Our season review continues with the player that has ended his playing career. Michael Carrick played his final season in professional football and is joining Jose Mourinho’s staff from the 2018-19 onwards. Here is how final season turned out to be.
What do the numbers say?
It was a very odd season. Right from the start of it, there was the sense that it was Carrick’s final campaign. Later on, he confirmed that, saying that he cannot offer to this team enough, but throughout the season he also had problems with injuries. They kept him away from the pitch for long periods and it was hard to expect him to jump straight back in even when he got fit. In the second part of the season, it was announced that he was becoming the coach in Mourinho’s staff and no one really expected him to be part of the playing squad afterwards.
He managed to play five matches this season – two in the Premier League, two in the FA Cup and one in the League cup. He played a total of 379 minutes, with his cup matches always being full 90 minutes. Of course, he did not score goals nor did he make assists. The final match of his career came on the last day of the Premier League season, when United hosted Watford. Carrick played right from the start with the captain’s armband on and he did quite well, too.
There was a sense of minor disappointment that he was ending his career, as his finest moments were never truly appreciated at the time. In the end, everyone realized that his decision to hang the boots was a logical one and started reminiscing all the great passes he had hit in the famous red shirt, all the great moments he was part of during his time at the club.
Was he an important player for the club?
No, unfortunately he was not. It is not hard to conclude that after seeing how little he played this season, but his importance did come from off the pitch. Carrick has always been the calmer type of player, someone who can offer advice and be thoughtful in everything he does, the way he played. And that must have been valuable for Jose Mourinho. The manager will now have the opportunity to mould him into a really good coach that he has the potential to become. The way he played the game offers a possibility that Carrick really could reach the heights in his coaching career. But let’s go step by step first.
Projection for the 2018-19 season
Well, this is an easy one – he will be the coach in Mourinho’s backroom staff. Carrick could play a big part in the way Mourinho will do his job next season, as Rui Faria had left him after 17 years of cooperation between the two Portuguese. Carrick will be learning his trade, but his advices could come very useful, as he was part of the 2008 Manchester United team that won the Champions League. He has seen it all, now it is about him learning, improving and becoming a great coach everyone in Manchester believe he can become.