A 2-1 win away to Southampton has made it five wins in a row for Louis Van Gaal’s United side, pushing them up to 3rd place as they begin to look upwards and believe they can be genuine title contenders.
Five wins in a row is no mean feat and to do it with so many players out injured is a great achievement, to say they deserve these five wins would be a lie but as it is so often said; a sign of a good team is winning when playing badly. This certainly applies to Man United in these five games.
The run has seen them beat Arsenal at the Emirates, Crystal Palace, Stoke and Hull at home and tonight Southampton at St Mary’s. The home games are not overly impressive you would expect United to be beating those teams every day but the away wins to Arsenal and Southampton are big results.
Tonight’s game in particular showed that Van Gaal is beginning to get the winning mentality back into the heads of these Manchester United players, after being completed outplayed for the entire game, Robin Van Persie scored 2 goals to secure all three points for the now 3rd placed team.
From start to finish they were completely overrun in all areas of the pitch, their defence was at times shambolic, Southampton could have had five but instead they only scored once and United showed their killer instinct and punished the Saints.
United are now only 8 points behind leaders Chelsea and their fans are beginning to think they can mount a serious challenge for the Premier League title and they may be right to think that.
Van Persie showed tonight that he is still a match winner and with 6 goals now this season he may begin to show some form consistently, Wayne Rooney as of late has been terrific, the Arsenal game was testament to that as his goal won them the game.
The defence is the main problem at the moment but understandably so with so many men out injured, Shaw, Rafael and Jones are three defenders that are missing for Van Gaal and have been for a considerable amount of time.
Injury problems are not only existing at the back for United with Di Maria, Blind and Lingard all missing from action not to mention big earner Radamel Falcao who despite being in the match day squad “can only play for twenty minutes, because the rhythm of the game in the Premier League is the highest” according to boss Louis Van Gaal.
Being 3rd in the table with all these problems is very promising for United begging the question what could they achieve if everyone was fit? Van Gaal will hope to find that out at some stage of the season but at the moment they’re coping fine without some key men.
Next up for Manchester United is the visit of fierce rivals Liverpool on Sunday, the game is set up to be a mouth watering affair that United will expect to win based on their recent run and the abject form of Liverpool as of late.