Red Rants Archives for January 2015

Manchester United v Wolfsburg Preview

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Manchester United v Wolfsburg
Champions League, 2015-16
Date: Saturday, 30 September, 2015
Time: 19:45 BST
Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester
Where to watch: BT Sport Europe
Live Stream Info: BT Sport Live Streaming

Manchester United are cruising in the league as they went on top of the table after their latest 3-0 victory over Sunderland.

LVG and Schweinsteiger aim to go all the way in the Champions League

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Bastian Schweinsteiger and Louis Van Gaal believe Manchester United can win the Champions League this season, despite getting their European campaign off to the wrong start by losing 2-1 against PSV Eindhoven.

The United manager, who guided Ajax to back-to-back finals in 1995 and 1996 losing the latter and steered Bayern Munich to the final against Inter Milan in 2010, said his aim was to take United to the final act of the competition this season.

Rooney: “I never asked to leave United”

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Wayne Rooney has denied handing a transfer request during Sir Alex Ferguson's last season at Manchester United, claiming he was shocked at the way the conversation made its way to the press.

Following United's 2-1 win over Swansea in Fergie's last game at Old Trafford, the former United manager said Rooney, who was left out of the side on the day, had handed in a transfer request and wanted to leave the club in the summer.

Is selling players the key to United’s success?

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Louis Van Gaal has said Manchester United's successful start to the season is down to the number of players who have left Old Trafford in the summer, rather than to the signings he has made.

United returned to the top of the league for the first time in over two years after beating Sunderland on Saturday 3-0, after City had suffered a 4-1 defeat at the hands of Tottenham Hotspur.

Five things we’ve learnt from United vs Sunderland

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Manchester United went top of the Premier League for the first time since winning the league in 2013 after comfortably beating Sunderland 3-0.

After yet another uninspiring first half, United shifted scored either side of halftime through Memphis Depay and Wayne Rooney before Juan Mata added a third late on to clinch United's third consecutive league win.

Should Van Gaal revert back to 4-3-3?

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For only the second time since Louis Van Gaal took charge of Manchester United, his side have scored 3 or more goals in two consecutive league games.

Cries of "Attack Attack Attack" are heard around Old Trafford more frequently than ever and fans of other teams often take great pleasure in pointing out that the number of goals scored during Van Gaal's first season as manager was less than when David Moyes was in charge.

LVG: “Martial won’t get carried away”

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Louis Van Gaal believes Anthony Martial will not get carried away despite making an explosive start to his Manchester United career.

The Frenchman, a £36m signing from Monaco, came off the bench to score United's third goal in their 3-0 win against Ipswich in the third round of the Capital One Cup on Wednesday night, making it four goals in three appearances for his new club.

Pereira: “Mata trusted me to score”

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Andres Pereira has thanked Juan Mata for allowing to take the free-kick which gave him his first professional goal for Manchester United.

The Brazilian made his first competitive start for the club against Ipswich Town on Wednesday night and capped an impressive performance with a superbly-taken free-kick, which put United 2-0 up on the night.

“I only managed four world class players at United,” says Fergie

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Sir Alex Ferguson said he only managed four world class players during his 26-year tenure at Manchester United, a statement which will undoubtedly upset some of his former players.

In his latest book, Leading, which is released on Tuesday, Fergie identifies the four players he considered to be best among those who wear a red shirt during his time at Old Trafford.

Fergie: “I didn’t want players to be paid more than me”

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Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed he was shocked to find out Wayne Rooney was getting paidtwice as much as him and told the Glazer family players should not be paid more than the manager.

In October 2010, fter accusing the club of not being ambitious enough and threatening to leave Old Trafford, Rooney was handed a new five-year deal worth £200,000-a-week.

Fergie: “Moyes’ appointment was perfect”

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Sir Alex Ferguson said the process that brought David Moyes to Manchester United was "perfect", although it admitted the former Everton manager missed out on becoming his number two in 1999.

Speaking in London at unveiling of his new book, Leading, Fergie insisted that United chose the right man by appointing Moyes as his successor in the summer of 2012, even though the Scotsman lasted only nine months in the job after a disastrous spell.

Tactics Board- Martial glory as Rooney flounders

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Southampton FC [2] vs [3] Manchester United
St Mary's Stadium – 20 September 2015

A Manchester United victory over Liverpool last week was followed by a lost away to PSV midweek in the Champions League. More damaging was Luke Shaw's broken leg, meaning that Louis Van Gaal needed to change his back line.

