Winger Ashley Young has claimed that winning the FA Cup – their first trophy since 2013 – feels like winning the Premier League itself.
However, the 2015-16 season is certainly one of the poorest in Man United’s history given that the club have not only failed to compete for the league title but they also finished outside the top four. As a result, they will be without Champions League football for a second time in three seasons. On the first instance, David Moyes was culpable of producing inconsistent results that led to one of the worst seasons in the club’s history.
Even though the FA Cup has been added to the trophy cabinet, Louis van Gaal is widely expected to leave the club in the next few days. He will be paid up for the remainder of his 12 months on his contract. Van Gaal is widely expected to be replaced by José Mourinho, who is available after having left Chelsea a few months ago. Young, though, is enjoying the present moment since he feels that winning the FA Cup is a great achievement for the club. United have been one of the most successful clubs as far as the FA Cup is concerned. This trophy, however, is the first that they have lifted since the days of Sir Alex Ferguson.
“This is up there with winning the league. You join a club like United to win these kinds of competitions and, when you do, it’s a great feeling and hopefully we can relive it again and again.When you win a trophy, it gives you belief that you can win more. We’ll enjoy this now and reconvene next season and come back tougher and stronger. That was down to that character and spirit we’ve always had. Everyone wants to fight for each other,” said Young.
Despite spending vast sums of money on new players, Manchester United fans were left shocked when manager Louis van Gaal elected to use winger Ashley Young as the striker in the club’s 3-0 defeat against Tottenham.
For much of the game, it looked like the team more to come away with a valuable point from their fixture at White Hart Lane. It was extremely important that the team picked up as many points as possible in order to remain in the top four race. Manchester City have not been looking likely to drop points after rediscovering their form in recent weeks.
Arsenal are the only hope for United to reclaim a top four place. The gunners have been slipping down the table consistently since the turn of the year. In order to take any advantage of a slipup, United have to be at their best. Unfortunately, this was not the case at White Hart Lane. United suffered a 3-0 loss with all goals coming in the space of 10 minutes. Van Gaal elected to replace striker Marcus Rashford with Ashley Young at half-time. This was seen as a move to play Anthony Martial upfront, but the Frenchman continued to remain on the wings. Instead, Young took the place of Rashford and played as a striker.
“I want more running in behind because in the first half we didn’t have an attacking point.I have said to the boys that until the first goal we played a very good away match with possibilities to score.Within five minutes the game is over with the second and third goals and that cannot happen. I know that, but OK that has happened and we have to cope with that,” said Van Gaal when his decision to use winger as a striker was questioned in the post-match press conference.
Arsene Wenger himself has stated that Barcelona are 95% through into the next round of the Champions League especially after the Spanish club claimed a 2-0 triumph over Arsenal in the first leg.
Arsenal now has the task of defeating Barcelona in Camp Nou with a deficit of 2 goals which is an incredibly difficult thing to do, not impossible but very hard.
Even with this recent defeat of Arsenal, they have been going through a superb season as the Premier League club is positioned in the top spots of the English club and have a realistic chance of becoming the new champions of England and this path is the easier one to fulfill.
Former star of Manchester United, Rio Ferdinand voiced his thoughts about what Arsenal should do and the retired player believes that Arsene Wenger should allocate all of his resources in pushing for the Premier League and leave everything else behind.
“Barcelona are capable of beating any team on the planet on any given day so you can’t really judge them on that. The Premier League this year has been so inconsistent, especially from the top teams like Chelsea, Man City and Manchester United. You’d say this is the year that Arsenal should go on and win it and if they don’t then I’m sure questions will be asked of Arsene Wenger.” Rio Ferdinand said.
The Premier League has always been the main objective of Arsene Wenger and now it’s his chance to do finally fulfill it.
Despite having lost against Barcelona, the performance that Arsenal displayed was something memorable and impressive as the Premier League club managed to hold their ground against a team that is widely considered to be the best in the history of the sport and they still were able to not only keep the scoreboard goal-less during the entirety of the first half but Arsenal also had a number of occasions where they could’ve score and taken the lead.
This is the kind of performance that Arsenal has to make for the remainder of the season and Arsene Wenger cant allow this defeat to plague the squad with negativity as their best chance to finally win the Premier League is within their grasp.
AFC Bournemouth is an English club that for the first time in their history is competing in the Premier League and so far has maintained themselves slightly above the relegation zone. Bournemouth isn’t so well known compared to other clubs but they have recently been in the spotlight of the media after claiming successive triumphs over Chelsea and Manchester United.
