Tag Archives: Man Utd

Man Utd Lose In Bizarre Penalty Shootout 11-10 To Competitive Villarreal; Ending Season On A Low

Man Utd were defeated in penalties by Villarreal in a wild penalty shootout that ended in the hands of the goal keepers.

The game ended 1-1 after a first half goal from Gerard Moreno and an equalizer from Edison Cavani in the second half, no side could breakthrough in extra time and the game went to penalties.

Man Utd Line Up and Pre-Match Thoughts

Eric Bailly and Victor Lindelof were the choice center back pairing with Harry Maguire and Axel Tuanzebe on the bench. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer opted for a more attacking side with three forwards getting the start.

Mason Greenwood, Marcus Rashford and Edison Cavani all together with Bruno for only the sixth time ever. Injuries and the congested schedule has not allowed such an attacking side being picked often, maybe a nod to the future by Solskjaer.

Scott McTominay fills in with Pogba in the middle, an extremely attack minded side, with Fred, McTominay and Pogba it is a bit safer and more possession minded. One-on-ones for Rashford and Greenwood could be prevalent with Bruno and Cavani occupying the middle.

Man Utd could be susceptible on the break with out a true six and Gerard Moreno is great on the counter. Bacca is a good passing forward as well, one or two passes and they could get behind any defense.

It will be interesting how Man Utd linked defender Pau Torres does against a strong and experienced striker like Cavani. Albiol will likely mark Cavani in the area, if Bruno runs at Albiol it could create mismatches and opportunities for the forwards.

Capoue and Parejo will have to do well in deciding when to press Pogba and Bruno and when to lay off. Juan Foyth gets the nod at right back, but he is also a center back, so he adds a more defensive presence in their back line.

Man Utd Go Behind In The First Half

Scott McTominay got the first decent chance in the sixth minute, McTominay pulled his long range shot well wide, it came after Man Utd won possession in Villarreal’s half.

After the initial spar, Man Utd won possession in Villarreal’s half often, the high press by United worked well in the beginning of the game.

The match became a little feisty before the 20th minute, some decent challenges brought the energy up, and Luke Shaw fizzled a cross/shot that could not find anybody or the back post.

Villarreal looked threatening on a couple of corners, Man Utd had trouble clearing their lines, but Villarreal offered little on the ball and United dominated possession.

Villarreal settled and began to press Man Utd back and won a free kick. Moreno got behind the defense on the subsequent free kick, David de Gea could do nothing and Moreno got his 30th goal of the season.

Man Utd dominated possession after the goal and Villarreal were willing and soaked up the pressure. United just could not get that last pass to create a decent chance.

Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford turned it up at the end of the first half, but United go in the locker room down 1-0.

A Goal By Cavani Sends Man Utd To Extra Time

Set pieces and Man Utd not being able to clear their lines properly allowed Villarreal a golden opportunity early in the second half. United’s frantic defending bailed them out.

McTominay did well to bully his way in the box, his shots were blocked and one gave United a corner. Rashford’s shot from the cleared corner resulted in a scramble and Cavani pounced to level the game early in the second half.

Man Utd sprang to life after the goal and had another opportunity but Bruno’s shot/cross went wide.

Francis Coquelin replaced Bacca in the first change of tactics for either side, Coquelin a defensive minded midfielder signaled that Villarreal were worried about United’s rejuvenated attack.

Cavani had a decent opportunity after Shaw scuffed a right footed shot, Cavani’s header looked to be going in, but Pau Torres blocked it well.

United had a lot of good opportunities and looked really threatening in the middle of the second half. Aaron Wan-Bissaka found a lot of space on the right, but his crossing is not a strength.

Super sub Paco Alcacer entered the game for Yeremy and Moi Gomez replaced Trigueros, two like for like swaps positionally, and Ole continues to opt for the same XI, who have played well.

