Wayne Rooney answers critics with hat trick against Brugge

Posted on August 27, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Champions League, Man United, Players   No Comments »
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Wayne Rooney celebrates with Ander Herrera having scored a hattrick against Club Brugge

Yes, the white Pele has once again answered his critics. Wayne Rooney helped Manchester United to juggernaut past the helpless Club Brugge in some style to qualify for the Champions League. We now know that Rooney and company are in Group B and will do battle with PSV Eindhoven, CSKA Moscow and German side Wolfsburg – a much more challenging proposition than the qualifying match posed. Rooney is usually very quick to be criticised when he is below par – and it is fair to say that his early season form didn’t look as if he would surpass the 249 goals set by Bobby Charlton and become the club’s top goalscorer of all time.

Fast forward two weeks and he is only 17 goals off hitting 250 for the club; an absolutely monumental achieve. So was the criticism just and what heights can Wayne Rooney reach this season?

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Wayne Rooney fails to score despite improved performance

Posted on August 23, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Man United, Newcastle United, Premier League   4 Comments »
Wayne Rooney's goal versus Newcastle was ruled offside
Wayne Rooney failed to score again but put in my improved performance

It was two points dropped for Manchester United at home against Newcastle United yesterday, despite dominating the game in terms of possession and shots on goal. The visitors also had their opportunities, with new signing Alexandre Mitrovic hitting the post in the first half whilst other new boy Florian Thauvin nearly won the game right at the end, but failed to latch on to Papiss Cisse’s cross.

The home side had equaled the same amount of shots on target in the first twenty minutes of the match as they did in the opening two Premier League matches against Tottenham Hotspur and Aston Villa. Louis van Gaal’s men have not conceded a goal since last May, when Tyler Blackett deflected a goal past Victor Valdes in the 1-1 draw with Arsenal – but have lacked firepower up top. Do United need to invest in a new striker?

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David De Gea missing again against Newcastle United

Posted on August 22, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Man United, Newcastle United, Premier League   No Comments »
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David De Gea is set to miss yet another match following interest from Real Madrid

Manchester United will again be without Spanish goalkeeper David De Gea, who will not feature for the club against Newcastle United today. De Gea is being courted by Real Madrid and United manager Louis van Gaal does not feel the keeper is in the right frame of mind to start. The club will be looking to continue its good early season form, having notched up wins against Tottenham Hotspur, Aston Villa and Club Brugge.

United fans will be eager to see a good performance following a week that saw the club lose out on two potential transfers; Pedro, who went to Chelsea from Barcelona, and Otamendi, who went to Manchester City from Valencia. The United boss has also dismissed speculation that he was frustrated by Ed Woodward and lack of transfer activity.

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Memphis Depay hits two goals as United beat Club Brugge

Posted on August 19, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Champions League, Man United   1 Comment »
Memphis Depay goal against Club Brugge
Memphis Depay scores twice against Club Brugge as Manchester United take a lead to Belgium

Author: Mitchell

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How good does it feel to be back in the Champions League? In some form, anyway. They’re not there quite yet, but a dominant 3-1 victory at home to Club Brugge should make the second leg of the qualifying play-offs in Belgium a little more of a relaxed affair.

It was tense, it was intense and it was a little more difficult than it should have been. Ultimately though, it was a game in Europe on a Tuesday night and I hope you won’t begrudge me for savouring that feeling once again.

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Manchester United vs. Club Brugge view from the oppo preview

Posted on August 17, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Champions League, Man United, Match Previews   No Comments »
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Manchester United take on Club Brugge for the first time in the club’s history

Manchester United fans last faced European opposition 496 days ago. In that time, signed a World cup winner, broke the British transfer record and sacked a manager and hired a new one. Yes, a lot can happen in just over a year, but United are two games away from finalising a place in the Champions League proper. After two decent wins, United fans are in joyful mood as the club welcome Club Brugge to Old Trafford – the first meeting between the two clubs in history. All eyes will be on whether David De Gea and whether he starts in goal for United this evening.

Even if this is just a qualifying round, reds are delighted to be back in the competition, with a young and developing side whilst welcoming new opposition to Old Trafford.

