X

Saturday 25
January

Manchester United

Are United lacking a leader?

23rd August 2019, 13:47

Manchester United have had some big leaders over the years but they appear to be lacking that type of character this season.

Ashley Young was named as club captain of the Red Devils ahead of the 2019-20 campaign following the departure of Antonio Valencia over the summer.

David de Gea has worn the armband in the opening two games of the season but it’s often claimed that goalkeepers aren’t well suited to that role.

Of course, the captain shouldn’t be the only leader on the pitch and others are expected to chip in when times get tough.

But United, who have been able to call on the likes of Roy Keane, Nemanja Vidic, Gary Neville and Steve Bruce in years gone by, don’t seem to have too many ‘big characters’ ready to step up to the plate.

That quartet had a never-say-die attitude and would back their teammates every step of the way through tough times.

 

United have lacked personalities of that ilk over the past few seasons and it could be suggested they are even lacking a real leader in the dugout.

In the days of Sir Alex Ferguson, United players knew they had to fall into rank otherwise they would be moved on at the earliest possible opportunity.

However, more recently the players have wrestled control of the club and David Moyes, Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho have all come and gone.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer appeared to garner the respect of his squad when he initially took over due to his previous exploits with the club.

The Norwegian seemed to have cracked it when he led the Red Devils to a run of 11 games unbeaten across all competitions.

Inevitably, that streak came to an end and Solskjaer found himself in a familiar-looking position as he was unable to galvanise his highly-paid stars.

It’s when the chips are down that you get a better indication of a real leader and Solsjkaer failed to address their problems as United went on to finish sixth.

He has assembled a young squad for 2019-20, taking a leaf out of Ferguson’s book, but that comes with it’s own problems and needs a strong man at the helm.

Solskjaer’s latest comments, which came after Paul Pogba assumed penalty responsibilities from Marcus Rashford against Wolves, suggest he is happy for the players to take control.

He said: “We’re practising [penalties] still and Marcus and Paul are still on them.”

That decision proved costly as Pogba failed to convert and United had to settle for a 1-1 draw at Molineux on Monday.

It’s unlikely Ferguson would have allowed such an incident to take place and you would expect Solskjaer to be more assertive.

United will need players to show grit and determination if they are to force their way back into the top four and someone is going to need to motivate them.

At present, that candidate has yet to present themselves and we are only likely to see them come to the fore when the wheels come off.

The post Are United lacking a leader? appeared first on ClubCall.com.

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

More Manchester United

Manchester United

Rashford to see specialist to boost injury return bid

24th January 2020, 14:31

Marcus Rashford will reportedly see a specialist early next week to determine whether his back injury requires further examination.

Manchester United

Tranmere Rovers v Manchester United Team News

24th January 2020, 11:26

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could shake things up with his selection when his side travel to Tranmere in the fourth round of the FA Cup.

Manchester United

Despite his obvious faults, Solskjaer is not the man to blame

23rd January 2020, 18:37

Manchester United fans pointing the finger at Ole Gunnar Solskjaer are missing the point - their problems lie much deeper.

Manchester United

United mulling over Henderson future plans

23rd January 2020, 12:32

Manchester United will take their time before considering whether to send goalkeeper Dean Henderson out on loan again next season.

Manchester United

Wolves v Liverpool Team News

23rd January 2020, 12:00

Wolves will be looking to derail Liverpool's relentless march towards the Premier League title when the two teams meet at Molineux on Thursday.

Manchester United

Solskjaer understands United fans’ frustration after Burnley debacle

23rd January 2020, 08:54

Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer feels Manchester United supporters had every right to feel "disillusioned" after their 2-0 defeat at the hands of Burnley.

Recent Sport Headlines

Horse Racing

2020 Cheltenham Gold Cup: Delta Work the ante post value

24th January 2020, 22:15

This year's Cheltenham Gold Cup renewal has a wide-open look to it and, at the current odds, Delta Work looks the ante post value.

Horse Racing

Can the Cheltenham Festival Expand to Five Days?

24th January 2020, 22:15

A debate has been raging within racing of late after Cheltenham Racecourse supremo Martin St Quinton refused to rule out the Festival extending to five days.

Real Sociedad

Roma set sights on Sociedad schemer Januzaj

24th January 2020, 19:39

Roma are reportedly planning a January move for Real Sociedad winger Adnan Januzaj.

Leicester City

Centre-back candidates as Rodgers eyes Leicester addition

24th January 2020, 19:25

With Brendan Rodgers confirming Leicester City are looking into signing a new centre-back, which players could be in the Northern Irishman's sights?

Rugby League

Saints coach sets sights on title defence

24th January 2020, 18:55

New coach Kristian Woolf hopes his St Helens side can defend their Grand Final title ahead of the new Super League season.

Tennis

Osaka keen to discover 'champion mentality' after Melbourne exit

24th January 2020, 18:30

Naomi Osaka says she needs to develop a "champion mentality" after her Australian Open defence was ended by Coco Gauff.

Rugby Union

Nienaber is Springboks' new head coach

24th January 2020, 17:36

Jacques Nienaber says it's "business as usual" after he was confirmed as world champions South Africa's new head coach.

Liverpool

FA Cup offers these fringe men a chance to impress

24th January 2020, 17:33

The FA Cup takes centre stage this weekend and there will be a few players looking to impress for various Premier League clubs.