Manchester United have splurged on good quality players this transfer window, and there is no denying the fact that the expectations of the fans would be sky-high. Schneiderlin and Schweinsteiger will be looking to strengthen the midfield and Rooney would be looking to continue his good spell. On paper, this seems to be a perfect setting for United to make a run for the trophy. Let’s take a look at the facts though, and see if Manchester United can really be title challengers this season.
£225m is not a tiny sum and it is really difficult to go wrong from this point. In the world of the English Premier League though, you can never be too sure. The squad has been trimmed and excellent quality players have been brought in. They do enjoy a greater strength in their depth when compared to their contemporaries, and also have a flexibility, this time around. David De Gea is rumoured to stay back in the club, and if that is the case, then it will be the best situation for the team. In their first five fixtures they take on Aston Villa, West Ham, Leicester, Norwich and Bournemouth, while Chelsea and Arsenal face Manchester City.
It has been mentioned that Manchester United have succeeded in putting together a very versatile team. On the flip side of the same coin though, that can sometimes prove to be a menace as well. Van Gaal’s ingenious ideas have included playing Robin van Persie in midfield and Di Maria as a striker. There’s less necessity for Antonio Valencia to fill in at right-back now that Matteo Darmian has arrived, but the manager’s suggestion that he might play Daley Blind in central defence isn’t to be encouraged, versatile as he might be. Van Gaal must also correct a tragic away record (six teams bettered it last season, and eight won more games) and settle early on a workable formation, and the right people to play in it.
Depay can get to be United’s main man if he’s slowly exposed to the busy match schedule and then given a consistent position either up front or in the left of a 4-3-3. But then again, that responsibility doesn’t exactly have to fall on him considering how the club is not deficient of good goal scorers, and therefore that gives Depay a lot of time to understand the environment better that’ll eventually help him fit in better.
United’s ball-carrying and creative midfielders were bypassed when Fellaini became a focal point in the second half of the season. Plus, opponents got wise to it, and United went on their longest goalless streak since 2007, losing three consecutive games for the first time since 2001.
Also, Wayne Rooney has really matured into a dependable and reliable player who knows what needs to be done. It has also come down on to him now to lead the striker line. It is a simple yet necessary move, and one that could be beneficial for Manchester United. His temper has proved the fact that he is no good in the midfield, but as a striker, he is one of the best.