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Stoke City 2-0 Man United | Match report

Man United suffer their fourth consecutive defeat as they slump to a 2-0 loss away at Stoke City.

It was all Stoke in the first half as they dominated possession and played with intent, continuously playing the ball into the forwards and putting Man United on the back foot.

Stoke’s Bojan opened the scoring in the 19th minute after a poor back pass from Memphis fell to Glen Johnson. The former Liverpool right back pulled a cross back to Bojan near the penalty spot who slotted the ball past David de Gea.

The Potters doubled their lead just 7 minutes later. A Bojan free kick was deflected by the Man United wall and the loose ball fell to Arnautovic who drilled the ball into the United goal from outside the box.

In the 36th minute, Arnautovic had a golden chance to put Stoke 3-0 up when he found himself one-on-one with David de Gea but he dragged his shot just wide of the post.

The half time break saw the introduction of Man United’s Wayne Rooney. The substitution seemed to lift United and give them a little more bite but they could only manage one real goal scoring opportunity.

In the 64th minute, Fellaini had a chance to pull a goal back for the visitors. From the right hand side of the Stoke box, Wayne Rooney hit a ball across the 6 yard box which fell to the Belgian’s feet. With only the keeper to beat, his first time shot was too weak and Jack Butland was able to get down and gather the ball easily.

United manager Louis van Gaal cannot watch as his team are beaten 2-0 by Stoke (Source: The Guardian)
United manager Louis van Gaal cannot watch as his team are beaten 2-0 by Stoke (Source: The Guardian)

Man United are now without a win in 5 Premier League games and the loss against Stoke means that the red devils slip down to 6th in the league. They could end the day in 7th if Watford win away at Chelsea this afternoon.

Man United slip to 6th in the Premier League (Source: BBC Football)
Man United slip to 6th in the Premier League (Source: BBC Football)

What did you think about the game? Did the players give all they had to relieve the pressure on Louis van Gaal? Were Stoke simply too good? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments sections below.

You can also watch the Man United V West Ham match reaction on The United Stand’s YouTube channel by clicking here. Or by watching below.

Stoke City Team Sheet

01 Butland
08 Johnson
17 Shawcross
26 Wollscheid
03 Pieters
20 Cameron (Adam – 75′)
06 Whelan (Van Ginkel – 45′)
22 Shaqiri (Diouf – 65′)
14 Afellay
10 Arnautovic
27 Krkic

Substitutes

11 Joselu
12 Wilson
15 Van Ginkel
16 Adam
18 Diouf
19 Walters
29 Haugaard

Man United Team Sheet

01 de Gea
18 Young
04 Jones
12 Smalling
17 Blind
16 Carrick
21 Herrera (Pereira – 82′)
08 Mata
27 Fellaini
07 Depay (Rooney – 45′)
09 Martial

Substitutes

10 Rooney
20 Romero
28 Schneiderlin
30 Varela
33 McNair
43 Borthwick-Jackson
44 Pereira

Louis van Gaal bows to player pressure

Louis van Gaal bows to player pressure in a bid to save his job as Man United manager.

At the start of this week a meeting was held between United boss, Louis van Gaal and senior players such as club captain Wayne Rooney, Michael Carrick, Chris Smalling and Juan Mata.

Although the boss still has the full support of his players, he has realised that a change is desperately needed after a string of poor performances and results have led to him being in danger of losing his job.

In an attempt to turn things around, Louis van Gaal had allowed the players to set their own Christmas training schedule. Instead of the players attending the Carrington training base between 1pm and 5pm as planned, the players trained in the morning and spent the afternoon with their families.

Strict meal conditions and meal times have also been relaxed, allowing players to sit where they like and eat at times that suit them.

It is also understood that the players are not about to throw the towel in against Stoke in a bid to have the manager sacked, something we have seen recently at Chelsea. The players are thought to be impressed with the way van Gaal has handled himself amidst all the talk in the media regarding his future.

The players were also impressed with van Gaal’s Christmas speech and admired his decision to leave the pre-match press conference on Wednesday.

