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Manchester United Player Ratings vs Brighton (Matchday 12)

Avatar November 10, 2019
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Manchester United  hosted Brighton Hove & Albion on Sunday looking to get back into the top seven. The Red Devils did so in style with a commendable 3-1 win. They started the game in electric fashion and broke the deadlock in the 17th minute when Andreas Pereira’s shot deflected off Dale Stephens to give him his first of the season.

They doubled the lead two minutes later, when Harry Maguire’s header off a set-piece caused chaos in Brighton’s box and Davy Propper scored an own goal from yards out. The visitors trifled United with their physicality afterwards and got one back in the 63rd minute when Lewis Dunk rose highest to power in a header from a corner.

But United restored their two-goal parity three minutes later, when Anthony Martial linked superbly with Marcus Rashford to allow him to score with a delightful finish. The hosts missed an array of chances later on, but the win took them to 7th place in the Premier League before the International break. 

Manchester United Player Ratings

Manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (7.5) –  

OGS was spot on to trust Williams to get the job done at left-back and giving Maguire the armband to lead his side. Both were solid and his trust with the Rashford-Martial-James combo also gave him rewards. Did well to tactically oust Brighton’s narrow shape by moving through the wide areas and persisting his side to keep on attacking during dangerous periods. Getting his flow back.

Goalkeeper

David de Gea (6.0) –

DDG didn’t have any saves to make in the first half, but did take a stinging blow during a set-piece around the half-hour mark which had him dizzy for a while. But he came alive in the 63rd minute with an instinctive save. But saw his clean-sheet blow away a minute later with Dunk’s goal. 

Defenders

Aaron Wan-Bissaka (6.5)-

Wan-Bissaka looks much promising going forward and has kept his side secure with strong challenges early on. Made some superb spider-like tackles and supported James in a bit of a quiet performance. 

Harry Maguire (7.0) –

Captain Maguire seems much more relaxed with his effective defending today. Played a heavy role in the second when his aerial prowess led to Brighton losing their marbles and causing the own-goal. Headed a set-piece over int he 44th minute. Created a ring of assurance by winning crucial duals and marshalled United forward with creative passes. 

Victor Lindelof (6.5) –

Started the game auspiciously by clipping a brilliant long-ball to almost set Rashford free in the 3rd minute. Bit lacking in the aerial department, but he made some important clearances to sniff out trouble. 

Brandon Williams (7.5)–

Making his Premier League debut, Williams already seems like an upgrade over Young. Exciting heading forward and aggressive with his challenges. His aggressiveness got him booked before the hour-mark after a high boot. Almost got his dream debut goal in the 72nd minute when he wheezed into the box, but his shot was saved.

His warrior-like tenacity rattled Brighton, as he made damning tackles and clearances to impress Old Trafford. Must start ahead of Young from now on. 

Midfielders

Fred (7.5) –

The Brazilian’s showing signs of improvement on the ball, linking together moves better than before. Played in a stunning set-piece leading to the second goal. Industrious winning back the ball and pressing Brighton. Rattled the crossbar in the 62nd minute with a clever drive from outside the area. 

Beautifully threaded a through-ball to allow Martial through leading to the 3rd goal. He hassled Brighton with his hound-like tenacity, won back possession many times and was pin-point with his passing. Encouraging performance. 

Scott McTominay (6.5) –

Despite picking up an injury on Thursday, the Scotsman back with similar vigor today and driven forward on promising note in the early minutes. Showcased predatorial instincts to capitalize on Ryan’s scuffle and force the own-goal. He won many free-kicks and remained a tenacious figure helping his backline, but allowed the ball to go over him for Dunk’s goal. 

Picked up another knoack towards the end, which ended another promising showing in worrisome fashion.

Andreas Pereira (7.0) –  

Pereira’s getting to the right positions, but his final delivery has been lacking early on. But he rode his luck in the 17th minute, marauding well and seeing his shot deflect off Stephens to grant him his first goal of the season. Forced a solid stop from Ryan before the break with a stinging low drive. Drilled one more on target in the 57th.  Pereira roarred his attackers forward with clever threaded passes and improved vastly from the stinker at Bournemouth. 

Forwards

Marcus Rashford (8.0) –  

Troubled Brighton with his electricity. Played some promising creative passes early on and zoomed past multiple bodies in stunning fashion in the 14th minute before seeing his shot saved. Got harried with aggressive lunges throughout and his frustrations got him booked before the half-time break after an unnecessary scissor challenge. 

Woke up in the second half, linking really well with Martial before finishing superbly in the 66th to bring breathing room for United. But then he shockingly missed a golden opportunity by scuffing an easy chance from few yards out.

Turned on the style at the 75th minute with a delightful trickery to wave into the box, but his shot forced a courageous save from Ryan. Played another delightful one-two with Martial towards the end, but his left-footed attempt went agonizingly wide. Had Old Trafford roaring with his buzzing nature. 

Daniel James (7.5) –   

The Birthday Boy looked packed with thrill and almost got an assist with a Beckhamesque cross in the 8th minute, only to see it cleared. His buzzing forward runs tormented Brighton, as he also put in a nice cross around the 42nd minute mark which got cleared.

Flung in another brilliant cross-field long-ball to find Rashford around the hour-mark and another top cross a minute later. Flashed forward in the 68th and was robbed off an assist when he handed a goal on a plate for Rashford only for him to scuff it. Almost got his goal in the 72nd minute but his booming close-range attempt was saved by Ryan. Another thrilling outing. 

Anthony Martial (7.5) –  

Martial looks so confident playing at Old Trafford. Linked well with his team-mates and won the assist for Pereira’s goal. Zoomed into the box in the 66th minute before showcasing impressive presence of mind to find Rashford for his goal. Showcased a moment of beauty in the 86th minute going past two defenders, but his shot was saved.  No goals for him, but proved his importance with two selfless assists. 

Substitutions

Jesse Lingard (6.5) –

Almost got his first goal after coming on and drove forward with the ball pretty well. 

Mason Greenwood (N/A)-

Came on too late to do anything. 

 Marcos Rojo (N/A) –

Made a few tackles. 

MAN OF THE MATCH

Rashford did miss a few chances, but he was relentless in charging through the left. Scored a crucial goal, dribbled past bodies constantly and unlucky not to get an assist as well. Finding his top form with Martial by his side.

Manchester United vs Brighton Hove & Albion Matchday 12 Preview

Avatar November 6, 2019

Who: Manchester United vs Brighton Hove & Albion
When: Sunday, November 10th @ 09:00am ET
LineManchester United -177 | Draw +280 | Brighton +575

Just when things started looking upwards for Manchester United, the drab defeat to Bournemouth brought everything crashing down. The Cherries hadn’t scored a goal/won a game in October, but against United managed to do both. Because of course they did!

It’s one step forward, two steps back for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side. At this point, I feel like these types of setbacks will be a regular thing this season. With the International break approaching, a win to calm the nerves would be ideal.

A very competitive Brighton Albion & Hove visit Old Trafford. They’re actually above United in the Premier League table. Not only are they defensively strong, but they’re fearless going forward with quality attackers.

The upside for United is they haven’t won away from home since the opening matchday. As long as they keep a strong defensive shape and convert their chances, a hard-fought win should arrive for the Red Devils.

Manchester United Likely XI

De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Williams, McTominay, Fred, Pereira, James, Martial, Rashford.

Paul Pogba remains a long-term absentee and Luke Shaw doesn’t seem capable of returning anytime soon. Axel Tuanzebe & Nemanja Matic are also definitely out, but Brandon Williams should start in place of the lacky Ashley Young.

Brighton Likely XI

Ryan, Montoya, Webster, Dunk, Burn, Gross, Propper, Stephens, Trossard, Maupey, Connolly

Brighton don’t really have many injuries, with Jose Izqueidero being the only absentee. Expect them to bring their best to Old Trafford.

Manchester United vs Brighton Hove & Albion Preview

The defeat to Bournemouth wasn’t only United’s 4th this campaign (their worst ever start in Premier League history), but it’s the third time they weren’t able to score! With all due respect to the Cherries solid defending, OGS’ side had enough quality to win the match even without Pogba.

The Norwegian has acknowledged a creativity issue, but there are too many problems to single out. With the churn of away games out of the way, United must work hard into improving their home form.

The Old Trafford faithful always act as their 12th man. However, it’s the responsibility of the players to do the work on the pitch. Marcus Rashford & Anthony Martial have created a buzzing partnership upfront. They must look for ways towards linking up better, getting into promising positions as well as really harrying opposition defenders with their unpredictability.

Rashford gets bullied out of games on occasions. He must be stronger. Martial doesn’t work hard enough to grind out goals. He must add more energy to his game to compliment his trickery. The more the weeks go by, the more Daniel James proves an amazing investment for United.

However, the Welshman’s quick running, looping crosses often go in vain. The major issue is United aren’t creating that many chances. As the #10, Andreas Pereira must be more composed picking out those killer passes. Even Fred needs to calm down to see creative opportunities ahead.

While Trent Alexander-Arnold & Andy Robertson are winning games for Liverpool, United’s fullbacks are barely effective. Aaron Wan-Bissaka is a colossal defensively (even withstanding his recent mistake), but lacks that fire going forward. Ashley Young is past it. Williams is a tenacious, clever kid who must be encouraged to create more.

But unless United start creating more, Brighton could easily get something out from Old Trafford. Graham Potter’s men are fearless in their own right, loving to control games &  work their way into creating.