McTominay played well for United, he had a few driving runs at the Villarreal defense, on one of the runs his low driven cross was nearly flicked in by Cavani at the near post.

Neither side could find that goal and the game finished 1-1 at full time.

A Stale and Tired Extra Time Results In Penalties

Both sides looked tired in extra time and seemed to hope for a mistake by either side. The subs for Villarreal were paying off Alcacer and Alberto Moreno got some decent chances in.

It took 100 minutes for Solskjaer to replace someone, Fred came on for Greenwood who looked exhausted and had a decent game for United.

A scramble for United defensively in the second half of stoppage made things a bit nervy, especially after Fred got away with a handball in the area.

Tuanzebe entered the game for Bailly and Dan James came on for Pogba, a surprise given Pogba’s penalty prowess.

Three added minutes in the second half and Man Utd brought in two more prospective penalty kick tackers, Alex Telles and Juan Mata for McTominay and Wan-Bissaka.

The Bizarre Penalty Shootout!

It was the confident and experienced David de Gea versus the young cup keeper Rulli for Villarreal.

Gerard Moreno, the regular penalty kick tacker for Villarreal, easily beat de Gea on the first penalty sending him the wrong way.

On Mata’s only touch of the game he beat Rulli high, a good penalty for the veteran, but Villarreal again beat de Gea and regained the lead.

The next substitute Telles took the second Man Utd penalty and he beat Rulli easily as well, four lefties, four goals.

Paco Alcacer snuck it past de Gea, a slight touch from the keeper. Bruno, United’s penalty taker, had a repeat of Alcacer’s and snuck it past Rulli, 3-3.

Former Liverpool player Alberto Moreno stepped up and powered it past de Gea. Rashford answered smoothly with a stutter run up and never looked down, 4-4.

Parejo beat de Gea awkwardly to de Gea’s right. Cavani then stepped up and beat Rulli, 5-5 and now sudden death.

Moi Gomez beats de Gea down the middle, but Fred smashes it past Rulli’s left, 6-6. Veteran Albiol was cool as well and sent de Gea the wrong way.

Dan James forced the keeper the wrong way as well and the nerves got really high on the field and in the stadium, 7-7.

Ex Aresnal man Coquelin went top netting and easily beat de Gea. A nervy Luke Shaw then beat Rulli somehow, the keeper got a piece to it as well, 8-8.

Villarreal club captain Mario Gaspar beat de Gea as well. Tuanzebe looked cool and composed before his kick and he was, easily beating Rulli, 9-9.

Man Utd linked defender Pau Torres went high as well and beat de Gea. Lindelof got by Rulli as well, and now it was the keeper’s turn.

Rulli smashed it by de Gea and then saved the penalty by de Gea.

End Of The Season For United

A disappointing ending to the season for United, a lot of people in the media and fans dubbed this game as a building block for United, even Ole.

Losing does not mean that United can not go forward and have a strong next season and be more competitive in the more prestigious tournaments, but it is a blow, winning a trophy is better than losing a trophy.

Man Utd Youngsters Pivotal in 1-2 Win On the Final Day of The Premier League

A heavily rotated Man Utd defeat Wolves 1-2 at Molineaux in the final day of the Premier League with the two goals being scored in the first half.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer opted for youth and rotational players for the final league game of the season. In three days Man Utd face Villarreal in the Europa League Final and with top 4 clinched a rotated squad was always likely.

Anthony Elanga had a golden opportunity in the 8th minute after Dan James cut inside and played a ball across the box and it fell nicely to the feet of Elanga, but he sent his shot in the stands.

It was Elanga who got the scoring started in the 13th minute, James found the 19-year-old forward again this time with a left footed cross. Elanga got in front of his defender and powered the header passed the Wolves keeper.

After some good Man Utd pressure and chances early, United sat back and soaked up some Wolves pressure with ease, not much for Dean Henderson to do in the first 38 minutes.