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Pedro reportedly questions transfer to Manchester United

Posted on August 15, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Man United, Transfer Speculation, Transfer Targets   No Comments »
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Reports suggest that Pedro is questions whether to move to Manchester United or not

Barcelona winger Pedro is reportedly questioning whether a move to Manchester United would be the right for him following the breakdown in communication with both Victor Valdes and David De Gea between Louis van Gaal. Valdes was a teammate of Pedro when at Barcelona, whilst De Gea is a teammate for the Spanish national team. The ex-Barcelona keeper, who went to Old Trafford last winter on a free transfer, fell out with the manager over playing in a reserve match – whilst United’s player of the season last term, was reported to have declined to play for the club following his apparent desire to join Real Madrid.

Will the potential transfer of Pedro hit a snag due to Louis van Gaal’s treatment of Valdes and De Gea?

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Was Louis van Gaal too harsh on Adnan Januzaj against Villa?

Posted on August 15, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Man United   3 Comments »
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Adnan Januzaj scores the only goal of the game but came under fire from Louis van Gaal

Many reds were pleased to see Adnan Januzaj back in the starting xi and even more so to see him slotted in behind Wayne Rooney in the number ten role. Eyebrows are still being raised at the logic of playing Juan Mata, who is blessed with a beautiful pass but not so much in terms of pace, out wide on the right – but it was a welcome return for United’s young prodigy, who hadn’t started a game since February of this year.

Januzaj’s goal was the first for a United player this season and it was some goal, despite the deflection along the way. A run from a central position to wide left, he was perfectly found by Juan Mata, before sending former Manchester City defender Micah Richards sliding along on his backside after a drag back before slotting home. The forward also showed some great close control, but was criticised following the match regarding his ball retention. So, was Louis van Gaal too harsh on United’s young star?

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David De Gea missing again as United travel to Aston Villa

Posted on August 14, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Aston Villa, Man United, Premier League   1 Comment »
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Falcao scores in the 1-1 draw with Aston Villa last season.

Manchester United look to continue their winning start to the season as they travel to Aston Villa. The home side are also buoyant after beating newly promoted Bournemouth on the opening day. All the talk before the game will be whether David De Gea will remain at Manchester United following the revelation from Louis van Gaal the goalkeeper is “not eager to play”. The Spaniard’s future is uncertain following interest from Real Madrid all summer and with his contract up next summer, United could look to cash in – if the price is right. Romero, who started last weekend against Tottenham, will replace De Gea tonight in goal. Marouane Fellaini is still serving a suspension following his sending off against Hull City at the end of last season whilst Phil Jones is still out injured.

United picked up four points against Aston Villa last season, drawing 1-1 at Villa Park and then beating Villa 3-1 at Old Trafford in the return fixture. Can United improve their performance from the opening fixture against Spurs OR will United’s slow start continue?

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Pedro asks to leave Barcelona as Stoichkov sticks the boot in!

Posted on August 11, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Man United, Transfer Speculation, Transfer Targets   1 Comment »
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Barcelona legend Hristo Stoichkov has slammed Louis van Gaal and urged Pedro to stay put

Surely it is only a matter of time? A matter of time before Manchester United fans see a grinning Pedro in a press conference being shadowed by new boss Louis van Gaal as the club look to add some much needed pace out wide following the departure of Angel Di Maria to PSG. Today, Barcelona released a statement proclaiming that Pedro, who has amassed over 50 caps for Spain and been at the Catalonian club since his was a child, wants to leave the Spanish Champions – with United looking the likely destination.

However, hours earlier barmy Bulgarian and Barcelona legend Hristo Stoichkov slammed the United coach and urged the winger to stay and the Nou Camp. So what is it going to be? Will Pedro part ways with the club where he has won three European Cups – or will he depart for pastures new under the van Gaal regime?

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Matteo Darmian impresses as United beat Spurs on opening day

Posted on August 09, 2015  by Stretford-end  in Man United, Premier League, Spurs   No Comments »
Matteo Darmian challenges Harry Kane
Matteo Darmian challenges Harry Kane for the ball in the 1-0 victory over Spurs

Its been 76 days since the final game of last season. Manchester United played out a drab 0-0 draw with Hull City, which saw the home side relegated to the Championship – as final games go, this was quite possibly one of the most uneventful for United fans over the past two decades. Fast forward two and a half months and a lot has happened since then. Gone are the likes of Robin van Persie, Nani, Rafael and Angel Di Maria whilst Louis van Gaal has spent big on Memphis Depay, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Morgan Schneiderlin, Sergio Romero and Matteo Darmian – with the latter impressing in his debut.

United huffed and puffed their way to a 1-0 victory against a high pressing Spurs, who were a lot more energetic than their limp display back in March against United. The home side ran out 3-0 victors that day and although the result was the same yesterday, the performance was definitely that of an opening day fixture.

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