Liverpool fans have questioned whether any Manchester United players should be going to the World Cup this summer.
One of the main reasons this season has been so enjoyable for Liverpool fans is because their likely Premier League title has been achieved in a season where their greatest rivals, Manchester United, have declined under David Moyes.
Liverpool fans currently have the edge over their United counterparts and one of the main fan forums, the message board powered by liverpoolfc.com, has raised an important question looking beyond this season to the summer.
A thread started yesterday questioned whether any of Manchester United’s current first team stars should be, or deserve to be, in Roy Hodgson’s England World Cup squad to go to Brazil this summer.
“Just how many of Utd's players will get in Hodgson's England WC squad. More importantly how many should? - In my honest opinion none should be in the squad” writes one fan.
Several Liverpool players are likely to start in Hodgson’s World Cup team but the idea that no United players should be in the 23 man squad is naïve for several reasons.
Someone like Wayne Rooney may not have had the best season in a year where he’s become the best paid player in United’s history but he still offers England a lot of quality, passion and experience.
Rooney is a United player who can lead well in Brazil, which is important because Hodgson’s side are likely to be under a lot of pressure against sides that dominate the ball well.
There should also be a place for Phil Jones, the most versatile defender at United, and Danny Welbeck, an attacking player who can play in wide and central positions, with plenty of pace on the counter attack.
“I wouldn't even take Rooney, they've all been pants and don’t deserve a call up. There are a load at Southampton and Everton that deserve a call up due to their performances,” added another Liverpool fan.
A fair point considering the superior league position of Everton and reflective of the fact that top Premier League sides have been linked with some of Southampton’s best players.
An interesting comparison could be a battle between two players such as Michael Carrick and Gareth Barry (on loan at Everton from Manchester City) who play in similar positions with the latter arguably more effective this season.
|Club||Pos||Total Tackle||Interception Won||Accurate Pass||Poss Lost All||Apps||Mins|
|Gareth Barry||Man City||MF||4||3||44||9||1||90|
|Michael Carrick||Man Utd||MF||1||1||73||8||1||90|
When the pair were squared up yesterday, Barry showed more bite and read the play more effectively, but Carrick protected possession more impressively during his time on the pitch.
Should United players be in Hodgson’s World Cup squad? Of course they should because they give the national boss more options but they certainly need to produce the sort of big performances which have been absent this season.