Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal lashed out at his players after the defeat to Arsenal as he spoke about the lack of will and fighting spirit United displayed in the early going at the Emirates conceding 3 goals in 20 minutes to a rampant Arsenal side. Arsene Wenger’s side played with more spirit and determination and had the edge in midfield as they ran riot in the early stages.
United dominated the ball for the rest of the game but failed to find that cutting edge and penetration as Wayne Rooney, Juan Mata and Bastian Schweinsteiger failed to provide that quality in the final third. United need to produce a response when the Premier League kicks off after the international break, and with a tie at Everton awaiting the Red Devils, Louis van Gaal’s men need to step up a gear or two to keep pace with Manchester City and Arsenal.
Here are 3 changes Louis van Gaal needs to make to get back to winning ways.
1. Player regular defenders in the back four.
Granted, Antonio Valencia did a decent job last season, but Matteo Darmian has been impressive so far except the odd game at the Emirates. LvG needs to put his faith in the Italian. With Luke Shaw ruled out long term and Rojo doubtful, Daley Blind could fill in at left back allowing either Phil Jones or Paddy McNair to play centre back.
Ashley Young may have done a decent job at left back at the Emirates but lacks the positional sense to play in that position week-in and week-out.
2. Bring the busy Ander Herrera back into the starting lineup
The combination of Carrick and Schweinsteiger worked brilliantly against Liverpool but lacked the legs against a side like Arsenal who like to move the ball quickly into attack. Either Carrick/Schweinsteiger could play as the regista allowing the creative Ander Herrera to cover the ground and link up with the front men.
Morgan Schneiderlin has looked tidy in midfield and although he provides defensive stability, the Frenchman lacks the vision and creativity at times.
3. Drop Depay as he needs a rest for good and play Ashley Young on the left wing.
Memphis Depay has been ever present for club and country right since pre season and is finding it tough to adjust to the physical demands of the Premier League. A break could do the Dutchman a world of good and ease pressure off his shoulders. Ashley Young has looked a threat on the left wing and provides a more direct option to whip balls into the box for the likes of Martial and Rooney to attack.
Of course, there is the small matter of Wayne Rooney playing higher up the pitch. The United skipper sat far too deep against Arsenal.