What has happened in the past two weeks?
So while I was on holiday, I was completely isolated from the world of football I wasn’t going to pay the astronomical charge of £5 per day for the Wifi the hotel offered (I pay that for a month at home) so I was completely out at sea as to what was happening. There was a bar which showed football but me a my brother where banned from watching by my misses (well not actually banned just that if we did I would have to pay for her to have a massage at the hotel for each game we saw. The massages where £40 so I just suffered without football for 2 weeks) The last bit of football I watched/read was our game against Aston Villa in the bar at the Airport before our flight so I was a bit out of the water from then on. When we got on the plane for the flight back the first thing I did was buy a newspaper, and what did it have blazened across the front and back page? Bale moving to Madrid, I cheered a little bit as I thought now we don’t have to worry about him anymore. However the paper did reveal that we had bought Eto’o(Happy with that), Willian(bit odd this one), Atsu(Great potential) and loaned out Lukaku and Moses along with a few others. I have watched the highlights from the United game and the Bayern game.
So firstly what we Bought In:
Eto’o (Free) – To get this type of player and the quality he possess for Free was quite a shock for me I thought we would of had to at least pay £10mill for him, I think we got him for free because Anzhi wanted to get his wgaes off of their books. A lot of people say he isn’t at his best anymore and I agree with those people, however I do say that he still has that spark to make something happen. He wasn’t completely consistent in the Russian League but when he was on form he was amazing. I know he won’t create the form he had while at Barca and Inter but I am sure he can make himself be at least ¾ of the player he was then. One thing that does concern me though is the rivalry that could be created between Eto’o and Torres. These two are arguably our two best strikers and both will be vying for the starting jersey.
Willian (£30mill) – A lot of papers have been saying different prices for Willian’s transfer to us with it ranging from £30million to £35million. However I am pleased it is cheaper than what Anzhi bought him for from Shaktar. Another issue is why did we sign Willian when we have an enough cover to have two players designated to each spot in our attacking trio (Hazard, Schurrle, Moses, De Bruyne, Oscar, Mata) I don’t mind that he has signed he is a great player with flair and speed which suits Mourinho’s style of play. But I really just see Willian as just this big Marquee Signing that we always seem to buy ie. Hazard and Oscar last year, Mata the year before that and Torres a few years back being a few examples of a marquee signing we seem to do. He was supposed to be Gareth Bale’s replacement at Spurs so this could just be another reason why we bought him to stop Spurs signing him.
Atsu (£3.5mill) – To buy a player from Porto where he has been playing a lot of football in their first team for so cheap with the potential he has was very very shocking for me. The rumoured buyout clause in his contract was £25million and we bought him for £3.5million. He has pace and skill with powerful shot on him however he does not have the accuracy in the shot yet. He has already been loaned to Vitesse where he will easily get into their first team and gain experience along with minutes under his belt.
What we Loaned Out:
Lukaku to Everton – I really can’t see why this was done? He was going to have a sure fire chance of playing as he is Mourinho’s type of player, but we got Eto’o which was Lukaku’s signal that he would be going on loan. The reason he was sent on loan was that “The club did not want to put so much pressure on the young player” well that is bollocks because he plays for his national side and that possibly is more pressure than playing at club level. I do think we have cocked up here with signing Eto’o and letting Lukaku go on loan, We have helped Everton in the fact we have given them a player who is wanting to play for his country in the World Cup(Belgium have qualified it is inevitable they are going Brazil) and he wants to prove himself, and they have replaced Felliani’s height and strength along with goals. He had a storming last season and I was hoping he was going to be able to do that for us this season sharing the Striker duties with Torres. I know sending Lukaku on loan is very beneficial as it gets him a lot of game time and experience but the experience he will get will just be the same from last season at West Brom. I think he should of stayed and we should of sold Demba Ba for the £10million Arsenal where supposedly willing to pay for him.
Moses to Liverpool – I see this as beneficial as he was going to get less game time than last season, he was only loaned out because we bought Willian. I am worried that he will enjoy his time at Liverpool and Sturridge will try to persuade him to stay. I know that Mourinho thought that Moses was a good player but not great as he is selfish and tried to do too much by himself and before he could pass he would be dispossessed. I think he is good he just hogs the ball too much for my liking and for the style of play we are trying to play he needs to pass more. If we ever did sell him I hope we sell him for what we bought him for so we do not lose out on the money and with the FFP we will need that money.
