Why Manchester United Deserve Some Praise This Season

Photo by reds on tour

I keep hearing from media types that this version of Manchester United is not one of the “greats” of all time or even one of the best teams in Europe. There are those in the media that equate United’s current record to some lucky breaks and matches against poor competition. While the 2010 team doesn’t have some of the name power as the teams from the late 90s or mid-2000s which had Cantona, Beckham and Ronaldo, I do think it is time the media begin to look at this team differently and give them more acclaim.

As it sits right now, Manchester United has one hand on the league trophy and is playing deep into two other competitions. That alone should tell us that United deserves more credit. The pundits keep bringing up the weakness of the midfield and the poor performance of Rooney for most of the season. Those arguments are reasonable, however, even with those deficiencies, United has recorded one of the best seasons in Europe.

Also, if this isn’t one of the “great” United teams, as everyone says, then what does this mean for the Premier League? United did not lose a league game until January and outside of a short bad run against Liverpool and Chelsea, United has not really struggled much at all. Looking back further, if not for some shoddy defensive work in early matches against Fulham and Everton, the league title race might already be over. So are we supposed to believe that the competition in the Premier League is not strong? Hardly, this has been one of the most competitive seasons in the history of the league and United has been on top of the table for the majority of the year.

To constantly reference this team as not “great” does a disservice to what they have accomplished and what is still out there for them to accomplish. Comparing them to the Treble winning side of the past is unfair as that was one of the greatest teams in the history of football and they did something that no other United teams has done before or since. So will it take winning the Treble for the media to finally change its view of this current team?

Talent alone doesn’t make a great team. While this current United side is very talented, more importantly it plays with a lot of heart and plays unselfishly. A football squad that encompasses those qualities will not only be great, it will become unforgettable.

10 thoughts on “Why Manchester United Deserve Some Praise This Season”

  1. I agree 100% with your premise. While the (majority London-based) media have spent the majority of their time maligning or criticizing the current MUFC squad, Sir Alex and the boys have responded in the best way possible: by winning. How is it possible to praise Spurs and (until recently) Arsenal for playing well, and then take brickbats to United’s achievements because the “League is weak this year.” Was it weak when Chelsea narrowly edged out Manchester United last season? I never heard that mentioned once, and I doubt the League quality has slipped so dramatically in the space of a few short months. As the regular readers of my website know, I’ve been banging the table all season about how underrated the current MUFC squad is: it may not have the jaw-dropping talent of Cristiano Ronaldo, but it does have a higely deep and talented list of players who are peaking at exactly the right time of the season. Fergie deserves to be commended for his man management skills, keeping lots of talent happy (see Mancini, Roberto, for the way not to handle this issue), and for continuing to build a great squad without making the splashy purchases (compare Smalling and Hernandez to Torres or Dzeko).

    1. not nearly the same even a moron like u could work that out dzeko and torres went in january u cant say the same for the other two,they have had more time.. (see Mancini, Roberto, for the way not to handle this issue)? and apart from a random comment wtf evidence have u got to back this up with? mancinis done a good job u titheah what planet are u on? This is just a biased man u fan(loyal fan for about 2 years whooo epic) So if u wanna start the petty insults heres one for ya .fergie aint got a clue or he’s got dementia …for e.g….No sign that age is catching up with Sir Alex Ferguson. He claimed on on Saturday night that “Fulham have not been beaten by more than single goal this season, until now”. And if you don’t count the 4-1 home defeat to Man City in November and 3-1 defeat at West Ham in December, both in the Premier League, or Stoke’s 2-0 Carling Cup win in December, he’s absolutely right….taxi for fergie

  2. I completely agree with you. Very nicely put. However, I think some media outlets are not necessarily saying this team is not great in terms of results, I think they mean it in terms of performances, which to a certain degree I do agree with even though I’m a United fan. For the first time in the 12 years that I’ve been a United fan I find myself at times getting bored while watching United, very odd and not the United way.

  3. Man U have had iffy away form, but have played well enough to be one of the best teams in Europe…. So does this mean you have to give the ownership credit as well? Sir Alex has been able to get the players he wants some even unseen. Shouldn’t the owners get credit as well?

  4. I agree with the writer of the article. MUFC results speak for itself. This squad has depth and a work rate that not many managers out there could deal with. Look at what is going on at ManCity. With all the talent/$ ManCity has they can’t put it together. Sir Alex and his inner circles of people have done an incredible job with finding talent without breaking the bank. Don’t get me wrong I liked watching Cantona, Beckham, and Ronaldo play with ManU but I’m just as happy with what they are accomplishing at the moment with the player they have today.

    1. nothing to do with man city ,u have compulsive man city disorder like most other munichs…who’s obsessed with who again….doh

  5. I think the most valid point is the idea that “if United are so poor, where does that leave the rest of the Prem?” In my biased opinion, I think that the answer to that question is that there is some real parity in the league this season. Look at the bottom half of the table. From top to bottom, any team has the ability to beat any other team without needing a massive stroke of luck. You can’t say that about La Liga, where it’s a two-horse league.

    I agree with one of posters up top that one reason United does not have the media fawning over them this season is that their away form is inconsistent at best and dropping points at the death to Everton and Fulham in the early stages while Chelsea were rolling teams didn’t help either.

    I’m all for the City-bashing as well, but realistically that team hasn’t had the same amount time gel that United has. However, that’s not City’s biggest problem. Its biggest problem is finding that patience to allow the team to generate chemistry. Then, they will consistently challenge for the league.

  6. To the pundits, not having a high profile(primadonna) player constitutes for a weak team. This united is solid in all areas with their starting 11. Valencia coming back further strengthen the squad–Notice how Rooney has started scoring goals again once he came back? With Nani and Valencia on both wings, United some of the best wing play in Europe.
    Evra and Rafael are two of the best right backs in the world. Ferdinand and Vidic are two of the best CBs in the world too.
    Rooney might not have the flair of a Ronaldo or Messi but IMO he is World Class. His technical understanding of the game is up there and he got good work-rate.
    Van Der Saar is one of the best keepers in the world.

    So i dont see how this United team can be weaker than past UTD teams.

  7. I support Chelsea, so let’s get that out of the way.

    Man U deserves all the credit in the world for their success over recent years. Ever since the Jose years the EPL has been a two horse race. My personal opinion is that on paper Chelsea have been the better side since we won in 2005. Of course both sides can blame there failures on injuries, but at the end of the day it comes down to coaching. SFA is the great difference maker. He always seems to adapt to injuries, suspensions, or any other obstacle in front of him.

    On paper Man U might be the 5th best team in Europe, but they always finish on top or close to it. They are a worthy opponent and I hope we beat the hell out of them tomorrow.

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