Still not much for Henderson to do when Wolves leveled. Fabio Silva found his Portuguese teammate Nelson Semedo. Silva’s pull back found an open Semedo in the box and he easily slotted the ball past Henderson.

Both sides became reinvigorated after the equalizer and Brandon Williams got behind the Wolves defense but his shot was straight at Rui Patricio and he easily saved the powerful shot.

Donny van de Beek won Man Utd a penalty during first half stoppage time and Juan Mata picked out the corner of the goal. Man Utd go into the locker room up 1-2 and probably deserve the lead after a solid performances from the rotated squad.

Man Utd Clamp Wolves in the Second Half

It was all Wolves to begin the second half, Man Utd took some of the pressure off with a couple of great attacks. Amad slipped James in with an extremely well weighted pass, but James was woeful and tried to be too cute with his finish.

Elanga and Amad were both really impressive on the day. Positionally and creatively, they both played like they were seasoned professionals compared to their youthful realities.

Brandon Williams also had a decent game, he got forward well, and kept the always over lapping left back at bay. Williams did well staying inside and pressing when the ball came out to the full back, but he also had a few misplaced passes.

Man Utd as a team played an assured second half, the possession that they conceded was defended really well as a team. United did well to not allow Wolves many moments inside, they forced Wolves wide and after Traore went down in the first half, Wolves lacked playmakers out wide.

The crosses that Wolves would create from the wide positions were easily snuffed out by Eric Bailly and Axel Tuanzebe. Tuanzebe and Williams rescued Bailly after he let Fabio Silva behind him in the 76th minute, the pairing looked good and could get the start together in three days.

Ole opted not to use his substitutes until the 82nd minute, Shola Shoretire and Hannibal came on for Juan Mata and Amad. It was a debut for Hannibal in the first team, it was only a short cameo for Hannibal, but he looked decent on the ball a couple of times.

William Fish also got a debut, a whole two minutes, but he could be an interesting watch in the summer during pre-season engagements.

Wolves found some joy down the right late in the match, but could not really create any decent chances until Gibbs-White found some space, but his shot was dragged wide. Willy Boly also had a decent long ranged shot.

It was an extremely impressive win for a young Man Utd side against a decent Wolves side at home and on the final game for manager Nuno Espirito Santo.

With a final in three days this was a pretty satisfying win to end the campaign.

Man Utd Give Up Second Half Goal to Fulham; Game Ends 1-1 in Final Home Game of the Season

Man Utd and relegated Fulham draw 1-1 in the final game at Old Trafford this season. United opened the scoring, but a goal from Fulham in the second half cemented parity between the sides.

Old Trafford hosted fans for the first time in 14 months and the energy in the beginning of the game because of it was extremely apparent.

Axel Tuanzebe got the start along side Lindelof in defense, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is going to have a huge decision to make if Harry Maguire is not fit for the Europa League final.

Fulham, have already been relegated and looked to use that freedom that some already relegated teams have experienced in the past, but United struck first sensationally.

Edinson Cavani scored one of Manchester United’s best goals of the season after David de Gea played a long ball that was flicked on by Bruno Fernandes. The pass found Cavani who spotted Alphone Areola off his line and chipped the keeper around 40 meters out.

Man Utd kept everything in front of them during long stretches in the first half easily breaking up any danger offered by Fulham. It helped create chances for Man Utd and Bruno had a wonderful shot saved by Areola.

Fulham youngster Fabio Carvalho almost put Fulham level after he was played in and got behind Victor Lindelof. The shot was tame and de Gea easily saved the one-on-one.

United probably should have put Fulham away in the first half, especially with all the possession that Fulham gave away in their own half.

Man Utd Let Fulham Back In The Game

As the second half wore on, the energy from the first half seemed to diminish and Fulham got back in the game and had some decent chances.

Ademola Lookman almost caught de Gea out at his near post, but de Gea saved well and followed it up with a double save after Carvalho tried a header off the deflection of the save.

