The Hard Tackle takes a look at the key news stories surrounding Premier League giants Manchester United from the day.
Manchester United played out a hard fought 1-1 draw against arch rivals Liverpool at Old Trafford on Sunday, mounting a late comeback to keep their unbeaten run alive. Post the exciting result for the Red Devils, here’s a roundup of everything happening in and around the Theatre of Dreams.
Speaking of the match, Manchester United defender applauded the efforts of the fans present at Old Trafford, after the Red Devils rallied and battled to come from a goal down to level the match and earn a vital point in the dying stages of Sunday’s game.
Jones hailed the supporters for getting behind Jose Mourinho’s side, as the Manchester United fans chanted their heart out all through the game, before Zlatan Ibrahimovic struck the all-important equaliser thanks to his looping header over Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet.
Speaking to MUTV, Jones said, “The fans spurred us on. You could hear them throughout the game, even when we were 1-0 down they were terrific. They helped us get that equaliser, the place erupted when Ibra scored, it absolutely erupted.”
Continuing with the post-match talk, and Manchester United midfielder Henirkh Mkhitaryan believes that Jose Mourinho’s side deserved more from the game, claiming that the 1-1 draw “wasn’t the right result” by any means.
Mkhitaryan claimed that Manchester United were the team that played better football throughout the match despite trailing for large parts of the duration of the game on Sunday. However, he was also quick to point out that the stalemate wasn’t a bad result considering they trailed for such a long time.
Mkhitaryan told MUTV, “It wasn’t the right result but we were down 1-0 so it wasn’t a bad result. We could have won, we could have lost, but I think we deserved to win more because we played very well like a team and did our best to win the game. So 1-1 is not a bad result because we are still very close to the top four and we will do our best in the next games.”
Manchester City’s 4-0 loss to Everton had given United the best chance to close the gap on their city rivals as well as Liverpool, but Sunday’s result now means that the gap to fourth has increased from three to four points.
Talking about the Armenia international, Mkhitaryan has stunningly revealed how he might have been turning out for Liverpool instead of Manchester United on Sunday evening, because he had the chance to join the Reds in 2013.
Mkhitaryan said he held transfer talks with last Sunday’s opponents and United’s fiercest rivals Liverpool back when Brendan Rodgers was still in charge at Anfield, but rejected the move in favour of his eventual transfer to Borussia Dortmund from Shakhtar Donetsk.
That was because, even though he had the prospect to play with Liverpool greats like Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez, Mkhitaryan had doubts over his ability to meet the physical demands of the Premier League, thus choosing to move to Germany instead.
Moving ahead with some transfer related news, and it looks like Spanish giants Real Madrid could reportedly be back into the market to make a move for Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea, making the Spaniard a top priority for the impending summer transfer window.
The reports claim that Real Madrid manager has taken the decision to sell the incumbent custodian Keylor Navas and make a bid to sign their long-term target De Gea, who they so nearly signed in 2015, before a failure to submit the paperwork meant that the deal fell through.
That worked well in United’s favour as De Gea proved to be the game changer for the Red Devils in several matches last season, earning vital points for his side all through the season before winning the club’s Player of the Year award.
This season, De Gea hasn’t been called upon as regularly as previous seasons, but has still made match defining saves on various occasions, keeping Manchester United in the matches against Liverpool and West Ham United among others. Thus United are unlikely to be keen to let their star man go, if and when Los Blancos come calling.
Finally, from one star to another, and it looks like Manchester United managed to sign Paul Pogba despite interest from Real Madrid and Barcelona, thus snatching the French midfielder from the clutches of the Spanish giants.
In fact, Pogba revealed that he snubbed interest from Real Madrid and Barcelona because he has a special place in his heart for Manchester United, and wanted to win everything with the club of his dreams.
Pogba has established himself to be one of the key figures in Jose Mourinho’s squad after struggling to settle to life back in England. And despite failing to make a mark against Liverpool on Sunday, he continues to remain an important member for the Manchester United boss.