Report: Man Utd 0 Wolves 0

Manchester United could only muster a 0-0 draw at Old Trafford on Saturday in their Premier league encounter with Wolves. The day marked the debut of Bruno Fernandes who transfered from Sporting Lisbon. The Portuguese midfielder’s performance was very good. It will take time for him to get that chemistry with his teammates and get used to the system.

Bruno Fernandes looked comfortable in the game and showed some good touches and accurate passing of the ball. But Wolves’ Diogo Jota was the one that had the early impact on the match gave United’s defense some problems. United had to settle for shooting from long-range, and Harry Maguire and Andreas Pereira were unable to test goalie Rui Patricio.

Fernandes had a shot that swerved wide of the goal, and a few minutes later he cracked a drive that went into the body of Patricio. The newcomer seemed to be up for the challenge and was influential in the second-half as well. He picked up a yellow card, and he later on hit a powerful free-kick that Patricio scrambled across his line to gather.

The Wolves keeper had to make another save from Juan Mata’s shot on the turn that just went wide. After that Fernandes on 67 minutes would smash a stinging drive that saw the keeper push it around the post. David De Gea would make an important save when Raul Jimenez’s piledriver of shot forced the Spanish stopper to push it over the bar.

Mason Greenwood came on as a sub for Andreas, and almost had the winner six minutes into the match when his shot took a double deflection of Willy Boly and Conor Coady. The ball almost deceived Patricio, but he was able to adjust quickly to grab the ball on his line.

Wolves also had their chances. Roman Saiss headed over an opportunity. Wan-Bissaka also made an important challenge to prevent a counter attack. But sub Diogo Dalot with seconds left in added time could have won the game for us. However, his stooping header went wide of the goal.

Preview: Man Utd v Wolves

Manchester United return to Premier League action on Saturday, when we welcome Wolverhampton Wanderers to Old Trafford for the second time in less than a month.Remarkably, it’s our fourth meeting of the season with the Midlands club, following August’s 1-1 draw in the league and two third-round FA Cup clashes in January, where the Reds eventually triumphed thanks to a 1-0 replay win.

The two teams are level on 34 points in the table – along with Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur – though United are ahead in fifth by virtue of a healthier goal difference.

With fourth-placed Chelsea our next opponents, following the winter break, a win here would be a vital boost to our top-four hopes. You can keep up to date with how everything goes through our live match web blog on ManUtd.com and via the Official App, where you can track live data and player statistics in the Match Centre.Here’s all the essential info ahead of our first game of February…

WHICH TV CHANNEL IS IT ON? Saturday afternoon’s final Premier League match will be broadcast live in the UK via Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Ultra HD. You can also keep across all of the action on MUTV. You can watch the match on NBC in the US at 12:30 pm and 17:30 GMT in the UK. Paul Tierney is the referee.

Bruno Fernandes signs with Manchester United

Image: BBC Sport

Manchester United has signed Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes from Sporting Lisbon to a five-and-a-half year contract with an option to extend for a further year.

The 25-year-old Portuguese international has scored 63 goals and 52 assists in 137 appearances for Sporting Lisbon. He has made 19 senior appearances for his country and was part of the successful squad that won the UEFA Nations League in 2019.

Bruno Fernandes said:

“My love of Manchester United really started when I used to watch Cristiano Ronaldo play and ever since then I have been a big fan of this great club.  For me to now play for Manchester United feels incredible, I have worked hard to get to this moment and I can promise the fans that I will give everything for the badge to help bring us more success and trophies.  I want to thank Sporting for everything they have done for me.  It is surreal to hear the nice words that have been said about me from players that used to play for this team.  A massive thank you to Ole and everyone at Manchester United for the trust they have shown in me and I can’t wait to start to repay that on the pitch.”

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said:

“We have been tracking Bruno for many months and everyone here has been tremendously impressed with all his attributes and what he will bring to this team. Most importantly he is a terrific human being with a great personality and his leadership qualities are clear for all to see.  Bruno’s goals and assists stats speak for themselves, he will be a fantastic addition to our team and he will help us push on in the second part of the season. The winter break is coming at a perfect time for us to integrate Bruno into the squad and for him to get to know his team-mates.”

