Manchester United has been able to overcome their issues for a few weeks. Ole’s side has become a formidable attack-minded squad. We saw a bit of their attacking prowess on Tuesday’s UCL clash.
One of the main parts of United’s attacking play was their midfield lineup. Ole was clever to line Bruno Fernandes, Fred, and Van de Beek to form an attack favoring midfield. With United triumphing in possession it was the best possible lineup Ole Gunnar could choose.
The results were also in favor of United as they beat Istanbul Basaksehir (4-1). But this midfield lineup can’t always be the best option for Manchester United. While facing clubs that keep the ball on the roll, this lineup may open gaps breaking the defense.
If United were to face clubs like Liverpool, Manchester City, or any dominant club. This attack-oriented midfield will become a boon instead of a bane. But United has multiple alternative lineups in hand for their midfield.
Bruno and Fred are key for United midfield
Though there are multiple options for Ole to line his midfield. Bruno Fernandes and Fred always makes the cut to the manager’s final lineup. The third man varies according to the club United are facing.
For instance, Van de Beek was the best option to support Fred giving more space for Bruno on Tuesday. But Matic or McTominay will be the better option playing against a more powerhouse club. Van de Beek does feel that he is comfortable to play in any position Ole wants him to, via Goal
But Donny will not be the best option when it comes to supporting the defense. United’s backline seems to be facing a tough time when it comes to 1-v-1 situations. As Donny lacks the defensive upper-hand, United will be on the weak-foot.
Whereas Matic or McTominay is solid when it comes to supporting the defense. The two are more like a center-back when the defense is tight. And also they make runs to the front, making a balance between the backline and frontline.
Pogba may be out of favor
Paul Pogba has failed to make a genuine impact so far in this season. United supporters were hoping to see Pogba and Bruno make a partnership in the midfield. But contrary to their hopes, Pogba’s days at Old Trafford seem to be nearing an end.
With the Frenchman’s contract expiring in 2022, he may leave United soon. There are interests from various European clubs and it seems like Pogba is also favoring a move.
But if Pogba was at his best now, a combo between Bruno and him might’ve been a terrific thing. United would possess a strong attack-oriented midfield had the partnership worked.
Ole Gunnar is keen to keep things smooth at United. Hence, he will try to keep the form up as it is now. They were able to secure a win in their last three games. Keeping this up is vital for the manager and the club.