Man United Finally Killing Games Off!

Two Premier League games in and Manchester United have won 4-0 in each of their opening fixtures.

In their first game they thrashed West Ham United at Old Trafford. Today they managed to overrun a resilient Swansea City side at the Liberty Stadium.

Last year they only managed fifty-four goals in the league and they only scored four on one occasion during the 2016-17 Premier League season. They needed to make some changes.

United started last term with Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Wayne Rooney as their main attackers but as a duo they lacked fluidity and speed to cause enough problems. Don’t get me wrong Zlatan led the line magnificently and I think he’ll re-sign for the Red Devils when he returns from injury but at times they needed more pace and a different focal point.

Jose splashed the cash and brought in Romelu Lukaku for £75m this summer. The Belgian has came in and scored three in his first two league games. He offers both power and pace up-top and seems to thrive wearing a Man United jersey.

The international striker has also linked up well with those around him.

Signing Nemanja Matic has offered more freedom to Paul Pogba to venture forward. The French midfielder has bagged two goals and an assist in the opening encounters.Holding midfielder Matic is fast becoming an important member of the first team as he offers discipline and balance to the side.

It might have taken a bit of time for creative force Henrikh Mkhitaryan to come to the fore at United but he’s looking very good this term. The Armenian forward has already created four assists for his teammates and played 173 minutes, which shows you Jose now fully trusts Mkhitaryan. His passing average is slightly above 90% per game!

At the moment the tactic seems to be keeping the ball and bossing possession for this Man Utd side. They are also creating plenty of chances. It was actually a similar story for the Red Devils last season but they couldn’t kill games off, that looks to have changed in this campaign.

They’ve scored five of their eight goals in the last ten minutes of the match. That’s because they are persistent and run opposition defences ragged.

A big part of their play has been young forwards Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial.

Rashford may still be looking for his first goal of the season but it’s his tireless running that has benefited his team. He runs at defenders, pulls markers from pillar to post and gets the ball into the channels. His runs are unselfish and they have an impact on his opposite number.

Mourinho then brings off the nineteen year old Englishman and replaces him with French internationalist Martial. The former Monaco man then stretches the opponents with his direct runs and electric pace. An already tired defence simply can’t cope and Anthony has helped himself to two goals and an assist in just twenty-six minutes of top flight football this term! His runs on the left also frees up more space for the other forwards as well as the onrushing Pogba.

When the Champions League starts, I fully expect Jose to rotate the two youngsters but it should have the same effect as long as the starter is willing to run all day.

It’s all very well keeping possession and scoring goals but we should also applaud the Man Utd defence who have yet to concede a league goal.

Goalkeeper David de Gea is a world-class performer and he gives those ahead of them lots of confidence.

As I’ve already stated, new boy Matic adds balance and protects his back four perfectly. He’s really settled in well and gives the United midfield an edge they missed last term.

The duo of Eric Bailly and Phil Jones seem to offer the best partnership in central defence. They compliment each other and both give 100% in every game. If they can keep Jones fit that will be a big bonus as he’s great when he can get a run of games together.

The full-backs offer something different too. They are they to defend first and both are well versed on that side of their game.

Antonio Valencia offer lost of running down the flanks and he likes to get into the last third and whip balls into the box.

While on the left Dutchman Danny Blind has good vision and he offers a nice range of passes. Blind will often fire the ball in early, much like David Beckham of yesteryear.

All in all, Manchester United are looking like an exciting outfit this year. Mourinho has them well drilled but he’s also allowing them to express themselves a bit more. They have a young vibrant feel about them and a work ethic that grinds teams down too.

It should also be noted that the squad also possess a good strength in depth, with many like for like replacements available to Jose Mourinho if he needs them.

Could it be another trophy laden year at Old Trafford?

Well it’s certainly looking promising from the start!

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