Manchester United started the new season on a positive note as we claimed our first piece of silverware, the Community Shield. The match showed and convinced fans like me why Ferguson is right to stick with the squad that he has.
The eleven players that started the game were all regular players from last season, except for maybe John O’Shea due to his injury and maybe Fabio. Chelsea too used the same players that they had last season, except for perhaps Essien, Ferreira and Hilario. But what was different was the confidence that I had after seeing the team sheets at the start of the game.
It was practically the same teams that played against each other last season (Chelsea vs. Man United) but last season, I had always felt that it was Chelsea who was going to win whenever we meet. This time round, it was different. Chelsea’s players are soon going to be using walking sticks to move around the pitch while our squad is being infused with youngsters with massive potential.
Looking back at the various games we played in pre-season plus the Community Shield, I believe we are well equipped to go into the new season firing on all cylinders. The reason being: The Players.
We have such a variety of players. Some are the constants, others are pushing on from last season, a crop of youngsters are trying to claim a starting berth in the team and lastly, inspired signings made by Alex Ferguson once again. Constants such as Rooney and Scholes, are expected to have another stellar season. The likes of Nani and Valencia will be hoping to quiet any remaining critics and justify their positions as starters in the United team. With promising youngsters such as Cleverley coming into the squad, it’s plain to see why United fans are feeling positive for the future and last but not least, the two signings that were made in Chicharito and Smalling. These two ‘unproven’ signings might just turn out to be the difference makers in our season, especially ‘The Little Pea’. Sound and impressive performances from both in the pre-season have raised fan’s optimism. With them on board, United’s defense will only get sturdier and our offense will be nothing short of devastating, two areas that were major factors in our performance last season.
With the Community Shield in the bag and a much improved squad despite only two summer signings, many have already marked Manchester United as favorites for lifting the Premiership crown come May. And when that happens, don’t say we did not warn the rest of the EPL!