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Red Devils 2017-2018

Gallego99

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If the criticism doesn't kill, it can only make the team better!!! Manchester United is not your Porto,Chelsea, Inter or Real Madrids. We are different. It's a club with history,passionate supporters and fans who will not hold back like Paul on commenting or criticizing the obvious.

Is it too much to ask the well paid players for 90 minutes of football passion? If you can't take the heat, you'd be better off elsewhere.

As for Paul Scholes, keep 'em flowing. It's obvious he's still passionate about the club and football. If there was a flaw in his critic of Pogba, it has to be said Juve had two solid DM and AM in Vidal and Marchisio. They were the rock in the middle that enabled Pogba a free role upfront.
 

Gallego99

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Very apparent that entire team has lost motivation n direction since there is no more hope of catching man c.

Pogba has been missing since he returned from suspension. Matic is slowing down play. He should be replaced by Herrera.

The swashbuckling style at beginning of season is no more. Whatever the fuck has happened. I imagine against Everton, it would be the park the bus game plan.

If Mou is to go, get ancelotti or throw money to get pochettino.
Matic showed signs of fatigue covering for the back four. At that point, I thought Mou should have brought Herrera in as you rightly pointed out.

The problem is the manager. He was too cautious with player and tactical deployment. It's not like we're 3-4 points away from the leaders. In the past when we lose 3 games in 10, Ferguson would consider any draw as a loss and United would go all out to win even in away matches. That was how we became Champions.
 

Gallego99

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Loyal
Sanchez is on his way to OT. This is the player SAF tried to sign but chose Barca ahead of United.
I'm delighted for Giggs as he is set to be Wales manager for the next 4 years. Well done!!:smile:
 

yinyang

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Gallego, you right on 3 counts. Sanchez to OT, Mikhi to Gunners, and great Wales gun for Giggsy. According to Guardian
1594952B-BE20-40B2-90A8-8DB618D0EC3D.jpeg


Alexis Sánchez transfer: Manchester City close to walking away in chase
• City regard financial package to sign Arsenal forward as excessive
• Way clear for Manchester United to seal move for Sánchez
 

Gallego99

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Loyal
Yup bro, Henrikh did not even warm the bench last night which suggest that he's on his way to the Emirates. Methinks he will do well over there. Good move by United as I can't see the Armenian priest changing his attitude any time soon.

Sanchez is coming with a hefty price tag but at least they finally got the player SAF targeted a long time ago. The other is Lucas Moura. Lucas has wasted his talent at PSG. Had he chosen United earlier, he could have been a better player by now and bound for the bright lights at Laliga.
 

yinyang

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Manchester United leading four-way chase for £35million Nice star Jean-Michael Seri

https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/transfer-news/manchester-united-leading-four-way-11873350


Manchester United are leading a four-way Premier League chase for £35million Nice midfielder Jean-Michael Seri.

United, Liverpool and Chelsea are all looking at the Ivory Coast central midfielder, with Manchester City also poised to join the chase.

Seri was set to join Barcelona last summer but that deal fell through, while Paris St Germain have been unable to sign him due to Financial Fair Play restrictions.

The 26-year-old has a €40m - £35m - release clause in his Nice contract, which has 18 months left to run, and is set to spark a scramble for his signature this summer.
 

Gallego99

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Loyal
Great news. Carrick agreed to take up a coaching role. I hope at some point of his career,he'll go into management. He has the quality to succeed. Good luck Mike!!
 

yinyang

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Manchester United beat Real Madrid to top spot
in latest football rich list

It is the 10th time the Old Trafford club have topped the Deloitte list, with their Europa League success being crucial to holding off Real


Manchester United have once again topped a list of football's top earners


Manchester United have retained their position as world football's top earners, according to the latest annual "Money League" report by accountancy firm Deloitte.

United made £581million during the 2016-17 season, pipping Real Madrid to the top spot by just £1.5million, the closest margin in the rich list's 21 years.

It is the 10th time the Old Trafford club have topped the Deloitte list, with their Europa League success being crucial to holding off Real, whose 12th Champions League win helped them swap places with Spanish rivals Barcelona.

Who are the Premier League's highest earners?
Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich held onto fourth spot and Manchester City stayed in fifth place with revenues of £454million. Arsenal climbed to sixth, swapping places with Paris St Germain, and Chelsea, Liverpool and Juventus keep their places to round out the top 10.