In response United had some good half chances that brought the crowd back into the game, but could not capitalize after decent spells of possession.

It was a counter attack that almost put the game away for United. Cavani found Mason Greenwood well, but Areola made himself big and was able to save the shot from Greenwood in the 73rd minute.

Fulham leveled the game after Bobby Decordova-Reid found Joe Bryan at the back post. Bryan was completely unmarked and had plenty of time to pick his spot against de Gea.

Bruno was one of the only outlets offensively for Man Utd during the second half and had many long range shots easily kept by Areola. Including one in the 79th minute after he sat down his defender and did well to create a shot opportunity.

It was basically all Fulham after that and even ended the game looking to score on United. It was an extremely disappointing game for United, they could have clinched second.

United had a chance to put in one last attack against but played the ball side-to-side instead of putting in the box. One eye must be on the Europa League final.

Three Matches In 2021 That Man Utd Suddenly Wish They Could Have Back

Man Utd defeated Aston Villa 3-1 on Sunday again delaying Manchester City being crowned champion. City lost to Chelsea on Saturday and dropped points to Leeds a month ago as well.

Man Utd claimed all three points against Villa today.

If Man Utd defeat Leicester on Tuesday they would cut the gap to seven points with three games left. Seven points can be equated too dropped points in three games.

If they had these three matches back the title race going into these last couple of weeks would have been drastically different, obviously, but if you look back at this season and games that should have been wins, these really stand out as big what-ifs.

There are more than three matches that could have forced a better title race, but my top three are: Sheffield United at home, Everton at home and Crystal Palace away.

Man Utd Fall to Relegated Sheffield United in January

United hosted rock bottom Sheffield United on a Wednesday after knocking out rivals Liverpool in the FA Cup the weekend before. Sheffield United from the beginning of the season looked destined to go down after languishing at the bottom for months.

Even in January there was a consensus that Sheffield United are going to go down and Man Utd should go into these types of games and win, especially at home.

After poor clearing and sustained pressure from the Blades, Oliver Burke had his shot deflect off of Axel Tuanzebe and past David de Gea to steal the points in 74th minute. United were not able to get a late equalizer and Sheffield United came into Old Trafford and took 3 points.

A huge and obvious blow in the title race for Man Utd. Since that defeat at home to Sheffield United, Man Utd have not lost in the league since.

Man Utd Drop Two Points to Everton in Stoppage Time

United went into the game against Everton only three points behind City, but City had a game at hand. They could have been level on points before City destroyed Liverpool but instead ended up being five points behind City after the weekend.

After going up 2-0 at half time, United were pegged back quick in the first six minutes of the second half. A goal from Scott McTominay in the 70th minute put United back up.

A Dominic Calvert-Lewin goal in the fifth minute of stoppage time meant that the points would be shared on the day at Old Trafford.

United would go on to draw against another soon to be relegated team, West Brom, and Man City made up their games and United were now down 10 points.

The West Brom game was a contender for one of the games, but the Crystal Palace game really cemented the title going to City.

A Stale 0-0 Draw in London

Man Utd headed to London on the 3rd of March to face a dreadful Crystal Palace side that could not score a goal to save their lives. BUT, no one could score on them either and they were fine playing like that.

All it was ever going to take was one goal for United and they would get the three points instead they left London frustrated by a Palace team that did not have their best player and former United player, Wilfred Zaha.

Man Utd could only muster one shot goal despite having 63% of the possession on the day. The weather was grim and foggy, typical English weather, you would have hoped for United to test the keeper from long range, get some shots off.

City would go on to take a 14 point lead after this result and it was becoming clear they would win the title.

Manchester United could not get it done on those days and if you look back on what could have been these results really stick out. The seven points dropped in these matches would have made things really exciting going in to the final few games.

11th Placed Aston Villa Should Be a Good Test for Man Utd

Man Utd face 11th placed Aston Villa in the Premier League later today. Man Utd will play Aston Villa, Leicester and Liverpool in the next few days.

