Manchester United fan Iain Anderson asks a searching question in the wake of the club's derby defeat.
About ten minutes before kick-off on Sunday, when I saw the United team to play City, I posted on Facebook that I "feared the worst"
There were some genuinely world class players in the City team and United countered their presence with the likes of Evra, (too often caught out of position), Young, (just not good enough), Welbeck, (a willing runner but, for United, little else) and Smalling playing at right back where we don't apparently have a problem as most of the transfer window was spent trying to buy a left back, (where we have Evra, Büttner and Fabio)
The real question is; How many United players would get into the City team? Answer, not many.
At the moment, De Gea vs Hart is debatable. Zabaleta would be safe from Rafael. It is unlikely that Evra would displace a fit Clichy. I can imagine Kompany and Vidic being a good partnership.
In midfield any four of Nasri, Toure, Fernandinho, Navas, Silva and possibly Milner on present form would probably not give way to any of Valencia, Carrick, Fellaini, Cleverley, Nani or Young.
The only real dilemma is up front where, in my opinion, it has to be Rooney and Van Persie, just shading it over Agüero and Dzeko/Negredo.
So the “Manchester Unity” team would only contain three to four United players.
When United won the title last season they were the best of a bad bunch. The team was average by previous standards, the rest were below average by previous standards. This time, the rest have strengthened, United haven’t. (Fellaini does slightly improve them but in my view not enough to win the title).
My feeling is that United have to strengthen considerably if they want to be champions again this season. They need to have at least five players good enough to play for Manchester Unity.
Which United players do you think would get into a joint side?
image: © smabs sputzer