Man United vs. QPR: Rio Must Be S***ting Himself
The Empire is indeed, striking back. Or so it would seem, anyway. A vast amount of summer spending has given the champions of two years ago a very different look compared to before the international break and whilst there’s a good few United fans pleased with a forward line to strike fear into opposition bowels, some are still sweating about defensive frailties that weren’t addressed.
Darth Van Gaal has somehow managed to strengthen his squad in all the wrong areas and weaken his squad in all the wrong ones, too. Marcos Rojo is a much-needed addition who can turn his hand to left-back or centre-back, which, you know, is pretty good. Daley Blind has also arrived with a reputation as something of a go-go gadget utility man who’d apparent be just as happy in goal as up front. All well and good, you might say. But with the recent news that Phil Jones is out injured for three weeks (Jones injured? Well I never) there are certainly worrying looks being cast across pubs in Manchester about the form of Jonny Evans and Chris Smalling.
However, that being said, Falcao eh? Much was made of the decision to sell Danny Welbeck to Arsenal and if Van Gaal’s scathing assessment of why he was sold is anything to go by, there will be few at United who will escape the Dutchman’s wrath if they under-perform. Few will argue that Falcao isn’t a better striker. Add Di Maria, a splash of Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata and a big helping of Robin Van Persie and you’ve got something akin to the outer shell of the Death Star complete with planet-destroying capabilities. A few members of the old guard have mumbled bits and bobs about a ‘loss of identity’, but it’s a front line to rival the best in the world. The crumbling, ageing legs of ex-Imperial Commander Rio Ferdinand must be trembling.
Which bring us nicely onto QPR, or the rebels – for the point of this article’s increasingly strained geek continuity (even though they too, splashed the cash in very un-rebel fashion). No one is ever sure whether ‘Arry is a genius or a complete cretin, and his side resembles previously unsuccessful Redknapp sides in as much as Nico Kranjcar has (again) been drafted in presumably to provide questionable flair and non-existent defensive qualities. But they’ve also got a fairly solid spine.
Caulker at the back is decent, Sandro in the middle who is decent, and Bobby Zamora up top who, again, is decent. So perhaps you’d be a fool to rate their chances of storming a Death Star with obvious shortcomings as, you know, decent.
But life is not a George Lucas production. You’d expect United to be too much for the fairly new and un-proven QPR rear-guard. There’s always a chance that if the ball is worked early and quickly to Fer and Hoilett that they could give Shaw and Rafael a bit of a torrid time, but with a lot of money spent and a hell of a lot to prove – this one might not 'ave the 'Ollywood ending Old ‘Arry is 'oping for.