With new signings Leandro Trossard, Neil Maupay creating the unpredictable cloak around them, youngster Aaron Connolly’s taken the goal-scoring duties off Glenn Murray too. The Seagulls won’t hesitate taking the game to United, attacking with fierce pace & rhythm.

Of course, their attacking mentality can play into United’s hands. The Red Devils love counter-attacking football and their attacking trio are lethal in swift-breaks. However, Potter won’t make it that easy for them. Adam Webster & Lewis Dunk are defensively compact, while their physicality can also cause United all sorts of problems.

After falling off the top-four race again, a win is essential for United to keep up with the top-7. Brighton aren’t the easiest to break down, but the wounded Devils must tap into their ultimate potential to get Old Trafford roaring again.

Prediction

I think this will be a pretty cagey yet competitive encounter. Knowing Brighton’s struggle away from home & United’s solidity at Old Trafford, I’m calling this to go a 1-0 win for OGS side.

Manchester United Player Ratings vs Bournemouth (Matchday 11)

Avatar November 2, 2019
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Manchester United went on another Premier League trip to AFC Bournemouth looking for back-to-back wins for the first time this season. It was raining cats and dogs at the Vitality Stadium, but United did well to form some attacking chances, but lacked the cutting-edge to finish them.

That cost them big time, as Josh King superbly fooled Aaron Wan-Bissaka to score an acrobatic finish just before the half-time break to give his side the lead.

United huffed and puffed in look for something in the second half, but without Mason Greenwood hitting the post late in the game, nothing came. It ended as another loss on the road, totaling to United’s 4th loss in the league this season as Bournemouth go over them in the table.

Manchester United Player Ratings

Manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (5.5) –  

Solskjaer played the best combination available to him, but needs to realize from defeats like this on how to remove the dysfunctional players. He still doesn’t know how to break down compact defences and is too reliant on counter-attacks. Needs to train the boys better to create chances against stout defences. His substitutions were decent, but brought on the youngsters too late to make an impact.

Goalkeeper

David de Gea (6.0) –  

De Gea looks to have a tough afternoon ahead. Makes a solid save early on to deny the Cherries a swipe at goal. Unable to do anything to save King’s opportunistic goal, but did well to make a few decent saves to keep the game from going out of United’s reach. Makes a fantastic diving attempt off Harry Wilson’s shot in the 74th.

Defenders

Aaron Wan-Bissaka (6.0)-

AWB proves his defensive solidity by culling an early Bournemouth storm with some crucial interceptions. Despite his solid tackles and recoveries, Wan-Bissaka made a rare error before half-time in allowing King too much time to score. Looked a bit rattled after that, but still made a few decent tackles before being subbed. 

Harry Maguire (5.5) –

Maguire looks somewhat rocked early on against the Bournemouth pace. While he was unbeatable aerially, Maguire lost track of King to expose his side to concede. Maguire was too anxious to cover for the out-of-positional Young, compromising his effectiveness. Not at all at in his dominant self. 

Victor Lindelof (5.0) –

Lindelof’s maintaining his cool demeanour in the relentless rain. The Swede made some important clearances and kept Callum Wilson relatively quiet, before losing him leading up to the goal. His poor positioning allowed King to score too easily. Clobbered him the 64th to get booked. Struggled against Bournemouth’s pace. 

Ashley Young (5.0) –

Well, they worked out pretty well early on as he made a few impressive interceptions and got his team forward valiantly. Too slow to react to attacking moves and should’ve gone for a tackle to deny the cross for King’s goal. Looked all over the place against Bournemouth’s pace and booked for a sloppy foul after the hour-mark. Really should not be starting!

Midfielders

Fred (6.0) –  

Fred isn’t lacking his bite in the difficult conditions. Pressing Bournemouth to oust their midfield movement. Crept into the box early on, but his right-footed attempt was a horrid one. Picked up a yellow-card after the half-hour mark for scuffling with the Bournemouth players.

Showcased better attacking edge, especially by finding Greenwood in space in the 83rd for United’s best chance. Curled a weak shot right to Ramsdale hands in added time. Needs some composure to his game. 

Scott McTominay (5.5) –  

The United player of the month(for October) is oozing with confidence early on, thriving in a physical midfield battle. But he lacked that driving force today and couldn’t conjure up anything special going forward either. Took a ferocious swipe at goal at the 83rd, only to see it saved.

Andreas Pereira (5.5) –  

The Brazilian looks a bit rattled early on. Scuffed an easy scoring chance in the 3rd minute and blasted one over four minutes later. He’s getting into the right areas, but being too harried with his through-balls results in them always being over-hit. Had one clever swipe parried out awkwardly in the 57th minute. Still lacking that cutting-edge. 

Forwards

Marcus Rashford (5.5) –  

Rashford didn’t come into the game before the 17th minute when he cheekily trotted the ball forward and delivered to Fred to take a shot for a corner.Brilliant formed a swift counter-attack in the 39th, but lacked the final delivery to send James through. Too static today and bullied by Bournemouth’s physicality. 

Daniel James (6.5) – 

James started the game in fiery fashion, getting behind Bournemouth’s defence and playing a glorious pass to Pereira in the 3rd. Cleverly found Fred inside the area minutes later. Every attacking move is going through him. Hurled forward with intent, but his pin-point delivery wasn’t met by anyone. Another energetic showing. 

Anthony Martial (6.0) –

Martial’s link-up prowess is showing early, as he tucked a clever pass to send James through in the 3rd. He breezed past multiple players to get through on goal in the 33rd, but got overcrowded before going down and sparking tensions. Didn’t get enough support and didn’t seem to work hard to get something for himself either. 

Substitutions

Jesse Lingard(5.5) –

Lingard got into all the right positions in the final third, but failed to take a proper swipe at goal or create a chance for his team-mates. Still too frustrating to watch.

Brandon Williams (6.0) –

Came on very late, but was a breath of fresh air for United. Cleverly played a short-corner for Greenwood’s chance. Roared his team forward, make some incisive passes and was pretty impressive. Needs to start ahead of Young.

Mason Greenwood (6.0) –

His first touch saw him hit the bar from close. Unlucky! Failed to see a sight of goal after that. Needs more minutes. 

MAN OF THE MATCH

Daniel James was the only bright from today, continuing his encouraging form. Deserved an assist today. But yeah honestly, Nathan Ake deserves the MOTM crown for his incredible defensive performance.

AFC Bournemouth vs Manchester United Matchday 11 Preview

Avatar October 31, 2019

Who: Bournemouth vs Manchester United
When: Saturday, November 2nd @ 08:30am ET
LineBournemouth +225 | Draw +250 | Manchester United +120

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It took some doing, but Manchester United finally picked up three points on the road in their fifth try in this season’s Premier League by thrashing relegation contenders Norwich City 3-1. Well, at least they’re safe from the drop zone now!

In all seriousness, United must maintain their new-found momentum to oust the dangerous AFC Bournemouth. Both sides are seven points behind the top-four and desperate to climb the table.

Eddie Howe’s side has a no-nonsense, attacking approach and are packed with troublesome, pacy players. They’ll surely cause problems for United. It’s time for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men to unveil their strong characters by weathering the storm & march forward into finding their feet amongst the top spots.

Bournemouth Likely XI

Ramsdale, Smith, Ake, Cook, Rico, H. Wilson, Lerma, Billing, Fraser, C. Wilson, King.

The Cherries are plagued with their own injuries, with Junior Stanislas, David Brooks, Dan Gosling & Charlie Daniels all being long-term absentees after picking up injuries earlier this year.

Manchester United Likely XI

De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Young, McTominay, Fred, Pereira, James, Martial, Rashford.

Paul Pogba’s not expected to return before December, meaning he’ll be a big miss. Nemanja Matic, Axel Tuanzebe & Luke Shaw are expected to miss the game, as OGS should go with the same side which thrashed Norwich.

AFC Bournemouth vs Manchester United Match Preview

United finally did their xG some justice against Norwich, scoring three (when it really should’ve been five) against their 4.51 XG vs the Canaries. They still have a long way to go to reach their current 20 xPTS, achieving which would’ve seen them be close to the top-four right now.

Regardless, the uphill task is just beginning for the Red Devils. With a few tricky away games in-store in November, OGS side must find back the spirit from earlier the year when United won 9 away games on a stretch.

Fortunately, he seems to have found his perfect combination from the options available. In attack, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial & Daniel James partnership looks a menacing one filled with pace, directness and creativity. Rashford & Martial became the first striking pair to miss penalties but go onto score against Norwich, as they’ll look to continue their bright run.

The England International looks so much deadlier with the Frenchman alongside him, with their intricate link-up play in tight areas bearing the result in Martial’s stunning goal against Norwich. James is slowly finding his inner David Beckham with the worldly crosses, while also doing his defensive duties well.

The silver lining for Ole is his signings are working a treat. Aaron Wan-Bissaka is an impenetrable wall in defence. Harry Maguire has formed a rock-solid partnership with Victor Lindelof. Scott McTominay & Fred are like hounds in midfield, while Andreas Pereira’s finding his own in a creative role.

But underestimating Bournemouth will be their downfall. Sure, The Cherries haven’t scored a goal in their last two league games. But with the bombastic Wilson duo (including Liverpool loanee Harry), electric Ryan Fraser & Jefferson Lerma, they have an explosive attacking tenacity.

Howe’s side is fearless going forward with pace, aggression and have that opportunistic nature to them. Their defensive state is rock-solid as well, which means United must grind their way and really take advantage of their opportunities to be victors at the Vitality Stadium.

Prediction

This won’t at all be a walk in the park like Norwich, but I think United will grind a 2-1 win with Rashford & Martial netting.

