Manchester United News: David de Gea, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

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Manchester United drew at West Bromwich Albion 1-1 today, and with that saw two more points they could have had gone by the wayside. Given that they were facing a side that’s second from the bottom in the table, this was one where they really needed to take all three points.

With this latest development, their Premier League title prospects are probably now in their last throes. Amid this reality let’s go over some news items from the game, covering manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and goalkeeper David de Gea. For part one of MUFC news and notes go here.

Once again #OleOut is trending on Twitter as the “sack Solskjaer” brigade is out in full force. Above and below are a couple examples of some of the more colorful tweets we’ve seen in this vein. United have taken only ten points from their last seven in the league and that stretch included matches against the bottom three.

So while, yes, United were top of the table in January/the back half of the season for the first time since 2013, what was working before doesn’t seem to be working now.

Although it’s far from fair to put all the onus on Ole.

United/Solskjaer’s biggest problem is their defense, particularly the centre of it. Mbaye Diagne scored an early goal in a sequence where he absolutely torched central defender Victor Lindelof.

In a postmatch interview, Solskjaer explained what happened when his side fell behind early, again, except this time to one of the worst offensive teams in the league.

“It’s something we knew would happen from the kick-off. We knew they’d put us under pressure and put in a few throw-ins,” the Norwegian said.

“They put a cross in, and [Diagne] finished well. We should play better, but we gave ourselves a tough start. You have 90 minutes to make amends, but we didn’t build that momentum until late in the first half.”

De Gea has certainly had an up and down season. His gaffes against Everton probably cost the Red Devils two points, but he more than made up for it here, saving the team both literally and metaphorically.

Feeling the heat of potentially losing his starting spot, deservedly so, to Dean Henderson, the Spaniard really stepped up his play today.

De Gea bailed out Harry Maguire when Diagne worked him thoroughly. The United captain was either surprised by the striker’s physically overpowering him or he intentionally hit the floor trying to win a penalty. Either way, the United No. 1 bailed him out big time with a sensational save.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB NationFollow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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  1. wonderful blog..keep writing

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