After another 4-0 beatdown in a row, let’s have a look at some talking points from another win for the red devils.
1. Clinical United
A sentence I haven’t said for years now. United through most of the game, were not great. Swansea did a good job of containing us and limiting our chances. But soon as Fellaini came on and Pogba moved further forward, we ran wild. 3 goals in 5 minutes shows how clinical we were. Lukaku added to his tally and Pogba and Martial continued their goal scoring. It’s something we’ve missed seeing from United. A side that will score plenty past smaller teams and show the rest of the league who are the real threats.
2. A Solid Partnership
If you told me last year that Phil Jones and Eric Bailly would of kept 2 clean sheets at the start of next season, I would of replied with “Phil Jones?” It’s good to see a player who had such a high ceiling finally show why Fergie had such high expectations for him. Both Jones and Bailly get the best out of each other. Bailly is a composed defender who can either sit deep or go further forward, and Jones has stopped trying to get himself injured and finally stopped diving into tackles. Both are playing great and I hope they continue this till the end of the season.
3. A lack of width
Even though we did win 4-0, there are still some complaints I have about the performance. The biggest concern is the lack of width. Normally Valencia and whoever was playing at left back would offer our width to stretch the opponent, because of our wingers normally strikers or number 10s who prefer to come inside instead of staying outwide. But today Valencia and Blind were just not going forward enough. It made Swansea’s defending much simpler, with all our forwards in the middle and no one to stretch them and give our players a chance to make space. Mourinho needs to make it clear to Valencia and Blind they need to go forward whenever the wide players begin to get possession, so they have an overlapping option, so we begin to play to another of Lukaku’s strengths. Balls into the box.
4. Our Midfield
Even though I have a huge love towards both Mhiki and Mata, I do miss some balance in midfield. If you really want the true best out of Pogba, Herrera needs to be playing as well as Matic. Herrera gives plenty of energy and a real leader in the side. With the three of them playing, it’ll give us 3 different types of midfielders, to ensure that we get the best out of each of them. Pogba is at his best when he drifts to the left and opens up the midfield. In a 4-2-3-1, Pogba is limited in this, he has to make sure he doesn’t drift too far in case the opponent regains possession and counters quickly. I do think playing 2 number 10s does make us exciting to watch, but in the bigger games 3 in midfield would be my preferred option.
5. Swansea have a chance
Before the game, Clement did say that they prepared for life without their Icelandic talisman. And it shows. They began the game being the bigger threat, with Abraham and Ayew drifting wide because our fullbacks would usually be further forward, so Bailly and Jones would have to follow them. It created more space in the middle for the midfielders and it did work at the beginning. They still have a good chance of surviving. If they bought a player in similar fashion of Siggurdsson, they should be fine this season.