If you had to name all the teams Manchester United have faced this season up to this point, you would not find many names of great football clubs. Real Madrid was the first of them all in UEFA Super Cup final in Skopje in early August.
After the European champions, Everton is the biggest side to have played against Man United. Interestingly, they sit just two spots off relegation zone after seven matches. CSKA Moscow and Basel are powerhouses in their respective countries, but are not a big task for a club like Manchester United.
August And September Will Be Fondly Remembered
These two months have been very good for Manchester United. Jose Mourinho brought his pieces together so well early into the season. The Reds are finally playing exciting football and goals at Old Trafford are not an exception anymore. Manchester United have looked very powerful going forwards.
Romelu Lukaku tends to bring that to the teams he plays for, yet it is a mixture of many other things. Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Juan Mata bring creative nous to this side. Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial seem to be having a race of who will impact the results with fewer minutes on the pitch.
Bring Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba (or Marouane Fellaini since the Frenchman’s injury) into the equation and you get a tall, powerful side with a lot of speed about it. Manchester United have already finished six matches this season scoring four goals. They have not been stopped in any of 11 of them. This was a nice beginning.
October Brings Challenges For Manchester United
However, Manchester United were not all about attack. Their defence did great job so far, as well. Just two goals conceded in Premier League (both away at Stoke) mean there have been six shut-outs for David De Gea in seven matches. Phil Jones looks better than ever and Eric Bailly is very composed in the heart of defence. Even Ashley Young manages to bring the best out of himself playing at left-back.
Still, this is where the season really kicks in. It is not early days anymore. After the October international break, Manchester United will have to show what they can do against challenging teams. First up will be Liverpool at Anfield. Though the Merseyside team have struggled so far, especially in September, a derby always brings the best out of teams. It will be interesting to see how United’s back four (or five?) copes against swarming attack of Liverpool’s.
Manchester United will have to travel in the three following matches (Benfica, Huddersfield, Swansea) in three different competitions. Just two weeks after the Liverpool clash, Tottenham Hotspur will visit Old Trafford. Mauricio Pochettino’s side has started playing very well, especially away from home.
Harry Kane is now scoring goals for fun and he will most certainly test Phil Jones, Eric Bailly and maybe even Victor Lindelof. Before the November international break, Man United will play against Benfica once more before visiting Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge.
It will be a demanding month for Jose Mourinho and his players. In about four weeks we will know how much this Manchester United team can do. October will bring out the real character.