Arsenal FC, Chelsea FC, Clubs, Manchester City, Manchester United

Premier League Summer Transfer Review

Sanchez pic for blogArsenal have now made two big summer signings in each of the last two years… Ozil last summer, and Sanchez this time around. In doing so, Arsenal have come up as huge players in the transfer market… In buying Sanchez, Arsene Wenger has not only brought over a team player, but an experienced leader. I enjoyed Ozil’s move to the Emirates last summer, but I don’t think he possesses the leadership and conviction necessary to sweep away the players around him. When Ramsey went down last year, Arsenal lost the lifeblood of their team – he was the clock that never stopped ticking… And, you could tell that they missed his presence on the field. In fact, when he went down, their midfield seemed disillusioned and wary, missing his leadership and energy… but, with the arrival of Sanchez, the young Arsenal players get a world class player with that Ramsey-esque world class mentality – that will be sure to keep everyone on point. Furthermore, Keiran Gibbs declared Sanchez an “animal” in training – which goes to show you how mentally fit, focused and committed he is at getting better at his craft. Journalists would be dead wrong if they shared the same assessment of Sanchez that they did about Ozil at this past summer’s world cup. In fact, it’d be blasphemy to ever say that Sanchez hasn’t put his heart and soul on the pitch every time he’s been on it. With Laurent Koscielny in the back, Ramsey in the middle, and Sanchez in the front, Arsenal now have a psychologically fit player with strong leadership, in all thirds of the pitch, and I truly do believe that they’ll fight honorably for this year’s premiership title… I think they’ll finish second or third… That said, Wilshere needs to step it up – and, it wouldn’t hurt them to buy a true defensive midfielder… but, even if they don’t, they’ll be a force to be reckoned with.

Now on to Manchester, who finally seem “united” again . LvG has somehow taken lifeless players and breathed a new Herrerah pic for blogsense of belief into them… Ashley Young, Kagawa, Rooney, and even Chicharito have starred in their preseason campaign this summer, and, I believe their new 3-4-1-2 formation has a lot to do with it. Ander Herrera’s move to United kind of took me by surprise at first, but, what I’ve learned over the course of the summer is that LvG knows exactly how to put his players in the best position to win. United, like the Netherlands, don’t have any world class center backs, so, it makes sense to start Jones, Smalling and Evans together – with the attack oriented Rafael and Luke Shaw as wingbacks to offer support to both the attack and defense. Furthermore, Herrera’s combative yet technical nature seems to be exactly what the back three will need in front of them this year. He will play in a similar role as Nigel de Jong for the Netherlands this past summer, and will certainly succeed through developing a rapport with Spanish compatriot Juan Mata. With the back three, two wingbacks, and Herrera all shoring up the defense, players like Rooney, Van Persie, Ashley Young (unless LvG keeps playing him at wingback), Nani (if he gets his act together), Kagawa, Valencia, Mata, and Welbeck, will all be able to exert full energy to their attacking efforts. This will inevitably cause problems for anyone they face… And you’ll hear it here first. I think they’ll win the premier league this year because of it… even despite their terrible first season game.

Costa pic for blogChelsea have seemed to make all the right moves, but honestly, I’m not sure that they have. Although I love the Fabregas purchase, as it finally addresses the midfield hole that they’ve had since selling Mata, I think they’ve really missed the boat by selling David Luiz, and here’s why: Although Luiz played really well in a defensive midfield position last year, I think that he would have come into his own this year and really mastered it. In fact, I think his role at Chelsea this past year played a part in his ineffectual displays at the world cup playing center back with Silva. In other words, my mouth waters at the thought of Fabregas, Luiz, and Ramires in the Chelsea midfield together at the same time… Matic lacks the Fabregas pic for blogtechnical quality that Luis possesses, and he also isn’t as physically gifted… Chelsea must stop selling the wrong players, and start buying the right ones to compliment who they already have. For Mourinho, that means learning how to adapt to his players needs, rather than to his own, and also believing that he can make mistakes, because right now, his ego should be at an all time low due to the fact that he hasn’t won almost anything in the past two seasons… Chelsea should never have sold Mata, Luiz, or Lukaku… But anyways, this is the year that the “special one,” could potentially digress to being called the “tensile one,” especially if he again doesn’t win anything. That said I think they’ll finish third or fourth, and I don’t understand why everyone has them as favorites… I know Costa is immensely talented, but will he adapt well to English football? I guess we’ll find out this year…

Mangala pic for blogMan City addressed their only concern in the transfer market by buying Eliaquim Mangala… Kompany’s mouth must be watering at the thought of playing next to a center back that’s as physically gifted as he is. Demichelis was a solid back, but not as solid as Man City could afford. Furthermore, he’s old and Kompany has had to pick up the slack on many occasions last year due to his lack of pace. Perhaps they could have purchased another striker, but if Aguero stays healthy, I don’t think they’l necessarily need on. Manchester City will be a huge force this year, no doubt about it, and from my point of view, they’ll defend their league title unless if United do not. And, if they don’t they’l, certainly finish second.

