Hart Broken At City – Time To Go Joe!
What a fascinating start to the Premier League!
Early days of course but I think already there may be one or two pointers as to what we can expect over the coming months, so I’ll get to the point and give you my thoughts on them!
I thought Man United rode their luck a little to be honest early on with 2 rather fortuitous goals but if anyone was in any doubt that Jose or indeed Zlatan were at Old Trafford for the ride then one or two people will be very disappointed.
Zlatan is a goal pig, you can tell by his movement and his speed of thought that he is top drawer, and I think we all feel that we would have loved to see him grace our league a little sooner. It will be interesting to see if the tempo and aggression will grind him down when the games come thick and fast, but he’s a super athlete, hungry for more success late on in his career.
And with respect to Rooney, Rashford or Martial, I think United have their line leader for the season bar injury.
On The Wayne
So what about the creative side of United’s play? For me Rooney just doesn’t make the cut. He took his goal well but did you notice that Juan Mata, so often played out of position for United, looked way more comfy and threatening against Bournemouth when drifting into the 10 position than Rooney did!
When Mkhitaryan & Pogba come into the team I can’t honestly see anything other than a prolonged spell on the bench for the Scouser.
Which will get us all excited as to whether he will stay and fight for his place or whether super-agent Paul Stretford will be eyeing up a lucrative deal elsewhere. This will be the story of the season. Rooney surplus to requirements and a changing of the guard at United.
Arsenal v Liverpool
The big game of gameweek one didn’t disappoint football fans watching across the globe bar Gooners, but if you are Wenger or Klopp pouring over the match analysis this week then neither can be happy at all with the overall display.
Liverpool were poor defensively in the first 25 minutes and how Moreno , with a full pre-season under his belt , hasn’t learnt when to stay and when to go as a left back, particularly after his display against Sevilla last season, then he never will.
The fact James Milner is being touted as a replacement tells its own story. Mane and Wijnaldum meanwhile grew as the game went on.
Liverpool will score bucketful of goals this season, but they need to keep many more clean sheets if they are going to threaten the top 4.
So Klopp needs to find a settled back 4 and quickly.
As for Arsenal, it’s Groundhog Day! Soft players, no leaders, Wenger reluctant to spend and cover key positions, it’s almost getting to the point of parody now. The storyline is so set that all you can do is shake your head in despair if you’re a Gooner.
Beat 80% of teams comfortably, have a wobble at some point during the season, then end well. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, until Arsenal break the bank for a younger, hungrier manager, a Simeone, they will coast in a sea of predictability and never win the biggest of prizes.
I thought Pep Guardiola tried too hard with his formation against Sunderland. I saw the hipsters drooling over the way the fullbacks drifted into midfield, and how the squiggles and lines on tactics boards across the world proved that Pep is peerless when it comes to bamboozling the opposition.
The problem is that the league he now works in is more about graft, tempo, aggression and the ability to overcome the odds when injuries, suspensions and poor form strike.
And I bet you one thing, Pep will find a 4-4-2, a 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 this season, and stick to it. Why? Because when those injuries, suspensions and poor form strike, players like simplicity. And I can’t see for the life of me all 20 odd players in the squad being able on a whim to walk into a side and play with the tactical complexity that Pep likes. Especially in the Premier League, so watch this space.
Sergeant Pep’s Lonely Hart
If I’m Joe Hart, I take the hint and quick.
He’s obviously surplus to requirements at City but there is still a fine keeper in there who needs a hug, needs a good number 2 to put him under pressure at club level and who also needs a jolt to the system when it comes to England. Maybe a jolt in the form of being left out of a couple of the 3 Lions Autumn games.
His form in the Euros and not being able to get into the City side of late will have affected him.
But if he comes through this spell then England and maybe one of the Premier League big boys could still find themselves with a hell of a keeper.
I can’t see any reason why Liverpool, Arsenal or Chelsea wouldn’t be having a good look at him and thinking ‘could we get a bargain and could we make him a better keeper?’ I think the answer is yes.
He’s cocky and brash and has bags of self belief but sometimes it takes the bloody nose of a top manager not fancying you to have a long hard look inside yourself and become even better.
He’s still not reached peak age for a keeper so if I’m you Joe, make the move now and start over again, you won’t regret it!