Last night, Manchester United Football Club lost the UEFA Super Cup to Real Madrid. Whilst the Red Devils didn’t embarrass themselves, the gulf in class was clear. Despite the fact that Jose Mourinho has made some excellent signings, his work in the market isn’t done; that’s if he plans to challenge for a Premier League title this term.
United have addressed the striker issue, brought in a badly-needed defensive midfielder, as well as adding a new centre-back. All of these fixed holes within the team, but there are still a pair of positions that need work.
First of all, it’s worth noting that the Old Trafford club actually have tailor-made players to fill in the voids, but as of right now, they’ve failed to make an impact on their Portuguese manager for one reason or another.
Manchester United Football Club still has two main issues
It looks as though Manchester United will start the season with Matteo Darmian as their first-choice left-back. This is a man who is predominantly right-footed and has played the majority of his career on the right flank. Although he can do a job on the left, when playing against Europe’s elite, you can just tell he isn’t a natural out there. My main concern comes when going forward. The Italian is so incredibly limited, and I’m surprised that Mourinho hasn’t brought in a new player.
Perhaps the reasoning as to why United haven’t brought anyone in is the fact that Luke Shaw is still on their books. The Southampton youth product is an immensely talented young man, but injuries have stunted his development. Right now, he isn’t expected back until September, so maybe the manager is giving him one final season to prove his worth.
The left-wing spot is a little different. Mourinho has pushed hard to try and bring in Ivan Perisic of Inter Milan, but it seems to be a dead-cert that the Red Devils will start the season without reinforcement in the final third.
Although United have an abundance of quality out on the left, the manager is clearly after a different type of player. He’s chasing someone who will hug the touchline and get crosses into the box, rather than playing the likes of Anthony Martial who prefers to cut inside and fire a shot on goal.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan can also play out there, as can the English pairing of Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford. Creativity from that side of the field was still a real issue last season, and an ineffectiveness, despite all of the talent, was one of the reasons why we failed to convert so many draws into victories at Old Trafford.
In my opinion, the more pressing matter has to be sorting out the left-back spot as we should be able to get by on the left-wing. There are a lot of eggs being thrown in a Luke Shaw-shaped basket and that greatly concerns me. Don’t get me wrong, I like the young Englishman. But, we have to be honest with ourselves, and it is a gamble pinning all our hopes on a youngster who struggles to get himself out on the field in the first place.