Manchester United

Muller would be a nice fit, but…

With all the talk surrounding Louis Van Gaal’s impending appointment as manager at Manchester Louis Van Gaal Blog Photo
United, some have forgotten that his real goal this summer will be to bring world cup glory to the Netherlands.  Now then, if he fails to bring them success this summer, and Van Persie doesn’t score a lot of goals (or any) for his country, would United fans still want him to be their manager? It’s a very relevant question (relevant poll question below) that sometimes makes me believe it’s rather stupid to speculate potential transfer moves that Van Gaal will want to make… however, I can’t resist, so let’s discuss the topic anyway, with a focus on Thomas Müller… 

Thomas MullerLet’s start with the positive: The BEST part about Müller is that he’s perhaps the most dynamic player in the world; he can play middy, striker, winger, and play them all effectively. But, let’s be honest, Man United don’t need a striker or winger (if it’s true that Gaal plans to keep Nani), they need a middy and some new defenders. So, with that said, it makes most sense for Müller to play in some kind of middy role… Please let me know in the comments section if you agree?

Now for the negative: The WORST part about Müller is that he’s too dynamic. I believe this to be the reason that Pep Guardiola has failed to make him a regular starter in his lineup; because he didn’t know how or where to use/play him in his Tika-taka system. Now then, I suppose you can call me Pep, because I have no sense about where he’d figure into Man United’s squad either, especially with their current crop of players. With Van Persie, Rooney, and Welbeck (who I think has a bright future if given the proper chance as a regular starter) there is really no need for Müller, and here’s why… 

Football TacticsThe reason why Sir Alex Ferguson was successful throughout his career was because he didn’t start players just to start them (hence why Rooney wouldn’t start (with Van Persie) regularly during Fergie’s final year), but rather, he started a team that best fit his system. It was perhaps his most beautiful feature; he was never too concerned about how to stubbornly make a star player fit into his system, and he didn’t waste time doing it. If a player didn’t fit into his plans, then he chose someone that was more compatible and willing. Giggs and Scholes had long careers for this very reason, they were always willing to adapt for Ferguson, rather than have Ferguson adapt his team for a single player.

If Müller were to transfer over to Man United, I think that Van Gaal would have quite some trouble fitting him into the current team… But, if Van Gaal truly believes that Müller could fit into the system/formation/tactics that he wants to implement at United, then I approve the transfer, but he shouldn’t sign him (and rumors shouldn’t be flying around about a potential transfer) just because he’s seems to be an accessible option due to his public acknowledgment of discontent at Bayern.

If Manchester United were to make a move for Thomas Müller where do you think he’d fit it? What formation would they play? Do Manchester United fans even want him? Please let me know in the comments section. Plus, if you have a chance, take a sec to answer the poll question! 

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Manchester United

Moyes Mania Over! (To blame or not to blame, that is the question)

David Moyes Pic

It’s no new news that David Moyes “failed” as a manager at United. I understand that, trust me, I do. But, must he be blamed entirely for the club’s lack of success over this past year?

It’s a fair question to ask… After all, he was the “chosen one” – handpicked by Sir Alex Ferguson himself, the most decorated/celebrated/respected manager to ever grace the premier league with his presence. A gentleman that Man United fans know as a legend among legends with an omniscient understanding of all things footy.

That being said, nobody’s truly omniscient, but last year if you had to pick one person to decide who the next manager of Manchester United should/would be, you’d have to pick Alex Ferguson to make that decision…

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Here’s my point: I understand Moyes didn’t succeed in succeeding Sir Alex Ferguson, but Sir Alex didn’t succeed in picking Moyes as his successor… He failed in that regard, and trust me, it shames me to say that because: one, I appreciate that he’d even go out of his way to handpick a manager in the first place, and two, that with Man U’s best interest in hand, he must have absolutely thought Moyes to be the best man for the job (which now seems utterly absurd and slightly tarnishes my view of him as an omniscient footy deity).