Aston Villa are having a better season than last year where they were nearly relegated and finished just above the drop, but they have sputtered slightly in the second half season after a good beginning of the season.

They have had some famous victories this season and could finish as high as eighth. Aston Villa defeated Everton last time out at Goodison Park 2-1. Ollie Watkins was on the scoresheet that day and has been solid since joining from Brentford in the summer.

Watkins leads the team with 13 goals, followed by Anwar El Ghazi who has 8 goals and has been in form lately. Jack Grealish has 6 goals and 10 assists but he has been out with an injury, but is close to returning.

Aston Villa are a solid team defensively, they have given up the fifth least amount of goals in the league this season with 38. Cash, Targett, Mings, Konsa and Martinez in goal are a decent defensive group that Villa can grow with.

John McGinn and Douglas Luiz work hard in the middle and in January, Aston Villa added french midfielder Morgan Sanson from Marseille, an ambitious signing for a mid-table club.

Aston Villa are a decent side that will give Man Utd a good game, it will be interesting to see how Man Utd lineup given the amount of games that are going to be played in the next few days.

Man Utd’s Team News Against Aston Villa

Man Utd had a four goal cushion on Roma, so the 3-2 loss did not mean much against a Roma side that was always going to come out pressing and force the action.

David de Gea was remarkable in goal against Roma and could cause some decisions to be made. Edison Cavani was fabulous over the two legs as well.

There will be squad rotations, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said in his press conference. The squad must be rotated because of the match congestion, Ole even said he will likely start a whole other stating XI in one of those games.

“I’ve got to think about my players, but I know the other teams fighting for the Champions League place will not. They will not think β€˜oh, that’s not Man United’s best team, that’s not the best players’ and I can promise you that it is impossible to play 90 minutes four times at this intensity, at that level, in the Premier League, from Thursday to Thursday. That means I cannot play everyone in every minute, so we have got to prioritise.”

“I feel for my players, I feel for the team, I feel for them. Having had this fantastic season, got to a final, I’m sat here answering these questions and not about the run in. They’ve worked their socks off, they’ve been absolutely brilliant and I’m just very, very happy for them that we’ve got to this place.”

“We just have to do the best we can, it’s another challenge for us and please, you can see I’m not happy with it, I’m not sulking, it’s one of them things that I know my players will take head-on and we as a group will be stronger for it when we come out of it. I just keep my fingers crossed that no one will get injured.”

The Aston Villa game could be where they rotate heavy, the Leicester game could be viewed as more important than the Aston Villa game, but the Leicester game is sandwiched between the Liverpool fixture which is as equally important as the Leicester game.

Eric Bailly and Donny van de Beek played well in Rome and in other cameos lately, they should get in the rotation, Axel Tuanzebe, Alex Telles and even Juan Mata could get a look.

It will be interesting how Ole rotates the squad during in the upcoming week.

Man Utd Should Comfortably Advance Past Roma With 4 Goal Cushion

Man Utd face Roma with a 6-2 aggregate lead tonight in the Europa League Semifinals. Man Utd took care of business in the first leg of the tie setting up this huge aggregate lead in Rome tonight.

Man Utd had one of their best performances of the season and got a week off because of the protest on Sunday that spilled over onto the pitch. The protests led to the game against Liverpool being called off.

So United should be fresh and ready to see out any danger that Roma has to offer.

Related: Man Utd v Roma Preview

Roma

After the beating from United, Roma headed to Sampdoria in a league match. Again, Roma were outclassed losing 2-0 on the day. Claudio Ranieri’s club was able to finish their chances and see off Roma.

Roma have only won two game since March, they beat Bologna and Ajax in back-to-back games, since then its been poor, four defeats and two draws has Roma limping to the finish line.

The limp has spurred Roma into announcing that Jose Mourinho will be their manager next season. The former Man Utd boss was recently let go as manager by Tottenham.