Credit: manutd.com

Report: Manchester City 0 Man Utd 1

Nemanja Matic celebrates scoring the winning goal. Image: Getty Images

Manchester United defeated Manchester City 1-0 in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday, but they failed to qualify for the finals because of City’s 3-2 aggregate advantage. Nemanja Matic was the match winner for United at the Etihad stadium. But he was sent of later after obtaining a second yellow card.

United had to play with 10 ten men for the rest of the contest when Matic was given a red card in the 76th minute. However the Red Devils wasn’t able to add to their goal tally, and it was the men in blue who qualified for the final against Aston Villa in the end.

City dominated the game in the early stages and David De Gea was called upon to make three great saves in the opening 15 minutes from Sergio Aguero and Riyad Mahrez.

The visitors were able to breach City’s defense when against the run of play Matic was the quickest to react to Fred’s free-kick and slammed home a half-volley that eluded goalie Claudio Bravo at the near post.

Raheem Sterling believed that he had equalised before half-time, but his goal was correctly ruled offside. The home side could of gotten a tying goal after the break. But Sterling missed a wonderful opportunity from a counter attack after 59 minutes when he went past De Gea, but he blazed his shot over the bar instead.

David Silva also had a fantastic chance to equalise when he opted not to shoot and passed the ball to Ilkay Gundogan who failed to get his shot away. I was pleased by United’s performance by not only getting a clean sheet and beating City again at the Etihad stadium, but they worked well as team to achieve this result.

There have been many times when United hasn’t played as team this season, and they looked disjointed and there have been times even last season when they looked liked strangers playing together. We can take courage form another win that will boost our morale even though we didn’t get to the final.

At least we are still in the FA Cup and the Europa league. We can possibly win one of them or both. Especially now that we have signed Bruno Fernandes which is a huge signing for us. If we can obtain a decent striker with experience before the transfer window starts then we’ll be in even better shape. All in a sudden things are looking a little brighter for us.

Preview: Manchester City v Man Utd

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is hoping that Nemanja Matic will be fit for Wednesday’s Carabao Cup semi-final second leg against neighbours Manchester City.

United are trailing 3-1 in the tie, and will need to overturn the deficit against a confident City side that outclassed us in the first leg at Old Trafford. The Reds after crushing Tranmere Rovers 6-0 in the FA Cup last Sunday at Prenton Park will be hoping to draw on that inspiration.

“We need everyone but, of course, some of these players have played loads of football,” Ole told MUTV. “Nemanja had to come off, let’s see how he is tomorrow. Anthony [Martial], we could take off at half-time and Harry [Maguire] has played the most football for us, which is okay. City rested their players as well so they’ll be just as fresh.”

“Apart from Nemanja it’s the same squad. Aaron [Wan-Bissaka] will be back in the squad that’s been travelling lately. They’ve done fantastic. We have two more games [this week] so let’s give what we have, then we have a little break.”

“Nemanja felt something and to make sure we give him the best possible chance for tomorrow night we took him off [at Tranmere]. I think he should be all right let’s see today in training.”

De Gea may get the nod to keep in goal, despite Sergio Romero’s fine form as his deputy in cup competitions, as the manager decides the best route to upsetting City on their home turf again.

There will be no Paul Pogba, Scott McTominay or Marcus Rashford, of course, but Eric Bailly has been fit enough to make the bench against Liverpool and Tranmere. He could be an option, particularly if Ole opts to field three central defenders in the derby.

City Team News

Pep Guardiola has a number of options available, with only Leroy Sane on the sidelines, although Aymeric Laporte is being treated carefully after his comeback from injury.

Claudio Bravo looks set to start in goal ahead of Ederson, while Kevin de Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero were all rested for the facile home Emirates FA Cup victory over 10-man Fulham at the weekend.

Guardiola later revealed Riyad Mahrez and Joao Cancelo picked up knocks during the game against the Cottagers, and may need fitness tests.

The match will be broadcasted on Sky Sports Football, Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Ultra HD at 19:45 GMT in the UK. MUTV will also telecast the match. The game will be shown on ESPN+ online in the US at 2:45 pm. The referee will be Andre Marriner.