I know it’s easy to say in hindsight, but Moyes didn’t fail, he’s an average manager at best, and we all knew that going in, but we also knew that Sir Alex knows best… Or at least we thought so  😦

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Really quickly: NO I don’t think Sir Alex handpicked Moyes knowing/wanting him to fail so that his legacy as manager looks that much better in comparison, plus… Why would he ever want Jose Mourinho to come back to town and successfully destroy the club that he lived his whole life to serve? I’m sure that any success Jose achieves probably would irk him slightly, no? Let me know if you disagree…

Anyways, I don’t know who will or should succeed Moyes, but I do know that his résumé should have this criteria next to a bullet point: “Previous success managing and winning with a top club”

Cause logically speaking, who in the world would want a manager with little to no experience winning any top competitions?

Let me know what you think of the article. Sorry in advance if you think that defending Moyes and pushing a little bit of the blame to Sir Alex is a bit blasphemous.

Please let me know what you think about all this, I’m more than curious to hear your responses – whether they be mean, nice, or ignorant.

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Manchester United

Manchester United, buy a Rolls Reus to Engine your Offense

Marco Reus Pic for blog

When Anderson arrived at Manchester United in 2007 I remember thinking, “Wow, this guy’s the perfect fit for Man U.”  Exactly what they need – a dynamic winger turned attacking mid with enough flair, speed, dribbling and vision to quickly move the ball forward in attack. The perfect player to support both Rooney and Ronaldo (before his exit). Boy was I wrong.

Since then, Anderson has been a massive under performer, so much so that he’s been on loan all this year. The large issue was that he tried to adapt to center-mid (with obvious trouble) and unlucky for him, any middy trying to follow in the footsteps of Paul Scholes portends failure to live up to the hype. That said, I really don’t think that he was a major disappointment. At times he did perform admirably, but despite his best efforts, he was never able to be a conduit of good fortune able to move the ball forward with ease like the aforementioned Ginger Prince. Now that I’ve wasted precious time on Anderson, let’s move on…

When assessing Manchester United’s needs, it seems rather obvious that they still need a replacement for Scholes, and, while I do respect Mata’s game highly, he’s no engine. I know that he can keep possession, make the necessary pass on the counter, and stun you with his flair, but that’s still not enough for me… (I’m of the firm belief that Oscar won the starting role at Chelsea because Mourinho wanted to build a team like Brazil’s; in other words, Oscar already proved he could fit a scheme that drives the ball forward in a fast paced nature like he did at last summer’s Confederations Cup, helping destroy Spain in the Final; in other other words, after four years at Real Madrid being demolished by Ticki-Taka, Mourinho went to Chelsea to build a club to combat it). Back to Manchester United, start Carrick, start Mata, sell Fellaini, and buy a midfield engine…  Here’s why:

Manchester United need an identity and style, and it’s impossible for clubs to fear them without one. They need players that are fast, brutal and intense; their one-one draw with Bayern was the biggest statement that they made all year, and they were able to do so because they fielded a team full of rage, aggression and experience (the one player that lacked experience was Danny Welbeck, and due to his lack of composure in front of goal, missed out on some great opportunities in the first leg that really could have advanced them. That said, I think he can prove to be as good as say a Daniel Sturridge given the opportunity to develop confidence and composure, but that is a post for another time).

Marco Reus completes Manchester United: he’s only 24, he’s not a project, he’s played in a Champions league final, and more importantly, he can give them the identity that they so sorely need, and that Moyes failed to provide (Yes, sometimes players can offer their clubs more of an identity than their manager). Reus is an engine beyond compare, and he can drive everyone on Man United to better heights.

Furthermore, Reus is an immensely skilled player, he’s fast, creative, aggressive, and in my opinion, better than either Ozil or Götze. Call me crazy, but I think at this point in his career, if better talent surrounds him, (Rooney, Van Persie, Welbeck, Valencia, Carrick, Mata) and he gets chance to play somewhere as intense as the field of dreams, he’ll give his opponents constant unrelenting nightmares. 

Please let me know what you think about all this, I’m more than curious to hear your responses – whether they be mean, nice, or ignorant.

Other players that I feel could help: Lucas Moura (Probably would be impossible to sign, also don’t think he has the personality enough to offer them an identity, but certainly has the talent)

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