Between the Lines

"Of all unimportant subjects, football is the most important" – Pope John Paul II

Archive for August, 2008


Posted by hakanrylander on August 29, 2008

Even though Louis Saha has been injured most of the time during his spell at Old Trafford I have to admit I’m sad to see him leave. When fit he made a great contribution to the team as the focal point of a very mobile attack, linking excellently with Rooney and Ronaldo in particular. He is one of my favourite players. If Saha had been fit I don’t think Ferguson would have been in any great hurry to sign Berbatov. The fee is unknown but probably highly dependent on the number of games he plays for Everton. I don’t think any club would dare take a chance on Saha otherwise. Let’s hope this deal is a sign that Ferguson is confident of bringing in another striker before the window closes.


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Posted by hakanrylander on August 19, 2008

Not a great start to the season, was it? To an extent it is understandable that we lacked penetration considering the absence of Ronaldo, Tevez, Nani, Saha and Anderson. When United needed to push forward in the second half there wasn’t a single striker on the bench. With both Giggs and Fletcher moving inside a lot of the time we also failed to threaten down the wings. Not even the usually outstanding Evra got forward much.

The most positive aspect of the game was the performance of Possebon who wanted the ball and looked comfortable when he got it. Some nice passes too. Similar to Carrick in many ways. A star in the making.

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Anderson in China

Posted by hakanrylander on August 17, 2008

Anderson’s performance at the Olympics has so far been disappointing. Some nice touches against Cameroon, but very poor movement off the ball. He basically stood around waiting for the ball. Also showed very little of the ball-winning aggression he is capable of. Part of the problem was that the whole team lacked movement and invention, but even so I was expecting more from Anderson. Let’s hope for an improvement against Argentina.

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A Perfect Signing

Posted by hakanrylander on August 13, 2008

Several of today’s papers report that Dimitar Berbatov will move from Spurs to United before the end of the week. Much the same has been written all summer and the stories generally contain no quotes or new information. Still, a deal is surely imminent. Spurs are unlikely to keep an unhappy player, and United have few, if any, alternatives. Unfortunately United’s need is probably the more pressing, and this is pushing the fee a lot higher than Ferguson and Gill were hoping for at the beginning of the summer.


But even at £30m Berbatov would be a perfect signing. I can think of no other player who better fills United’s present requirements. He will score goals but more importantly bring the best out of team-mates like Rooney and Tevez. Jonathan Northcroft expressed this brilliantly in the Sunday Times:

“All strikers must be soloists when appropriate – but rare ones, like Berbatov and Cantona, can also conduct the orchestra.”



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