Sheffield United Earns Its Keep

Earlier in the week, I said, “Sheffield United and ManUnited will be a brawl, but considering the troubles with ManUnited, I’m going with Sheffield in the win (it won’t be a blow-out, though).”

In some ways, I was right, though it ended up in a draw, 3-3, with furious action hitting in the last 25 minutes.

A draw. Here’s my biggest take-away, ManUnited is not playing the right players at the right time. They have the quality to be a Top 5 team, but I can’t see the management putting the right players on at the right times. Sheffield United got away with more shots on target and watching the match, you’d swear for the most part, Sheffield had the dominant possession. Sheffield’s passing fell apart in the last 25 minutes, more so than the previous 70. At the same time, it seemed as though Sheffield was making more complicated and longer passes. (Likely how the pass count and the pass accuracy was so much higher for ManUnited.

But here’s the thing, ManUnited’s quality happened for a short burst of about 7 minutes when they scored their three goals. This was also aligned with Mason Greenwood coming onto the pitch. If I remember correctly, Rashford’s goal was more or less a lucky drive in. Right place, right time. (Though, I suppose that’s how all proper football is.)

Courtesy: Google Match Commentary

Sheffield United earns its rightful spot, nearing the top of the table. Today’s draw puts them in 6th place, behind The Wolves. It also marks two wins and three draws in the past five matches, which included a win over Arsenal, a draw against West Ham, a win over Burnley, a draw with Tottenham and a draw with Manchester United. Honestly, Sheffield United is coming in hot from the Championship League and making a stand as a team that deserves to be mid-table, if not better.

This also suggests that Manchester United likely has the necessary ingredients to get back to the Top 6 or better, but they simply aren’t pulling it together in a coherent way. Up until the 70 minute, you’d swear ManUnited were just trying to throw their manager under the bus. Sloppy passes, short passes, often an inability to move the ball down the field fully, etc. etc. etc. We’ll have to see what the next two weeks bring for The Devils.