Where to bet the Premier League in the US

In the US, you can legally bet on soccer in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

For New Jersey, we recommend DraftKings Sportsbook NJ or FanDuel Sportsbook.

Chelsea vs Manchester United EFL Cup Round 4 Preview

Avatar October 28, 2019

Who: Chelsea vs Manchester United
When: Wednesday, October 30th @ 1:05pm ET
LineChelsea -106 | Draw +240 | Manchester United +290

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So the EFL Cup (ie Carabao Cup) is back later this week! Yay! (said no one ever). Well the silver lining is that there are some big games in store. With apologies to Liverpool vs Arsenal, the biggest of the bunch is Chelsea hosting Manchester United at Stamford Bridge.

United were somewhat lucky to pick up a dominant 4-0 thrashing of the Blues in their opening Premier League match. Frank Lampard must be hell-bent on revenge. As this is the EFL Cup and not something of prime importance, it’s inevitable that both teams will be making changes to give their best players some rest before the next set of league fixtures.

That being said, Lampard won’t be holding back and will throttle his side forward to get one over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. OGS’ side have finally reformed their away form with two wins on the road. They’ll be looking to maintain their momentum by ending Chelsea’s winning streak. This should be an entertaining bout.

Chelsea Likely XI

Kepa, James, Guehi, Tomori, Emerson, Kovacic, Jorginho, Gilmour, Hudson-Odoi, Willian, Batshuayi

Chelsea are plagued with a host of injuries, with N’Golo Kante, Andreas Christensen, Antonio Rudiger, Ross Barkley & Ruben Loftus-Cheek all out of contention. Lampard will surely rotate his side, with many young prodigies being in contention to start.

Manchester United Likely XI

Romero, Wan-Bissaka, Jones, Maguire, Rojo, Williams, Garner, McTominay, Mata, Rashford, Greenwood.

OGS was rocked with the news that Paul Pogba won’t be back before December. Luke Shaw remains on the sidelines, as does Diogo Dalot, Axel Tuanzebe, Nemanja Matic & Eric Bailly. Expect some of the academy lads & substitutes against Norwich City to start.

Chelsea vs Manchester United Match Preview

United have regained their momentum on the road after a frisky start to the season, with the Norwich win definitely giving them a boost in confidence with many trips lined up ahead. While the EFL Cup isn’t a priority, OGS wouldn’t mind lifting the trophy in March.

Marcus Rashford & Anthony Martial are working their magic by linking beautifully. However, OGS probably won’t risk Martial with his injury-prone manner. Mason Greenwood should get a crack at further establishing his role, as the cunning goal-scorer can introduce himself in style by putting goals past a young Chelsea backline.

Young James Garner &  Brandon Williams should get opportunities to shine, especially after the latter gained high praises for his impressive work at Partizan Belgrade. OGS could also go with a 5-man defence to counter Chelsea’s attacking intensity and deny a humiliation.

But United would be more than happy to let the hosts dictate proceedings & hit them on the counter-attack with Rashford & Daniel James’ electric pace. The Welsh winger’s putting in marvelous crosses from the right. He’ll threaten once again with his buzzing attitude.

Chelsea, however, are on an unstoppable roll themselves. After shocking Ajax by ending their undefeated streak this season, Christian Pulisic’s brilliance further showed in the 4-2 win over Burnley at the weekend.

While Christian Pulisic, Tammy Abraham & Mason Mount could all be rested after grueling fixtures, Lampard’s side still has enough firepower to burn any side. With the fans behind them, it’ll be perfect opportunities for the likes of Michy Batshuayi, Reece James, Emerson & Billy Gilmour to amplify their reputations.

The Blues are playing with a swagger thanks to the fast-paced, swift-passing style Lampard’s brought on board. While their defensive vulnerabilities remain a cause for concern, Chelsea ends up scoring many to make up for their defenders’ inexperience.

They’ll try to hit the Red Devils with full force as the players haven’t forgotten the embarrassment at Old Trafford. United might be defensively strong, but need to weather the storm to stop the unrelenting attacking force that Chelsea churns out on them to try and get into the next round of the EFL Cup, which could be a nice trophy addition for Lampard.

Prediction

I think this should be a 1-1 draw at normal time. Chelsea will win it in penalties to knock United out, moving into the next round.

Where to bet Carabao Cup in the US

In the US, you can legally bet on soccer in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

For New Jersey, we recommend DraftKings Sportsbook NJ or FanDuel Sportsbook.

Manchester United Player Ratings vs Norwich (Matchday 10)

Avatar October 27, 2019
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Manchester United travelled to struggling Norwich City in look of getting their first away win of their Premier League campaign. They did so with a dominant 3-1 win, finally ending their away curse.United started the game on the front-foot, forcing a couple of solid saves from Krul early on. They finally found their reward in the 21st minute when Scott McTominay’s clever shot brisked into the net to give them the lead.

Daniel James won them a penalty in the 26th minute, but Marcus Rashford scuffed it with a pathetic attempt. However, Rashford didn’t miss in the 31st minute when James’ amazing pass allowed him to score an easy goal after being one-v-one with Krul. 

United had the chance to go three up when they won another penalty in the 43rd minute, but Anthony Martial missed that too! Why can’t these guys score pens?!?!

The Red Devils weathered the storm in the second half and found their third in the 73rd minute, when Rashford linked well with Martial before playing a clever back-heel to allow the Frenchman to dink in his goal past Krul. Onel Hernandez capitalized on McTominay’s error to score a consolation in the 88th minute, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side sealed an impressive first away win in style. 

Manchester United Player Ratings

Manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (7.5) –

Solskjaer’s clearly rejuvenated after the Liverpool result and playing his best front-three did the trick. He capitalized on Norwich’s defensive vulnerabilities superbly by setting his side to run at their frail backline and keep things grounded. Seems to have found his midfield combination as well to accompany Pogba. Outwitted the clever Daniel Farke and gives his job some much needed security with this dominant showing.

Goalkeeper

David de Gea (6.0) –

Saw his side take a solid lead without having to do anything. But DDG was alert when called upon, making  a great stop to deny Cantwell in the 38th. Unlucky to see his clean-sheet wasted by conceding an unnecessary goal late on. 

Defenders

Aaron Wan-Bissaka(7.5)-

AWB looks more confident roaming forward today, but is still lacking that added zest to his delivery. Makes a potential goal-saving challenge by recovering brilliantly in the 38th. Uncharasterically makes a horrible challenge before the break to get a yellow-card. 

Found his stride in the second half, making some vintage tackles and clearances to prove why he’s such an asset to this side.

Harry Maguire (6.5) –

Harry has a challenging night ahead of him against the venomous Teemu Pukki. Done well up till the break, making a few clever challenges. Despite being caught wrong-footed at times, Maguire did a number on Pukki and made some important challenges to keep the hosts quiet. 

Victor Lindelof (6.5) –

Victor’s playing very high up to try and create some chances for his side. Very confident with his work tonight. intained a solid defensive line with Maguire, made some composed challenges and countered Norwich’s press like a boss. 

Ashley Young (5.0) –

Sloppy start to the game, allowing Norwich to blaze through his wing leading to Cantwell’s 5th minute chance. Way too slow with his defensive contributions. Allowing Aarons to swift past him too easily. His frustrations are showing with a series of bad tackles, one on Aarons which got him booked. Shouldn’t be starting games anymore. 

Midfielders

Fred (7.0) –

Assertive with his distribution and  pressing early on. Still shaky with passing and gave one straight to Pukki to allow a Norwich counter-attack before the break. Won his side a penalty when his strike from outside the area struck Cantwell’s arm.

Forced a solid stop from Krul few minutes later after the missed penalty. The Brazilian pressed Norwich like a hound, made crucial tackles and recoveries. Finding his stride slowly. 

Scott McTominay (7.0) –

The Scotsman is playing deeper than usual today and has done well to dominate proceedings early on. Yet when it came to finishing from just inside the area in the 21st minute, he slotted in perfectly past many bodies to give his side the lead.

Despite a sloppy error to deny DDG a clean-sheet in the ding minutes, McTominay gave another warrior-like showing by driving United forward, making interceptions and working his socks off the whole game.

Andreas Pereira (6.5) –

Pereira looks much more expressive in central role. Takes a swipe at goal which goes just wide in the 10th. Sent in an inviting cross from the right to create confusion leading to the opener. Menacing with his corner delivery and linked play pretty well in the final third. 

Forwards

Marcus Rashford (7.5) –

Rashford’s received a free role today. Looking menacing with movement, but nothing with his delivery so far. Linked well with Martial to get a solid swipe at goal in the 19th. Chested a corner superbly for Martial a minute later. Missed a penalty AGAIN in the 29th. Horrible, weak attempt.

Redeems himself by slotting in comfortably after a clever run in a few minutes later. Showcases new-found confidence by drifting past Aarons through the left and hitting the side-netting in the 34th. Worked his magic sprinting through the left the whole game and played a clever flick behind to assist Martial’s goal.

Daniel James (7.5) – 

Moved permanently to the right wing with Martial’s inclusion. Done well to help Wan-Bissaka with tracking back so far. Used his wits to win United a penalty in the 26th minute by forcing a mild tackle from Godfrey.

Despite seeing it missed, James pegged on to deliver a spectacular assist with a fantastic lobbed through-ball to hand Rashford his goal. Whipped in another amazing cross after the break to get Martial a swipe at goal. Finding his groove on the right and United’s most dangerous creator again today. 

Anthony Martial (7.0) –

Not as involved as he’d like to be early on. Found Rashford’s run pretty well to create a decent chance in the 19th. Denied by an amazing save from Krul when his header from close was tipped over a minute later. Or not. He missed his one too before the break! Awarded another golden chance at goal in the 53rd, but saw his shot saved again. 