Schneiderlin hoping to sink Saints

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The love affair with the United of recent is fairly similar to being mislead by a Thai lady boy.

The rush, the desire and the passion quickly decimated by the reveal of a twelve-inch python between his legs. After that initial high you're left lost, disappointed and even a bit confused.

That is what best describes United fans at the moment.

Tactics Board- Double Dutched

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PSV [2] vs [1] Manchester United Philips Stadion – 15 September 2015

Manchester United looked sharp in their play-off ties against Club Brugge. After beating Liverpool 3-1 over the weekend, United hoped they would carry some momentum into matchday 1 against the reigning champions of the Netherlands, who lost 2 key players in Memphis Depay and Georginio Wijnaldum in the summer.

Moreno: “I’m sorry but tackle on Shaw was fair”

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Hector Moreno has apologised to Luke Shaw for the tackle that saw the Manchester United left-back suffer a double-leg fracture, but insisted he did not mean any harm.

Shaw was stretchered off while receiving oxygen after 15 minutes, as a reckless challenge from the PSV defender snapped his right leg.

Five things we’ve learnt from PSV vs United

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Manchester United's return to the Champions League did not turn out to be the night to remember they had hoped for, as they relinquished a 1-0 lead to lose 2-1 against PSV Eindhoven, while Luke Shaw suffered an horrendous injury.

After a season-long absence from European football's elite competition, United took the lead in the first half and were in control for large spells of the game but only have themselves to blame for returning from Holland empty handed.

Shaw suffers double-leg fracture

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Manchester United have confirmed that Luke Shaw has suffered a double fracture of his right leg, following an horrendous injury against PSV Eindhoven on Tuesday night.

The United left-back went to ground after a strong challenge from PSV's Hector Moreno after what immediately looked to be a serious injury and had to be carried off the pitch while receiving oxygen.

Memphis vows to celebrate against his former club

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Memphis Depay has said facing his former club in the Champions League tonight will be "special" but has vowed to celebrate should he score against PSV Eindhoven.

The Dutchman joined PSV Eindhoven when he was 12-year-old before moving to Old Trafford this summer after winning the Dutch Eredivisie in his final season at the club, PSV's first league title since 2008.

Young willing to replace Rooney

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Ashley Young has said he's willing to replace the injured Wayne Rooney and play as a striker, should he be asked to do so by Louis Van Gaal.

United face PSV Eindhoven in Holland on Tuesday, as they return to the Champions League after a season-long absence but they will be without their injured captain for the second consecutive game.

LVG: “I don’t know if United are good enough for the Champions League”

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Louis Van Gaal has admitted he does not know whether Manchester United will be good enough to progress past the Champions League group stage.

United return to European football's elite competition for the first time after a season-long hiatus but while they look a stronger side than they did under David Moyes, Van Gaal, who won the tournament with Ajax in 1995 and reached the final with Bayern in 2010, said his side were untested at this level.

Tactics Board- Another roll over Liverpool

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Manchester United [3] vs [1] Liverpool
Old Trafford – 12 September 2015

Both Manchester United and Liverpool came into this derby game with questions. United lost to Swansea 2-1, before the international break. They've floundered in a domestic season in which sterile possession has been the norm, a lack of striking options and £38 million spent on a 19-year old striker with 52 Ligue 1 appearances to his name.

Carrick “We didn’t know much about Martial”

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Michael Carrick has admitted him and most of his teammates didn't know much Anthony Martial when the Frenchman arrived at Old Trafford on deadline day.

However, after the 19-year-old marked his debut with a fine goal against Liverpool on Saturday, Carrick said the squad has taken notice of the youngster's potential.

Henry: “I loved Martial’s goal”

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Thierry Henry has hailed Anthony Martial's debut for Manchester United as a "great way" for the Frenchman to announce himself.

The 19-year-old, the world's most expensive teenager, made his first appearance for United as he came on as 65th minute substitute and scored his side's third goal with a wonderful solo finish.

The best and the worst of the last 5 United vs Liverpool at Old Trafford

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Manchester United host Liverpool today, as English football's biggest rivalry resumes yet again, with the visitors arriving at Old Trafford after suffering defeats home and away last season.

United enter the contest with a strong home record against their arch-rivals, having won four of their last five games against Liverpool on home turf.

De Gea signs new United deal

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David De Gea has signed a new four-year deal at Manchester United, bringing one of the most tedious and bizarre transfer sagas in recent years to an end.

The Spaniard had refused to extend his current deal, which would run out at the end of next season, and looked poised to join Real Madrid on deadline day, only for the move to collapse at the eleventh hour.

