United can’t keep playing like they have been anymore.
Manchester United rode their luck again on Wednesday night as they nicked a 1-0 victory away to Newcastle United, but there’s no way they can continue playing as they have been.
For all Louis van Gaal’s talk of style and philosophy, there has been little of anything resembling a plan from United in recent games, with the team barely doing enough to win in some unconvincing displays against mediocre opposition.
Newcastle were poor last night, but still arguably the better team at St James’ Park, with only a late and lucky goal from Ashley Young delivering the three points for the visitors.
United now face some big tests in their next seven games, with Arsenal lying in wait in the FA Cup, followed by Premier League fixtures against Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool, Aston Villa, Man City, Chelsea and Everton.
Even Arsenal, who have a horrific record against United, particularly at Old Trafford, will have no trouble against the Red Devils if they continue to lack any imagination in attack, as well as looking so suspect at the back. Meanwhile, Tottenham, Liverpool, City and Chelsea will definitely fancy their chances of an easy win. Meanwhile, Villa are fighting for their lives at the bottom of the table and will be no pushovers under new manager Tim Sherwood, and Everton have a history of making things tough for United, despite their own struggles this season.
United desperately need to fix things quick: Angel Di Maria needs to find some form, and Wayne Rooney needs to continue to show the scoring touch he showed against Sunderland. Radamel Falcao, meanwhile, also needs goals as he looks to earn a permanent move to Old Trafford. So far, he is one of may who just hasn’t looked good enough for the club this season.
It’s all very well when playing teams like Burnley, Sunderland and Newcastle, but United need to be more than a gritty team riding their luck when it comes to taking on the big boys.