Manchester United

Does Manchester United have Realistic Chances of Finishing Top 4?

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As things stand right now, Manchester United is in 6th place with 24 points in 13 matches. That’s 6 points behind league-leader Arsenal. When we look at the whole table, Manchester United’s tally isn’t too shabby. 

However, Erik Ten Hag’s men only scored 16 goals in 13 matches, while conceding the exact same number. To put their goalscoring into perspective, Manchester City scored more than double (33 goals) and Aston Villa scored almost double (31 goals).

With such a terrible record and generally lethargic displays, is it realistic to expect United to finish top 4 this season? Let’s talk about that! 

Reasons For

Let’s start off with the positive aspects of Manchester United’s season up to this point. There are two players I’d like to emphasize (and I’m sure you all know which two), their CL efforts (or the lack thereof), as well as a specific aspect of their gameplay. So, let’s roll!

Garnacho and McTominay

These two individuals have been on fire lately. I’m not joining the Garnacho bandwagon following that majestic goal against Everton. I’ve been watching this young fella play week in and week out and he’s a FIGHTER!

The same can be said for Scott McTominay. Even though his roles are primarily defensive, he’s scored several really important goals for his team. He’s giving it all match in and match out, and it does show! 

No Champions League Football

Theoretically, Manchester United can still qualify for the playoffs. But, they have to defeat Bayern Munich in the final fixture and hope that Galatasaray vs. Copenhagen match ends in a draw. That’s the only scenario in which United can continue their CL run this season.

Obviously, that’s unlikely to happen, meaning ETH’s men will be able to fully focus on finishing top 4 in the EPL. Most soccer betting sites featured on have already updated their odds to reflect on United’s soon-to-be-official-exit out of the CL.

Massive Snowball Potential

Another notable fact is Manchester United’s massive snowball potential. Remember, Manchester still has some of the world’s best players. Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes, Casemiro, Varane. When they’re all fit and having a good day, United is typically on the winning end of things.

Healthy individuals create wins – wins create more wins. Especially when you have a team with as much individual firepower as Manchester United. If nothing else works out, I bet Manchester United can rely on their snowball potential.  

Reasons Against

Unfortunately, Manchester United has glaring issues that need to be addressed if they are to do anything notable in the remainder of the season. Of course, the first reason against Man Utd finishing top 4 is Onana, followed by defensive mistakes in general.

Onana

At first, I though I was being way too harsh on the fella. However, after witnessing his shenanigans against Galatasaray, I was speechless. On a good day, Onana is one of the best keepers in the world. On a bad day, and he’s having increasingly more of those lately, he’s absolutely terrible. 

Defensive Mistakes in General

It’s not just Onana, mind you! Manchester’s defensive efforts have been all over the place thus far. But, a part of that comes down to the injury list. United’s defense seems out of sync when Casemiro, Martinez, and Shaw aren’t on the pitch. On the bright side, Shaw is back and looking great!

Wrapping Things Up

In the end, I’m not even sure what to say or what to think. Severa underwhelming performances coupled with Onana’s shenanigans lead me to think Manchester United won’t be able to secure a Champions League spot next season. And, looking at the way they’ve played in the CL this season, that might be for the best.

But then again, seeing the raw passion and dedication of individuals like Shaw, McTominay, and Garnacho makes me think the Red Devils aren’t done and dusted just yet. If Rashford returns to his goalscoring abilities, if Hojlund gets in on the action too… and if Onana stops making ridiculous mistakes, United could be in!

I know, I know – that’s a whole lot of ifs. But if someone can do it, it’s got to be Manchester United! 

Balachandran B

Co-founder & Head of Operations @ SoccerSouls Sports Network. Nick Name: Jin. Favorite Sports team: Arsenal Follow me @Jin

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