Why Sir Alex Ferguson should sign another Veteran for this season

The talk of Manchester United’s midfield has started to become insipid, unfair criticism of Michael Carrick, whether Phil Jones is a midfielder or defender to the fact Anderson is turning into the new Djemba-Djemba.

The re-signing of Paul Scholes has boosted the squad who had been missing the young Tom Cleverly as a creative spark. As I watched the highlights of United’s 3-0 victory over Bolton Wanderer in which Scholes scored, I wondered just how they’d benefit from another veteran and former United player.

David Beckham had been extremely close to signing with Paris Saint-Germain following his contract with LA Galaxy ending on 31st December. However, talks broke down and new PSG boss Carlo Ancelotti revealed that Beckham rejected the deal because his family wanted to stay in Los Angeles.

I suppose it makes sense, Beckham who turns 37 in May would only be joining PSG on a short term basis, not the logical move for a young family to make. Reports suggest that he’ll sign a new contract with the Galaxy very soon; if he does it is likely a loan move whilst the MLS season is off looks likely.

Tottenham Hotspur and Queens Park Rangers have been the two named clubs rumoured in signing Beckham but the player himself has said he’d find it extremely hard to play against United for any other Premier League team.

That’s why I can see a loan deal for Beckham a viable option for Sir Alex Ferguson as his United side that hope to retain the Premier League title from the advances of City and Spurs.

Scholes coming out of retirement shocked a few, especially with the sale of Darron Gibson to Everton and the fact Anderson seems to be out of favour, could the team benefit from another veteran?

Whilst Becks may not have the fitness for full on Premier League games, he could play a vital part. Scholes came off for fellow veteran Ryan Giggs against Bolton and similar rotation could be done with Beckham.

No one can argue against the statement that Beckham is one of the best crossers of the football in the World and his delivery and passing could booster United’s midfield for the rest of the season.

The hype and fame that comes with Beckham may be off putting for SAF but as Becks is close to retiring, perhaps a return and bow out to English football would make it all the more worthwhile.

He’s expected to be included in the Great Britain team come the 2012 Olympic Games, he’ll want to be fit for it and the MLS season does not start until March.

We saw fellow ex-Premier League/MLS stars Thierry Henry and Robbie Keane return with Loan deals to Arsenal and Aston Villa. If Becks does re-sign for LA Galaxy again, Fergie should give him a call and see if he can add that extra option to the United midfield with silverware in mind that would end a golden era of players.

I don’t think that’s one move David Beckham could ever turn down.


Just what is Phil Jones’ best position? #ManUtd

One of Manchester United’s most interesting signings in the summer was the capture of Phil Jones from Blackburn Rovers for a transfer fee around £16.5 Million. The money is not in question as Jones has made an emphatic start at his new club and has made the most appearances for the Red Devils so far this season.

At the weekend, Jones scored his first goal for United with an excellent side footed volley in the area from Nani’s cross. It was a finish that any attacking player would be proud of and in particular United legends like Bryan Robson and Brian McClair.

It begs the question that has been on my mind throughout the season so far and that is just what is Phil Jones’ best position?

Naturally, he is a centre half and no doubt Sir Alex Ferguson signed him to be the successor of Rio Ferdinand and/or Nemanja Vidic. In particular, Fergie signed Jones not only for his football talent but also his leadership and many in the game have tipped him to be a future United captain, as well as England.

However, after seeing how well he has adapted to life at Old Trafford, it’s remarkable to think that he is only 19 years old. He plays with a sense of confidence that usually players his senior command on the pitch, he is bound to be one of the best Defenders in the future but what about now?

Jones has played at the back for United this season on a number of occasions but he has also filled in at right-back where he looked competent but not his natural game. However, the times he has been pushed up the pitch in United’s midfield has seen him come alive.

When breaking though to the Blackburn Rovers team, he was preferred in midfield mainly because of Rovers’ competent centre-backs Ryan Nelsen and Christopher Samba. Still he impressed as a defensive midfielder however, for United you often see him bursting forward with the ball and creating opportunities.

The beautiful finish at Villa Park, which won United the game 1-0, makes me wonder if he should be considered as a midfielder for the next several years.

Whilst the centre-back position may be his natural trait, it’s a position that is often thrived with plenty of experience and like I already mentioned in this article, Jones is bound to be one of the best when he’s older.

However, at only 19, I feel that he could solidify that United midfield that appears to be lacking this season bringing to mind the classic square pegs in round holes cliché.

And maybe the holding midfielder role isn’t even right for him, as he’s a player who likes to move forward. Perhaps a more box-to-box central midfield position would suit him and United throughout this season and through the next.

The only downside to his versatility is that he could become just that, a versatile player who fits in various positions on the pitch without making one his own. It’s a similar story to John O’Shea and his demise from the United team.

Just what is O’Shea’s best position? I couldn’t really tell you but perhaps it is unfair to compare the two, whilst O’Shea is a better footballer than often given credit for, Jones has the potential to be much, much better.

I for one can’t wait to see what is to come from the youngster, for England’s sake more over.