But he didn’t miss in the 73rd, taking Rashford’s fancy flick in stride before brilliantly chipping past Krul. Bit frustrating at times, but got the job done with a smart goal. 

Substitutions  

Mason Greenwood (6.0) –

The Teenager almost got his first Premier League goal, but his shot in added time was kept out by a hobbling Krul.

Jesse Lingard (6.0) –

Nearly found his first league goal when his shot from range blasted over in the 83rd. Worked hard to keep his side ahead. 

James Garner (N/A) –

Kept the game ticking with industrious work. 

MAN OF THE MATCH

He was frustrating at times, but Rashford proved his class working through the left-wing today. Broke through on numerous occasions, scored a smart goal and brilliantly assisted later on to redeem his penalty miss. 

Why Liverpool vs Manchester United Meant Nothing and Champions League Preview: A New High Press Soccer Podcast

High Press 10 October 23, 2019

Getting this up a day late, but here’s the latest High Press Soccer Podcast. Listen below or subscribe and download from Apple’s Podcast Center.

Covered in this episode:

  • Liverpool and Manchester United drew 1-1. Liverpool were unlucky. United played hard and were lucky. The game meant nothing.
  • Barcelona is back on top of La Liga! And they’re their to stay.
  • The UEFA Champions League is back this week. Watchability rankings for the week.

Listen to “High Press Soccer Podcast Episode 34: Liverpool vs Man U and UCL Preview” on Spreaker.

Norwich City vs Manchester United Matchday 10 Preview

Avatar October 22, 2019

Who: Norwich City vs Manchester United
When: Sunday, October 27th @ 12:30pm ET
LineNorwich +330 | Draw +295 | Manchester United -139

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Manchester United’s season gained some flight when they put an end to Liverpool’s lengthy winning streak in the Premier League. It was another game in which Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side surrendered a slender lead to go home with a point, but the encouraging performance proved there might be fighting spirit remaining.

Regardless of that promising result, the grim reality is that United remain in 14th position. They’re literally a few points ahead of Norwich City, who are craving the opportunity to pile on their misery. The Canaries are no laughing matter, with the win against Manchester City earlier this season proving their mettle.

With an exciting attacking philosophy and the ever-present Teemu Pukki hungry as ever, United need to show character to end their atrocious recent away record. If they continue being callous as before, another humiliation could be on the cards.

Norwich City Likely XI

Krul, Aarons, Amadou, Godfrey Lewis, Tettey, McLean, Buendia, Leitner, Cantwell, Pukki.

Norwich are struggling from their own injury troubles. Centre-back Christoph Zimmermann remains on the sidelines, as does Grant Hanley. Timm Klose, Ralf Fahrmann, Onel Hernandez & Mario Vrancic are all injured, piling the headaches for Daniel Farke.

Manchester United Likely XI

De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Young, McTominay, Fred, Pereira, James, Martial, Rashford.

Paul Pogba remains a question mark for Manchester United after failing to recover from his ankle injury. Luke Shaw is also on his road to recovery, while Axel Tuanzebe is out after picking up a groin injury in the warm-up before the Liverpool game.

Norwich City vs Manchester United Match Preview

For many, United’s result against Liverpool is being taken as something they can build upon to get back to winning ways. The courageous act proved there’s still that never-say-die attitude inscribed in the team and OGS must amplify that spirit going forward.

Of course, there’s still a need to improve the attacking rhythm when it comes to creating more clear-cut chances in games. Anthony Martial’s return from injury means they have a solid finisher back to pounce on those chances they create.

Daniel James proved his class in a fiery showcase against Liverpool. Andreas Pereira proved he’s a more natural playmaker than a right-sided midfielder. The Welsh winger must be indulged more to zoom past figures & put in inviting crosses as he did on Sunday, while Pereira must tone down on his need for something spectacular and find incisive passes forward.

Marcus Rashford’s regained confidence with the goal, but looks much more comfortable sprinting through the left than playing through the centre. Fred must brush off his sloppiness. Meanwhile, Scott McTominay’s acting as their midfield general is doing wonders to inspire Solskjaer’s boys.

United’s defensive shape is among the strongest in the league, but occasional errors have plagued their reputation. Playing error-prone stars like Marcos Rojo, Ashley Young only invites trouble, something OGS must extinguish.

Making errors against this Norwich side would be catastrophic. Not only the lethal Pukki, but creative players like Todd Cantwell, Emiliano Buendia, Max Aarons can cause real problems marching forward.

Daniel Farke’s instilled a smooth, fearless passing system which can run rings around United if they’re not careful. Carrow Road isn’t the easiest to get a result from(just ask City), but OGS’ men must channel their warrior spirits to trouble Norwich’s frail defence and end the awful away-day curse.

Prediction

Without Pogba, there just isn’t enough cutting-edge for United to trouble with. I think another scored draw is on the cards against Norwich.

Manchester United Player Ratings vs Liverpool

Avatar October 20, 2019
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Manchester United hosted Liverpool at a packed Old Trafford on Sunday looking to break the visitors winning record. They did so with a 1-1 draw. A five-man United backline held their resolve in the early minutes, but United created very little themselves.

The hosts frustrated Liverpool and made their chance count in the 36th minute when Daniel James’ brilliant cross was tapped in by Marcus Rashford. The visitors bit back with a 44th goal from Sadio Mane, but VAR overturned it after watching it striking his hand. 

Liverpool kept flinging balls at United’s box and one worked a treat in the 85th minute when Andy Robertson’s pass found it’s way to Adam Lallana to put things level.So both teams had to settle for a point and go home with mixed feelings. 

Manchester United Player Ratings

Manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (6.5) –  

Despite my early scepticism, Solskjaer’s tactics actually worked pretty well. United frustrated Liverpool and worked brilliantly on counter-attacks, getting that precious goal as well. Of course, he still must wrinkle out better attacking moves and find out his best XI, but Ole did well with whatever he had today. Still needs to iron out mistake-prone waste like Rojo, though.

Goalkeeper

David de Gea (6.0) –  

DDG avoided an injury scare but looks fit as ever after the internationals. Denied Wijnaldum with an easy grab in the 12th. Keeps Firmino’s tame shot out with a comfortable save after the half-hour mark. His good work was undone by the equalizer, but De Gea looked confident as ever otherwise. 

Defenders

Marcos Rojo (5.0) –  

Nearly caused disaster losing the ball to Mane in the early minutes. Has just been at the right places to deny Liverpool some opportunities. Still very shaky defending on one-v-one situations. Made that expected dreadful mistake letting the ball go past him for Lallana’s equalizer. 

Harry Maguire (7.0) –  

Maguire doesn’t look daunted against the league’s best attack at all. The big man’s made a few crucial early challenges and flung the ball forward wisely. Maintained his back-line really well, keeping things compact. Won 90% of the headed attempts and made numerous clearances. Bit unlucky to concede like that. 

Victor Lindelof (6.5) –

Victor looks to be relishing the challenge against Origi. Proves his distribution prowess with quick forward passes. Lucky to have Mane’s goal overturned after being completely outdone by him. Settled in afterwards and made an especially clever interception on Mane in the 69th to trigger a counter. Kept on Firmino’s toes later on and kept him quiet, but couldn’t stop the decisive assist for the equalizer. 

Aaron Wan-Bissaka(6.0)-  

Back to his usual business after an injury lay-off. Strong early challenge on Robertson shows his aggressive side. Finally puts in an inviting ball in the 28th. Stayed more centrally defensively(which played a part in the goal), but stung in with tackles whenever necessary. A breath of fresh air to solidify United’s backline. 

Ashley Young (6.0) –

Still unsure what exactly his role is today? Has fluffed the ball forward at times to trigger half-baked attacks. Young was actually composed with his defending, but as a winger still very uninspired creatively. 

Midfielders

Fred (6.5) –

The Brazilian’s questionable form didn’t grant a start, but he hasn’t made any mistakes so far in the first twenty. Passing sensibly to find his targets. Fred’s made a few important blocks and numerous recoveries. Looking proactive. Ventured forward adventurously in the 72nd and saw an attempt braze wide. Saw another whisk wide ten minutes later.

Avoided a late penalty give-away by whisking his hand out of the way, but his pit-bull performance was what was needed. 

Scott McTominay (6.5) –  

The Mancunian for the occasion is packed with the energy to stop Liverpool’s transitions. Makes a typical driving run in the 25th but sees his grounded shot saved comfortably. Doing pretty well to protect Fred and also drove James forward for the goal. Kept Liverpool’s midfielders frustrated and an asset clearing out set-pieces as well. 

Andreas Pereira (6.0) –  

Playing in the playmaker role, he really seems to be struggling finding creative passes. Scuffed a decent chance into Allison’s hand in the 11th to frustrate Old Trafford. Another unnecessary tricky pass in the 17th wastes a good chance. Working his socks off is somewhat winning back the fans. Did pretty well to find Rashford forward in the 66th

Forwards

Marcus Rashford (7.0) –  

After breaking his goal-scoring duck with England, Rashford seems hungry for a goal. Moved well through the flanks on some occasions, but lacking the final product. Wriggled past Liverpool’s defence in the 27th to flare into the area, but couldn’t make the decisive pass. Finally ends his drought with a good run, but a simple tap-in. 

Nearly doubled it in the 66th but his slick move and long-shot went wide. Rashford played like the buzzing striker he’s expected to be and won over some confidence with a decisive performance. 