In a statement, Deloitte Sports Business Group partner Dan Jones said: "United's ability to retain first position is all the more impressive against the backdrop of the weakened pound against the euro.

"With both Real Madrid and Barcelona forecasting further revenue growth in 2017-18, the battle at the top will likely come down to on-pitch performance again next year.

"With all three clubs through to the round of 16 of the Champions League, it may be as simple as the club that goes furthest in the competition will have the best chance of topping the Money League next year."

United's Europa League campaign was worth £39million, a testament to both the size of the British market for televised football and UEFA's efforts to raise the profile of the competition.

Unlike some studies of football's finances, Deloitte excludes revenues from player-trading but its numbers confirm several recent reports by other organisations, most notably last week's report on European club football by UEFA. It also underlines the growing financial clout of the Premier League.


United used their financial muscle to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal (Getty)

For example, Spurs overhauled Borussia Dortmund to take 11th place, with Leicester up six places to 14th, West Ham up one to 17th and Southampton and Everton new entries in 18th and 20th respectively.

Both Leicester and Southampton were buoyed by their involvement in European competitions but the Premier League's record-breaking 10 teams in the top 20 is also a result of the improved domestic television deal that kicked in that season.

In fact, Premier League clubs nearly took half of the top 30 places recorded by Deloitte, with Crystal Palace, West Brom, Bournemouth and Stoke in 26th to 29th place - Bournemouth's revenue of £136.8million last season was £135.7million higher than their equivalent figure in the first ever Money League report in 1996-97, when they finished 16th in English football's third tier.

Deloitte Sports Business Group senior manager Tim Bridge said the "Money League has a particularly English feel this year" thanks to over half a billion pounds of growth in broadcast and UEFA competition revenues for those in the top 20.

Bridge added that the upcoming auctions for the next cycle of Premier League domestic and international rights, starting from 2019-20, will be "crucial to determining the long-term composition of the Money League".


http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/...-money-league-ranking-rich-list-a8173526.html
 

yinyang

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NICE ONE SERI
Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho turns attention to Nice midfielder Jean Michael Seri after landing Alexis Sanchez
Ivory Coast star is one the most wanted midfielders in Europe and is keen to make the step up to the Premier League with United feeling bullish in transfer market after Sanchez coup


The Mail updated: 24th January 2018, 6:43 pm

JOSE MOURINHO will turn his attention to signing Jean Michael Seri after landing Alexis Sanchez.

The Manchester United boss is pushing hardest for the Nice midfielder and is weighing up a deal that would see him join in the summer, or whether he can be signed before next week’s transfer deadline.


Jean Michael Seri is wanted by Manchester United

Central midfield is now Mourinho’s priority now Sanchez has arrived in a £35million deal to bolster United’s attack.

The Special One was also looking at left-backs, although last week he insisted Luke Shaw’s form made him one of the best in the world at that position.

Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic have been regulars in the heart of Mourinho’s midfield but he has been short on cover with Michael Carrick expected to join the coaching staff next season and Marouane Fellaini out of contract.

Seri, 26, saw a move to Barcelona fall through in the summer but has interest in the Premier League.
 

yinyang

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Asset
Red faces if yet lose to minnows again. Especially if Sanchez makes his debut :wink:

Yeovil Town 19:55 Manchester United

upload_2018-1-26_8-38-8.gif

Alexis Sanchez will likely make his Manchester United debut in the FA Cup against Yeovil at Huish Park
TEAM NEWS
Manchester United's new signing Alexis Sanchez is in the squad following his high-profile transfer from Arsenal.

Manager Jose Mourinho has promised to play a "very strong team", although goalkeeper Sergio Romero is likely to replace David de Gea.

Yeovil are without star winger Otis Khan, who was given a five-game ban for shoving a referee last weekend.

Rhys Browne could return after ankle problems but Omar Sowunmi may miss out after experiencing dizzy spells.

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES
Steve Bower: "Most lower league clubs dream of drawing Manchester United once in a lifetime, but Yeovil now face their second match against the 12-time FA Cup winners in just over three years.