The Friday Focus: Midlands Derby, Fergie Dilemma & More…

Friday Focus

The Midlands Derby

If Alex McLeish can steer his Aston Villa side to victory over their midland rivals Wolves, then it’d go even further to endearing himself to the Holte End faithful. Wolves on the other hand, are still buoyant over their home win over Fulham last week. Expect a keenly fought local derby on Saturday afternoon.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s Selection Dilemma

With Phil Jones and Chris Smalling performing with distinction on Monday evening against Spurs, what thoughts are occupying Ferguson in terms of Manchester United’s clash with Arsenal?. I was curious to see Jones being deployed as a right centre-back with Jonny Evans deployed on the left of him. Is Chris Smalling seen as a long term option at right back? Will Tom Cleverley continue to flourish or flounder as a central midfielder? All these questions and more will be answered when Arsenal visit the Theatre of Dreams.

Nottingham Forest v West Ham

Another clash of the big name managers in The Championship. With Steve Mc Claren and Sam Allardyce in the dugout, there’s bound to be more focus on their touchline antics rather than the game itself. West Ham’s form under Allardyce has been far from sparkling and they’ll be keen to find some form at the City Ground.

AVB aka Andre Villas-Boas

The man of the managerial moment, Mr Villas-Boas hasn’t had things go all his own way since he touched down in England. Judging by Villas-Boas’ firm rebuttal to the audible boos from the Chelsea crowd during their win over West Brom, it seems that Villas-Boas was starting to believe his own hype. It looks like Villas-Boas is becoming a prickly character even at this early stage of his debut season in the Premier League. He’ll definitely be one to watch.

Arsene Wenger

Arsene Wenger is being criticised from all corners (Arsenal fans included). Despite the recent sales of Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasir, Wenger has remained defiant to all the naysayers. Arsenal’s clash with Manchester United won’t provide the death knell that many people predicted. Arsenal’s win over Udinese has given the players and Wenger a fillip. Arsene Wenger will leave Old Trafford after the match with his head held high, win, lose or draw.

Done Deals: Sunderland looking good,Leicester on the march…

  Another new feature for the Verbal Football blog is Done Deals, a general round-up and opinion on the latest transfers from the football world. Whilst we’ve been bombarded with transfer rumours over the summer break, this section will only focus on Done Deals in the transfer market.

The Premier League champions, Manchester United have been very assertive in the transfer market but it was to be expected. Despite manager, Sir Alex Ferguson commenting on how over priced the current market is last summer, this close season he’s had no choice but make some signings with the loss of Edwin Van der Saar, Gary Neville and Paul Scholes to retirement.

Whilst I covered United’s signings in a previous article on Fergie and his Continue reading

Manchester United & Sunderland set the transfer standard

  Since the closing games of the 2010/2011 season there have been rumours galore on potential transfers set to be taking place over the summer but many of them have yet to be concluded. However, two clubs from the English Premier League have done the business, nice and early and in preparation for the up and coming pre-season campaign.

Barclays Premier League champions, Manchester United have made three great signings to bolster their squad. They may have lost veterans Paul Scholes, Gary Neville and Edwin Van der Saar to retirement but Sir Alex Ferguson has signed three Continue reading

Manchester United’s Wing Wizards







With Manchester United signing England International Ashley Young from Aston Villa, I feel it’s pertinent to analyse the state of play with regards to the rest of the wide players currently at Old Trafford. Sir Alex Ferguson has always been a fan of wide players, the recent purchase of Young proves this to be the case. Read on…

Continue reading

Is Steve McClaren really that bad?

 Yesterday, I couldn’t help but over hear the thoughts of Aston Villa fans via TalkSport and Twitter commenting on the news that Steve McClaren could become the new manager of Continue reading

Crucial time ahead for Arsene Wenger

 The 2010/2011 season has to be one of the worst for Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger since he was appointed manager of the north London club in 1996. The previous season saw the Gunners go a sixth consecutive season without winning a trophy and the pressure from the fans and the media were and still are high in scrutiny of the team, but most importantly the manager.

It’s a big conundrum at Arsenal Continue reading

Monday Muse: Handballs,Promotions&Relegations

  Time for a very late Monday Muse here on Verbal Football which has undergone a number of makeovers in the last week, but it’s all part of the process. Another bank holiday weekend of football action saw promotion and relegations settled across the Football League, whilst the Premier League table is looking as unpredictable as ever.

I was not surprised to see Arsenal victorious in the home game against Manchester United yesterday. The 1-0 victory was perhaps deserved on their overall performance where the young and exuberant midfielders Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey had a field day against a lack lustre United team.

Perhaps the extra Champions League games have caught up with United and they would’ve settled for a draw at the Emirates, knowing that a win over Chelsea next weekend will (more or less) win them the English Premier League title. But typically this Arsenal side play well when there isn’t so much pressure on top of their young heads after squandering three potential victories in their last three games that could’ve seen them top of the league right now.

Something that did shock me was to see Liverpool now 5th in the English Premier League. Where did that come from? Kenny Dalglish deserves all the plaudits for rejuvenating the Liverpool side into having some kind of successful season that was looking like mid table mediocrity around Christmas. It also questions whether Harry Redknapp and Tottenham Hotspur even want 5th spot and Europa League qualification? Continue reading