Manchester United are in a good form, not conceding a goal since Boxing Day and winning all of their matches in the New Year. They were also busy in the transfer market, trying to get Alexis Sanchez to Old Trafford. They succeeded in that pursuit, letting Henrikh Mkhitaryan go to Arsenal in the swap deal. The team also progressed in FA Cup and Jesse Lingard and Paul Pogba have been, among others, in great form.
So, here are our five thoughts on Manchester United in 2018 so far.
Alexis Is Red
This is the number one story in whole of England! Alexis Sanchez moved to Manchester United, showing ambition to build something big at Old Trafford. The legendary number 7 on his back could help him do that, while he will be surrounded by Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku in their quest to winning trophies.
Manchester United reacted very well in the market. They were decisive and firm, knowing what they want. The team has got an amazing player that could bring so much to the club. After all, he was part of 32.9 percent of all Arsenal goals during his three and a half years tenure at the club.
Letting Mkhitaryan Leave Was A Wise Move
Manchester United did both parts of that transfer deal properly. Instead of paying money for Sanchez, they let Henrikh Mkhitaryan go other direction. He could be the player Arsenal need, as he is more likely to fit their style of play. Jose Mourinho was not impressed with the Armenian playmaker and the deal makes sense.
United will be without a player that could have been unhappy with his status and also getting a much better player in Sanchez. It was a wise move from the board.
Anthony Martial Is Phenomenal
Manchester United played four matches in 2018 and Anthony Martial had a hand in at least one goal in each of the four games. He scored three goals and assisted another two in just 270 out of possible 360 minutes on the pitch. This means he was involved in a goal every 54 minutes, but more importantly, he was involved in five of United’s eight goals in those four matches.
It only shows how important Martial is becoming to this team. With his 11 goals and six assists this season in all competitions, the Frenchman is already playing his best season since joining Man United.
This season Manchester United have been known for conceding too many shots than the team of their quality should. With David De Gea making 78 saves this season (only Lukasz Fabianski has more and Swansea are rock-bottom), United are not doing things perfectly in defence.
However, the team has improved a lot in recent weeks. Since the 2-2 draw against Burnley on Boxing Day, it has now been 504 minutes since Man United conceded in all competitions. The team has been more compact going backwards, not allowing the same easy chances they have been allowing in the better part of December.
Mourinho will be satisfied with that, as the good defensive work will be a good foundation for scoring goals at the other end.