It’s a different story with the fans though with the majority not happy with the manager and desperately seeking a replacement.

If you would like to read the full article, please visit the Daily Mail website here.

It’s all good relaxing a few rules at the training ground to raise a little morale, but will these changes have any affect on how the players perform on the pitch? After all, it is on the pitch that games are won and points obtained. We would love to hear what you think. Please feel free to leave your comments below.

Van Gaal is a Dead Man Walking

Van Gaal is a Dead Man Walking

Amongst the boos and jeers at Old Trafford following the shambolic defeat to Norwich, you could cut the atmosphere with a knife. This was the day that Louis van Gaal lost the majority of supporters who are still baffled as to what his famous “philosophy” actually is.

The body language the Dutchman displayed as he made his exit from the pitch suggests he knows he’s a dead man walking.

To grant him more time to turn things around would be ludicrous, simply because there have been no signs of a big improvement since the days that David Moyes was sat at the helm with his Manchester United mouse mat, and he didn’t spend £250m.

Out of the top 4, out of the Champions League, out of the Capital One cup, why continue to let the rot set in? It makes no sense at all? Some climb above their high horse and claim he needs time?

Others say we’re not a sacking club and point to the time it took for Sir Alex to turn things around. The wonky nosed Dutchman is halfway through a 3 year contract that he has no intention of extending, thankfully! So why back him financially again when he’ll be gone after next season?

Some spout about us requiring a manager with longevity, someone to build a dynasty, basically, another Sir Alex Ferguson. Stop living in the past, football has changed. All the top European sides change their manager to freshen up the ideas of team. We were lucky that we had a manager who spoilt us for 26 years. Ultimately it’s a results industry, and if you’re not succeeding, you’re gone, that’s just the nature of the beast that is modern day football.

Louis van Gaal’s is a dinosaur, his methods and brand of football is outdated, he has failed miserably at Old Trafford after blowing £250m on new recruits. No other manager would get away with this in top flight football.

The timing of this disastrous and embarrassing run of results couldn’t have come at a better time, following the Russian crooks decision to hand Jose Mourinho his P45. Mourinho has already stated he has no intention of taking a break from football, a wounded Jose could be just the tonic.

Mourinho’s obsession with Old Trafford could be the key. The fact he would bring confidence, an ego, and a CV showing he wins trophies makes it a match made in heaven.

Questions will be asked about his failure to promote youth from within, but you get the impression that given the job, he’d adapt to this, he’d know what the club and supporters would expect of him and I believe he would respect and honour this tradition.

He could be the closest thing to Sir Alex Ferguson, the way he deals with the press, that “it’s us against the world” mentality, that ability to piss off every other rival manager and get under their skin. Mourinho would make us hated again, but never ignored.

A criticism of Lois van Gaal has been his inability to get off his arse during games, he doesn’t lead the team from the sidelines or bark instructions, you’d get the complete opposite with Mourinho. I recall the time he put his finger to his lips against Liverpool celebrating a goal that Chelsea had scored, what’s not to like about that kind of carry on?

Stick with Louis van Gaal and run the risk of finishing outside the top 4? No thanks. Appoint Mourinho and with the players actually playing for him and willing to impress, we could get ourselves back into a title charge. That’s the Mourinho effect, he would relish the job and the supporters would take to him. Rival fans see him as a bit of a twat, but he’d be our twat.

@KevinAshford7

Man United 1-2 Norwich | Match report

Man United slip out of top four after suffering second consecutive league defeat at the hands of Norwich City.

Despite a positive start from Man United, controlling the game, attacking; they were once again unable to come away with three points thanks to goals from Norwich’s Cameron Jerome and Alex Tettey, either side of the break.

The first goal came in the 37th minute following a Norwich counter attack. Jerome shook off advances from Michael Carrick in the United box and fired home past David de Gea to put the Canaries 1-0 up.

Shortly after the break, following a mix-up in the United midfield, Tettey doubled the visitor’s lead after driving the ball into the bottom left corner leaving David de Gea stood rooted to the ground.

