Over on Football Fancast a writer named Tom Costello took it upon himself to draw up a list of what United fans want for Christmas.
I had a read and I must say there were some that I disagreed with, I think there are a number of things we could do with and without that were included and weren’t included on that list so let me have a little go (I’ve been a good boy I promise).
1. Sell Wes Brown: I’d rather we didn’t actually! Wes may not be the player he was in 07/08 but with the number of injuries he has had who would be? I’d have him as a solid back up option to Rafael any day and definitely would take him ahead of O’Shea and Neville but again that’s just me!
2. Gigi Buffon: Really? The same Buffon who hasn’t played since the World Cup due to injury? At 32, Buffon is relatively young for a keeper and no one can deny he is still one of the best between the sticks but and this is a BIG but, how many injuries has he picked up in the past few years?
A bad back is an injury that won’t get better with age so why not spend less money on a younger keeper? Dunno just makes sense to me, maybe I’m the one that’s crazy?!
3. An away win: Would be nice especially with Chelsea coming up but meh top of the league with a game in hand, 2 points ahead of Arsenal & City and 3 ahead of Chelsea says we aren’t doing too bad. Our away form does need to improve but at the mo it isn’t a huge concern plus Stoke fans seem to hate us so it must stick in their craw that they are the only team we have beat away in the league this term.
Now for what I want!
4. Give youth a chance: We have some good youngsters, obviously we are out of the Carling Cup and the league is still finely balanced despite our position but I would like to see some of these guys get a chance. Rafael has benefitted from a run in the team, Welbeck is looking great with some games under his belt at Sunderland and Cleverley is looking good now he is getting games at Wigan so why not?
5. Return to form of Jonny Evans: He’s going through a rough patch right now but he is young and learning. A bit of confidence will do wonders for his game and it takes one good performance to get that. There has been talk of a loan move and if that is what it takes then so be it.
6. Creativity in the middle of the pitch: Scholes is still the pass master and putting younger lads to shame but he is on a strict time schedule and we can’t hold onto him forever (I’m still willing to under go any body swap experiment that will see him get another 10-15 years, nobody will miss me not even my own family!). Anderson has been stepping up recently but he offers something different to Scholes with his direct running and energy compared to Scholes’ sweet passing and knack for getting the goals. Anderson can pass but his range is nothing like Scholes’ (really though whose is?) and his passing doesn’t always come off.
7. #19: This one is rather self explanatory, every fan wants to win their league but as one of our readers, Jonathan, pointed out amidst all the doom and gloom that has surrounded the club on and off field we aren’t actually doing too bad. People expected us to crash and burn once Tevez and Ronaldo left and they felt these claims were vindictaed with Chelsea pipping us to the title even though it was by the grand sum of one point so what better why to shut these people up by winning the league whilst still ‘not playing well’ ?
These are just a few off the top of the head from me, I’m sure I’m missing loads and probably some big ones at that so what would you like?
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My ultimate wish would be that our youth step up to the point that we don’t need to make any signings at all. I won’t lie and say transfer rumours don’t interest me, but as I’ve always felt, there is no greater glory than to win with a team that was developed from within.
I’d much rather see guys we worked with and invested into like Macheda, Cleverley, Eikrem, Morrison, Obertan, Fabio etc…help lead us to glory than going the galactico approach.
Fergie is doing a brilliant job – as he’s always done – in ensuring we have the experience to compete for every trophy while making opportunities for the new talent.
For me, no signings in January, and let’s see where things stand at the end of the season.
I actually would have preferred two class midfielders, one a creative spark offensively who can also score goals, the other a defensive linchpin to protect the back four and boss the middle of the pitch. But Anderson of late has really blossomed and could, if he can maintain consistency and be allowed to play in his natural attacking role, turn out to be the creative force the team has long needed – his passing is better than you give him credit for (take the Blackburn game as an example) and will only improve with additional playing time.
So basically, all we need now is someone to replace Hargreaves in the role he was purchased for.
Also, given a bit more time Cleverly looks quite capable of becoming a midfield dynamo as well.
Lastly, I REALLY wish Sir Alex would ditch that idiot striker of ours who can’t score a goal to save his life – and has made blasting the ball into the stratosphere over goal his signature shot – and give Berbatov, the form striker, an extended run as the sole player up front in 4-5-1 formations against the better teams.
I don’t think I was overly harsh on Anderson, he can pass better than average but like I said he isn’t Scholes.
I think you on the other hand are being overly harsh on Rooney, he’s been very selfless in his play recently working very hard. Was at OT for the Valencia game and he worked his ass off tracking back and all over the field fullstop. Hasn’t added a goal to his play yet but has gone close (the shot that hit the bar against Valencia as well as the shot lob the ‘Chesney’ got finger tips on) so it’s just a matter of time.
Timbo, I think you have a point about the defensive linchpin. That’s one position where we aren’t particularly strong presently, and I’m not too aware of anyone through the ranks who can challenge for that spot in the relative near-future.
I’m a fairly big fan of Lass Diarra. I can’t really figure out why Real only use him sparingly as he’s very good. He can do the defensive work exceptionally, but he’s quite productive offensively as well.
So I’d probably have to contradict myself and say we could use another player, but there really aren’t many beyond Diarra that I’d be interested in…well maybe Pastore as well, only because he’s frickin’ brilliant!
we should swap evra with diara and sell oshea, carrick, kusjack and gibson and try to buy gareth bale….
Swap Evra with Diarra? Really?