KENNA’S RED VIEW REVIEW: RED DEVILS UNABLE TO CLOSE OUT WIN AGAINST GUNNERS BUT LOTS OF POSITIVES TO TAKE
Looking at the game , I felt vindicated by not feeding into the massive media hype generated by these “block buster “games. I decided to totally ignore the media hype and just watch the game from the exact moment it starts. And from my experience , I was indeed vindicated.
The first few minutes were a cagey affair as I would have expected. United , thankfully did not concede the early goal which has become synonymous with our games against ‘bigger opponents’. As the game moved on, united began to dominate and control the midfield without even having their defense troubled. My initial fear about a potentially disastrous pairing of Jones and Rojo would be exploited were allayed after 30 minutes. It seemed hilariously ironic that the arsenal faithful who criticized Jose for his pragmatic approach at liverpool , were watching their team put on such a tepid display and hope for the best.
United were organized in midfield with a 4-3-3 formation. Carrick at the base providing the cover for the defense and Herrera and pogba pulling the strings in midfield. Watching the game , I felt we were comfortable in possession and organized without it. For all the hype , I did not see any incision from the arsenal attack. They seemed to be overwhelmed by the occasion. The game had lot of positives for united fans (assuming you are a fan of the overall game and not just the scores). Herrera is beginning to dominate matches imperiously and pogba seems to be settling down,providing much needed guile in the attack .
The only flaw I noticed was in our attack . We have lacked the ruthless cutting edge for 3 games running. Rashford has looked lethargic for the past few games. I will excuse him because he is still a kid thrust with a huge mantle of being an integral part of a united attack. I expected way much more from the gunners and for all their hype about their attack and intricate play , all I saw was a team desperately trying to limit damage control .
There are positives for united – more cohesion in play , a steady stream of chances and more grit. However there are also areas for massive improvement , most notably in the finishing. We have had too many draws that should have been wins assuming we had more clinical finishing. I am optimistic things will improve under Jose. I have seen enough from the last three games to trust that fortunes will change.
From an individual perspective , Mata , pogba , Valencia and Herrera stood out to me. They put in monster shifts on an individual level . The team as a whole , put in a decent shift. The result aside , I know things will improve.