Stoke 2 - 0 United
Young Jones Smalling Blind
Mata Fellaini Memphis(Rooney)
Well, that was expected....wasn't it? I never really believed we would take anything today, especially when we went behind to a Bojan goal after a shocking header by Memphis. Stoke scored their second almost immediately and that was game over really. There were times, under SAF, when we used to be trailing by 3 goals and I still used to believe we'll turn it around. But does anyone still believe that our players can turn a result around nowadays? I doubt it.
Is it LVG's fault that we're in this mess? Well, yes, he has to shoulder a lot of the blame. We gave his philosophy time to bloom but it stank. It's now 7 games since we last won a game. In mid-November we were close to the top but now we're dangerously close to being leapfrogged by the likes of Watford, Liverpool, West Ham and Stoke. LVG's latest pre-match press conference was entertaining to watch but demanding apologies from the media is totally absurd. If anything, LVG should be apologizing to us for making United's fans watch 90 minutes of utter shite every week. What's worse is that there were weeks when we had to watch 180 minutes of dour football.
But it is not just van Gaal. Our players need to man up and admit that they've been ridiculously poor lately. When we were winning games by a goal it was them playing as LVG wanted. We were getting points and they were performing as demanded. However, they've stopped playing. I've never seen a bunch of players as spineless as the ones we've got now. It's either they're not United quality or they've simply lost their trust in their manager and can't perform for him. I expect better from the likes of Blind, Memphis, Mata and Herrera. The latter was shockingly bad today. Mata is very likeable but he always slows play down. That's why Mourinho didn't play him at Chelsea and, to be fair, I think he's one of our problems. Technically, he's definitely one of our best players so I agree that he starts games but is he United quality? Well, if we expect fast play then no, he's not.
And that's our problem. Mata is one of our best players and he's not showing it. Same with Rooney and a host of others. Do we have a world class attacking minded player? No, we don't. Hopefully, Martial will be one in a couple years but that's that. And this is my problem with LVG: with all the money spent he should've done better when recruiting players. We won't get anywhere till we get a player who can break opposition's attacks and acts fast to start attacks for us. Schweinsteiger and Schneiderlin are both very defensive minded. I have no idea why our midfield Frenchman is being left on the bench week in, week out. Carrick's not the same Carrick that played under Fergie.
Things need to change immediately. There are no signs that we'll ever improve under this manager. I do feel sorry for him. He's a great manager, no doubt, he's proven it along the years. But is he a good enough manager to manage a BPL team? I don't think so. Is his infamous philosophy good enough to guide a modern day football team? I don't think so either. Unfortunately for us there's only one world class manager available at the moment. Do I want United to be led by Mourinho? Nope. But someone needs to stop the rot immediately. I've heard LVG's post match conference and it looks like he's walking out the club himself. He's probably said that so that the club can say that a mutual decision has been reached once the directors decide that enough is enough. It's definitely not a good time to be a red but we'll keep the red flag flying high because, hate it or love it, we'll never die. Whatever happens, I hope that our fans behave like the ones who were at the Brittania today. They never stopped singing and were even applauding our players and manager off the pitch. Our players definitely don't deserve any applause but, then again, booing them should never be an option so well done to all our away fans. LVG did wave at them before entering the tunnel, was it a goodbye wave? I think so. I think it was.