Man Utd Press Conference and Team News

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer would probably not like the way his team got an extra few days off but they did. United will now have to play three games in five days because of the re-schedule of the Liverpool game, stating on Sunday.

Solskjaer advocated for peace after the protests during the press conference and hopes that team winning trophies could ease the tensions with the fans.

As I mentioned in other previews United are getting their fitness levels back, Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford and Edison Cavani are getting their fitness levels back and it has been a huge boost for the club at the end of the season.

“We brought some young staff in, we are working on robustness, resilience, being able to play 50 games for Man Utd. A winning Man Utd team has players who can play 45-50 games at high standard,” said Solskjaer about the expected fitness levels at United.

United should reach the final, SHOULD! Roma probably will not lay over and might fight hard especially early in the game to get a goal or two, it is United’s game to lose.

Man Utd and Liverpool Reignite their Fierce Rivarly Tommorrow

Man Utd will host rivals Liverpool tomorrow in the Premier League. It is a must win for Liverpool as they try and keep up with the teams around them that are vying for the last Champions League spot.

Man Utd sit comfortably in second place and will clinch Champions League soon. If Liverpool defeat Man Utd than Man City will clinch the title. Lose to your rivals and your other biggest rival wins the league, odd situation for Man Utd.

One could conclude that this derby could be a fascinating one with everything on the line, but last time Liverpool and Man Utd played the game finished 0-0.

Looking at the Leeds game last weekend, it had the makings of a great game, however it finished 0-0. Liverpool need to win and Man Utd are coming off one of their best performances this season, the game could become open sooner rather than later or they both play it safe.

Related: Bruno, Cavani and Paul Pogba Run Rampant Against Roma

Liverpool

Disappointing is a nice one word answer to describe Liverpool this season. High off winning their first league title in decades, Liverpool got hit hard with the injury bug and have had inconsistencies from key players.

Even Jurgen Klopp has seemed on edge, especially when he speaks to the media. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is a lot more composed and tactical when he speaks to the press.

Some could admire Klopp’s passion but his passion creates these moments of frustration and exacerbates the problems that Liverpool are having and then you blindside your club with the European Super League, the situation looks tense from an outside perspective.

Liverpool have dropped points the last two league games, two 1-1 draws against Leeds and Newcastle, with both goals coming late in the game. The draws mean that Liverpool languish in sixth place.

Sixth placed Liverpool are currently four points behind Chelsea who are fourth and hold the final Champions League spot and two points behind fifth placed West Ham. Chelsea face Fulham on Saturday and could be seven points clear of Liverpool by Sunday.

Mohamed Salah leads the team in scoring with 20 league goals. Sadio Mane and Diogo Jota are next with eight each. Salah has been rumored to leave Liverpool, but who knows.

Mane has been inconsistent this season and Jota has been hurt after impressing early in the season. Club captain Jordan Henderson going down was also a massive blow.

Defensively Liverpool has suffered the most with injuries this season after losing Virgil Van Dijk early in the season, Joe Gomes and Joel Matip have both gone down as well. Last game they started Ozan Kabak and Fabinho as their starting center backs.

Fabinho is better suited as a six and sitting in front of the two central defenders but he has done well and is capable of playing a sweeper. Kabak still needs time to analyze his performances. Allison the goal keeper has also has a mistake in him this season.

A draw or a defeat for Liverpool will see them probably drop out of the race for fourth.

Man Utd Team News

Man Utd were sensational a couple of nights ago against Roma and looked to have sealed the time against the Romans, four goals will be a tough ask for any team.

There could be smart rotations after that extremely high energy game that Man Utd took part in, they ran all night against Roma. Not only was it one of the better performances all season, it was one of Man Utd’s highest paced games all season.

Man Utd could be a little leggy still, maybe we will see Mason Greenwood start, Daniel James, Eric Bailly or even Donny van de Beek.