Manchester United should make the sacrifice and sign Fernandes

Manchester United are in dire need of bringing in a midfielder and a striker this month. However we have yet to sign anyone in this January transfer window. The case of Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes is a situation where United should of reached a deal with Sporting Lisbon by now. I know that Sporting is trying to take advantage of the situation as far as increasing the base fee plus add-ons so that they can make more money for themselves for this deal. I don’t have a problem with a club taking a strong stance on how much they’ll pay another club for a player.

But in United’s case they have allowed this situation to drag on for too long. We know that Sporting is going to get as much as possible out of the deal financially as they can. Their debt issues are well-known so they’re going to get as much money as possible for their best player so that they can help them to pay off their debt. Allegedly Sporting and United are £10 million apart in their valuation of the player.

However, both sides aren’t budging when it comes to the transfer fee. United is the richest club in the world. So why not pay the transfer fee which would be a little over £56 million? United is only willing bid £46.4 million. So let’s see if Sporting accepts this new bid. Sometimes teams have to over pay for players because they’re in a difficult situation and the buying club needs that player badly. That may sound desperate, but time is running on Man Utd, and Fernandes is a wonderful player we can’t give up on signing. He is a player that can make a huge difference for the club.

Many clubs like Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus and Bayern Bunich have overpayed at some point and reaped the benefits of winning titles in their countries. So if on a few occasions we have to overpay for a player, what’s the big deal? Yes I know that it makes us less financially stable. But we can’t always get exactly what we want.

We should make the sacrifice or compromise more to get the deal done. Bruno would be a huge asset to us if we were able to sign him in this transfer window. So Ed Woodward and United should do all they can to make this deal happen. If not we wouldn’t finish in the top four this season, and may not qualify for Europe if we don’t win the Europa league this year.

Now that will be a big financial blow for the club. It will also further damage their reputation. It’s time to get this deal done.

Report: Tranmere 0 Man Utd 6

Harry Maguire celebrates scoring his first goal for United. Image: The Evening Standard

Manchester United won their FA Cup game today with a 6-0 drubbing of Tranmere Rovers at Prenton Park, and qualified for the round of 16. Harry Maguire also scored his first goal for Manchester United in spectacular fashion.

Anthony Martial, Diogo Dalot, Jesse Lingard, Phil Jones and Mason Greenwood all scored. Maguire opened the scoring in the 10th minute with a long range effort that deflected off Peter Clarke and went into the top corner.

Diogo Dalot got on the scoresheet when he ran past two defenders and executed a great finish three minutes later with some good footwork. Then it was Lingard’s turn when he curled a wonderful shot past goalie Scott Davieson in the 16th minute. With United up 3-0, the visitors kept the pressure on the home side.

A few minutes before the break, Jones grabbed the fourth goal with a header. After that, Martial got in on the act when his drive deflected in off Kieron Morris. At the 56th minute mark, goalie Scott Davies fouled Tahith Chong in the box and Greenwood coolly stepped up to convert the penalty.

It was a very good professional performance that we don’t always see from United. So we can say that we are expected to defeat a lower league side. But this could have been a potential banana skin for us. Tranmere could have upset us and put us out of the competition. But we played well together as a team and got a convincing win.

Although professional footballers are supposed to adapt to the conditions of different pitches. I thought that we looked comfortable on a pitch that had these big patches of dirt between the grass, which makes the playing surface uneven. I thought that maybe this would disrupt our passing game, but our players looked just fine out there.

I hope that we can move forward and use this win as a fuel for confidence even though we were expected to win against a team that are below our talent level.

FA Cup Preview: Tranmere v Man Utd

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could make changes to his team for their FA Cup trip to Tranmere Rovers this Sunday. Victor Lindelof was ill and missed a 2-0 home loss to Burnley on Wednesday, joining Marcus Rojo, Axel Tuanzebe, Scott McTominay, Paul Pogba and top scorer Marcus Rashford on the sidelines.

However the Swede is set to return at Prenton Park.

“Victor will be available again,” Ole told MUTV. “He’s recovered so it’s one more to choose from. That’s good and I don’t think anyone suffered any bad injuries, no, in midweek.”

Tuanzebe is still definitely unavailable, although he is not too far away from getting back out on the pitch.

“Axel will be back after the midseason break, training with us,” added the boss. “He’s had a difficult spell as well because it’s taken so much longer than we thought. We had to make sure he is fine when he gets back.”

