Carra explains why Man City vs Chelsea is the ‘nightmare’ final

Chelsea will meet Man City in … The post Carra explains why Man City vs Chelsea is the ‘nightmare’ final appeared first on Football365.

Carra explains why Man City vs Chelsea is the ‘nightmare’ final

Jamie Carragher thinks a Champions League final between Manchester City and Chelsea is a “nightmare” as Barcelona and Real Madrid “can’t cope with the Premier League”.

Timo Werner and Mason Mount struck to in Wednesday’s Champions League semi-final second leg, for a 3-1 aggregate victory.

The Blues stormed into their first Champions League final since 2012 with a potent showing in west London, where sharper finishing would have entirely floored the 13-time tournament winners Madrid.


OPINION: 


They will meet fellow Premier League side Manchester City after .

And Carragher thinks the dominance of English football could see the European Super League discussed again before too long.

Carragher told CBS Sports: “It’s an absolute nightmare, really! Listen, I’m delighted in a way because it shows where English football is right now. After tomorrow [the Europa League semi-finals] we could have four English teams in the European finals.

“We go back to a big story in the last couple of weeks with the European Super League, I think it tells you why [Florentino] Perez and [Joan] Laporta at the two Spanish giants [Real Madrid and Barcelona] are desperate for a Super League because at this moment in time they can’t cope with the Premier League.

“It’s not just the quality of football, it’s the finances of the teams and the great managers. You look at Thomas Tuchel, Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp… at the moment the Premier League is the place to be and it’s a sorry tale for the rest of Europe because they seem a fair bit away.

“Chelsea didn’t just beat Real Madrid, they battered them over two games, it should have been four of five really.”

The hosts could easily have put a hatful of goals past Zinedine Zidane’s oddly limited Madrid, and Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel conceded there were some nervy moments amid another fine performance.

Tuchel said: “Don’t get me wrong with any chance you don’t take and you miss, and you know you play on the edge because Real Madrid can hurt you out of absolutely nothing, by pure individual quality.

“So to hang in there and to continue with positive body language, and to hang in there physically, to stay aggressive, to stay active, to never stop trying to play for the second goal, never allowing Real Madrid to push us deep, this is really huge.

“I’m absolutely delighted with this spirit, and big credit and big congratulations to the team.”

 

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Should Man Utd stick or twist on a mediocre midfield hand?

Solskjaer will twist in the transfer … The post Should Man Utd stick or twist on a mediocre midfield hand? appeared first on Football365.

Should Man Utd stick or twist on a mediocre midfield hand?

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will twist in the transfer window on Manchester United’s problem positions, but should he stick with his midfield pivot?

Although there are disagreements over what the absolute transfer priority should be this summer, there appears to be a general consensus that three positions need strengthening at Man Utd: centre-back, striker, right winger.

But if United did, for example, sign Raphael Varane, Harry Kane and Jadon Sancho, their midfield would then look mighty ordinary in comparison to the rest of the team.

Scott McTominay and Fred have performed admirably this season; it would be churlish to suggest otherwise. McTominay has kicked on, scoring some important, eye-catching goals and both he and Fred have been consistently solid: seven out of tens, occasional eights, very rarely below a six.

And that’s what you want from your defensive midfielders. The same could be said of Rodri, or N’Golo Kante, or Fabinho – dependability is the name of the game in that position. But the point is, a ten out of ten performance from those players and – let’s face it – many others in the Premier League, would be far better than the peak of the Manchester United duo.

How would a top Fred display compare to one from Wilfred Ndidi or Declan Rice? How would a McTominay stormer stack up against the very best of Youri Tielemans?

Let’s play a game. It’s called ‘Double Pivots That Would Have Saved Fulham’. If you hadn’t guessed how to play from that cryptic title, you simply take the two holding midfielders from other teams in the Premier League and speculate as to whether they would have prevented Fulham from relegation.

Kante and Jorginho? Yes.

Rodri and Ilkay Gundogan? Yes.

Fabinho and Jordan Henderson? Yes.

Ndidi and Tielemans? Yes.

Rice and Tomas Soucek? Yes.

Fred and McTominay? Hmmm.

You can also play reverse DPTWHSF, where you take Fulham’s double pivot and put them in other teams. Would United be much worse if they had Harrison Reed and Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa? Point made, I’ll put the pot-stirring spoon down now.

It all comes down to one question: Have Manchester United had a good season thanks to McTominay and Fred or in spite of them?

There are perfectly valid points to be made on both sides of the argument, which perhaps suggests that neither is really the case. They’ve been fine. And for United this season that’s been enough. Enough to allow Bruno Fernandes to be ridiculous. Enough for them to improve on last season. But there will come a point soon when ‘meh’ is not enough.

Grouping Fred and McTominay together is unfair – they’re not a package deal. And it’s not impossible to imagine either one of them being part of a title-winning team. But not both. You can have a dogsbody as long as you’ve got a world-beater alongside them, inevitably dragging the lackey towards their level.

As has been apparent for some time – and made abundantly clear in recent weeks – there is not a bottomless pit of cash for Solskjaer to spend; it will be a case of prioritising key areas. Picking your hands wisely.

But while the need for a right winger and a striker is more obvious having watched Marcus Rashford struggle out of position and Edinson Cavani thrive in his, the inconspicuous nature of the midfield problem – although it could and perhaps should be seen as a credit to the displays of McTominay and Fred – could be a greater long-term issue, though not as immediate.

You have to twist on 14 or lower and United will do so this summer to remedy the obvious gaps in the squad, but what to do with a pair of midfield 8s? Risk a twist or stick and accept mediocrity in the hope it won’t be beaten?

If Solskjaer can, he’s got to hit on one, surely.

 

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