"Both have changed their managers since their last meeting, and in Yeovil's case they've dropped a division, but for one game they can forget about being only two points above the League Two relegation zone and enjoy welcoming Jose Mourinho and his squad to Somerset.

"United, who were shocked by Bristol City in the Carabao Cup, will look for their fifth successive victory in a quiet, efficient and professional manner."

Twitter: @SteveBowercomm

WHAT THE MANAGERS SAY
Yeovil Town manager Darren Way: "Sometimes people don't dream big enough. We have worked extremely hard against all the odds to get this opportunity. What I don't want my players to do is waste it.

"If we get a result this will be the biggest story ever in Yeovil's history."

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho on Alexis Sanchez: "We got one of the best attacking players in the world and he's very important for us because we want the best possible players.

"Alexis changed from a fantastic club to a giant club and [Henrikh] Mkhitaryan changed for a fantastic club, so it was a great deal for everybody."

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head
  • Manchester United have won their three previous meetings with Yeovil Town, all in the FA Cup, by an aggregate score of 13-0.
  • That includes an 8-0 win in the FA Cup fifth round at Maine Road in February 1949.
  • United won the last meeting 2-0 in 2015 thanks to second-half goals from Ander Herrera and Angel Di Maria.
Yeovil Town
  • Yeovil Town are the lowest ranked side left in the competition, sitting 21st in League Two.
  • The Glovers have beaten top-flight opposition before, eliminating Sunderland in the fourth round in 1949.
  • However, they have since lost nine consecutive FA Cup games against top-flight sides, failing to score in seven of them.
  • They have the joint-second worst defence in League Two with Forest Green Rovers, conceding 50 goals. Only Chesterfield have let in more.
  • Yeovil have attempted 246 shots in League Two this season, the fewest in the division.
Manchester United
  • Manchester United are on a seven-game unbeaten run in all competitions, winning their last four games without conceding.
  • United have also won five of their last six away league games, drawing the other.
  • However, they lost their last cup away match - a 2-1 defeat by Bristol City in the EFL Cup.
  • Manchester United have progressed in each of their last 16 FA Cup ties as a top-flight side against teams from the fourth tier or lower.
  • However, the last time they faced League Two opposition away in the FA Cup on a Friday night was three years ago, when they drew 0-0 at Cambridge United.
  • This will be Jose Mourinho's 100th game in charge of Manchester United - his record is: P99, W61, D23, L15.
  • Mourinho hasn't faced a League Two side in the FA Cup since his Chelsea team beat Paul Ince's Macclesfield Town 6-1 in January 2007.
  • Ander Herrera is set to make his 150th appearance for Manchester United.
http://www.bbc.com/sport/football/42742088
 

yinyang

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Ex-Manchester United players' university plans approved

Image captionThe university will offer sport, media and business courses, say UA92
Members of Manchester United's "Class of '92" have had their plans to build a university and a student village approved.

The University Academy '92 (UA92) is part of a £170m Trafford Council plan for the Greater Manchester area.

The original designs were modified after locals said the "ugly tower block" was an "eyesore".

Trafford Council's executive committee endorsed the proposals in a vote on Monday.

Last week the council said the offending 20-storey tower block had been scrappedin favour of "lower rise" student accommodation adding there would be "ongoing engagement" about the development.

They were approved as part of the refreshed Stretford master plan which includes proposals to redevelop part of Stretford Mall and bring the Grade II listed art deco Essoldo cinema on Chester Road back into use.

UA92 is fronted by former Manchester United stars Gary and Phil Neville, Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes and takes its name from the year they started their careers at the club.

The university will offer sport, media and business courses and cater for up to 6,500 students as part of Lancaster University, in partnership with Trafford Council and Trafford College.

New homes and leisure facilities are also part of the plan, which would see the main campus located on the site of the former Kellogg's building on Talbot Road.

Image copyrightGOOGLE
Image captionPart of Stretford Mall will be demolished and redeveloped under the scheme
Respondents to the consultation said there was a lack of a plan for an "enhanced evening economy" and pointed to the poor quality of the physical environment and vacant buildings.

Trafford Council said it was committed to "ongoing engagement", but the redevelopment would "drive economic growth".

The five former players have diversified their careers since they retired from playing, purchasing Salford City FC in 2014 and opening a hotel alongside Old Trafford a year later.

