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Man Utd can score goals but are one injury away from the inadequacy of last season – Agree?

The dark cloud over Old Trafford appears to be fading. What does Man Utd’s 4-0 thrashing over Lampard mean for the Red Devils as they march on?

No honest Man Utd or Chelsea fan can admit they saw that coming. Despite Chelsea having moments of showing how they can find themselves in dangerous areas, the attacks were always snuffed.

Man Utd and Chelsea are in similar situations, both have a much weaker squad than they have done in the years gone by, both feel they are underachieving and both are managed by a club legend.

This occasion was truly boys versus men. Man Utd allowed Chelsea the arrogance to try and bring the game to the Reds on their home turf, backfiring 4 goals from 5 shots on target. Which leads on to the first key thing we learned from Solskjaer’s 4-0 win…

Clinical United

Romelu Lukaku’s departure from the club left many fans scratching their heads. Where on Earth was Manchester United going to get their goals from?

If Man Utd had just beaten Norwich, Sheffield Utd or Newcastle 4-0, with respect to those clubs, there would still be concern about how Man Utd will cope this season.

However, in a campaign where Man Utd are fighting for 4th place with Chelsea and Arsenal, the Reds have already sent one of them to the bins. With a fairly given penalty buried by Rashford, he continued to show how much bottle he has.

A real number nine goal for Man Utd’s number nine. It saw Man Utd play it out to the wing, whipped in across goal from Pereira and met in front of the net by Anthony Martial to make it 2-0.

Merely seconds later, a beautiful pass behind the Chelsea defence came from a quiet Paul Pogba, controlled and slotted home by Marcus Rashford. Challenging Martial for his striker spot.

Finally, a dream debut for substitute Daniel James. As Pogba drove forward, the Welsh speedster caught up to him on his right-hand side, was played in and buried it home.

Basically, Man Utd can score goals this season.

Ole agrees! Team selection

Man Utd fans worldwide disagree on many things, to the abuse of players, to the ownership to how nice the new strip is. But one thing they all agree on is that Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, and Nemanja Matic are crucial to why Man Utd will fail this season.

Be it silly mistakes, lack of quality or inability to keep up with the new style of play; Solskjaer gave none of them game time today.

It is positive for fans to see their club moving forward, after falling behind for so many years. It appears the concerns of the fans are also the concerns of Solskjaer and all are on the same page with how this Man Utd team should look, behave and perform. Unfortunately, the Reds are merely and injury or two away from having an inadequate squad.

Two experienced strikers Man Utd should bring in to nurture youngsters

With the departure of Romelu Lukaku looking imminent, Manchester United need an experienced striker in the squad.

Without Lukaku in Solskjaer’s side, Ole Gunnar himself may be the only established striker in the ranks. Other options are Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood, Daniel James and Anthony Martial. With an average age of 20.5 between them. Alexis Sanchez has been discounted from this list due to him being invisible for the past 18 months.

That’s right, the most successful football team in British history is without an established striker.

Despite all aforementioned players having immense quality and talent between them, it is important that Solskjaer has an experienced striker to bring onto the field. As is stands, Manchester United’s most natural finisher is a 17-year-old Mason Greenwood.

Here are two experienced strikers that could be added to Man Utd’s ranks, and tutor the young strikers into fully-fledged finishers…

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Man Utd could repeat history by stealing Arsenal’s most prolific striker. It has happened once before with Robin Van Persie, again to less effect with Sanchez. But Aubameyang has taken well to the Premier League after the 30-year-old bagged 22 goals in the competition last season.

Aubameyang has been regularly linked to Man Utd, before and after he joined Arsenal. The Gunners having a small transfer budget this summer, they may be more willing to let their number one striker leave to a rival.

Robert Lewandowski

Another 30-year-old striker who bagged 22 goals in his league last season. Lewandowski could be seeking a big final pay going into the last 5 or 6 years of his career.

Not only would this Polish goal-scorer act as a steward for the progression of the young strikers at Old Trafford, but he also adds strength and an aerial threat unlike any other player at Man Utd.

Lukaku out: 2 experienced strikers Man Utd should be looking at

Romelu Lukaku looks set to join Inter Milan this summer, leaving Man Utd with the need to sign a new striker.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is creating a team of players with pace, high work-rate and ability to play the ball on the floor. Romelu Lukaku possesses none of these qualities. Which could be why he fell out of favour with Solskjaer and Marcus Rashford took the number nine spot.

