Lacking the decisive second goal

Barring the opening day win over Chelsea, MUFC have failed to score more than 1 goal in 4 of the 5 matches played in the English Premier League. One of the familiar problems still haunting the club more than 6 years after Sir Alex Ferguson left. Scott McTominay has earned the right to be the mainstay ahead of Matic, while his partners in the engine room have constantly changed. Paul Pogba when fit is the first pick. The 3rd slot has been up for grabs and Fred against Leicester when he came on as a substitute might have done enough to keep it in the short term. Fred missed majority of the pre-season to be considered for the first team selection. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer retaining the Brazilian speaks about the faith in which he is held by the coaching staff. Unless McTominay-Pogba-Fred tick Ole will have to re-consider his preferred 4-3-3 formation with the players he has at his disposal.

Andreas Pereira hit a good free kick and got into good positions but his final touch lacked composure. Consistent run of games might help Pereira to sort it out. Juan Mata by his own standards was disappointing and the removal of Nemanja Matic lifted the handle on the brakes to attack. Fans have been screaming for Angel Gomes to be involved in the first team following his great form with the reserves. The Europa Cup mid-week game against Astana and League Cup against Rochdale later this month provides Ole with the opportunity. Ole will have to manage the young Daniel James and not wear him out. Right of the front three is a concern as Martial, Rashford and James having a preference for the left.

Injury to Pogba and Martial the defense stood out to sustain the early one goal lead into a victory. De Gea made a fantastic save and MUFC have the 2nd clean sheet at home already this season which equals the tally for whole of last season. Those two clean sheets last season were in a draw while the ones this time around are in victories! That's another turnaround.

James Maddison linked with a possible move in footsteps of Harry Maguire had a decent game. His shot saved by David De Gea after he got the better of Victor Lindelof. How he handles the limelight of being linked with MUFC and drafted into the England team setup will be crucial. Bruno Fernandes might come into reckoning finally as continues to impress with excellent stats in the new season if he holds the ball better and improves his pass percentage. Playing well for Portugal against top sides might decide his fate, esp that win against Netherlands to lift the inaugural Nations League in June. Portugal face leaders Ukraine in the next round of qualifiers for Euro 2020. If MUFC do sign a player in January it might be either and not both. With Wolves struggling this season there might be an possibility to tempt Ruben Neves, while Aston Villa might only agree to sell John McGinn if he stays on for rest of this season at Villa Park. Very early for January transfer speculation.

After Leicester City its the turn of another challenger for top 6 in West Ham who under Manuel Pellegrini have transformed the team with shrewd transfers. Almost a year ago at the London Stadium witnessed the unraveling of Jose Mourinho reign with a horrific 1-3 loss. That team was in complete disarray while for Ole this game against Leicester brought the best 'team performance'. MUFC are yet to win on the road this season and West Ham will offer a stiff challenge with Issa Diop for whom a bid was made will try to justify his undoubted talent, Manuel Lanzini is revitalized after injury and Sebastien Haller has had a great start after his move from Eintracht Frankfurt.

Incidentally its the U23 teams of Manchester United and West Ham who are vying for the top spot in the Professional Development League standings.

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