On Monday, Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs's £200m plan to redevelop part of Manchester city centre was snubbed for a second time by conservationists.

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-manchester-42863914
 

yinyang

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Preview away to Spurs tonight, how?

TEAM NEWS
Tottenham quartet Christian Eriksen, Erik Lamela, Hugo Lloris and Danny Rose are all back in contention.

Defender Toby Alderweireld is still not fit enough to return, while both Serge Aurier and Harry Winks also remain on the injury list.

Manchester United are set to hand Alexis Sanchez his first Premier League start for the club.

The only members of United's squad ruled out with injury are Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Eric Bailly.

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES
Steve Wilson: "Given their success in domestic cup competitions, it's a little surprising that this will be only the second meeting between Spurs and Manchester United at Wembley.

"Nine years ago, Ben Foster used his iPod to help Manchester United win a penalty shoot-out against Tottenham in the League Cup final, but that's the only previous encounter at the national stadium.

"Spurs may be on an eight-match unbeaten run in all competitions but Manchester United look the more solid of the two just now. Between them, David de Gea and Sergio Romero have kept six successive clean sheets whilst Mourinho's side have rattled off five wins on the spin.

"Having dropped points to both West Ham and Southampton recently, Spurs could do with a real statement result - and what would be better than beating Manchester United?"

Twitter: @Wilsonfooty

WHAT THE MANAGERS SAY
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino: "It is so important to win games, to be close and to have the possibility to fight to the end.

"I don't think the key to the top four is to win tomorrow or to win Sunday. But yes it is so important to put yourself in a good position in the table and in the end be there."

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho: "Spurs are one of the top teams in the country - not a title contender because they are too far away, but I say honestly they are a Champions League contender. They can reach that level.

"They have some of the best players in the country, a very good manager and are a very difficult opponent.

"It is a really big game. The difference between us and Spurs is seven or eight points, but the reality is they are a top team in terms of their quality and ambitions, and a team of our level, so it is a big match."

LAWRO'S PREDICTION
I don't think a draw is much good for both teams. Manchester United will still try to nick a goal, of course, but there is no way they will go there and look to completely dominate the game or even to try to open Spurs up.

They did the latter against Arsenal at the Emirates in December, and were able to hurt them on the break, but this Spurs team is set up very differently and I think the home side will win it.

Prediction: 2-1
Lawro's full predictions v rock band Editors

  • Think you can do better than Lawro? Predict the score for this match and the rest of this round's Premier League fixtures in our Predictor game
MATCH FACTS
Head-to-head
  • Tottenham have lost 80 league matches to Manchester United, 11 more than against any other opponent.
  • United have only lost four of the last 33 top-flight meetings (W21, D8).
  • However, those four wins for Tottenham have come in the 11 most recent league encounters between the sides, including the last two at White Hart Lane.
  • Spurs last won three consecutive home league games against Manchester United between 1965 and 1966.
Tottenham Hotspur
  • Spurs have earned just three points in five games this season against Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United, which is fewer than any other current top-six side in these fixtures.
  • However, Tottenham have lost only one of their 31 league home fixtures since the beginning of last season.
  • They have gone 11 home matches without defeat in the league since losing to Chelsea in August, winning seven of their last nine games at Wembley.
  • Harry Kane has scored 99 goals in 139 Premier League appearances; only Alan Shearer (124) and Sergio Aguero (147) have reached a century of goals in fewer than 150 matches in the division.
Manchester United
  • United are unbeaten in eight league matches and have taken 16 points from their last six away games.
  • Jose Mourinho has won 12 matches against Spurs in all competitions, more than he has against any other opponent.
  • David de Gea has kept 14 clean sheets in the Premier League this season, the most by any goalkeeper in Europe's big five leagues.
  • Paul Pogba has not finished on the losing team in any of his last 36 Premier League appearances, dating back to October 2016.
SAM's verdict
Most probable score: 1-1 Probability of draw: 27%
Probability of home win: 44% Probability of away win: 29%
SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by @ProfIanMcHale at the University of Liverpool that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.

 

yinyang

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Can makan, after debacle at Spurs? :rolleyes::wink:



Since the start of last season, Alexis Sanchez has been involved in eight goals in his nine league games against promoted sides

TEAM NEWS
Manchester United are likely to hand Alexis Sanchez his home debut but Marouane Fellaini is out after suffering a midweek knee injury.

