonny Evans has given Man United fans around the world something to smile about, as his wonderful maturity in defence at such a young age is proof that the future indeed is looking bright. Last season Man United were lacklustre too often but this season Manchester United’s consistency became the massive difference between losing the title last season and winning it with time to spare this season.