Daniel James (7.0) – 

James’ operating more centrally tonight and apart from a fancy flick to Pereira, has been quiet early on. He might’ve been quiet the whole half, but he put in a peachy cross to hand Rashford a goal on the plate. Annoyed Liverpool with his theatrics and ran them red with his electric movement. 

Substitutions  

Anthony Martial (N/A) –

Came over late on after his injury and couldn’t have any influence over a winner. 

Brandon Williams (N/A) – 

Made his official Premier League debut. 

MAN OF THE MATCH

Rashford scored once again vs Liverpool at Old Trafford and was the reason for this point, so his electric performance deserves today’s MOTM. 

Manchester United vs Liverpool Matchday 9 Preview (Man U Edition)

Avatar October 15, 2019

Who: Manchester United vs Liverpool
When: Sunday, October 20th @ 11:30am ET
LineManchester United +340 | Draw +310 | Liverpool -137

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(Also read: Manchester United vs Liverpool preview – Liverpool edition)

The biggest task of Manchester United’s quickly derailing season awaits when runaway league-leaders Liverpool visit town for the first derby. Considering how the win against Chelsea now seems a big fluke, there’s a need for United to prove themselves capable of tussling against the best.

Momentum, however, is not on their side.

One win in their last four Premier League games underlines a worrying problem under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The Norwegian’s under fire to start getting the results, with rumours of former Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri being interested in his seat only amplifying the pressure on OGS.

As much as one can blame lack of luck for their distraught situation, United are just not playing up to the mark and look completely toothless going forward. Inability to recruit properly in the summer is taking its toll.

A win against an undefeated Liverpool, however, can completely change the mood around the club. I think it can also reinvigorate the players and properly kick start their campaign towards a more fruitful direction. Jurgen Klopp’s side were responsible for inflicting the lethal blow on Jose Mourinho’s reign last December. It remains to be seen whether the same is dealt on Solskjaer.

Manchester United Likely XI

De Gea, Young, Lindelof, Maguire, Rojo, McTominay, Pogba, Pereira, Mata, James, Rashford.

The injury bug has still not worn out from the United squad. Paul Pogba’s been working hard in the middle east to recover from his ankle knock, which means he should start if everything going well. Anthony Martial’s FINALLY back, but is a doubt to start. Jesse Lingard & Luke Shaw’s injuries mean that Solskjaer has limited options and must construct a strong defensive stance to counter Liverpool’s fiery attacking threat.

Liverpool Likely XI

Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Salah, Firmino, Mane.

Well, the good news for Liverpool is that Alisson is back in contention to make his return! Joel Matip’s also ready to go, reforming his strong partnership with Virgil Van Dijk. Xherdan Shaqiri and Nathaniel Clyne remain their long-term absentees.

Manchester United vs Liverpool preview

While the United board are adamant to retain their faith on OGS for the long-term, a heavy defeat to bitter rivals Liverpool will automatically dent the fans’ trust on the manager. It doesn’t matter whether the Reds are flying high playing like Champions, a positive result is quintessential to prove that the Norwegian can be trusted.

So how exactly do you defeat the side who are on a 17-match winning streak, much of that without their best goalkeeper? Well, I think it’s time Ole pulled out a rabbit from his hat to prove that United still have that competitive mojo inside them.

Perhaps rekindling that night in Paris, after which things started sloping down for United, would work a treat in reigniting that missing fire. The good thing is that Pogba, Martial are both gunning to return. They’ll automatically upgrade their lethality going forward, injecting pace and creativity into their otherwise dull attack.

United need to be clever with their approach to breach Liverpool’s organized defence, led by an impeccable Van Dijk. Going for the aerial route is pointless thanks to their towering individuals in defence.

However, Liverpool have been somewhat susceptible to quick-linked passing moves throughout the season. Their defence isn’t as strong as last season, which means there’s still a ray of hope to create timely opportunities. As much as United need Martial & Pogba, everyone must tap into their creative best to work moves as a solid unit.

Marcus Rashford and co also must start taking their chances, capitalizing on the little opportunities created to at least test the goalkeeper. This game is written for Liverpool to dominate, but United’s feisty counter-attacking skills have worked a treat ever since OGS came on board.

Dan James’ unbridled pace will be key, while there’s hope surrounding that Rashford finds back his 17’ form when he slotted two past the Reds. Now, apart from keeping their attacking moves clean, United must be at their very best defensively to keep Liverpool at bay.

Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino & Sadio Mane are dangerous as ever with a bag full of tricks in their arsenal. Andy Robertson & Trent Alexander-Arnold’s dynamic marauding runs will also test the Red Devils, who must prove why they’re the 4th best defensive side in the league by digging their heels in deep to frustrate the Reds if they aspire to see out a result.

Prediction

As much as this looks another inevitable loss, I’ll roll the dice and say United get out a result. I think it’ll be a draw, which should be enough to reduce pressure on Solskjaer’s job.

Manchester United vs Liverpool Matchday 9 Preview (Liverpool Edition)

Chops October 13, 2019

Who: Manchester United vs Liverpool
When: Sunday, October 20th @ 11:30am ET
LineManchester United +340 | Draw +310 | Liverpool -137

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For many reasons, the biggest game in next weekend’s Premier League slate is Manchester United vs Liverpool.

If United get smashed, is  Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s job in jeopardy? Can Liverpool tie the Premier League record for most consecutive wins? Will Harry Maguire ball up in a fetal position while deeply sobbing over his knucklehead decision to leave Leicester for Man U?

Despite the massive disparity in talent, I don’t expect Manchester United to come out flat. This games means a lot to them. OGS has the entire international break to get their tactics right and implement a strategy. Liverpool have shown casualness lately that can be exploited.

This will be fight.

Manchester United vs Liverpool Preview

First, let’s start with this: a lot has been made of Manchester United’s xG and xPTS this season. Here’s the EPL table adjusted by xPTS:

Manchester United have been soooo unlucky, amirite? And boy, Liverpool sure do have a horseshoe up their ass, don’t they!

No. Not necessarily.

Liverpool have elite finishers. Manchester United do not. Hence the over and under performing xGs, holmes.

Part of United’s scoring issues revolve around their shot selection. They’re the anti-Red Bull Salzburg. They’re not creating easy chances within the 18 yard box.

Throwing out the anomaly of their first match against Chelsea, Man U’s most similar opponents to Liverpool this season have been Arsenal (1-1 draw) and Leicester (1-0 win).

Against Arsenal, they took 3 shots from within 18 yards. Against Leicester, they had 4 from within 18. One of those was from the spot, which Marcus Rashford converted for the win.

Liverpool’s shot charts…look…much…different.

Occasionally, Scott McTominay creates a moment of brilliance and scores from outside the 18. More often though, Scott McTominay doesn’t get a shot on target.

Liverpool dribble into the attacking third more. They complete more passes in the attacking third. And they finish more of those chances.

Sometimes, it’s not any more complicated than that.

Prediction

Manchester United will put up a fight. Could even see them rallied by a boisterous Old Trafford crowd and scoring the first goal of the game. But as soon as Liverpool scores, the crowd, the players, and OGS’ sphincter will tighten. Liverpool will come away with a 3-1 type win and tie Manchester City’s consecutive win streak of 18 matches.

What Changes Must Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Make to Save His Manchester United Job?

Avatar October 11, 2019

Well, the wheels are sadly coming off for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign at Manchester United.

After finding his team sitting at a horrible 12th place in the Premier League, the Norwegian has lost his smile. United were once cruising like a Ferrari under him but have now been reduced to a broken-down truck. What’s worse is there are no signs of improvement either. Rumours of getting the sack are getting louder.

While I can obviously sympathize with his situation as the players underperforming nature hasn’t helped, but OGS is also at fault for the tactical errors. He’s trusted upon the wrong kind of players. He’s showcasing signs of stubbornness in sticking with players who are just not good enough.

There are major changes needed for him to survive at least till January, when United can buy big and save themselves from clinging onto this relegation battle. He might not be the most experienced manager, but it’s now time for Ole to prove his grit by inspiring his players to bring back their A-game (preferably by getting a positive result against Liverpool). Here are the changes he should make to save his job.

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1. Replacing the aging players with talented youngsters

At the start of the season, Solskjaer reiterated how he would give youngsters (especially Mason Greenwood) more chances over the older players. However, persisting with players past their best now makes him look like a hypocrite. He must discard the likes of Ashley Young, Juan Mata & Nemanja Matic who offer absolutely no creative edge.

They are too static, one-dimensional & frustrating with their slow, unresponsive contribution. OGS must take risks now with his back against the wall and trust upon the youngsters to offer an olive branch. Greenwood is more than capable of leading the line, being a much better finisher than the misfiring Marcus Rashford.

Even Angel Gomes has that fiery, creative eye which Mata seems to have lost. James Garner also deserves chances to light up United’s midfield with his energetic, skilfull presence. It’s a go-hard or go-home situation for Ole, who must give the popular youngsters their chances to turn things around for United.

2. Improving the set-piece style

To say that United are horrible at set-pieces would probably be an understatement. Ashley Young’s botched crosses barely help, neither do instances like Harry Maguire scuffing a free header wide against Newcastle United. It’s been nearly seven months since they last scored off a set-piece which is the longest among any other side in the Premier League. It’s not like they don’t have enough quality.

Apart from Maguire’s “slabhead,” there are resounding players like Scott McTominay, Paul Pogba to pounce in powerful headers. The delivery needs to be right. Ole must work extensively on improving this in the training ground and find a proper set-piece taker who at least gets the ball into dangerous areas.

