Gary Neville Will Help Jose Get United Back On Their Perch
So after the Three Lions took to the field for the first friendly of their pre Euro prep, the main questions I was left asking were as follows…
Where Is Vardy Going To Play?
If he plays up top with Kane, rather than to the left of Kane, we look woeful in defensive wide positions.
It’s all well and good half of Twitter having a pop at me for suggesting Vardy in this tournament be slightly to the left, whilst being told that he’s a “striker”. But if anyone watched closely at England when they went to a narrow diamond to accommodate Vardy and Kane as a two, they will soon have realised that this leads Alli, Wilshere, Dier and potentially Rooney all very narrow without any real protection for the full backs.
It may not appeal to some, but Vardy helped the team with his graft and pace slightly to the left, and dare I say we looked much more comfy as a defensive unit with him there than up top.
So What Do We Do?
Lots of callers to Call Collymore came up with some good ideas including a back 5 which stiffens up a very poor defensive central 2 at the moment,
allows full backs to get further forward, still having 3 in midfield and two up top. It’s the only way I can see England progressing if Vardy, Rooney and Kane are to be accommodated in positions which get the best from them.
Alternatively we could leave Vardy out, an impact sub with his pace after 60 mins would be some weapon to have, but I think that would only reaffirm to many that Vardy has to work his nuts off to get only on the bench, while the captain walks into the team having had one of his least productive seasons ever.
I’ve got to be honest, I try to think like Roy and avoid the speculation and conjecture of England fans at this time, because in plain speaking, we’ve seen enough of Roy to know that he’s not for adventure or late system changes, he goes with what he trusts and knows and for me that means Vardy out to the left or on the bench.
So it’s done and dusted then, the dirty secret that we all knew but LvG didn’t. I think it’s borderline shameful that people were briefing journalists after the Cup Final, not even allowing a decent, if prickly man to enjoy his moment, but we all knew it was happening, so what next?
As you’d expect me to do, I’ve tried to dig away at some of the people close to Mourinho to see what and who may be wrapped around The Special One when he walks through the hallowed Old Trafford doors and from four different people, two very close to Mourinho, one name keeps popping up.
Mourinho likes him, respected his move to a tough Valencia job and feels he has way more credibility with United fans than the romantic option of Ryan Giggs. Do I believe Giggs will be embraced by Jose though? Of course he will but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Jose calmly cajoles Giggs to go out and “find his own way” while bringing in Neville in some capacity to United.
I personally think that would be tremendously exciting for United, a club legend, already in the thick of a coaching experience with England, angry and hungry to prove the doubters wrong who’ve suggested he’s great with giant TVs but not with real players.
For Jose, he has a motivated, animated “we hate scousers” Neville who will bollock players and cuddle them in equal measure,
something when you look at Giggs’ eyes, just doesn’t seem to be happening.
To many it’s the dream team, two very competitive men coming together to get United back on their perch, and for me working the phones and emails, it may just yet happen if I’m right.
Watch this space.