One of the main reasons of why Louis van Gaal has been receiving so much criticism lately is due to this loss that they suffered when playing against AFC Bournemouth and there also was a number of events which occurred in the match that has baffled the supporters of Manchester United as well as Ashley Young.
In this match, Louis van Gaal used up all of his 3 substitutions but the decisions he made in relation to these substitutions is what has surprised many people.
The first substitution of Manchester United was made in the 31st minute when Jesse Lingard had to be removed from the pitch after receiving a hit and he was replaced by the youngster Pereira.
The 2nd change occurred in the 2nd half when the 21 year old Nick Powell entered the playing grounds in place of MarouaneFellaini. The final swap arrived in the 90th minute when Phil Jones replaced Patrick McNair.
Why was Ashley Young left on the sidelines and left unused while these other youngsters were given playing time? That’s the question that the supporters of Manchester United and Ashley Young himself want to have responded.
Ashley Young has been praised throughout this entire season and in this match that Manchester United eventually lost he was simply left in the sidelines.
The 30 year old player was also left on the bench during Manchester United’s draw against Leicester City and West Ham United.
Louis van Gaal has confirmed that struggling striker Wayne Rooney will be available for the game against Southampton.
The forward has not scored a league goal this season and he will be hoping to end the wait against Southampton, who have not been as convincing defensively as they were last season. He has done exceedingly well for the England national team and recently became the record goal scorer for England with his goals in the recent Euro 2016 qualification matches. He has also found the back of the net in the Champions League games.
However, the manager will especially want the player to perform well in the domestic competitions. Winning back the league title is one of the important priorities for United and they need a player like Rooney to be firing on all cylinders. The pressure on the England international has been lifted somewhat by the arrival of Anthony Martial, who has already opened his league record by scoring against archrivals Liverpool. Van Gaal also revealed that defender Phil Jones should be back in action sooner rather than later. The former Blackburn Rovers defender has been struggling with thrombosis. The 23-year-old has been able to make no appearances for United in this campaign.
“Shaw’s injury is a big loss but Rooney is fit to play against Southampton and Jones has trained with the group.I called Luke Shaw last night. He sounds very strong, which is amazing for me – a good signal. His family is there… He shall come back tomorrow and there will be a long period of rehabilitation.It’s a big loss for the team, I already said it shall be the season of Luke Shaw, now it’s nearly finished. We built up a strong partnership with him and Memphis which is disappointing,” said Van Gaal.
Winger Ashley Young has experienced a complete turnaround in fortunes over the last 12 months.
After David Moyes’ appointment, his United career appeared to have stalled completely and this even threatened to take him out of the spotlight in the international scene too. The faith shown by Louis Van Gaal in the second half of last season meant that Young has been able to recapture his form. He has now gone from being a backup left wingback to being restored in his normal position of a left winger. The improvement shown by the player has seen himself being rewarded with a new contract.
United have extended the contract of the 30-year-old by another three years with the option of an additional year as well. This would effectively see the best years of Young being spent at Old Trafford. The player effectively managed to overcome the threat of Angel di Maria, who was the club’s record signing at £ 60 million. Even though there are suggestions that United may make a late move for Barcelona superstar Neymar, these transfer rumours are unlikely to materialise given that the Catalan club will not be in a mood to sell the Brazilian international.
Prior to signing a new contract, Young was subjected to transfer rumours linking him with Tottenham. “I’m delighted to have signed a new contract.The spirit and motivation amongst this team is very high and we are all determined to make this a season to remember. All I have ever wanted to do is play football and to be able to continue to do that at the biggest club in the world means everything to me and my family. Delighted to extend my stay with this amazing club,” said Young.“We are delighted that Ashley has signed a new contract,” said United.
England boss Roy Hodgson has revealed that injury was the main reason behind Ashley Young not being involved in the squad for the Euro 2016 qualifiers against Slovenia.
It was rather surprising to see the Manchester United winger left out of the squad when Hodgson announced it a few weeks ago. After all, the 29-year-old had been in impressive form in the last six months of the campaign. At the start, manager Louis van Gaal was utilising the former Aston Villa man as a wing back. The discipline shown by Young in this position was rather surprising.