Alex Tettey strikes to double the visitors lead against Man United (Source: Mirror)
Alex Tettey strikes to double the visitors lead against Man United (Source: Mirror)

Man United fought back and found their way back into the game on the 65th minute when an Ashley Young cross fell to Anthony Martial in the box. The French international battled past two Norwich defenders to power the ball into the roof of the net. But the goal wasn’t enough to inspire Man United to stage a fantastic come back.

During the first half, United had several attempts at taking the lead. However, none of them really caused Norwich any problems.

Captain Wayne Rooney did, however, have a goal disallowed in the 9th minute due to the flag being raised signalling that Fellaini, who played the ball to Rooney, was offside.

In the 23rd minute, Rooney played a one-two with Juan Mata and on the return pass the Man United veteran fired a shot at the Norwich goal but it was deflected out for a corner.

Anthony Martial pulls one back for Man United (Source: Mirror)
Anthony Martial pulls one back for Man United (Source: Mirror)

Late on in the second half both teams had chances to score. Man United could have equalised in the 78th minute if not for a Mata free kick being saved by Rudd and in the 83rd minute Norwich had a shot at goal bringing a save out of de Gea who was at full stretch.

Man United have now only won two out of their last eight league games allowing the teams above them to pull away and teams below to catch up.

These are worrying times not just for the fans but also for the club. If thing’s don’t improve, Man United may not only miss out on a title challenge, but also on a top four Champions League spot.

The loss means that Man United slip down to fifth with Tottenham Hotspur moving up into fourth.

Man United drop to 5th after loss at home to Norwich (Source: BBC Football)
Man United drop to 5th after loss at home to Norwich (Source: BBC Football)

What did you think of the game? Do you feel it’s time for the manager to move on? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

You can also watch the Man United V West Ham match reaction on The United Stand’s YouTube channel by clicking here. Or by watching below.

Man United Team Sheet

01 de Gea
18 Young
04 Jones
12 Smalling
17 Blind
16 Carrick
27 Fellaini (Herrera – 60′)
09 Martial
08 Mata
07 Depay
10 Rooney

Substitutes

20 Romero
21 Herrera
28 Schneiderlin
30 Varela
33 McNair
43 Borthwick-Jackson
44 Pereira

Norwich City Team Sheet

13 Rudd
05 Martin
24 R Bennett
06 Bassong
23 Olsson
28 O’Neil (Mulumbu – 82′)
27 Tettey
22 Redmond
14 Hoolahan (Howson – 66′)
12 Brady
10 Jerome (Mbokani Bezua – 82′)

Substitutes

01 Ruddy
02 Whittaker
08 Howson
09 Mbokani Bezua
18 Dorrans
21 Mulumbu
32 Odjidja-Ofoe

Bournemouth 2-1 Man United | Full match report

Man United suffer their second defeat in a week after losing away at lowly Bournemouth.

After their victory against Chelsea last week, Bournemouth were bullish about their chances against a misfiring Man United.

Their confidence showed as they came at United and took the lead in the 2nd minute after a Stanislav corner caught the wind and ended up dropping into top corner at the back post.

Man United reacted positively by playing plenty of forward passes and creating chances. In the 24th minute they were rewarded for their efforts when Fellaini brought the scores level. Michael Carrick played a long ball over the top after spotting Memphis making a run behind the Bournemouth defence. The United number 7 chested the ball down but couldn’t get much power in his shot. The shot was saved by Boruc and Fellaini reacted quickest to score from the rebound.

Fellaini celebrates scoring Man United's equaliser (Source: Mirror)
Fellaini celebrates scoring Man United’s equaliser (Source: Mirror)

Bournemouth came out in the second half full of energy and fight and in the 54th minute took the lead again from another corner. This time it was a set piece straight off the training ground. The corner was hit hard across the ground toward the penalty spot and King ran out from the back post to hit the loose ball straight down the middle of the Man United goal, leaving David de Gea rooted to the ground.

Josh King celebrates scoring Bournemouth's winner against Man United (Source: Mirror)
Josh King celebrates scoring Bournemouth’s winner against Man United (Source: Mirror)

The game was played at a high tempo throughout and both teams had great chances to score more goals.