Last season Lukaku scored 15 goals, compared to the 27 goals he got the season before. It shows that the Belgian worked under Jose Mourinho’s pragmatic and defensive approach and Lukaku can hold up the ball and win it from long passes.

Here are two experienced players that could add to Solskjaer’s high pressing and on-the-floor build-up play…

Javier Hernandez return to United?

Hernandez, or Chicharito, is fantastic in the number nine role. He rarely takes more the two touches on the ball before finding a teammate and instantly finding space. Chicharito was a Manchester United player under Sir Alex Ferguson. He understands the demand for quality necessary to play at Manchester United and even won two Premier League titles with the club.

Chicharito scored 8 goals and got 3 assists in 28 appearances for West Ham last season. However, being surrounded by Manchester United’s creative players such as Juan Mata, Angel Gomes and Paul Pogba. Chicharito could be the super-sub that adds over 10 goals to the tally for the club in a season. Unlike Lukaku, Chicharito is less offended by being on the bench.

Arsenal’s Aubameyang

With Arsenal’s pitiful £45million transfer budget, now is the chance to secure deals that otherwise would be dismissed. According to the Mirror, Arsenal is open to bids for their 30-year-old prolific striker.

If Manchester United want a first-team striker, Aubameyang can replicate last season and score over 20 goals in the Premier League.

It isn’t a foreign concept for Man Utd to steal star players from Arsenal. In the past few years, Robin Van Persie and Alexis Sanchez both ended their loyalty to Arsenal to join Manchester United.

How can Man United get the best out of Alexis Sanchez?

It’s not over for Sanchez, he can successfully impact this Man Utd squad if Solskjaer plays to his strengths.

Alexis Sanchez, 30, played 166 games and got 80 goals and 45 assists during his time at Arsenal. It’s fair to say that the Chilean has failed to live up to his expectations.

Sanchez was involved in a swap deal, where he came to Old Trafford and Henrikh Mkhitaryan went the other way to the Emirates Stadium.

Since joining Man Utd, Sanchez has a record of 5 goals and 9 assists in 45 appearances. A statistic that needs to vastly improve.

Solskjaer recently had an interview where he said: “If we get him firing, he can get us 20 goals easily if he gets on a good run.” Which gives us an idea of what the coaches expect from him.

Where will Sanchez fit into this squad?

Alexis Sanchez has lost a yard of pace since his days at Arsenal and Barcelona. Playing him on the wing last season was almost like playing with 10 men as the Chilean failed to impact games.

However, one notable attribute Sanchez has is the energy to close down and press high up the field. He showed real determination on many occasions throughout his time at Man Utd. His effort is never questioned, but his ability to push the team forward most definitely is.

Sanchez can play as a centre-forward, despite majoring on the wing throughout his career. This wouldn’t require him to partake in foot races against the modern speedy full-backs.

Instead, Sanchez would play as a number 10, closing down from the front and playing the pacey players through on goal and behind the defence, a skill Sanchez is more than capable of.

Sanchez had a great run in Copa America with Chile. He will then take a few weeks off and jump into a brand new system to play in, upon rejoining the squad. These circumstances could result in the old Sanchez coming back, and he could feel like a brand new signing by succeeding under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in the upcoming campaign.

Man Utd joins Man City, Arsenal and Tottenham in the race for 21y/o

Solskjaer is looking at add yet another young talent to his Man United ranks in an attempt to bolster the attacking force next season.

When Europe’s top clubs such as Arsenal, Man City, Tottenham, Bayern Munich, Monaco and Sevilla are all seeking your signature, you know you’re doing something right.

CSKA Moscow’s 21-year-old Russian striker Fedor Chalov seems to be doing everything right, with Manchester United, also interested in his services.

With 15 goals, Chalov was the top scorer in the Russian Premier League last season. Furthermore, he also had 7 assists to his name. The young talent shows a keen eye for goal partnered with a high level of football IQ.

Why does Solskjaer need him?

Romelu Lukaku openly admitted to seeking a move to Italy’s Inter Milan. This would result in the Red Devils losing between ten and twenty goals in the Premier League next season.

Chalov has scored 27 goals in 65 League games for CSKA Moscow. By putting him in a squad with more quality in the ranks, Chalov could translate and improve his conversion rate in a more advanced competition.

In a Manchester United squad, Chalov would provide competition for current forwards Rashford and Martial. However, the two are pressured to be versatile as they are expected to perform in each of the forward four positions.

Chalov, on the other hand, has 108 career games to his name. 105 of which he featured as a striker, and in 3 he played as a second striker, according to Transfermarkt.