Eric Bailly and Zlatan Ibrahimovic remain long-term injury absentees.

Huddersfield duo Danny Williams and Chris Lowe miss out with respective leg and groin injuries, Elias Kachunga is also still sidelined.

January signing Terence Kongolo has been given the all-clear to play after feeling unwell during the week.

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES
Steve Bower: "After a shock to the system away to Tottenham in midweek, where Manchester United lost by two or more goals for only the second time in 87 games in all competitions, they return to a fixture that has equally haunting connotations.

"I was in West Yorkshire in October to witness Huddersfield's first win over United since 1952; a day, whatever happens this season, that will live long in the memory for all Terriers fans.

"Jose Mourinho will hope for an immediate reaction and a far more routine afternoon for Alexis Sanchez's home debut, and to maintain a record where only Manchester City have won at Old Trafford in the last 39 matches.

"Huddersfield have far more crucial fixtures lying in wait although, as David Wagner told me earlier in the week, they are playing at the Theatre of Dreams."

Twitter: @SteveBowercomm

WHAT THE MANAGERS SAY
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho: "The game is important for us because we need points to be the first of the last (after Manchester City). We have to try to finish second.

"We're doing better than last season and it's very important for us to do better than last season. We are trying to win something this season, and if not, we will try to be stronger for next season."

Huddersfield head coach David Wagner: "The home game against Manchester United was one of the examples where everything went in our favour. We have to show our desire and belief to get something out of the game tomorrow.

"We've found ideas in the past that you can use to get something out of the games against the top six. The question is how uncomfortable can we make it for them?

"It's so important that you stay in the game, make it uncomfortable and use the first opportunity you have."

LAWRO'S PREDICTION
Teams have found out what Huddersfield try to do to you, and it has not been working very well for a while. David Wagner's side are on a run of seven league games without a win and confidence must be becoming an issue.

Manchester United had a bad result against Tottenham at Wembley on Wednesday but I think we will see a reaction from Jose Mourinho's side at Old Trafford.

Prediction: 2-0

Lawro's full predictions v NFL stars Emmanuel Sanders and Josh Norman

  • Think you can do better than Lawro? Predict the score for this match and the rest of this round's Premier League fixtures in our Predictor game.
MATCH FACTS
Head-to-head
  • This is the first league meeting at Old Trafford since March 1972, when Manchester United won 2-0 with goals from Ian Storey-Moore and George Best.
  • United have won seven of their last nine league and cup matches against Huddersfield, with their solitary loss coming in October's reverse fixture.
  • Huddersfield are winless in their last 14 away games in all competitions against United, losing nine, since a 6-0 triumph in September 1930.
  • The Terriers could complete a top-flight double against Manchester United for just the second time, having done so in 1930-31.
Manchester United
  • The midweek defeat against Tottenham ended United's eight-game unbeaten league run. It also brought to an end a sequence of four successive league clean sheets.
  • United have lost only two of their last 39 home league matches, with both coming against Manchester City.
  • They haven't been beaten home and away by a promoted side since Wimbledon completed the double over them in 1986-87.
  • Jose Mourinho hasn't a lost a home league match in February since 2002, when his then-Porto side lost 3-2 to Beira Mar in the Portuguese top flight (W19, D5).
Huddersfield Town
  • Huddersfield have lost their last four league matches and conceded 12 goals in the process.
  • They are without a win in seven Premier League games and have claimed just two victories from their last 14 matches.
  • Huddersfield have taken just nine points from the last possible 42.
  • The Terriers have scored in just three of their 12 away league fixtures.
  • Huddersfield have exactly the same record as they did after 25 matches when they were last top flight season in 1971-72; they went on to finish bottom and were relegated.
  • The last 19 clubs to play their first Premier League match at Old Trafford have all lost - the exception being Derby County's famous Paulo Wanchope-inspired 3-2 win in April 1997.
SAM's verdict
Most probable score: 2-0 Probability of draw: 10%
Probability of home win: 86% Probability of away win: 4%

SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by @ProfIanMcHale at the University of Liverpool that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.

http://www.bbc.com/sport/football/42842340
 

yinyang

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Alexis Sanchez off the mark as Manchester United return to winning ways against Huddersfield

Manchester United 2 Huddersfield Town 0
The Chilean clinched his first Old Trafford goal while Romelu Lukaku opened the scoring after the break The Independent Sport

Alexis Sanchez missed his initial penalty attempt but followed it up with a first goal for United Getty
Manchester United rose to Jose Mourinho's challenge and recovered from their midweek blues with a routine victory over Huddersfield Town.

