The Ginger Prince has improved!

     It was a rainy day in Manchester, and the locals were getting ready for a classic cup clash with bitter rivals Manchester City. Manchester City versus Manchester United, nothing can get bigger than this. Both sets of fans came into the stadium anticipating a regular match with no surprises. However, things didn’t go to plan. Paul Scholes a local lad from Salford came out of retirement aged 37 years old. Scholes retired in May 31 2011, making 676 appearances and scoring 150 goals for Manchester United. He was the best midfielder in his generation. He was technically gifted and had an eye for goal.

On May 31 2011, Manchester United lost a legend. Paul Scholes decided it was time to hang up his boots. After the Champions League final many people believed that it was Paul Scholes’ final appearance for Manchester United. The Barcelona players knew it too. Paul Scholes was first used as an attacking midfielder scoring some vital goals early on in his career. He then developed into a box-to-box midfielder, scoring goals and also stopping them. Long range shots and long-range passes were his strengths, his weakness was tackling, earning quiet a few cards in his time. Scholes endured a great playing career, playing in two Champion League finals and won them both. He was suspended for the famous 1999 Champions League final. On the 24th of January 2006, Paul Scholes was ruled out for the rest of the campaign. He had been suffering double visions in his right eye after the Birmingham City match on December 28th. This was Scholes’ low point in his career. He later retired from international football to concentrate on winning trophies with United.

After his retirement, Scholes became Manchester United’s reserve coach. His presence with the younger players impacted their performance on the pitch. After a few months Scholes wanted a change. A few days before the Manchester derby, Paul Scholes wanted to speak to Ferguson about coming out of retirement. He eventually came out of retirement and was given the number 22 shirt.  Scholes started with a bang. His first game back was against bitter rivals Manchester City. He came on as a substitute, and completed more passes than the entire City team. Later on, on his first Premier League game he scored a goal and his passing had a 90.04% success rate. Scholes without a doubt improved his attacking third passing. He has been successful in most of his attacking third passes.

 

As you can see here, his attacking third passes aren’t the best, but Manchester United have been benefiting from them. United haven’t lost a single league match whenever Scholes featured. His eye for goal is a danger for the opposition, and his long rage passing is probably the best out there. Many Manchester United fans and journalists are predicting that Scholes will continue onto next season at United. Other fans think that it’s not the best thing. They think it’s time for a change, out with the old and in with the new. That doesn’t seem right to me. Each team needs a mixture of experienced players with a blend of young talent, and Manchester United have that. Paul Scholes is an important figure in the dressing room. All the players look up to him, given the fact that he’s a one-club player. Many think that Scholes is the perfect central midfielder, however a few fans, including me think otherwise. There are same areas of Paul Scholes’ game that needs slight improvement.

Some of his strengths are short and long rage passing, long shots, and leadership on the field. These traits are vital for any footballer, especially a footballer that plays for Manchester United. However, many people don’t realise that there are other stuff that Scholes is excellent at, but can’t see it in front of them. His aggression is superb; the fact that he’s a local lad helps too. However, he’s not the tallest person on the pitch, although he’s never afraid to get stuck in. He always loves a good tackle. Speaking about his strengths, his passing is second to none. He can pick out a pass from anywhere. Whether it’s 10 yards away or 65 yards away, Scholes has that skill. Which is very vital for a central midfielder. It’s a rare quality. Xavi, Gerrard, Xabi Alonso, Iniesta, Lampard, and Scholes are the only players who spring to mind when you think of long-range passers. These six players are world class, because of that trait that sets them apart from the rest of the central midfielders.

When we talk about his weaknesses only one thing springs to mind, his tackling. Good old Scholes can’t tackle. We’re talking about a player who has 146 yellow cards to his name, for a central midfielder. He averages 9.44 yellow cards a season. He has been sent of 10 times as well. He averages 0.66 sending offs a season. He needs to work on his tackling. Scholes is almost 38 and some fans think he shouldn’t improve. He’s too old. However, I think Scholes should practice his tackling. It’s never to old to learn something new. Given the fact that there is speculation that Scholes might extended his contract until the next season, it won’t hurt if he improves. Sir Alex hints that Scholes might continue, he had this to say: “With the form he’s showing at the moment, there’s no reason to think he couldn’t play on.”

