Tag Archives: lacazette

How close are Manchester United to Premier League glory?

Manchester United enjoyed a successful pre-season over the course of July and the beginning of August. They managed to claim six wins out of seven despite coming up against the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Manchester City. More importantly though, they managed to create good chances and finish them off (including an excellent counter-attack against Sampdoria).

One of the main problems last season was killing teams off. This problem seems to have been sorted though with the arrival of Romelu Lukaku. The extra years experience that Rashford has gained also looks to be paying off as he looked sharp throughout the summer and will hopefully contribute more goals this term. Furthermore, the signing of Nemanja Matic makes players like Pogba and Mkhitaryan more confident knowing that they have defensive cover. This allows them to get further up the pitch.

With one problem solved, what else do Manchester United need to do to lift the league title? Well, while a marquee signing such as Gareth Bale would certainly help them towards success, balance down the left hand side of the pitch is crucial. This is what sparked Mourinho’s interest in Inter’s Ivan Perisic. However, as the transfer window rumbles on, chances of Manchester United getting their key target are fading. Therefore, United may need to look elsewhere for a player capable of filling the left wing-back role. Someone like Alex Sandro, perhaps?

Apart from the need of balance, United look to be heading into the new season feeling fairly confident and looking a lot more dangerous. There is also reason to believe that United are more prepared than their biggest Premier League rivals this term. If we look at Liverpool’s pre-season preparation, then yes, they may have won a trophy, but are they stronger than last season? While they have made the same amount of signings as Manchester United, the signings aren’t quite on the same level. Furthermore, if Coutinho does leave for Barcelona then they will be significantly weaker than last year.

Additionally, Arsenal have signed Lacazette, a striker that previously played in the top French division, Ligue 1. The former Lyon player will also need time to adjust to the demands and physicality of the Premier League. Then, there’s Chelsea, who will need to juggle Champions League and Premier League this term, and there are question marks over whether their squad has the depth to handle both. Tottenham Hotspur are also slightly weaker than last season. This is due to the loss of Kyle Walker to Manchester City and the fact that they haven’t made any signings as of yet. Then, lastly, there’s Manchester city who have spent huge money on trying to fix their defence. Whether this has worked remains to be seen, but all signings will need time to get onto the same level as one another.

So compared to Manchester United’s rivals, they are not as far away from Premier League glory as some may think.

What are your thoughts? Do you think Manchester United can return to Premier League glory this year? Share your opinion in the comments below or with The United Stand on Twitter!

GUEST BLOG: Moura? Lacazette? Possible future targets

Believe it or not, Louis Van Gaal has a solid reputation amongst the footballing world. This transpires into a great advantage for Manchester United. Whether you like the man or not, you can’t deny that he has done very well to attract players of the highest quality to our club. Bastian Schweinsteiger has been the most recent example of this theory and even the rather naïve signing of Angel Di Maria last season.

Could you imagine David Moyes attracting this calibre of talent? Whilst it is one of the few positives that one can draw from our manager, it is a very important one as well as one which may prove to be very useful during the foreseeable future.

With the January transfer window upon us, it is customary that Manchester United should have very ambitious targets. The Daily Mail have valued our transfer budget at £100 million plus (obviously the largest in the Premier League). Surely, that’s enough to solve the problems of any club. In my opinion the two main positions that need to be strengthened are the right-wing and striker roles. Additionally, money could be spent on a new left-back with both Marcos Rojo and Luke Shaw injured or even a new centre-back in order to add stability to the back four. This is a detailed list of the players that I think we should be targeting in January.

Lucas Moura – PSG (£40 million)

The Brazilian international is the perfect solution to our right-wing problem. He offers pace to burn and some phenomenal skill to accompany it. Ever since the arrival of Angel Di Maria to the French side, Moura has been sidelined which has led to him being unhappy at the club in recent months. However, his price tag is quite large and questions must be asked about whether he will shine under Van Gaal’s philosophy. At only 23 years of age, he already has over 30 international caps and has played 90 games for PSG scoring a total of 56 goals for club and country. He looks the perfect combination of youth and experience and will add a lot of flair to the current United side. However, it may be difficult to attract a player of Moura’s calibre from a team still competing in the Champions League to one which is not.

Felipe Anderson – Lazio (£35 million)

Perhaps a more realistic January target, Felipe Anderson is also a Brazilian winger who can play anywhere across the front three. He will also solve the right-wing problem as well as provide depth in the final third. At the age of only 22, he may turn out to be a very solid long term investment. Much like Moura, he offers vast speed in attack as well as great creativity on the flanks. This transfer is more likely to happen as Lazio are too out of the Champions League, but once again questions must be asked about whether Anderson will blossom under LVG’s style of play.

Alexandre Lacazette – Lyon (£45 million)

The Frenchman is a prolific goalscorer having scored over 55 goals in Ligue 1 and will be the perfect striker for Manchester United. He could either be playing alone in the centre forward position or even partner Anthony Martial in a 4-1-3-2 formation. Despite the fact that Lyon are also out of the Champions League, if this deal were to go ahead it will most likely be during the Summer transfer window.

Many other players could also address our lack of depth in the striker role. The likes of Yoshinori Muto and Ayoze Perez have also been heavily linked with Manchester United but their ability is questionable.

Ryan Bertrand – Southampton (£15 million)

The English left-back could be a very good buy for United this January especially after the injuries of both Rojo and Shaw. He offers speed in his position and is Premier League proven. Should the role be strengthened, it’s hard to look past Bertrand as a very suitable target.

By Simon Pavlov
Follow me on Twitter: @Simon0208