Wednesday, 08 April, 2009
Here is my analysis on how and why Manchester United are leaking goals these days!
Did not confront opponents who were constantly surging towards our goal. Instead they backtracked and allowed the opponents time/space to move freely and cross the ball. Jony Evans did make such a mistake to allow Porto's first goal.
Defenders should be alert and able to close gaps and, if possible, block the crosses or any attempts at goal.
2. Mid-field players.
Were not performing their duty properly.
i) they did not offer sufficient cover to our defenders, as a result the back four were exposed to opponents' attacks! This was evident in matches against both Aston Villa and Porto.
ii) they did not support attacking players, as a result strikers did not get the required services and hence, became easy to play against (also, sometines due to lack of penetration or tactics to unlock opponents' defense)
iii) their passing accuracy was poor (to their standards). Scholes' and Carrick's passing were uncharacteristic below par throughout the 90-minutes.
iv) they lacked courage to make attempts on goal.
3. Patrice Evra.
Of late he has become vulnerable to losing balls and/or concetration. He did not make a quick move to block the cross which resulted to conceding the second goal against Porto. There was no need for him to be high on the pitch with two minutes remaing (while Manchester United were holding a 2-1 lead). His main priority would be to defend rather than overlapping leaving the defense porous!
He was also at fault to similar mistake on Sunday's game against Aston Villa, by failing to block Barry's cross to Carew who scored the equalizer.
4. Cristiano Ronaldo.
His work rate is questionable. He rarely fights for his team mates. He lost the ball and didn't track back -as a result Porto got their first goal in the 4th minute.
He did a similar mistake on Sunday against Aston Villa by carelessly losing possession and didn't bother to follow behind -this also resulted to a second goal for Villa.
Whenever he loses the ball he never stands up and chase to regain possession. For me, he is not working hard enough to help team mates! Therefore he should do more!
I didn't fancy yesterday's 4-3-3 formation. We have to accept that Man United do not have 'the Essiens' who could boast at the middle of the park! Therefore this system did not suit Man United at all.
We played the same formation against Liverpool at Anfield earlier this season, but it didn't work for us.
The manager should stick to the usual 4-4-2 because it often gives us positive results on the pitch!