What does the future hold for Scholes? I personally think if he can extend his stay for another season, he’ll easily earn three medals at least. A premier league this year, community shield next season, another league medal the following season, and maybe a domestic cup, even a Euros championship with England if Harry Redknapp decides to take charge of the national time. Time after time Redknapp states that Scholes would be a great addition to England, and that Scholes is the best midfielder the country has seen. So why not? He might go to Poland and Ukraine and run the show for the three lions. Things are looking good for Scholes. If he does carry one for another season I personally think he’s going to play another 50 games, score 5 goals, gets one red card, and 12 yellow cards. Without a doubt, every Manchester United fan had a smile on his face when Scholes was in the squad to face Manchester City. Hopefully next year he brings many smiles to our faces.

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By KhalidMUFC

First successful month

Hey guys, I just wanted to thank everyone who has visited this site in the past 30 days. I would also like to thank the positive and negative criticism I have received from everyone. Hopefully the next couple of months you can enjoy my articles.

Follow me on Twitter: @KhalidMUFC

By KhalidMUFC

Michael Carrick – Manchester United best player this season?

 

 

 

A sigh of relief was echoed around Old Trafford as Michael Carrick’s name wasn’t in the starting line up. Months after months the fans disliked him, every mistake that occurred, Michael Carrick was blamed. He didn’t pass the ball correctly, he didn’t clear the ball more accurately, the fans complained, and that was harsh on Michael. However, right now, the fans would cheer his name, he is the key to our midfielder problems, time after time he has been accused of a poor passing rate and passing it backwards quite often; now he became a fans favorite, passing the ball more smoothly, creating goals, and even scoring them. How come suddenly he’s a fans favorite?

 

At the start of the season, the midfield duo of Andeson and Tom Cleverley emerged, United were unbeaten for four games, both of them started in those four games. United in the process of those four games scored 28 goals and conceded three goals. Everything was going great, Anderson continued on his spectacular form, which started at the end of last season. Tom Cleverley broke into the first team, and managed to hold down a starting role, after his superb showing in the Community Shield victory of Manchester City. He was the key into the equalizing goal, passing the ball in tight areas freely; the goal was a treat to the eyes. Cleverly instantly became a fans favorite. This wasn’t the case in the summer though; Sir Alex was under heated criticism from the fans after he didn’t purchase a central midfielder. After months of speculation and rumors that one of Nasri, Modric, or even Wesley Sneijder will be joining the club, Sir Alex didn’t purchase any of them. In fact he purchased a winger and a 16 million teenage center back from Blackburn, the fans were baffled. The fans all wanted a central midfielder, who can pass the ball more effectively, score some goals, and boss the midfield. The midfield partnership of Cleverley and Anderson was a combination of those traits. Cleverley was passing the ball on the pitch effectively, while Anderson was scoring a couple of goals, which came against Tottenham and Norwich. During the Bolton match, Cleverley picked up an injury from a heavy Kevin Davies tackle, which sidelined Cleverley for a period of time.

 

With Cleverley’s injury, Sir Alex Ferguson had no choice but to partner Darren Fletcher with Anderson, which worked out well too. They started three games, a win over Chelsea, a draw against Stoke, and a win over Norwich. Anderson scored in the Norwich match, things were going pretty great for Manchester United, unbeaten in seven games, and the fans were enjoying every moment of it. Many fans were surprised that Fletcher started in all those three games, due to the fact with Fletcher’s illness. After the Norwich match, Anderson picked up a slight knock and didn’t play in the Liverpool match. At that time, he was our best midfielder, so Sir Alex picked him and Fletcher for the City match, an after that Anderson picked up another injury. So in came Wayne Rooney as a central midfielder. For two consecutive games he started as a midfielder, we won both games by one goal, because of the lack of creativity upfront. However, everything changed when Michael Carrick regained full fitness.

 

Michael Carrick started against Swansea, who had the best passing accuracy in the premier league, obviously this was going to be a tough match. Michael Carrick had attempted the most passes, with 96. He completed 92 of those passes, with 12 of the passes going backwards. That was a success rate of 96%. Michael started all of our league matches after the Swansea match. In all of those matches, he attempted over 40 passes, bar the Blackburn match, where he attempted 38 passes. His lowest success rate was against Bolton, where he attempted 66 passes and completed 56, with a success rate of 81%, if that’s not consistent then I don’t know what it.

