The Combined Manchester XI for the 2014-15 season
Manchester United and Manchester City form one of the biggest rivalries of recent areas. The last four Premier League titles have been equally divided between the Manchester clubs. Only last season, Manchester United finished below third since ages! This year with Louis van Gaal looking to get the Red Devils on track and Pallegrini’s Man City looking to defend their title, it’ll be exciting to have a look of eleven of the best players from Manchester.
David De Gea
The young acrobatic Spaniard is one of the best goalkeepers in the league and arguably his form of last season was so good that people actually started considering him among the other top keepers in the world, not just the young ones. A very important player for Man Utd, David de Gea will have a key role to play this season too.
Defender: Pablo Zabaleta
The Argentine Right Back has proved himself so well in the Premier League that he is now been considered as among the best Right Backs in the world, not only the league. Despite him having only average acceleration and pace or technical abilities, he is very efficient in stopping the attacks. Be it tackling or intercepting passes and crosses, Zabaleta plays a very important role. He contributes well in attack as well with his good crossing abilities.
Defender: Vincent Kompany
The Manchester City Captain is right among the best defenders in the world. The Belgian is a rock solid, aggressive and calculative defender. He is best known for his ability to organise the defense with his leadership as well as break-up plays effortlessly with his reading of the game and muscle force as well. He is a mobile centre back and is good with the ball at his feet as well.
Defender: Phil Jones
The young Englishman is one of England’s best young defenders and Manchester United’s key player. He is capable of playing at Centre Back as well as Right Back and Defensive Midfield. He boasts of versatile defensive attributes, main being his marking and tackling. Jones is a mobile defender and has no problems playing against faster players as he has the physical power and strength to stop them in their tracks.
Midfield: Yaya Touré
There is no argument about who has emerged as the best midfielder in the Premier League in the last couple of seasons. Yaya has strength, deceptive pace and a tactically strong mind. He boasts of good technical abilities as he has now added goals and assists to his game making him and absolute beast. The Ivorians direct free kicks have been a revelation. Yaya is now up there with the best midfielders in the world with his box to box work rate, and the ease with which he fits in different tactics- be it 4-4-2 or 4-2-3-1 in central midfield.
Midfield: Juan Mata
The diminutive Spanish playmaker was criticised by José Mourinho as someone who doesn’t put in efforts in defending when off the possession. But the twice player of the year for Chelsea then got transferred to Man Utd and found playing time and form as well. Under van Gaal’s 3-5-2 formation, Mata would enjoy playing in the middle of the attack with other players covering up for his defensive work. Mata enjoys a free role as a playmaker and boasts of 20 goals and 35 assists in a season (12-13) with Chelsea when playing that role. He can be a game changer with his exemplary vision, positioning and finishing.
Midfield: David Silva
Silva is one of Spain’s regular starters and one of the best play makers in the world. Injuries marred his season last time but he is a proven performer and would again be a key part in Man City’s attack. He has picked up his defensive duties as well as we could clearly see him tracking back from the wide left position he occupies on the pitch. His main attributes are his passing, vision and smooth movement with the ball. He is a very attractive player to watch with the ball as he glides with the ball effortlessly and finds a player in a good position.
Midfield: Ander Herrera
Man Utd finally seem to have got the central midfielder they wanted. Herrera is a top passer both short and long. He puts in good attacking as well defensive work rate in the middle of the park. He has been particularly impressive in the preseason with his playmaking from a deeper position. He can stretch the opposition with his long passes to the wingers as well as split the defense with an accurate through pass for the striker. Herrera seems to be the player Man Utd needed last season too. His transfer fee was very high for a player not playing international matches, but if preseason gives us a hint of his abilities, we can be sure that he’d fit in well and guide Man Utd to a much better position this season.
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