Not being defeated could take precedent over a must win, the position that Man Utd are in is extremely comfortable and finishing the season healthy with a chance to win a trophy could be more important than winning a derby game, doing both would be ideal.

Man Utd look healthier and healthier as we come to an end of the season. The condensed schedule has eased up a bit and Man Utd are an obvious benefactor of having a little extra rest. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer spoke on the fitness during his press conference.

Big game regardless of the situation, a win would leave the fans happy to not see a rival clinch the title on your behalf and boosts spirits before an upcoming European final.

Bruno, Cavani and Pogba Run Rampant against Roma; Man Utd on the Verge of European Final AFter Destroying Roma 6-2

Man Utd are on the cusp of finishing off Roma and playing in the Europa League final after an inspiring performance from Bruno Fernandes, Edison Cavani and Paul Pogba.

Man Utd won 6-2 on the night and scored five goals in the second half, Bruno had two goals as well as Cavani, Pogba scored on a header and Mason Greenwood probably finished off the tie late in the game.

The goals were obviously great but the passing was amazing. Cavani was so good holding the ball up, Pogba was taking players on and finding his teammates at will and Bruno pulled the strings as the playmaker and made smart runs in the box.

Bruno’s first goal was brilliant, the run from Pogba, the one touch pass from Cavani while holding off the defender and a clever finish from Bruno to chip the goalie from close range, the perfect start for united.

Man Utd’s energy levels were evidently high. Their relentless pressing helped create chance after chance for Man Utd.

Another beautiful moment between the three for the second goal, Pogba released Cavani who held the ball up well and found Bruno, he played it back to Cavani and finished smoothly in the top hand corner.

In the 67th minute the cameras panned to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer who encouraged his team to keep the pressure high, and they did.

The high press created counter attacking opportunities for Roma but they were so overwhelmed by Man Utd going forward that the two goals they did score are pretty meaningless in the long run.

A tap in from Cavani, a Bruno penalty, Pogba’s header and the best pass of the game from Cavani found Greenwood on the counter to round out the rest of the goals on the night.

This performance has me begging Man Utd re-sign Edison Cavani immediately.

Man Utd v Roma Preview: Roma Insight, Ole’s Comments Provoke Roma Fans and Team News

Man Utd will host Roma in the first leg of the Europa League Semifinals tomorrow evening. Man Utd would rather be participating in the Champions League Semifinals but this a big opportunity against a historic club.

Roma are not the Roma team from a few years ago that was challenging for Serie A titles and knocking Barcelona out of the Champions League. Roma currently sit 7th in Serie A and lost to Cagliari this weekend.

The days of De Rossi and Totti are long gone. Two former Man Utd players currently play for Roma, Chris Smalling and Henrikh Mkhitaryan. Jordan Veretout had a stint in the Premier League and Edin Dzeko played for rivals Man City.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was criticized by Roma fans for ‘disrespecting’ their club, Solskjaer responded at the press conference to those claims.

“That was straight after the game and, with all the games we’ve had, I was just relieved that we had gone through. Of course, I’ve watched them but I hadn’t analyzed them and I hadn’t seen them in depth to give them enough respect probably.”

Maybe the Roma fans are a bit insecure about their team. Besides the aging stars that I have mentioned, Roma has a lot of players in their mid to lower 20’s that are not really stepping up to the club’s former level.

Roma did get past a solid Ajax side 3-2 on aggregate in the quarterfinals of the Europa League but have only won a single league game in their last seven league games.

The last time Roma was this poor in the league was the 2011-2012 season where they finished 7th. The last two seasons saw Roma finish 5th and 6th.

Roma could do no worse than 8th this season. Sassuolo is currently 8th and three points behind the Romans, after that Sampdoria sit on 42 points at 9th. Milan and Juventus currently sit at 4th and 5th with a 11 point cushion over Roma.

