Manchester United 2017/18
Pep Guardiola came in for serious criticism last season for putting philosophy ahead of pragmatism and not understanding what it takes to win the Premier League.
In that regard, Jose Mourinho is at the opposite end of the scale.
Not only is the Portuguese a multiple winner of the Premier League, but everything he does at a football club is based around getting results.
When he joined Manchester United, Mourinho was tasked with bringing back the glory days to the club. People thought that meant playing the sort of football that the Old Trafford faithful had become used to under Sir Alex Ferguson.
Mourinho had other ideas. He’s used the financial might of Man Utd to create a team that’s become known as ‘Mourinho’s Monsters’.
United are full of tall, strong, physically imposing players who have no chance of being bullied by their opponents over the coming months. The question is, will they have enough about them going forwards to be in the hunt for the title come the final weeks of the season?
We saw throughout last season and once again in the UEFA Super Cup against Real Madrid that Mourinho will not think twice about setting his team up first and foremost to be tough to beat.
That’s fine when playing tough games away from home but only if the likes of Romelu Lukaku and Marcus Rashford can take their chances and the team can kill off winnable games at home.
- David De Gea
- Sergio Romero
- Joel Dinis Castro Pereira
- Victor Lindelof
- Eric Bailly
- Phil Jones
- Marcos Rojo
- Chris Smalling
- Daley Blind
- Luke Shaw
- Antonio Valencia
- Matteo Darmian
- Axel Tuanzebe
- Paul Pogba
- Jesse Lingard
- Michael Carrick
- Ander Herrera
- Marouane Fellaini
- Nemanja Matic
- Andreas Pereira
- Juan Mata
- Ashley Young
- Henrikh Mkhitaryan
- Romelu Lukaku
- Anthony Martial
- Marcus Rashford
More than one pundit has suggested that Mourinho is trying to copy the formula that worked so well for him when he first took over at Chelsea.
If this Man Utd team are anything like as tough to beat as the Blues were back then, they will surely be there or thereabouts in the title race.
However, football has moved on. Man Utd dropped far too many points at home last season while their record against their fellow top six teams was poor.
They are sure to be stronger this season but you’ve got to think that the title is going to allude them. Still, they should be able to qualify for the Champions League through their league position.
Best Bets for the Season
Manchester United to finish inside the top four at 1/3 with Bet365
Manchester United to finish above Tottenham at 8/15 with Ladbrokes