He also attempted 73 passes against Wolves, and completed 66, with a success rate of 90%. He also had a success rate of 98% against Wigan, he attempted 40 passes and completed 39. Carrick also scored two goals in eleven games, his first goal came against QPR, after Joey Barton misplaced a pass, Carrick took the ball took on four QPR players, then slotted the ball into the net. His second goal came against Bolton, he received a pass, took the ball, as the Stretford End yelled out shoot, Carrick shot and scored. Michael Carrick is turning into a new player. His passing success rate is 89% for the season.

 

Opponent

Passes

Passes completed

success rate

Swansea

96

92

96.00%

 Newcastle (H)

54

45

83.00%

Aston Villa

62

55

89.00%

Wolves

73

66

90.00%

QPR

58

49

84.00%

Fuham

74

67

91.00%

Wigan

40

39

98.00%

Blackburn

38

34

89.00%

Newcastle (A)

80

69

86.00%

Bolton

66

59

81.00%

Arsenal

56

51

91.00%

Full success rate:

89%

 

The fans should be pretty pleased with Michaels work ethic, he never complains when he’s not picked, and when he is chosen he gives it his all. Manchester United fans need to realize that we don’t have the amount of money our neighbors have, we are winning titles and reaching Champions League finals with determination and hard work, we have the desire as a team, while most Manchester City players go there because of the high wages. Carrick is one of those players, he can go to other clubs, like Spurs or Arsenal, and he’ll get a starting role, but he remains loyal. He is now one of the most important players at the club, and not because of his performances, but also his off the field behavior, and his influence on the younger players at the club. The club is in a process of rebuilding the team, the new younger players can learn from Michael Carrick, he wasn’t liked at first, but now he is. He is a role model to our younger players, and that is very important for the clubs future.

 

 

By KhalidMUFC

Danny Welbeck, our savior?

Who would ever believe a young Mancunian boy named Daniel Welbeck would be a force for Manchester United, and be called up for the England squad? Young Danny was born in Longsight, Manchester; and little did he know that he’s going to be a Manchester United regular.

 

Welbeck has many traits, a powerful head, and pin point heading accuracy. The boy’s got pace. His finishing is superb too, but all of this couldn’t help him establish himself as a Manchester United regular. When he was called up to the first team in the 2007-2008 season, he couldn’t find a place, the reason was, Manchester United were flourishing under the trinity of Ronaldo, Tevez, and Rooney. He waited and waited, then when he got the chance to play for the first team versus Al-Hilal he earned us a penalty but hit it over the bar. Not the right choice, eh Danny?

 

After a couple of appearances in the Carling Cup for Man United, he came on as a 63rd minute substitute for Park Ji Sung versus Stoke City, then soon he hit a 30 yd. strike into the top corner sealing a 5-0 win for the reds. A great start for the young boy. He was then awarded for his superb showing against Stoke with a starting role against Southampton in the fourth round of the FA Cup, which he scored a goal. He later continued his great form whilst scoring a goal in the fourth round versus Derby County.Sir Alex Ferguson thought that it was time for Danny Welbeck to get some first team experience. So he sent him to Darren Ferguson’s Preston North End. He played 8 games and scored 2. It was not the right experience Ferguson wanted, but all in all it helped the young lad. The following season, Sir Alex thought that Welbeck needed Premier League experience, so he sent him to Steve Bruce’s Sunderland playing 28 games and scored 6 goals. Including a goal vs. Chelsea. Welbeck played a huge role in that season for Sunderland, which made Steve Bruce consider purchasing Welbeck permanently. But Sir Alex Ferguson had other ideas.

