With the recent news of Ighalo extending his loan and Pogba coming back from injury, Ole’s selection woes have just increased.
Having sold off Lukaku and not finding a replacement for the Belgian, Ole had to stick with using Martial or Rashford up front. While United started off the first match of the season strong, there were many games where we wavered. The lack of a central striking figure who we could consistently depend on was telling.
Even though Lukaku had departed, Rashford and Martial seemed to have taken the mantle of getting the goals in. Rashford especially has been having a sensational year. In the previous season he scored 10 goals. This disrupted season has seen him net 14 times before he suffered from a back injury.
Rashford was having the season of his life before injury halted his season.
As luck would have it, Greenwood would become the young wonder who played well beyond his years. As Sir Matt Busby put it: “If you are good enough, you are old enough.” But having to rely on youth this season just showed United would need to enter the transfer market in order to challenge for the Top Four.
Having signed Bruno Fernandes in January, who hit the ground running, United got a much-needed uplift. With Bruno coming in so late in the transfer window, many thought that would be the only signing we would get. Remarkably enough United managed to secure the services of Odion Ighalo on deadline day. It was a surprise for many of the United faithful. Many suspected whether or not he was a caliber United required and rival fans had quipped on how we signed a player who was playing in the Chinese league. Thankfully, he has managed to win over the fans and silence the critics so far. But this has added to a selection conundrum for Ole.
Up front Ole has had the option to choose from a variety of players. This includes the likes of Rashford, Greenwood, Martial, Mata and Daniel James. In the middle of the park he has had to work with Fred, Matic, McTominay, Lingard and Pereira. Now that Pogba has recovered from his injury and the recent additions of both Bruno and Ighalo, it will be interesting to see how Ole is able to play the best formation with the players he has going forward.
Everyone is salivating at the opportunity to see what a midfield consisting of both Pogba and Bruno will look like. But with all these players, who will be selected and who will be dropped? Daniel James brings in pace and could link well with Ighalo who always plays off the last defender. Matic performing at his best is our best defensive midfielder, which could free up Bruno or Pogba to move up and cause havoc with their creative attributes. Fred has shown the talent we bought him for and with him in the system our plays flow much more smoothly than when he is out. McTominay seems undroppable. Greenwood can’t stop scoring. It is quite a conundrum that Ole is faced with.
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Hopefully Ole can figure out the best formation going forward, in order to turn the selection headache into smiles for everyone