When it comes to free-kick, they need improvement with Marcus Rashford’s attempt to imitating Cristiano Ronaldo is failing miserably. Of course, relying upon goals from scrappy set-pieces could be considered a cheap way to success. But even that’s better than not scoring at all. Ole must find a better set-piece taker(perhaps make Andreas Pereira work on his perfecting his delivery) and instruct his players to capitalize on chances in corners+free-kicks.

3. Appoint better leaders on the pitch

What was evident in United’s lifeless display against Newcastle is they’re badly lacking some strong characters in the pitch. Liverpool have Virgil Van Dijk & Jordan Henderson. Man City has got David Silva & Sergio Aguero.  Arsenal have Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang. But United don’t have anyone to take games by the scruff of their necks and turn things around.

OGS has earmarked Maguire as a future captain, while also hailing Axel Tuanzebe’s efforts, but handing the captain’s armband to Young itself is a bad choice. His consistent errors in defense or frustrating crosses manage to dim down the players than charging them. United do possess players who can make their voices felt by ordering their team-mates how to deal with pressure, but Ole must give them the freedom to do so.

Indeed, the likes of Maguire, McTominay or Victor Lindelof must be given responsibility to re-energize the players with confidence or rallying them forward with their overbearing personalities. Unless they have dominant characters to inject liveliness into their performances, OGS can’t do anything about stopping this free-fall or his own potential departure.

Manchester United vs Liverpool Combined Starting XI (UPDATE)

High Press 10 October 11, 2019

Who: Manchester United vs Liverpool
When: Sunday, October 20th @ 11:30am ET
LineManchester United +340 | Draw +310 | Liverpool -137

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Editor’s Note: Paul Pogba has been ruled out of the Sunday clash. So replace him with Jordan Henderson. And there you have 11 Liverpool players among the starting 11. Uffda. 

The marquee match-up for Premier League matchday 9 next weekend is Liverpool traveling to Old Trafford to take on Manchester United.

In drafting the preview post (coming soon!), I was looking at the rosters and thought: “Wait, would one single Manchester United player break into a combined starting XI?”

The answer is yes. One would. Just one. Only one. And now he’s injured. So scratch him from the graphic below and replace him with any Liverpool midfielder, Naby Keita included. Yep, we went there.

Manchester United vs Liverpool Combined Starting XI

Assuming Paul Pogba is fit and ready to play, he’s the only Man U member who cracks a combined starting XI. (And admittedly, seeing him alongside Liverpool’s best–that looks good! Can we buy him?)

Alisson is reportedly likely back from injury this match as well. If so, the reigning Golden Glove winner gets the nod over David de Gea. But even if Alisson wasn’t back–is de Gea over Adrian an automatic call? Scott McTominay gives a crap. He’s playing well. But he has some stinkers in him (see: Wolves, Newcastle). Would you take him over Fabinho? Very few would.

To be fair, Aaron Wan-Bissaka would make almost any combined starting XI. Unfortunately he isn’t above Trent Alexander-Arnold.

United have problems. While Ole Gunnar Solskjaer maybe isn’t an elite manager, he wasn’t handed an elite roster. The reality is United lack quality all over the pitch. Fred isn’t cutting it.

Looking at this combined XI, United building a title contender seems a lot longer than 2-3 years away.

Could Gareth Bale Bail Manchester United Out of the Relegation Zone Come January?

Tyler Everett October 9, 2019

Gareth Bale and Zinedine Zidane are at odds. Again.

This is Part 700 (give or take) in the feud between these two. The latest chapter could result in Bale finally finding greener pastures. Reports today claim Bale will try to leave the Spanish capital during the winter transfer window. One potential destination? Relegation candidate Manchester United.

Why now?

While Bale’s relationship with Zidane has been extremely rocky at best, he has never truly wanted to leave Spain until now.

Bale was reportedly “angry” over his complete exclusion from the squad in last weekend’s UEFA Champions League draw against Club Brugge. He returned to the line-up this weekend against Granada. With Bale doing Bale things, RM won 4-2. Check out this banana assist around the 0:40 second mark in the embedded video. Few players are capable of this.

Bale’s performance earned him a standing ovation from Los Blancos fans. That never happens.

So maybe Bale feels like for the first time he has public sentiment on his side. The timing is just right. His play this certainly warrants immediate starter status for RM. He’s tallied two goals and two assists in domestic play. His passing in particular is “prime Bale” good.

Of note, his highest statistical output has been when he’s deployed as a center-forward. Do you know what club desperately needs more quality at the forward position?

Bale to Manchester United a good short-term fix

Manchester United are a mess.

Or are they?

Their underlying statistics show them to be more unlucky than bad. (How’s that for a rallying cry? “We’re not bad! We’re unlucky!”)

Man U are third in xPTS in the Premier League. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has tightened up United’s defense, which is fourth best in the EPL. They just can’t score.

Bale’s pace and creativity could help unlock the offense. Paired with Daniel James on the wing and supported by a potentially rejuvenated Paul Pogba, United would have the weapons to find the net and avoid relegation.

As a short-term fix, the deal makes sense for both sides. Bale will get all of the playing time he can handle. If United improve with him, he’ll have a fan-base and coach that actually appreciates him. And Manchester United avoid dropping to the Championship next season.

Win-win all around.

Who Manchester United Should Buy in January to Keep from Being Relegated

Avatar October 8, 2019

Well, I never thought we would come to this situation when Manchester United find themselves closer to relegation than the Premier League top-four.

Indeed, after another shallow defeat to Newcastle United, they sit merely two points above the drop zone. There’s a relegation party being organized in May just in case. They are +7000 to be relegated.

It looks unlikely things will improve anytime soon. The players simply aren’t performing. Ole Gunner Solskjaer’s tactics have become obsolete and there’s just no life in the team. Lethargic is perhaps the perfect word to sum up their situation, with clear-cut chances hard to come by. Not like their current attackers are decisive enough to finish the little ones that do come by.

United clearly didn’t spend enough during the summer, meaning major reinforcements must be made to revitalize their attack. With pressure piling on distancing themselves from a he relegation zone, here are a few players United could buy in January to turn things around for them.

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5. Steven Bergwijn

United have had a persistent problem attacking through their right-flank, with pointless delivery from that side rendering them useless due to the lack of talent. Everyone thought Daniel James as the fix, but he’s more a natural left-winger who loves cutting in. Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s a sturdy defender but still lacks that delivery sense from the right.

They still need to address their right-winger problems, but Steven Bergwijn can be a clever solution. The Netherlands international is a feisty figure through the right, having the pace along with the dribbling skills to torment defenders. He has a WhoScored rating of 7.41 when playing through the right, having scored one and assisted twice from that.

Moreover, his 3 key passes & 1.8 per game proves he’s a creative, electric figure moving through the wings. A tricky winger like Bergwijn, who can cross & cut from the right, is ideal to bring another dimension to re-energize United’s front-line.

At 22, the PSV Eindhoven winger fits the right age profile as well for a Man U squad that should build through youth.

4. Sean Longstaff

What United lacked in their embarrassing loss to Newcastle United was the passion which Sean Longstaff displayed for the Magpies. While his younger brother Matty stole the show with his winner, Sean’s been among the best things to come out from their youth system in ages. He’s determined, tough-tackling and possesses a valuable never-say-die spirit.

Of course, Scott McTominay wears his badge with pride, having produced some inspired performances recently, but he often gets overrun with little back-up. Nemanja Matic is too slow, while Fred is too clumsy. Longstaff’s expected assists per 90 are superior to all three aforementioned players, proving he possesses that cutting creative edge.

He tends to run his socks off, make crucial interceptions and drive his side forward with lung-busting runs. Longstaff was linked with United in the summer, as his recent fiery performance proves he’s the one needed to run oppositions to the ground.

He’s also 21 and from England, fitting key criteria United are after in their rebuild.

3. Mario Mandzukic

Another one that got away for United in the summer, Mario Mandzukic was there for the taking as Romelu Lukaku’s replacement. However, OGS couldn’t get it done due to wage issues, instead deciding to trust Marcus Rashford & Anthony Martial to come up with the goods.

Well, that hasn’t worked out. United is only scoring 5 goals in 7 games since that Chelsea drubbing. Mandzukic hasn’t appeared for Juventus this season, but is again available in January. The 2018 FIFA World Cup finalist is everything United need in a warrior in the attack.

Manduzkic is hard-working, versatile enough to even move through the wings and a terror inside the area. He’s very clinical inside the area, with the effectiveness for scoring on big occasions. His bullish presence is also unnerving for defenders. The Croatian can battle his way into scoring goals, with his elite mentality making him the ideal mentor for United’s growing strikers.

At 33, he’s long in the tooth for a rebuild. But like our #1 on the list, he will solve United’s biggest short-term need in their quest to stay above relegation.

2. Bruno Fernandes

When Man United fans begged for a creative centre-midfield to take some pressure off Paul Pogba’s shoulders, they decided to just raise the responsibility on the wantaway Frenchman. Ander Herrera was never replaced, nor was Marouane Fellaini.

The results of doing nothing are showing, with United’s static midfield barely influencing their results. Bruno Fernandes is still at Portuguese side Sporting, but United must go on with a big bid in January. He’s scored six goals and assisted five from attacking midfield this season. Those numbersthe entire United midfield haven’t been able to match.

The industrious, creative Fernandes has that cutting-edge which they lack. Be it his bombing long-shots, ripping through-balls or a hard-working tenacity, Fernandes is the proactive, multi-layered workhorse. He would spark their creativity as well as solve their goal-scoring issues from midfield.