LVG: “I bought Martial for the next United manager”

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Louis Van Gaal has described the fee Manchester United paid for Anthony Martial as "ridiculous", addingthe price tag wasevidence of the "crazy world we are in".

The United manager added that the French striker was signed for his long-term potential, rather than as ready-made solution, explaining he sanctioned the transfer as he believes Martial will be a powerful asset in the hands of his eventual successor in the Old Trafford dugout.

United players “confronted Van Gaal” over training methods

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Louis Van Gaal was confronted by a delegation of senior Manchester United over his "rigid training methods", according to a report published by The Times on Thursday.

A number of the more experienced players are understood to have held talks with the United manager to discuss the training approach and the perceived rigidity in the tactics that have restrained United to a mere three goals in their first four Premier League games.

Charlton: “Great to see a United player breaking my record”

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Sir Bobby Charlton said he was delightedthe record of being England's all-time topscorer has remained with a Manchester United player.

Wayne Rooney overtook Charlton as England's most prolific goalscorer as he scored in the 2-0 win on Tuesday night and Sir Bobby admitted that while he was disappointed to lose the record, the blow was softened as the man who broke his record plies his trade at Old Trafford.

Rooney: “Fergie is the greatest manager ever”

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Wayne Rooneyhas described Sir Alex Ferguson as "the greatest manager of all times" and dismissed the well-documented row he had with his former manager as "having different opinions".

After his final home game in charge of United, Ferguson accused Rooney of having handed in a second transfer request in three years, hinting the striker had not been happy at being played in a role he did not consider his own.

United dealt injury blow

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Manchester United have been dealt a injury blow ahead their match against Liverpool on Saturday, after Michael Carrick was forced to withdraw from the England squad.

The 34-year-old, who has played in all of United's four Premier League fixtures so far this season, was expected to feature for England against Switzerland on Tuesday but has left the camp with an unspecified injury and could be in doubt for United's meeting with Liverpool at the weekend.

Perez: “United lack transfer experience”

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Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has accused Manchester United of lacking experience in the transfer market, as he hinted United should shoulder responsibilitiesfor the collapse of David De Gea's transfer.

Perez revealed he was left frustrated by United's behaviour, claiming it took them over eight hours to return the required paperwork to Real Madrid, which also prevented Madrid's keeper Keylor Navas from joining United.

Mata: “De Gea is relaxed and calm despite transfer issue”

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Juan Mata has said that David De Gea is "calm" and "relaxed" despite the collapse of his proposed transfer to Real Madrid.

De Gea looked poised to move to the Santiago Bernabeu on Monday night, only for the deal to fall through after the paperwork was not submitted in time, leading both clubs to blame each other for the mishap.

Why keeping De Gea could shape United’s future

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Ed Woodward is a divisive figure among Manchester United fans. Formerly a man who seemed completely out of his depth when it came to getting transfer deals done, he went through a resurrection of sorts over the last 2 summers. But it is his handling of the non-sale of David de Gea that may prove to be his greatest contribution to the club.

United hit back at Real over De Gea

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Manchester United have hit back at Real Madrid over their accusations United were to blame for David De Gea's failed transfer to the Spanish capital.

Earlier on Tuesday afternoon, Real released a statement claiming they had done all they could to ensure De Gea would be a Real Madrid player by midnight on Monday, suggesting United should shoulder the blame for failing to complete the deal.

United unveil new signing

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Manchester United have completed the signing of Anthony Martial from Monaco for a fee of approximately £36m.

The 19-year-old made 70 appearances and scored 15 goals for Monaco since joining the Ligue 1 side in 2013 and has represented his country from Under-16 level to Under-21, before beingcalled up to France's senior national squad for the first time late last week.

Real explain De Gea fiasco

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Real Madrid have released a statement to explain what exactly went wrong with David De Gea's proposed transfer to the Santiago Bernabeu.

On Monday afternoon, the Spanish international looked set to finally return to the Spanish capital after a summer-long saga, only for the deal to collapse as the required paperwork was not submitted before the end of the Spanish transfer window at midnight.

Tactics Board- United falls against Swansea’s changes

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Swansea vs Manchester United Liberty Stadium – 30th August, 2015

Manchester United came into this game on the back of a convincing 4-0 victory over Club Brugge midweek. While they looked impressive in both legs of the Champion's League Play-off, they have looked less assured in the league. United travelled to the Liberty Stadium, having lost both games last season against Gary Monk's side, and the fans wondered which performance was the real Manchester United.