Not getting Rooney
I am not the only one that is a bit annoyed by not signing Rooney after all the talk from Mourinho and the reports from the club, most of us thought he was going to sign. I was hoping he would of because that means we would of signed a world class striker who knew what the Premier League was like and had an eye for goal. He would have been a great buy and I believe he would of gelled well with the team. I think we only have until the end of the Summer Transfer Window in the 2014/2015 season to sign him or he won’t leave United.
Champions League Groups where announced
The groups where annouced for the Champions League and on paper we have a very, very easy group in the form of Schalke 04, FC Basel and Steaua Burcharest. On paper we should finish the group top with 18points but in reality I cannot see that happening. This is because we lost to Steaua away but that was unlucky in fairness and going to Schalke is not going to be a walk in the park. Here’s a little bit of info about our group stage oppenents.
Schalke 04 – The second best team in our group behind us. They have reinforced their team well this season and have got quality down the spine of their team, Klass Jan Huntelaar being there threat upfront, Julian Draxler is their little magician in midfield, Kevin Prince Boateng is their new acquisition and a great one at that he brings solidarity to the team then they have Papadoupalous at Centre Back for his age he is very mature and a leader. With these four players they have a great spine of their team which makes them a tricky team. When we play them at the Bridge we should win with ease as they are not doing well away from home but when we go to Germany they are sterner stuff and play well infront of their fans eventhough they haven’t won at home yet they push teams right till the end.
FC Basel – Played them last year in the Europa League Semi-Final and their team has not changed much since then, they have lost however their young, solid Centre Back Dragovic. Their league form went downhill from the battering they received from us last season and they are finding it difficult to find ways to win games as a lot of teams in Switzerland have figured out how to beat them.
Steaua Burcharest – We unluckily lost to them last year away from home but we came back with avengence in the home tie. They are hard battlers and fight for every ball. They have changed personel over the summer as their top goalscorer has been snapped up by Sevilla and Vlad Chircheres has moved to Spurs apart from these two departures they are pretty much the same team as before.
Final Positions of group stage:
2. Schalke 04
3. FC Basel
4. Steaua Burcharest
Falcao – Big Club Release Clause
It has come out of France that Falcao has in his contract a clause that if a big club like Madrid, PSG, United, City or Chelsea want to buy Falcao they can but for a minimum price of £40million. I don’t really think this is actually to be true as why would a team do that and then have the Minimum Fee at only £40million when they bought him for a rumoured £50.5million that means they would lose out on £10million, that is a big sum of money if you take into consideration the FFP.
Super Cup Loss
I was rather disappointed by this result as by the sounds of it eventhough we where down to 10 men we where still the better side. In all fairness it was it seemed like the opposite way round to what happened between us and Bayern in the Champions League Final where we won. Our first goal by Torres was a well worked goal by Hazard and Schurle with the latter crossing for Torres to score placing the ball in the top left corner of the goal, Hazard’s goal (Chelsea Second) was a well worked individual goal with one of Hazard’s trademark cutting in to the box to shoot on his stronger foot. I feel sorry for Lukaku as he missed the penalty and I don’t think he deserved that, it wasn’t one of his best penalties that’s for sure. However I was proud of the team as they have gelled extrememly well under a new regime. They are starting to look like a team with attacking intent and we seem not to be as dodgy at the back anymore but that is what Mourinho does, he works on the defence first and makes them completely rock solid before anyother part of the team has a proper look in. In all fairness apart from possibly our Strikers the defence is the only area we need working on.
This game looked like an even affair, eventhough it looked like we where not playing to the best of our ability. I do believe we where saving oursleves for the game against Bayern. Either team could of won this game we just didn’t take our chances. We defended well but we were cut open sometimes but you can say the same about us doing that to United. Rooney seemed to be unfazed by playing Chelsea which may have signalled he has made his decision about his future. It did seemed like we where missing that little bit more of creativity in the midfield and that being Juan Mata, he scored the winner at Old Trafford last year and I believe he could of unlocked the United defence with his passing and the link up play we all know too well with Hazard that they can dismantle teams by themselves with this passing. I was dissapointed with this draw as I do believe we should of won it.
What do you think of our new signings? Should Lukaku gone out on Loan or should he of stayed and we sold Ba or not even signed Eto’o?
What about our last two performances?