United, Spurs, Liverpool, City, and a look back at a ridiculous Premier League season
As a Manchester United fan, this was the most polarizing season in recent times.
Ole's team played some fluid and counter-attacking football, but it didn't take long for them to lose the rhythm and show their true colors. United created history in Paris, but then succumbed to defeat against Cardiff on the final match day. Cardiff were already relegated by that time and stood 18th in the league. Earlier, it was the draw with another relegated team, Huddersfield. These drastic performances came at a time when getting three points was precious.
The result? A 6th-place finish in the Premier League, Europa League next year, loss of revenue from Champions League, and a strong possibility of missing out on important transfer targets.
United's season went from riches to rags in a span of three months. The purple patch of these players was shorter than the attention span of millennials . Mourinho's words of finishing 2nd with this squad started making sense. He was never the problem. A part of it may be, but not the only problem in the club. You can write a 5,000 piece article about the problems at the club. But watching this passionate rant of Gary Neville would be enough for now.
What made matters worse for a Man United fan was the way City and Liverpool were playing. In the Premier League, we witnessed a great two-horse title race thanks to these two teams. City fought hard in some of the must-win games and came out winning with all 3 points. Liverpool too played some ultra attacking football. But the fate had different plans. Liverpool finished second on 97 points, their highest points total ever.
Europe was a different story though. The Reds had to overcome Bayern and Barcelona in knockout stages and made history. Guardiola's men had some easy draws in knockout stage, but they were finally beaten in an dramatic game of football by Tottenham Hotspur.
Oh what an incredible season Spurs had! No transfers in either transfer window, delayed stadium work, and playing the home games away from home were some of the obstacles Spurs had to overcome this season. Despite the hurdles, Spurs defeated Ajax in the best semi-final of UCL. The trophy eventually eluded them, but that should not be the reason to look down on Spurs' season.
When four English clubs were playing European finals, United lost 4-0 to Everton. When English football was thriving, United became a laughing stock. A visit to Old Trafford meant a guaranteed one point. Talk about changing times.
United's bitter rivals won the League and Champions League in same season. The was the most frustrating thing for any United fan. Seeing Ashley Young putting wayward crosses in box and Pogba jogging box-to-box during games is second and third. A diffcult year for the fans across the globe.
Maybe the club will sort out their transfer problems this summer. Maybe the imminent overhaul of the squad will bring some positivity the playing style. Maybe Solskjaer will give the youth a chance. Maybe Sergio Ramos will finally join United this summer. Maybe United will be back in Champions League next season.
Or maybe, none of this will happen and we will have another mediocre season.
No matter what, fans like me would still watch every game week in week out on their TVs, Laptops and phones, because this is football and we are the famous Manchester United of this beautiful game.