His renaissance comes at a time when his United career almost looked like being over after the club brought in Angel de Maria in the summer for £ 60 million. However, it turned out to be the death kneel for Nani and notYoung. Towards the end of the campaign,Young developed a spectacular partnership with the likes of Marouane Fellaini and Wayne Rooney to produce devastating performances. His best game in a United career came in the 4-2 win over Manchester City when two assists and a goal set up this victory. However, Hodgson says that the winger is no longer in top condition and that it was advisable to leave him out of the squad.
“We made soundings with the United medical department with regards to Ashley and they led us to believe there was a slight issue with him which does need to get cleared up over the summer.So on this occasion we decided it was probably not the right moment to ask him to come back.I certainly have not called time on his [England] career as far as I know, so we will see how it goes in the future. And I congratulate him on the latter part of the season with Manchester United, where he has played very well,” said Hodgson.
Manchester United are hitting form at just the right time in the season according to winger Ashley Young, who has been an integral part of this revival at Old Trafford.
United have managed to win the last five league matches and this has propelled them into a position from where they can even think about the Premier League title with almost 10 games remaining. Chelsea continue to remain as the favourites for the trophy, butUnited are becoming an ever-increasing threat along with Arsenal.Young appeared to be on the fringes of a United exit in the summer, but the experienced campaigner has become an integral part of the team.
Initially, he was used as the left wingback in place of Luke Shaw. Now, he is being used in his usual position of a left winger. He has formed an impeccable partnership with Marouane Fellaini in the left side of the midfield. The 29-year-old received the man of the match award in the recent 4-2 win over Manchester City. Apart from creating two goals, he also scored one himself. Even though top four was the primary objective at the start of the campaign, United’s good form could see them as unlikely title winners because of the run.
“It’s nice to be winning, but it’s about that momentum — especially when you are going into this vital stage of the season.United teams always come strong at this stage, and we are showing in every game just how strong we can be.It’s nice to go out and win games and control games too. You saw against Villa that we controlled it from the first whistle right until the end, not just in terms of possession but also getting in the box and having shots at goal,” said the former Aston Villa winger.
Unlike all the other managers in English Football, the Manchester United boss, Louis Van Gaal, does not like to laud his players that much even if they put in world class performances.
It’s hard to say whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing, but, sometimes, as a player, it can really do wonders to you if you play well and your manager wholeheartedly talks about your showing.
Take Ashley Young’s case for example. The veteran had been coping with a bit of a hard time in the last few seasons and then suddenly, this season, he has started cranking it up a little bit. Versus the Black Cats the previous week, he produced an absolute blinder of a show.
So, one would have supposed Van Gaal to come in pouring plaudits for the playmaker in the post match press conference, but, no, the Dutchman was pretty cold. He did acknowledge the fact that Young showed improvement, but, he refused to admit that the player was back to his best.
Van Gaal kept on emphasizing how important it was for Young and the other midfielders to work on the consistency.
Van Gaal has done his job as coach. He has worked hard on Young.
The manager should be credited for being flexible with the 30-year old by using him in different places and giving him the freedom to play the way he knows and he has got good response from Young, but, he is not satisfied.
He is a man of not many words, Van Gaal. People know that. It’s not that he does not speak at all. He does, but, he does not always go over the top. However, if he starts giving due praise to his players, it would help them a great deal.
During the time when David Moyes was in charge of Manchester United as the coach of the English club, the Scottish manager utilized Ashley Young on a regular basis.
After having gone through a disastrous time at Old Trafford, Moyes was sacked before even 1 year in charge and now Moyes has taken up a coaching position for Real Sociedad and the rumors are suggesting that Moyes wants to reunite with Ashley Young.
Ashley Young has been struggling with injuries but even when the English midfielder returns back to fitness, he is not expected to turn into a first choice player for Louis van Gaal who already has a wide variety of options available for him and things will turn even worse for Ashley Young after the January transfer window reaches its end as Louis van Gaal has already expressed his desire to sign a few more players.
One of the first things that David Moyes wants to do as the new coach of Real Sociedad is to strengthen his current squad and Ashley Young is on his wish-list. Taking into consideration that Real Sociedad is not a club that has a huge budget at their availability it’s expected that the Spanish will only offer to make a season long loan deal but if Ashley Young really does not play any important role in the plans of Louis van Gaal, the Dutch manager could release Young on a cut price deal.
Ashley Young is current earning €135,000 per week at Old Trafford and in order for a transfer to Real Sociedad on actually happening and working out, the English midfielder would also have to accept slash in his wages but he will certainly be getting guaranteed playing time with the Spanish club.