United v Liverpool: Van Gaal looks to the summit

Manchester United v Liverpool

There was, in truth, rare occasion over the past two decades that this fixture meant as much in competitive terms as it does to the state of local rivalry. While the passion has always burned bright for supporters, only twice during Sir Alex Ferguson’s Old Trafford tenure did Liverpool challenge for the Premier League title. Then, […]

Southampton v United: Reds aim for third

Southampton v Manchester United, St Mary's, 8 December 2014

It is an uncommon narrative this season, but this is a Manchester United side very much on the up. Just shy of half way through the campaign, United’s recent good form – fours wins in four – will elevate Louis van Gaal’s side to third in the Premier League should the Reds complete a fifth at Southampton on […]

United’s new midfield hope

Manchester United v Hull City

The debate continues: which midfielder was Manchester United’s Man of the Match against Hull City on Saturday? In United’s most comprehensive victory under Louis van Gaal it was the quartet of Michael Carrick, Juan Mata, Marouanne Fellaini and, especially, Ander Herrera that impressed most at Old Trafford. Indeed, far from the common observation of recent […]

United v Hull: Van Persie under pressure

Manchester United v Hull City, Old Trafford, Premier League, 29 November 2014

There is something odd going on at Manchester United. Not the renewed sense of confidence following victory over Arsenal last week. Nor even United’s position in the Premier League’s top four. The most curious narrative this weekend is, surely, United’s improved injury situation. After months with little to offer aside from bad news, manager Louis […]

Arsenal v United: Reds face resurgent Welbeck

Arsenal v Manchester United, Premier League, Emirates, 22 November 2014

“If it wasn’t for bad luck,” penned Stax singer William Bell, “I wouldn’t have no luck at all.” It is, surely, a sentiment that resonates with Louis van Gaal. His squad has been decimated by injuries for much of the season, and yet the recent international break has brought little but further cause for concern. […]

United v City, the best of

Wayne Rooney v Manchester City

It has been too long since Manchester United started a local derby, if not favourites, then in better morale than the crosstown neighbours City. Indeed, for much of the 122 year history of this game it has been United and not the Blues that has been the preeminent force. Thanks to seemingly unlimited riches City […]

City v United: Rooney returns

Manchester City v Manchester United, Etihad, 2 November 2014

How did the narrative get so turned around? The derby has not often been pleasant viewing for Manchester United supporters in recent seasons, with City not only racking up some embarrassingly weighty victories, but securing two Premier League titles in the past three years. Yet, it is not obvious that the Blues enter the Sunday […]