Are Manchester United ever going to win a football match again?
After two straight defeats for Jose Mourinho’s men, Manchester United fans have entered a melodramatic meltdown. Yes, they were poor against Brighton, but we are only three games into the season!
Their opportunity to recover from this ‘slump’ will come at Turf Moor, against a Burnley side who are seemingly suffering the worst kind of hangover: a European one.
Their Europa League qualifying exploits are clearly taking their toll on Sean Dyche’s men, who play the second-leg of their final European play-off against Olympiakos just three days before they face United.
The Clarets have one point from their opening three, and look a shell of the rock-solid side who finished seventh last season.
Mournho’s public show of defiance – much of it for the cameras – after their 3-0 Spurs defeat shows he isn’t quite done at Old Trafford just yet. Defeat to Burnley would push him perilously close to that trap door, but I think Sunday is when they sort themselves out. It’s a good time to play Burnley, and United will squeak through with a win by a one goal margin.
The main problems both sides face going into this game is in defence. United’s centre-backs all seem to be as bad as each other – how Chris Smalling and Phil Jones are STILL Manchester United players is beyond me – while Burnley have conceded 10 goals in their last three matches.
With this in mind, I’m expecting circumspection from both teams. Mourinho and Dyche aren’t the most attacking managers at the best of times, and I’m expecting this to be a gritty, stop-start affair.
United squeezed past Burnley 1-0 at Turf Moor last season courtesy of a second half winner, and I’m predicting a similar story here.
I’m tipping the score to be 0-0 at half-time for this one.
One man who will fancy himself against this low-on-confidence Burnley defence is Romelu Lukaku. The Belgian hasn’t hit top gear yet this season – despite a goal against Brighton – and if things start going against United, Mourinho will not think twice about going much more direct and planting the ball on his head.
I’m backing big Rom to score against Sean Dyche’s men as my final tip.