On an otherwise sombre day when Old Trafford paid its respects to the victims of the Munich Air Disaster, a goal apiece from Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez, his first for United, proved enough to secure victory and cut Manchester City's lead at the top of the Premier League table to 13 points.

Mourinho may have conceded the title but he would not have accepted another performance like the one in Wednesday's defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley and a cut-throat team selection suggested as much.

Although always on top, it looked as though United were on course for frustrating afternoon after an ill-tempered first half ended goalless. Huddersfield, though, are a spirited team with clear limitations and as soon as Lukaku confidently finished Juan Mata's cross to open the scoring, the result was not in doubt.


Romelu Lukaku handed Manchester United their opener after the break (Getty)
The day was dominated by thoughts of one 60 years previous, when eight Manchester United players and three members of staff lost their lives on Flight 609 at Munich-Reim Airport. The names of all 23 fatalities, including the crew and reporters who also perished, were displayed around Old Trafford during a minute's silence that was, as they always are at this time of year, immaculately observed.

The match itself was at the back of most people's minds before kick-off but the teamsheet provided plenty of intrigue. There was the matter of Sanchez's Old Trafford debut, of course, but that was a footnote to four surprising changes, with Phil Jones, Ashley Young, Paul Pogba and Anthony Martial ruthlessly dropped in the wake of the Tottenham defeat.

After a heated touchline exchange with his manager that night, Pogba’s demotion was the most eye-catching. Mourinho said it was purely a result of academy product Scott McTominay deserving a chance but fooled nobody.

There was also the matter of Manchester City’s 1-1 draw at Burnley in the lunchtime kick-off, which handed United the chance to cut the gap at the top of the table. The hosts were expected to do just that against a Huddersfield side winless in seven league matches, with the top flight's third-worst travelling defence.


Old Trafford paid its respects to the Busby Babes 60 years on from the Munich Air Disaster (Getty)
Yet David Wagner's visitors showed more tenacity in the first half than they had mustered in the entirety of their 3-0 defeat to Liverpool just four days earlier. Though still lacking any serious threat in the final third, Huddersfield were more than game for the midfield battle and the opening 45 minutes was defined by fierce tackles and a general tetchiness.

These Lancashire and Yorkshire rivals came closest to a Battle of Bosworth re-enactment when the full weight of Terence Kongolo clattered into McTominay. The youngster was struck square on the side of his head and lay dazed in the penalty area for some time, but it was not worthy of a spot-kick according to referee Stuart Atwell and nothing like a foul if you asked the braying away end. Neither seemed to have the correct interpretation.

United's new signing is not one to shy away from such skirmishes and Sanchez tested Jonas Lossl more than any of his new team-mates with one shot from the edge of the box as the half-hour mark approached. Huddersfield's goalkeeper, down low to his right, needed both hands to push it away but he would not be called on again for the remainder of the half.

It was during the interval that a section of United's support unfurled a banner honouring Sanchez and those two treasured names in the storied history of this famous club, Atom and Humber. The presence of this tribute was embarrassing enough. That it obscured part of the only Old Trafford banner to depict Sir Matt Busby, on this particular day, was only sadder still.


Jesse Lingard attempts to get away from Tommy Smith (Getty)
It was eventually removed, but not before Lukaku had broken Huddersfield's resolve and established United's lead. Juan Mata's cross from the left was impeccably-placed and invited the Belgian into a side-foot finish on the volley that bounced before slipping under Lossl's helpless right hand.

The Huddersfield 'keeper was more successful when squaring up to Sanchez from the penalty spot some twelve minutes later, after substitute Michael Hefele had clumsily tripped the Chilean a few yards inside the area. Lossl stopped the resulting tame and low attempt but by clawing at the ball, he only diverted back towards Sanchez, who stroked in on the rebound for his first United goal.

