Manchester United’s bane this season has been their shambolic defending.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer might’ve slightly improved their defensive strength during the early stages of his previously interim period, yet reality’s hit him hard after being handed the job permanently.
For the second time in as many weeks, the Red Devils fell to a disappointing defeat at Molineux. Granted, Wolves have been their “bogey team”, to whom they drop points to almost regularly, doing so in the midst of a crunch top-four battle was unexpected.
Clearly, the Red Devils started the game with a storm and should’ve scored three goals in the first half-hour. That must be the most frustrating thing for the fans reading this right now, the fact that they’ve looked good enough to win the game, only to have it thrown away.
Under Jose Mourinho, there was no hope to cling onto. Under Solskjaer, it simply slips through their fingers.
Their inability to seal the deal struck them hard, mostly due to individual errors. Wolves sensed their defensive instability and pounced on them, exposing the weakness of the inconsistent Chris Smalling and Ashley Young. If this defeat proved anything, it’s that United need to work on strengthening their defensive quickly.
In the summer, their top-most priority should be bringing in quality defenders. They have some on their radars in Raphael Varane and Kalidou Koulibaly (as per the Independent), along with Aaron Wan-Bissaka (talkSPORT), and unless multiple world-class defenders are brought in, the similar cycle of despair will continue. Smalling and comedy partner in crime Phil Jones are too error-prone and simply not good enough to challenge for a title.
Elsewhere, neither Ashley Young or the departing Antonio Valencia are absolutely not captaincy material.
If Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is to take United back into the promised land, he needs to remove the liabilities constantly letting him down and Ed Woodward needs to replace them with big names. There’s the saying that defenders win titles and it’s one which couldn’t be more apt for the Red Devils in such troublesome times.
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