1. Zlatan Ibrahimovic

The more troubles start creeping up on United, the more it becomes confusing why they let go of Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the first place. He was “replaced” with Lukaku after sustaining a terrible injury, but letting him go without a proper plan now seems unnecessary.

Zlatan’s since gone onto take the MLS by storm, scoring 52 goals in 56 games for LA Galaxy! He’s reaffirmed himself the King of MLS, scoring incredible efforts to inspire them to many victories. However, here at High Press Soccer, we feel Ibra would be a perfect buy for United in January. He still has that hunger in him after having successfully recovered from the injury.

Ibra’s a beast aerially, rarely scuffs his chances & the ideal finisher United need to creep in their limited chances. Zlatan’s already reiterated he’d be open to returning to Old Trafford, as they shouldn’t make any second guesses when it comes to resigning this lethal goal-scorer.

Manchester United Relegation Odds

High Press 10 October 7, 2019

Manchester United. Wow.

After 8 Premier League games, Manchester United have 9 points and sit 2 clear of relegation.

Math math math…that’s not good.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer record since being named permanent manager

Man U have played 20 games across all competitions since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was named permanent manager. Here’s how that’s gone:

  • 5 Wins, 6 Draws, 9 losses
  • 17 goals scored, 26 goals conceded, -9 goal differential
  • A record good for 17th best in the Premier League

OGS by no means is the only problem at Old Trafford. He’s not been set up for success. But Roy Hodgson is looking at those numbers and laughing himself to sleep.

Manchester United relegation odds

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Despite the sustained run of poor form, United are still only +7000 to see relegation this season.

As of October 6 
Norwich -129Watford +120
Newcastle +125Aston Villa +200
Sheffield +200Southampton +275
Brighton +350Burnley +500
Bournemouth +600Crystal Palace +900
Everton +1100West Ham +1400
Wolves +2000Manchester United +7000

Everton, who currently sit in the relegation zone, are +1100. Marco Silva’s seat is very hot.

Crystal Palace, who were among relegation favorites to start the campaign, have seen the most improvement in their odds. They’re now priced at +900.

Where to Bet the Premier League in the US

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Manchester United Player Ratings vs Newcastle (Premier League Matchday 8)

Avatar October 6, 2019
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Manchester United fell to a terrible 1-0 loss to Newcastle United in the hunt to continue their horrible away winless streak. The Red Devils started as drably as they were in mid-week Europa League fixture against AZ Alkmaar, showing little inspiration going forward.

United had the lion’s share of possession(66%) in the first half, but Newcastle were much better in getting more chances. They were unlucky not to score, as Harry Maguire also scuffed a free header wide to rob his side of a fortunate lead.

Newcastle kept the visitors quiet and a thunderous counter-attack in the 72nd minute led to debutant Matthew Longstaff scoring a brilliant long-ranger to give his side the lead. United huffed and puffed, but were unable to create anything concrete, falling to another shameful away defeat. Liverpool next and things won’t get any better anytime soon. Here are the player ratings for the game. 

Manchester United Player Ratings

Manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (4.0) –

For all his ramblings of promoting youth, Solskjaer is persistently trusting upon bygone oldies who offered no productivity. His United are shockingly tame going forward, look clueless creativity and even the good players are losing their touch. Unless he changes his tactics and mentality, things won’t get better any soon.

Goalkeeper

David de Gea (5.5) –

DDG’s distribution still isn’t the most convincing. Lucky to see Matty Longstaff’s long-range screamer hit the post in the 27th after he’d been beaten all ends up. However, he was unable to do anything when he struck a bullet into his bottom right corner in the 72nd to give Newcastle the lead. 

Defenders

Axel Tuanzebe (6.5) –

Tuanzebe’s second start in as many games, but he doesn’t seem fearful of the towering Joelinton’s threat. Kept the Brazilian quiet with persistent marking and tackling. Later moved to the right and retained his confident defensive solidity with timely challenges. A slight bright spark in United’s dark day. 

Harry Maguire (6.0) –

Despite not having his regular partner, Maguire’s comfortable moving possession forward or clearing danger. Makes a brilliant block in the 38th to save a certain goal from Almiron. Heads a glorious scoring opportunity wide in the 45th. Should’ve scored that! Not doing so cost him, with Newcastle taking the win despite him being composed with defensive work. 

Diogo Dalot (6.0)-

Getting his first Premier League start, Dalot looks ready for the challenge against the pacy Saint-Maxim. Gets one shot(read: attempted cross) on target in the 21st. Did a pretty good job keeping up with him and making timely challenges. Offered little going forward and worsened United’s situation by picking up an injury before the hour-mark.

Ashley Young (5.5) –

The nervy captain makes a promising start with an important block in the first minute. Regains his buffoon reputation with a botch minutes later. Was off and on with his delivery, but defensive frailty proved again tonight with another wonky showing. 

Midfielders

Fred(4.0) –

Already looks all over the place. Made an unnecessary challenge to concede a free-kick in the early minutes and looks nervous with his distribution. Played it safe with predictable passes and overrun by Newcastle’s midfield.  Scuffed a long-ranger over late on, summing up his evening. 

Scott McTominay (5.0) –

Monday night’s hero looks a bit ruffled today. Lost the ball on different occasions in the first 15 minutes to allow Newcastle forward. However, he’s regained his urgent demeanor driving United forward. Frustrations led to a terrible challenge on Sean Longstaff to get booked at the half-hour mark.

Andreas Pereira (4.5) –

A fish out of water on the right-wing, the Brazilian is almost obsolete apart from a few recoveries. Moved towards the left later on and had an attempted curler saved in the 41st. Horribly played Williems onside leading up to the goal. 

Forwards

Marcus Rashford (3.0) –

Rashford’s showing signs of the known pace, but unable to get into any promising position behind Newcastle’s packed backline. Almost looked uninterested at points with shoddy movement and offered very little in terms of penetrativeness. He showed no signs of even being a centre-forward with another invisible showing. 

Daniel James (4.5) – 

Unusually weary in possession. James isn’t being able to find space to move forward and being countered by Newcastle’s deep defence. Kept mostly quiet, but had a promising cross in the 70th scraped clear by Schar. The bad form is starting to affect his game as well. 

Juan Mata (4.0)

Playing at his preferred #10 role, Mata hasn’t shown any signs of creativity in the early phase of the game. Moved into pockets of space throughout, but offered little in terms of killer-passes required. Another drab showing. 

Substitutions

Marcos Rojo (5.5) –

The Argentine was unable to do anything for the goal, but had a header scrap over the bar in the 75th. Booked minutes later for a typically unnecessary aggressive challenge. 

Mason Greenwood (6.0) –

The 17-year-old automatically lifted his side’s attack by displaying his natural striking attributes. Laid in a clever ball to send Young through in the 69th, but saw it horrible wasted. Tried powering a frail cross into goal in the 85th, only to see it collected. 

Tahith Chong (N/A) –

Came on very late on and unable to do anything about the scoreline.  

MAN OF THE MATCH

Tuanzebe was probably United’s best player with his defensive solidity, but nobody from the Red Devils really deserves MOTM today.

 

Newcastle United vs Manchester United Matchday 8 Preview

Avatar October 4, 2019

Who: Newcastle vs Manchester United
When: Sunday, October 6th @ 11:30am ET
LineNewcastle +340 | Draw +245 | Manchester United -114

Manchester United’s season is already getting dangerously close to being dead in the water. Of course, lady luck hasn’t been on their side ever since the opening weekend drubbing of Chelsea, with injuries as well as botched opportunities not allowing them to live up to their expected points hype.

Now two games without a win in the league, United travel to the land of the Geordies hoping to at least keep up with the top six, if not the top-four. Newcastle United themselves are stuck in a ditch, having picked up that single win and sitting shamefully in the relegation zone.

Steve Bruce’s tactics aren’t working at all, with Newcastle being an absolutely drab side going forward. New signing Joelinton has not being able to do it all by himself and even their normally solid defence was ripped apart by a Leicester City thrashing last weekend. The pressure is mounting on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, as his side must turn up big against the struggling Newcastle or risk falling deeper into obscurity.

Newcastle United Predicted XI

Dubravka, Yedlin, Schar, Lascelles, Dummett, Longstaff, Ki Sung-Yueng, Almiron, Saint-Maxim, Atsu, Joelinton

Newcastle are themselves experiencing an injury crisis of sorts, with first-teamers Jonjo Shelvey, Jetro Williems & Matt Ricthie all injured. Dwight Gayle & Florian Lejeune remain out, while Isaac Hayden will also miss the game after his red card against Leicester.

Manchester United Predicted XI

De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Young, Matic, McTominay, Pogba, Pereira, James, Rashford.

For OGS, Luke Shaw is still out for an unidentified period of time despite having started light training recently. Paul Pogba was left out of their squad for the Europa League game against AZ Alkmaar with issues on his foot injury but, I think, should be back on Sunday. Anthony Martial’s also a doubt, with a return against Liverpool after the international break seeming a more realistic time-frame.

Newcastle United vs Manchester United Preview

Nothing is going Manchester United’s way these days. With only two wins from the first seven in the new Premier League season, they’ve experienced the worst start to a league season in 30 years!

Of course, the statistics are continuing to work onto their favour, showing them to being unlucky to not have been in the top five or scoring more goals. When it comes to realistic output, their players have come up short ever since that opening week brilliant show against Chelsea.

For a side with so much quality in their ranks, they must amp up their attacking intensity by being more effective and quicker at creating chances. Their finishing needs improving, with Marcus Rashford especially doing no favours to his reputation with consistently scuffing easy chances.