With that first-half midfield battle now decisively won and Huddersfield still lacking anything in the way of attacking threat, United saw out the remainder with little difficulty.
 

yinyang

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Munich air disaster and Man Utd's laundry ladies - from lipstick on the collars to cleaning the coffins

_99810898_manutdshirts1.jpg

With a maternal, caring attitude towards the players, the laundry ladies cleaned the coffins after the bodies returned from Munich

You did know everyone and, of course, you knew the players. You saw them every day. They would go in the laundry to cadge a cup of tea, have a cigarette or borrow the paper.

Bobby Charlton, Duncan Edwards, Mark Jones - they all came in to the club from outside, so they were sometimes a bit lost and a bit lonely.

They saw in my mum and my aunt a softer side of life. A friendlier side. If they got a bit of lipstick on their shirt, they would take it to the laundry and get it washed. It was that kind of thing.

In those days the FA Cup draw was only ever on the BBC. Everybody stopped to listen to the draw. There was only one radio in the club and that was in the laundry. The players would mooch down there around the time just to listen to the draw. It was that kind of a place.

It was a very intimate atmosphere, which has long gone of course.

First-team shirts hung in the street
The players were big stars to me but would travel in on the bus or cycle. They would go in the same shops as you.

We lived in Salford. Eddie Colman - another who died in Munich - was born and lived in Salford. A lot of the boys lived in Stretford, round Longford Park.


"When my mum saw me she would take me back inside Old Trafford with her"

In the school holidays I would come down to the ground, like lots of kids did, just to hang around.

You couldn't get in the ground but you just stood waiting for the players to arrive and go out. However, in those days, when my mum and my aunt washed the clothes, they would often hang them out on lines between the stadium wall and the railway fence. Can you imagine now putting shirts on the line to dry?
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My mum would come out with a basket full of shirts and when she saw me, she would take me back in with her. That was my day made. All the other kids were looking at me marching into the ground. She would take me to the laundry room and make me a drink. Players or trainers would come down. I was in seventh heaven.

I am sure the coffins didn't need polishing but there was this closeness, an affection - caring for them when they were alive and carrying that on

I remember one day I was in the dressing room for some reason. Tommy Taylor and David Pegg came in. Tommy lit a cigarette - you couldn't do that now of course. But he dropped his matches. I was on the floor so fast to pick them up for him. I looked up and saw him laughing, nudging Pegg going 'look at this stupid kid'.

The players went dancing to the plaza on a Saturday night. The fans would see them there, or in the chip shop.

On Sunday afternoon you could go into Longford Park in Stretford and find them playing football with the kids. They would be walking around and someone had a ball and they would join in. That is the way it was.

Breaking news? We waited days
United beat Red Star 2-1 at Old Trafford in the first leg of their quarter-final. They drew 3-3 in Belgrade on a Wednesday afternoon to go through and then embarked on the return journey in a chartered plane. United had stopped to refuel in a snowy Munich when their Airspeed Ambassador plane crashed as it made its third attempt to take off, ploughing through a fence at the end of the runaway and hitting a house.

We did not know much about the match, just what we saw in the newspapers.
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Pegg, who joked with a young Ramsden in the changing rooms at Old Trafford, lost his life at Munich

The next day, it must have been about 4pm. Mum had come home from work, I was home from school. Someone came to the door. It was a young boy from the next street. He knew where my mum worked and he came to tell her that he had heard on the radio that there had been a plane crash.

My mother sent him away with a flea in his ear and told him not to say such terrible things. She couldn't believe it was true. But over a period of hours and days, the truth emerged.

I have been in the museum on a number of occasions. There is a spread of all the newspapers. It is quite amazing how slowly the story unfolded.

One day it is this, next day so and so is getting better, the next he is getting worse. It took five or six days for the full story to emerge.

I remember being in school on the Friday and the word went round the playground that Tommy Taylor had survived. It was actually journalist Frank Taylor. It is difficult for people of a certain generation to understand how little news came and how slowly it came. I do recall it took a long time for the full story to emerge.

They polished the coffins - it was wanting to do something
Fairly soon after the crash the bodies started to arrive.

There is lots of newsreel footage of them arriving at Manchester airport and being brought to the ground. The gymnasium, which was alongside the dressing rooms, was turned into a temporary mortuary. That is where the bodies stayed for quite some time.