 

Then everything changed for Welbeck, he was very impressive in the US pre season tour, it was his chance to get a starting role for Manchester United, with the absence of Javier Hernandez, who had a head injury at the time. Welbeck showed promising signs scoring 5 goals in 12 appearances for Manchester United. He scored his first goal in the 3-0 win against Spurs. He scored one, and got an assist. His next goal came in the 8-2 thumping of premier league rivals Arsenal. The whole team played well, so it was no surprise that Welbeck managed to grab a goal. He then didn’t score in two consecutive games, but in the third game he grabbed a brace against FC Basel, which arguably kept us in the Champions League group stages. The following week he put the Norwich game to bed with a goal which was superbly crafted. He found space within a crowded Norwich City defense and smashed the ball into the net. He later went on a four game scoring drought. He has had five goals in 12 appearances  for Manchester United this term. It should have been six if it weren’t for a deflected header versus Sunderland, hitting Wesley Brown and going in the net. Welbeck’s form forced the now fit Hernandez out of the Liverpool game which raised many eye-brows. He also put a man of the match display against Spurs. Game after game he has been improving gradually. His off the ball movement is nowhere near as good as Chicharito’s, but his contribution to the team is phenomenal. His passing ability is superb, and his pace. He has scored many vital goals for United, most recently scoring the winning goal against Arsenal, and scoring the decisive goal against Manchester City with a sublime volley.

 

This young boy has got talent, although his descion making isn’t the best, but under Sir Alex Ferugson he can improve. Every Manchester United fan hopes and dreams that one day, when Rooney leaves, a young man named Daniel Welbeck will be our talisman.

By KhalidMUFC

Keeping up with the Joneses

    

 

Many eyebrows were raised when Sir Alex Ferguson paid Blackburn Rovers 16.5 million pounds, for a virtually unknown English player. Phil Jones was his name, and he had a point to prove. Jones can play as a right back, central and defensive midfield, which is the position he played at Blackburn last year, making over 25 appearances.

I, for one, was very surprised that Sir Alex Ferguson splashed this amount of cash on an unknown teenager playing for a bottom club. I really thought that we needed a creative central midfielder, with experience. Like Sneijder or Shweinstieger. Over the years, I knew that I had to trust Ferguson, and that’s what I did.

 

Sir Alex said that he was impressed with Jones’s commitment when Blackburn were five goals down against us at Old Trafford. He saw this young lad screaming at his defense, and that got Sir Alex Ferguson thinking. Although, this wasn’t the first time Sir Alex saw Jones. Sitting in his office, looking through the window at Carrington, Sir Alex was watching the reserves take on Blackburn reserves, in 2009, and he watched this young boy bossing the field. Later that day, Sir Alex phoned Sam Allardyce, asking him if he could sign Phil Jones. Big Sam told Sir Alex to forget about it! And that he was going to play Jones versus Chelsea in the Carling Cup. I remember watching the game, and I was gob-smacked. I checked how old that kid was, and he was just 18! I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.

 

When Phil Jones arrived at United, I never expected him to play this many of games. The injuries of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic helped Jones get into the team. Game by game, he was improving. He’s got tremendous speed for a defender. If you recall back to the Spurs match, when Gareth Bale was running with the ball, and Jones was on the edge of the half, while Bale was in front of him, by a distance. I honestly thought that Bale was going to score. Then, Jones comes sprinting all the way and takes the ball away with a fair sliding tackle. It showed the skill that he’s got. Jones also has great technical ability, and can find space on the field. The match vs. Otelul Galati showed that. When Jones came up for a corner, and the ball bounces out of the box, along comes Jones, shimmies between a player, and shoots on goal, the ball was heading to the top corner, if it wasn’t for a deflected shot. He later on scored a great goal against Aston Villa, it was a peach of a goal! Nani takes the ball and sprints to the half way line, no United player was in the box except for center back Phil Jones. So Nani looks up, whips a cross, and Jones volleys it home.

 

For a 19 year old to make almost 50 club appearances is quite remarkable, and he’s only been playing football for two years! All of his skills grabbed the attention of England manager, Fabio Capello. Who handed him his second cap against Spain, in midfield. His first cap for England was against Montenegro, at right back. He started the match; he almost gave away a penalty at the beginning of the match, that was the only concern for him throughout the match. He was superb. Few months later, Capello gave Jones his second call up, against Spain and Sweden. Before the Spain match, Capello announced that Jones would be playing in midfield. When it was time for the game, you could feel that Jones was ready, and was about to do some magical stuff, and boy did he do that. He found space in the midfield more than once, which stretched the Spanish defense; he would have gotten an assist, if It wasn’t for Darren Bents poor positioning. The shocking part about Jones’s England career is that his first football memory was the Ronaldinho goal vs. England in the 2002 World Cup.