Daniel James has remained a bright spark with his electric running and will use that to strike fear into Newcastle’s defenders. Scott McTominay’s playing with his heart on the sleeve, as his tenacity and clever movement, for me, is assured to create some sparks at Tyneside.

Pogba, I think, must improve his productivity going forward and work on his finishing or timing his passes as well. United’s defence did well apart from that one error leading to Arsenal’s goal on Monday night, but their physical aptitude will be tested by a Newcastle side hooping in long crosses. However, it’s their underperforming strike-force which must roll its sleeves, dug in and finish off the little chances they manage to create.

Newcastle are now goalless in more than two games, having last scored in the early minutes against Liverpool. Despite some exciting players up-front in Joelinton, Allan Saint-Maxim & Miguel Almiron, there’s very little productivity thanks to Steve Bruce’s stone-age tactics.

The experienced manager must prove his ability against his former side, making sure to utilize his attacking stars attributes perfectly. Newcastle have the ability to torment teams aerially as well as moving forward like a pack, but I feel are too cautious for their own good.

In order to take the game to an under-performing Man United, Bruce must allow his side to bomb forward even if it leaves their defence exposed. United need to ride the wind, unleash their unique creativity+ explosiveness going forward to break down the Geordies’ packed defence line to get a crucial win before the crucial Liverpool derby.

Prediction

At this point, predicting a Man United win feels like spelling my own doom. However, I’ll run the gauntlet once again to go with a 2-1 win for United at Tyneside.

Manchester United Player Ratings vs Arsenal (Premier League Matchday 7)

Avatar September 30, 2019
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Manchester United played out a 1-1 draw against  Arsenal in the Premier League’s marquee fixture for matchday 7.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side look revitalized in a rainy night at Old Trafford, taking the fight to Arsenal in the early minutes. The game lost its after a lively start, but ended in thunderous fashion with David De Gea making a double-save before Scott McTominay finished off a counter-attack with a fantastic strike to give his side the lead in the 45th minute. 

Arsenal went hard for the equalizer after the break and got it in the 58th when a defensive error allowed Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang to score his 8th goal this season. The game opened up after that with chances for both side, but neither could take them. Splitting points helps Arsenal get back into the top-four, while United are now on 10th place!

Manchester United Player Ratings

Manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (5.0) –

OGS is making me lose patience by showcasing blind faith on consistently underperforming players like Lingard, Young and Pereira. This was the perfect opportunity for an in-form Mason Greenwood to prove himself, but he was brought on late on.

The once-great substitute still can’t get his changes in order. Even though United’s counter-attacks are lethal under him, they still lack shape and order going forward. The pressure mounts with no win in two league games.

Goalkeeper

David de Gea (6.5) –

DDG’s distribution looks off today, but isn’t helped by skitty surface at a wet Old Trafford. Makes a routine dived save off Pepe in the 35th.  A terrific double save to keep the game-level, denying Saka and then Guendouzi brilliantly off the rebound. Helpless for the goal, but DDG’s regained his confidence in goal.

Defenders

Axel Tuanzebe (5.5) –

A surprise inclusion at left-back of all places, he’s proved his worth maintaining a composed nature. A clever run forward before the 10th minute incurred delightful jeers. Super work in the 18th to cut off Chambers and stop a tricky attack.

 Displayed impressive confidence throughout with strong challenges, but makes that one vital mistake with a botched pass leading to Aubameyang’s equalizer. Looks a bit rattled after that. Not suited for a wing-back role despite defensive strength.

Harry Maguire (6.5) –

Maguire looks pumped for this big battle already. He’s made a few decent clearances including one decisive one in the 6th to steer Pogba forward. Struck a wild header to create an early chance, but Rashford couldn’t read his attempt.  A master in the air today, winning every aerial thrown at him. 

Unlucky playing Aubameyang on for the goal, but he almost redeemed that forcing a solid stop from Leno in the 72nd with a thunderous shot.

Victor Lindelof (6.0)-

Victor has his job cut out for him with Aubameyang flanking around him. But he’s done well to keep him quiet so far throughout the first half-hour, making some composed challenges as well. Lost track of Torreira in the 51st, but thankfully saw him botch his shot from range. 

Couldn’t salvage Tuanzebe’s pass leading to the equalizer, but did make a crucial block to skim Saka’s shot forward minutes later.

Ashley Young (4.5) –

Young’s first game as a right-back this season isn’t going well as expected. A horrifying botched cross early up summed why he’s been replaced with Wan-Bissaka in the first place. Repeatedly getting outsmarted by a guy nearly half his age in Saka. Had one good set-piece header over by McTominay, but defensive clueless against pace. Crosses overhit as usual. 

Midfielders

Paul Pogba (5.0) –

Returning from injury with a brand new hairstyle, he’s already frustrated with a few sloppy passes in the early minutes. Tried a fancy flick forward in the 20th but ended up wasting an opportunity. Another shoddy botched one-two touch sparking a counter-attack in the 34th

Finally wakes up in 43rd to win possession and spark a counter-attack, but sees his peach-perfect through-ball to Rashford wasted.  Sees his attempted curler go agonizingly wide at the 64th. Despite minute moments of brilliance, The Frenchman had another under-par performance. 

 Scott McTominay (8.0) –

McTominay seems chuffed in a battle against the energetic Guendouzi. Done well to oust the Frenchman on a few occasions in the early minutes. The Scotsman is working his socks off to win possession, make recoveries and get United forward.

Says “I’ll do it myself” by bolting a thunderous shot into the top bin to finish off an impressive counter-attack just before half-time. Nearly restored his side’s parity in the 69th, but his header just went over. Kept roaring forward and created an esteemed scoring opportunity in the 90th earning a promising free-kick which was saved. 

Andreas Pereira (5.5) –

He’s hard-working as ever but him at looks like a fish out of water on the right-wing. Well, he seems intent on proving me wrong as he channels his inner-Ronaldo to drive forward, do a step-over and force a strong save from Leno in the 28th.  Adrenaline forced a sloppy slide to take out Guendouzi in the 32nd to earn a yellow. 

Terrible slip before half-time almost echoed disaster, but De Gea saves his blushes. Wastes a promising counter-attack in the 56th after being found brilliantly by his keeper. Skies the ball to the top-tier a minute later.  Ran out of energy forcing a substitution. 

Forwards

Marcus Rashford (5.5) –

Surprise inclusion after last weekend’s injury, but Rashford looks packed with pace and intent so far. Yet to fine-tuned finishing, scuffing an unpredictable chance early on from yards out. Booked for an unnecessary slide on Sokratis in the 27th.

Missed a decisive chance after going through in the 42nd, but somewhat redeems himself with assist for McTominay’s goal. Finally got a free-kick right with thunderbolt in stoppage time, but Leno kept it out heroically. Showed more intent as the game progressed, but still lacking clinical touch. 

Daniel James (6.0) – 

James is going to run at Chambers all-day today. Already showcased his flash-like electricity going past him on some occasions. Got the right-back booked cleverly in the 10th and will now torment him even more. Influential in creating goal, with his insane run forward responsible for destabilizing Arsenal’s defence.

Turned Arsenal defenders inside out in second period with confident running. 

Jesse Lingard (4.0)

Only starting because of his good record against Arsenal, Lingard’s already infuriated with a childish error. Worked hard to thunder his way past a few bodies in the 68th to get into the box, but booked immediately afterwards for a lunge. Created nothing. No shots on target. Still goalless in 2019.

Substitutions

Mason Greenwood (N/A) –

Throwing Greenwood in for the final fifteen minutes and expecting an impact is unfair. He made some clever passes and tried some shots, but to no avail.

Fred (N/A)- 

Fred coming on allowed Pogba to go forward, but that didn’t help anyone. Did little himself to force anything.

MAN OF THE MATCH

Scott McTominay was THE driving force for United today. He dribbled with a swagger, played promising forward balls, intercepted possession and made numerous recoveries. Stunning goal to top off a delightful performance. Let down by team-mates today.

Liverpool Are Perfect This Season and Have Won 16 In-A-Row and Are STILL NOT Title Favorites and Some Top 4 Finish Values

High Press 10 September 29, 2019

Liverpool, champions of Europe, gutted out a 1-0 victory away at Sheffield United on Saturday. The win kept Liverpool perfect for the season at 7-0-0. Going back to last season, they’ve won 16 domestic games in a row. That’s the third longest Premier League streak ever.

They’re also the fifth best team of all-time according to ClubElo (and approaching fourth). After 7 games, they’re 5 points clear of FFP and human / women’s rights violating Manchester City.

And they’re still not favorites to win the 2019-20 Premier League title.

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Updated 2019-20 Premier League Title Odds

Yes, there are 20 teams currently in England’s top flight. However, when it comes to title odds, there are really only two.

Manchester City -125 Liverpool +115

The next closest batch of competitors (Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea) are at +10000. None of the other four major domestic leagues (we don’t count Ligue Ugh) have such a top heavy titles future market.

Premier League Top Four Odds

There’s at least a little intrigue here. While Liverpool and City’s odds for at top 4 are off the board now, the next batch of teams is closely bunched.

TeamTop 4
Tottenham -150
Arsenal+110
Chelsea +130
Manchester United+225
Leicester+300
West Ham+2500
Bournemouth+10000

If you’re looking for value, Manchester United have been unlucky this season and have the metrics of a top 4 squad. That +225 is appealing. Leicester have been the third best team in the EPL since the start of 2019. Their +300 is decently priced.

Where to Bet Premier League in the US

In the US, you can legally bet on soccer online in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

For New Jersey, we recommend DraftKings Sportsbook NJ or FanDuel Sportsbook

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