For the first time ever, the majority of Manchester United fans actually think they can’t beat Liverpool.
It’s at Old Trafford, the ground will be full and I know the supporters will all be behind the team – they always are. But I think the majority will just be hoping they don’t get a hiding, it will be that kind of mindset
That’s just where United are at this moment in time, nobody knows what they’re going to get with them. They don’t have a consistent side each week and that is always going to make you inconsistent on the pitch.
Even so, there is no real pressure on United because the expectations are all on Liverpool, the tables have well and truly turned. It wasn’t like that in my day. When I played for Manchester United we always expected to beat Liverpool. ALWAYS. We were the better team, it’s as simple as that.
Then when I went to Liverpool we always expected to lose against United!
Now, it has completely reversed and everyone is expecting Liverpool to go out and there and get the three points against United whether they’re playing home or away. Last year they won 3-1 at Anfield and it was 0-0 at Old Trafford with Jose Mourinho in charge. The expectation for them now is to beat United every single time.
That’s a bit sad but it also means the pressure is off for and I really think it could work in their favour. United fans will probably be thinking ‘we’ll take a beating so long as it’s only 1-0 or 2-1 and we’re in the game’. That might be okay.
The only problem for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is the pressure will mount if they end up getting beaten by three or four. Pundits will start asking even more questions but he knows that himself, we all do. I’ve seen it myself as both a manager and a pundit, so I understand both sides.
What I’d really like to see from United in this game is a bit of progress in terms of the style of their play. I understand it’s a results business but I’m not too concerned about that. The circumstances are difficult at the moment and they’ve got a few injuries, but the fans want to see progression more than anything else.
Look at Chelsea, they’ve also got a young team but they went out and smashed Southampton 4-1 in their last game. They create loads of chances and that’s something United just don’t do.
They scored just two goals in the whole of September and didn’t even have a shot on target against AZ Alkmaar in the Europa League which is completely unknown. Against Newcastle they had two shots and neither of them even bothered the goalkeeper.
These are the things that concern me more than anything. I don’t actually mind losing games. I don’t mind going to Newcastle and getting beaten as long you come away from it and their goalkeeper is the man of the match. But when you’re not getting shots, that is a massive concern.
Let’s hope we see a change against Liverpool.