“It’s three more games to go until we get a break. We’re still only on the second day after the last game so it’s still a bit of a recovery day. We’ll prepare for Sunday and we just have to stay together, stick together and use the last bit of energy before we get a little bit of a break.”

Tranmere’s manager Micky Mellon gave his take on what the tie means to his club.

“I don’t think it’s an opportunity [for us to go through] because of the form United are in, “explained Mellon. “I know they have a threat. We have to make sure we are ready. We will give it everything we have got. There is no doubt we will be up against a good side.”

Manchester United travel to Prenton Park on Sunday and the match will kick-off at 10 am ET in the US on ESPN+ and at 15:00 GMT in the UK. In the UK it will be televised on BT Sport 1 and BT Sport Ultimate. You can also see it on MUTV. Lee Mason will be the referee.

Credit: manutd.com

Solskjaer is clueless about how to solve the team's issues

As Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looked on from the sidelines during the 2-0 embarrassing loss to Burnley yesterday he had a look of despair. The Norwegian seems to be clueless on how to fix the many problems that has repeatedly occurred over the course of the season. Now that there has been injuries to key players like Marcus Rashford, Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba it has just made those issues worse.

Solskjaer doesn’t seem to know how to motivate or inspire his players to win games especially when they encounter adversity. When we were behind 1-0 to Burnley late in the first half Ole should have made the right adjustments in order for United get the equalizing goal and then go on to get a second.

Although we dominated possession and created more chances than the opposition we still couldn’t score. In the second half we still had more of the possession and didn’t take our chances which our strikers or attacking midfielders didn’t capitalize on.

But our style of play or tactics changed little. Ole didn’t change his formation of 4-2-3-1 from the first half, nor did he bring on a player at half-time or very early in the second half. He could of told his midfielders to use some diagonal balls over the top of Burnley’s defense.

Whatever changes he might of made I didn’t see it. Maybe if he made subtle changes to the team’s set up they weren’t recognizable. It seems to me whenever the coach of the opposing team comes up with different or new tactics he doesn’t seem to know how to counteract that. Sometimes something like speeding up the overall play of the team or more movement on and off the ball are all simple tactics that can make a difference.

Even basic things like that can help you win a game. On the other hand the players were wasteful in front of goal. They also didn’t show effort, desire and determination to win the game with the exception of a few players like Aaron Wan-Bissaka who played well. If on a consistent basis as a coach you can’t provide methods or tactics on how to get them back into a game and help them win it then that’s not good coaching.

I believe Ole would eventually get fired. Whether it’s over the next few weeks or later on or at the end of the season, I think it’s just a matter of time. He is clearly out of his depth and had no previous experience as a senior manager in top flight football in Europe. Making the same mistakes like using the same 4-3-2-1 formation in each game also shows that he isn’t learning fast enough.

Other managers have seen our play as predictable, and they’re taking advantage of that. It’s time that the club hires an experienced manager that has much better pedigree that can coach this team. Someone like Mauricio Pochettino will do just fine for Manchester United fans.

Report: Man Utd 0 Burnley 2

Man Utd players react in disappointment after conceding a goal. Image: ESPN UK

Manchester United fell 2-0 at Old Trafford to Burnley on Wednesday, and this was the second consecutive defeat for the Red Devils.

United lost 2-0 against Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday and this was just another embarrassing display for Manchester United. Chris Wood and Jay Rodriguez were the scorers in each half for the visitors. United are still six points behind Chelsea and are in 5th place.

United had the best chances in the match especially in the first-half, but Anthony Martial and Juan Mata missed opportunities from two Aaron Wan-Bissaka crosses. Burnley would open the scoring in the 39th minute when Ben Mee flicked on Ashley Westwood’s free kick for Chris Wood to score.

In the second-half, Burnley scored a second in the 56th minute when Jay Rodriguez produced an amazing goal with the ball going into the top corner. There was a late goal that was ruled out against Luke Shaw.

This club has fallen very far down the abyss ever since Sir Alex left it in 2013. The owners of the club the Glazers and Ed Woodward has made things worse at the club.

With Solskjaer not having any top flight experience coupled with long-term injuries to key players has made an already serious problem even much worse.