Rashford, Martial and Greenwood are all able to play across the front line of the attack. Manchester United, however, may require someone whose trade is solely to get in the box and score goals, similarly to Lukaku.

Is another young talent the right option for United?

Solskjaer is targeting keen, young, hardworking talent to join his squad. Two of which, Daniel James and Aaron Wan-Bissaka, have already been integrated with the squad, exciting fans with their debut.

However, Manchester United will be lacking an experienced and proven striker, should Lukaku exit. Therefore, recruiting a prolific striker who would happily sit on the bench may be a necessity for Solskjaer.

3 key dates for Man City Women that could play a part in their push for the title

Now that full fixtures have been released for the Women’s Super League, The Football Manc Cave are picking out 3 dates that should be key for Man City Women.

Nick Cushing’s side managed to finish 2nd behind Arsenal Women last season. They’ll be out to win the title this campaign. With the signings over the summer such as Ellen White and Aoife Mannion, it’s clear to see that they are hoping to go one better by winning the league.

Now that all the players are back from the World Cup, I’ve picked out 3 dates to look out for next season…

Manchester United WomenSeptember 7th

Manchester United at home. And by home, we mean at the Etihad Stadium. I was hoping that these fixtures would be treated just like the men’s, as a big derby that deserved being watched. I’m so happy that Man City have made this happen, and I hope that Man United will host their game against their rivals at Old Trafford. This will be a great match as Manchester United women who were promoted to the WSL at the end of last season, we will see how they cope. It will also be interested to see both team captains, Steph Houghton and Alex Greenwood go against each other rather than being a part of the same team.

Arsenal Women – February 2nd

Arsenal at home. As the Manchester City were fighting with the Gunners for the title spot last season, this will surely be an exciting game of football. Both dates that they meet each other will be great games. I’ve only picked their home game as a key date, as fans will love to see the two teams go head to head. Man City should have a better chance of getting some points from Arsenal on home soil.

Brighton Women – May 16th

The last match of the season. A key date for most teams, as it will more than likely determine their league position. In this case, Man City could have to win against Brighton women in order to take the Super League title from Arsenal if they can have a promising season once again.

Man Utd have 2 reasons why they should go for Chelsea midfielder

There are rumours of a transfer race for Chelsea midfielder, Tiémoué Bakayoko and Manchester United are one team named as being interested.

Today at the Football Manc Cave, we are looking at reasons why Man United should advance on signing him.

The 24-year-old has found himself in an unlikely transfer race with Arsenal, Man United and PSG all monitoring him in the hope to get his signature. He’s had a shaky start in his career, especially at Chelsea as he found himself in a couple of red card situations. As you can imagine, that didn’t leave the best impression on the fans and other teams.

The Frenchman spent last season on loan at AC Milan after his disappointing spell at Stamford Bridge. It was there where Bakayoko improved which explains the sudden development of interest. The ex-Monaco player is now in pre-season training and being watched by new Chelsea manager, Frank Lampard.

So if he does decide that a change would do him good, why should Ole Gunnar Solskjaer go all out for him?

He Will Give It His All

This might be an obvious statement to make. All footballers who want to make it should be putting 100% effort in. However, not only will he be determined to get appearances, but he will also want to prove his improving form.

When he played for Monaco in the 2016/17 season, in an interview, he revealed how he had been suffering from a knee injury. He had been having problems since 2015, although he only addressed the issue in 2017. He said, “people don’t know but throughout the whole of last season, I suffered because of my knee. I had to grit my teeth in every match.” Now that he appears to be over this, I’m sure he’ll give it his all even more.

Champions League

Man United missed out on qualifying for Champions League football at the end of last season. Fans will be hoping for a better campaign this football season that sees the Red Devil’s end up back where they belong. If they do, Bakayoko is no stranger to the competition. He was with Monaco since 2014 and in the 2016/17 season, he contributed to their Ligue 1 title win.

As an individual, he was then named in the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League squad of the season before he joined Chelsea for £40 million. Let’s just hope he wants to be a part of a Man United side that wants to fight to be a part of Champions League football, rather than being put off by the fact they won’t be playing it next season.

2 Arsenal replacements for Ozil they must look at – Agree?

Mesut Ozil has been linked with Turkish side Fenerbahce, and the funds they would receive could be a huge turning point in Arsenal’s transfer window.

Arsenal has been plagued with a £45million budget for Unai Emery to make amendments to his squad this summer. This means that offloading players in order to bring in players could result in a hectic transfer window for the Gunners.