Roma’s poor form in the league has probably condemned them to another season of Europa League unless they were to win the Europa League, they have no shot of qualifying for Champions League.

Luke Shaw is Ready for Man Utd Semifinals Chance

Luke Shaw joined Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at the press conference and gave his thoughts on the upcoming match. Luke Shaw has not featured in a cup final during his time at Old Trafford and he is ready for that chance.

“Of course personally for me its massive motivation, I have been quite unfortunate to not be involved in the semis or finals, so of course I am really looking forward to tomorrow night. From a team point of view it’s very important, in the past we have missed out on a few finals.”

“No semifinal is easy, there are always tough games, we have just missed out on a few. We had a lot of disappointment from that, we can use that as motivation.”

Man Utd Team News

Ole joked about Luke Shaw inserting himself in the Man Utd starting XI for the first leg when asked about not featuring in big games like this, it will be interesting to see if Shaw starts because Alex Telles has featured a lot in the Europa League at left back.

Both Eric Bailly and Marcus Rashford will be available according to Solskjaer. Bailly was recovering from Covid and Rashford has had a lingering foot problem.

“They’re all fit and available, we didn’t lose anyone from the last game, which was good. It was a hard-fought game of course against Leeds, high intensity. We’re ready and we’ve had good preparation for the rest of the season.”

Man Utd will have a fully fit squad for the first time in a while this season, obviously minus Anthony Martial, who looks out for the rest of the season.

Ole has a lot of options against Roma, Man Utd look set to finish second in the league, barring a catastrophic collapse in the league, Man Utd will finish in the top four.

Shola Shoretire’s Brace Helps End Man Utd’s U-23s Losing Streak By Easily Defeating Chelsea’s U-23s

Man Utd U-23s defeated Chelsea U-23s in a Premier League 2 matchup, 4-2. Shola Shoretire scored a brace and Chelsea’s U-23s were forced to 10 men early in the game and never recovered.

Amad made a surprising return to the U-23 side after being a frequent member of the Man Utd first team squad. He could still be on the bench for the Sunday game against Leeds. Brandon Williams also started for the U-23 side, both needed some minutes.

Chelsea started the scoring in the 6th minute, a long through ball over the top got in behind the Man Utd defense and a Brandon Williams sliding challenge was not enough and the ball rolled awkwardly in.

The game took a dramatic turn in the 14th minute when the Chelsea keeper handled the ball outside the box after a ball over the top of the Chelsea’s defense played in Amad.

The Chelsea keeper looked to have gotten away without punishment, but the ref showed red and Chelsea were forced early to play with 10 men.

Shola Shoretire leveled the game before half-time when he turned well in the box to find space, his left footed shot found the back of the net, it was his seventh goal in PL2 this season.

The game looked to be going into half-time leveled at 1-1, but Shola Shoretire did well again after receiving the ball in the box, Shoretire kept his composure and blazed the ball passed the Chelsea keeper making it 2-1 going into the half.

Chelsea were forced to catch Man Utd on the break or during set pieces while Man Utd pushed for a third goal. Chelsea were still dangerous at times and could have tied the game but Charlie Wellens cleared the ball off the line.

Shola Shoretire won a penalty in the 65th minute, but instead of going for the hat trick, Hannibal stepped up to take the penalty only to have it saved by the Chelsea keeper.

Amad curled in a beautiful free-kick in the 70th minute to put the game out of reach, but it would wind up as the game winning goal.

Shola Shoretire had a great match for Man Utd and should have had his hat trick but missed a wide-open header in the 74th minute. Shola Shoretire was subbed off for the last 15 minutes after tacking a couple of knocks, he played well as the number 9 for United.

Mark Helm scored the fourth goal for the young Red Devils when he converted a low cross from close range with his left in the 81st minute. Helm did well to re-direct the cross into the bottom corner.

The U-23s have two games left in their PL 2 campaign, they next face Derby on the 3rd of May.

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