 

This boy has got talent, and I can assure you that he will be England’s captain. Just thinking about it, with the potential that Jones and Cleverley have, do we really need an extra central midfielder? We could play one of the twins at right back, Smalling and Vidic in the center of defense, Evra as left back. Jones could be the defensive midfielder, while the magical Cleverley can be our attacking midfielder. Behind Rooney and Hernandez/Welbeck We can win things with kids, we just need to wait for them to flourish and gain experience. We, the fans just need patience, and the coming years will certainly be a roller coaster ride.

By KhalidMUFC

David De Gea – The boy just needs time

In my opinion the toughest job in the world is being a goalkeeper for the biggest club in the world, and your replacing a club legend a fans favorite.  Edwin Van Der Sar has retired and the only good keeper Manchester United had was Lindergaard. This caused alarm at Manchester United Football Club, so Sir Alex Ferguson had no choice but to dip into the summer transfer window for a goalkeeper. He had many choices, Stucklenberg, Nuer, Buffon (contract talks broke down at the time), De Gea and many others. After Manuel Nuers superb showing against Manchester United in the Champions League semi final, we all thought he was coming to us. As the days went buy in the summer, we were constantly reading rumors of Manuel Nuer heading to Bayern Munchen, and then later on it happened. Nuer had left. So Ferguson sprung to sign a player, inexperienced, young, although has lots of potential. His name was David De Gea. We signed De Gea in July days after the U-21 Euro Championship, which he helped Spain win, at. 1.93 meters De Gea was not as tall as Van Der Sar, but boy can he do the job well.

Ferguson splashed 20 million pounds on this boy, and judging by his performances this season, I think he was worth every penny. His first few games weren’t the best in his first game against Manchester City he was to blame for both goals. The first goal was scored due to the lack of communication between De Gea and the defense. The second goal just went under him by a venomous shot by Dzeko. Although De Gea made up for it in the second half with bags of stunning saves, helping us win the Community Shield. In his first Premier League game, Shane Long scored the equalizing goal in a 2-1 win against West Brom, the goal was because of De Gea’s poor handling of the ball. As the games went on he gradually improved. Keeping a clean sheet against a tough Spurs side.  He also saved a penalty hit by Robin Van Persie in the 8-2 thumping of Arsenal at Old Trafford. Then their was THAT save against Chelsea which made the whole world gasp, even Peter Shmeichel got up from his seat and gave a huge clap to that stunning save.  It all started when Torres took the ball inside the box he was heading straight to De Gea, De Gea run to Torres, who passed the ball to Ramires standing in front of an open net, De Gea jumped in front of the ball to denying Ramires scoring. The stadium erupted. Every mistake De Gea does the English press attacks him and over exaggerates it. Peter Barclay attacked De Gea in an article and questioned Sir Alex Ferguson’s scouts for scouting him for over 4 months, and the amount they paid for an average goalkeeper.

Take the doughnut incident as an example,  it was reported that De Gea stole a doughnut from Tesco, and The Sun made a laughing stock out of De Gea. Few days later De Gea explained that he took the doughnut then wanted to pay for it. He looked into his pocket and found out that he forget his wallet, he went into his car and the security caught him, end of story. The Sun said he was a thief, and stated that a player who earn 60K a week steals a doughnut and what not. Then they said he was dropped due to his incident. All they want to do is make David De Gea look foolish. It’s hard enough to be a twenty year old foreign goalkeeper playing for the biggest club in the world replacing Edwin Van Der Sars shoes, but De Gea is doing really well.

De Gea has many strengths, his shot stopping and his reflexes are one of them. If you look back to the Bolton, Chelsea, and Arsenal matches, those are all great examples of his strengths. De Gea has weaknesses, but to be fair, he’s only twenty. His commandment in the box isn’t the best, but that’s due to the lack of understanding because he doesn’t speak English as well as our back four. His handling was quite alarming in the beginning of the season, but he’s been gradually improving.

De Gea under Sir Alex Ferguson will flourish, this boy is going places, in a few years time he’ll be second choice for Spain or even first. With the experience of Manchester United goalkeeper coach Eric Steal De Gea is going to be one of the best goalkeepers the league has got. And dare I say it, he could even be better than Edwin Van Der Sar.

By KhalidMUFC