Last season, Ozil made 35 appearances under new manager Emery. Compared to the similarly regarded Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who made 51 appearances, in all competitions.

Ozil has fallen out of favour with both the manager and the fans, and as the midfielder edges towards 31 years old, he may well be looking for a big move away. However, in the current financial state of Turkish football teams, it is unlikely that any could afford his £350,000 per week wage, unless the German humbly accepts a wage decrease.

With two years left on his contract, Ozil could rake in upwards of a £30million budget increase, and there are two potential replacements for Arsenal to spend that money on…

James Maddison

After being linked with Manchester United, it is unlikely that this young Englishman will join them after the heated interaction between themselves and his teammate Harry Maguire. It has been confirmed that Leicester City has obtained the services of Youri Tielemans, meaning the availability of Maddison may well have increased.

This attacking-midfielder had a breakthrough season in the recent campaign. Creating 100 chances in the Premier League, more than any other player in the competition.

Paulo Dybala

This option may seem too lucrative. However, Dybala became frustrated at Juventus after the introduction of the greatest player in the world; Cristiano Ronaldo.

His current worth stands at around £76million as rated by Transfermarkt, which may mean he could be the only big signing Arsenal can bring in this summer. But with regards to shirt sales and performances on the pitch, there is a lot he could offer the Gunners in the place of the work-shy Mesut Ozil.

Forget Zaha: Ligue 1 starlet is the answer according to polled Arsenal fans

This week we asked you who Arsenal should sign, Nabil Fekir or Wilfred Zaha.

Arsenal is known to be looking for signings this transfer window before the season starts and two names that have been on their radar are Zaha and Fekir. We asked you here which player would be a better fit and 71% of you favoured Fekir.

Since the original news of his possible departure from Lyon broke, the Gunners are meant to have advanced in their talking to Fekir but haven’t yet made a bid or negotiated a deal. It has been made apparent that Arsenal are quite stuck for cash in this window, so I think that’s the main reason to why the poll vote favoured the Frenchman.

If you’re reading this and you don’t know who he is, he’s a 25-year-old midfielder and striker. He’s been with Lyon since his youth and has had appearances in the French international team. When comparing the two, I favoured him as the right man for Arsenal as he’s cheaper, played in a different league which would make him keen to for a change and generally I think he’d make a fresh addition.

26-year-old Zaha had interest from the Gunners too and they supposedly put forward a £40 million bid for him. However, Crystal Palace rejected the advances as they are holding out for £80 million. I presume that fans think the asking price is too high and not worth the cost. At the end of the day, any club would go for a cheaper option if they had two players that could deliver the same type of play and get similar results, cash struck or not.

Around 143 of you voted and 101 of you went for the cheaper option. I hope Arsenal fans get the result they want with this signing and if it does go ahead, I’m hoping Fekir will deliver.

Man City’s Spanish invasion is the hot topic

Man City have resigned a familiar face. Although a different piece of City transfer gossip is taking the spotlight here at the Football Manc Cave.

The news broke this morning that Angelino has become Pep Guardiola’s first addition to his side. The Spanish 22-year-old has spent a year at PSV Eindhoven where he played in every game for the side. His form attracted clubs like Arsenal. However, Man City beat them to it and have signed him on a four-year deal.

Angelino has reportedly been keeping up to date with Man City while playing in Holland. He spoke about, how it’s been a ‘pleasure’ to watch the football coming out of Guardiola’s team. The left-back will be able to contribute to the blue’s defensive line next season. With Kompany departing over the summer. The Manchester side needs to make sure their options for their back four is strong.

Personally, I’m happy that Man City has signed a player back to them that spent years in their youth teams. It’s always good to see a club develop a player, send them out to gain experience and then end up wanting them back as a result of their hard work. Now that he has grown as a player, he will surely gain interest from his international side too. Angelino has already played at youth levels for Spain. So now he may gain his senior level call up as a result of being back at the Premier League side.

A hot topic for Man City fans

As part of the deal in seeing the Spanish defender come back to the Etihad. Man City has had to activate a £5.3 million buy-back clause. However, this signing is not the hot topic for fans of the Manchester club.

This comes after the news of Man City paying Atletico Madrid the £63 million release clause for Rodri. The signing will be a club record signing. Confirmation of Rodri becoming a blue had been revealed this morning and many comments stating, that while they welcomed the Spanish defender. They were really just hanging on for the Spanish midfielder. 

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