Fellaini could have equalised for Man United in the 4th minute when he struck a volley in the box but it was straight at Boruc.

And Bournemouth could have went 2-0 up just before Man United equalised when Stanislas found himself one on one with de Gea, but the Bournemouth player couldn’t get his shot off before the United keeper came out and snatched the ball from Stanislas’ feet.

At 2-1 down, Man United had several more attempts on goal but, it was Bournemouth who had the better chances which fell to Murray. He had two shots in as many minutes from just six yards out with a gaping goal in front of him but he hit them both over the bar.

The game ended with a roar from the home fans as they celebrated beating Britain’s most successful football team a week after a victory against the current Premier League champions.

Man United on the other hand have now won only 2 of their last 7 Premier League games and appear to be heading down a slippery slope.

The loss means they remain fourth in the table with Arsenal and Leicester still to play with a chance to pull away.

Man United remain fourth after defeat at Bournemouth (Source: BBC Football)
Man United remain fourth after defeat at Bournemouth (Source: BBC Football)

What did you think of the game? Are you concerned for the direction in which the team seem to be heading? Is it still too early to judge? Let us know in the comments below.

You can also watch the Man United V West Ham match reaction on The United Stand’s YouTube channel by clicking here. Or by watching below.

Bournemouth Team Sheet

01 Boruc
15 Smith
02 Francis
03 Cook
11 Daniels
06 Surman
30 Ritchie
08 Arter (O’Kane – 86′)
04 Gosling
19 Stanislas
17 King (Murray – 65′)

Substitutes

07 Pugh
09 Rantie
18 Kermorgant
23 Federici
25 Distin
27 Murray
32 O’Kane

Man United Team Sheet

01 de Gea
30 Varela
33 McNair (Jones – 91′)
17 Blind
43 Borthwick-Jackson
16 Carrick
27 Fellaini (Powell – 74′)
35 Lingard (Pereira – 31′)
08 Mata
07 Depay
09 Martial

Substitutes

04 Jones
18 Young
20 Romero
22 Powell
28 Schneiderlin
38 Tuanzebe
44 Pereira

Bebe thought Manchester united signing was a “joke”

Former Manchester united striker Bebe said he thought it was a “joke” when he heard Manchester united wanted to sign him.

Bebe has made just seven appearances for the reds, scoring only two goals before leaving the club in 2014.

During his united tenure, he enjoyed a lot of time with a number of teams on loan. He has referred to his experience of playing with the red devils as “insane”. Bebe now plays as a forward for spanish club Rayo Vallecano, on loan from Portuguese club, Benfica.

In an interview with Spanish newspaper AS, he named Didier Drigba as his Idol and also highlighted Ronaldo among his favorites as both come from the same country, Portugal. He further compared his style of playing to that of former Manchester united star Cristiano Ronaldo and concluded that they have lot of similarities.

According to Bebe, He has the same way of running and same style of shooting as the former united sensation. He added that he was there at united only with the things that he had from birth and according to him, those are talent, speed and strength.

We certainly have our doubts regarding everything he has said. One of Manchester United’s worst ever signings has compared himself one of their best ever signings.

For his full comments in the interview, visit the guardian.

Gareth Bale transfer “edging closer”

A deal between Gareth Bale and Manchester United is edging closer, according to ESPN sources.

It’s no secret that Gareth Bale has been a top target for Manchester United, particularly with Cristiano Ronaldo unlikely to leave Real Madrid any time soon.

It is also stated that United have received ‘significant encouragement’ with Gareth Bale struggling to settle in Spain.

If a big Premier League club should approach with a big money offer it is thought both Bale and Real Madrid would be open to agreeing a deal.

However, should Cristiano Ronaldo leave Real Madrid in the summer, it is very unlikely the La Liga giants would allow Bale to leave.

To read the full report, please visit the Telegraph website here.

The Bale to United rumour is one we have seen many times. Do you think it is a transfer that could happen? Would you like to see Bale at United? Let us know your thoughts in the United Stand fan forum here, or in the comments section below.