My mum and aunty polished the coffins. Partly it was wanting to do something. I am sure they didn't need polishing but there was this closeness, an affection - caring for them when they were alive and carrying that on.

It always struck me that one week they were washing their shirts, the following week they were polishing coffins. Even now, 60 years on, when you start to think about it, it is just quite amazing.

It was not long after the war. Nobody came and said "how are you coping, are you all right?" That wasn't the way in 1958. You just got on with what you were doing.

Back on the field 13 days later
"Wherever football is played, United is mourned," club chairman Harold Hardman said on the programme cover of United's first match after Munich. Amazingly, that took place on 19 February - just 13 days after the crash. United beat Sheffield Wednesday 3-0 in the third round of the FA Cup and went on to reach the final that year, losing to Bolton.


Seven of the players photographed here lining up for United in March 1957 were killed in Munich
We lived in Salford, so we had perhaps a 15-minute walk to the ground. My mum got a couple of tickets for every game, so my dad and I went.

We were walking down Trafford Road and there were more people walking back towards us than were walking down because the ground was full so early. We were fighting a tide of supporters. It was unreal.

We had been welling up with this great sadness and tragedy and here was a chance to go to a football match where you could shout and cheer. That was cathartic, I think.

But it was just this amazing feeling that the club was carrying on. There was that sense of relief, I suppose.

Sheffield Wednesday might as well have not turned up. They had no chance. I felt sorry for them. Everybody felt sorry for them. They daren't have won. It was just overwhelming.

People worked for nothing to keep the club going
Seven players were dead when United played Wednesday, and Duncan Edwards died days later. Manager Matt Busby remained seriously ill and was twice given his last rites. Assistant Jimmy Murphy had not travelled with the team because he was managing Wales at the time - and he took over for the rest of the season. He made signings and promoted youngsters but league form understandably suffered and the team finished 11th.


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yinyang

Alfrescian (Inf)
Asset
Dennis Viollet and Tommy Taylor (left to right in white) played against Arsenal on 1 February 1958. United won 5-4. Days later Taylor died on the runway in Munich

Goalkeeper Harry Gregg and defender Bill Foulkes came home quite quickly - Jimmy Murphy had gone over and brought them back overland. Both played against Wednesday and I have always been amazed at the strength of Harry and Bill to play so quickly.

Not only did we lose eight players. People like Johnny Berry and Jackie Blanchflower survived but never played again.

By and large, don't forget the club had been building this production line before Munich. There were people like Shay Brennan, Wilf McGuinness, Ronnie Cope, Freddy Goodwin, Alex Dawson, Mike Pearson. Quite a few players who were coming through.

To be fair to them, their careers were greatly affected by the fact they were brought through before perhaps they were ready for it. In other circumstances, it might have been another couple of years.

After the Sheffield Wednesday game a sort of normality came back. I think back to one of my predecessors Les Olive, who was the assistant secretary at the time of the crash. He was 28. The club secretary died in the crash and Les was suddenly thrust into this amazing situation. The club had little or no staff.

The stewards and ground committee came in from work on an evening and worked for nothing, just opening the post, helping to file applications for tickets and so on.

The club was run on a shoestring. There was no money. There was no financial support from anywhere, no big staff to take over.

It was a case of opening letters, reading them, marking what they wanted, putting them in the right pile, sorting the tickets, taking the money. It is a very slow and laborious job.

How they coped with everything else that was going on, even now I can't get my mind round it.

All people could see were the ghosts of Munich - they stopped coming
Some may say the crash made United unique. I would like to think it made for a very humble club.


Dennis Viollet and Tommy Taylor (left to right in white) played against Arsenal on 1 February 1958. United won 5-4. Days later Taylor died on the runway in Munich

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"Every year at this time my mind goes back to those days and the players I saw" - Ken Ramsden
I think from Munich we saw the affection there was for Manchester United and the love for it.

I know from my working life, a lot of people stopped coming after Munich. There are those who say 'you only became a fan after Munich'. That may be true for some but a lot of people stopped coming because they couldn't bear to come here and, as they saw it, see the ghosts of Munich.

That is perhaps not as widely known as some of the other stuff, but it is a fact that a number of people have told me over the years that their dad or uncle never came again because they couldn't bear to come
 
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