Either Manchester United are back or they're really setting us up for a massive joke. Even in the best of times, you cannot expect to go play the kind of pre season fixtures United have had and come out with a flawless record. Compared to what we've been served for the last 12 months, watching United ahead of the up coming season has been incredibly unbelievable.
After making light work of tests against LA Galaxy, AS Roma and Inter Milan, we wondered if Real Madrid would be the side to expose United's new system. Besides the fact that they have a good chunk of quality players, they are a well coached team under Ancellotti who ranks equal to Louis van Gaal in terms of achievements if not experience. However, by the time United were through with the European champions, Ancellotti had sent on the world's best player, a certain former red, in a bid to salvage the situation even after ruling him out of the match due to fitness concerns.
Not that it mattered though, as United claimed a third goal even after the introduction of Ronaldo.
Before all that though, Ashley Young managed to get the attention of the anti-dopping authorities by putting on another blinder of a performance. They will require a urine sample soon.
In light of the performances of some of the would be fringe players, you understand Louis van Gaal's reluctance in the transfer market. This is a manager who trusts a system more than individual players. It's the product of the sum of the parts that counts for him. It doesn't bother him that its Ashley Young on left wing back producing the goods as opposed to Luke Shaw. Such is the reality we shall soon have to come to terms with because in the new system, Ashley Young is playing himself to a song on the terraces.
Again though, it wasn't about the brilliance of one player as the entire team was once again at the races. It's notable that we are yet to concede a goal in the penalty box from open play, something those worried about our 3 man defence should consider. I've already blogged that in a 3-5-2 formation, you defend 5 because of the added presence of wing backs or cover from the holding midfielders. It's the beauty of the system, you alwaya out number your opponent in just about every area of the pitch. Again, not that it's flawless, as we shall soon find out, but when executed perfectly, it will win you more games than cost you.
In the main though, it was impressive seeing this United team outclass a side of Madrid's quality. We shall find out how ready we are for the season when we play the vermin on Monday, but from the evidence so far, we're more ready for this season than we were for the last. LVG wants more time to train the players but he will get that in between league matches since we thankfully failed to make the Europa league.
Till then, cheers!