Manchester United’s remarkable winning run under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer continued as they beat Spurs 1-0 at Wembley on Sunday.
This was their biggest test since Ole took over, and they passed, thanks mainly to the form of keeper David De Gea.
The previous four Premier League wins were against inferior opposition that United would be expected to beat.
Even while stuttering under the leadership of Jose Mourinho, United fans would still expect their team to beat Cardiff, Huddersfield, Bournemouth, and Newcastle.
Spurs were a different proposition. The Londoners are a team United could really be judged against. To beat them away from home was a massive statement from the Red Devils.
Solskjaer’s Winning Run
Under Solskjaer’s leadership United won their previous four matches matches in style. They played attacking, attractive football, scoring goals aplenty.
Fourteen goals in fact, five against Cardiff, three Huddersfield, they put four past Bournemouth, and two past a stubborn Newcastle.
In three of those four games, United brought in the Over 2.5 goals bet. Finding out what does over/under goals mean is important in football betting, as it can be a very profitable betting market.
Compared to the performances under Mourinho, this sort of football must seem like watching Brazil in the 70’s.
Would it be too simplistic to say that simply releasing the shackles off Paul Pogba has been the difference in the team and has led to the winning run under Solskjaer? The Frenchman has played a key role in the recent revival.
Ole Has Brought His Share Of Good Luck
Sometimes it is said that it’s better to be a lucky manager, and Ole certainly seems to have brought some good fortune with him.
He had the four not too difficult matches to start with, and he had his fair share of luck at Wembley beating Spurs.
It could be said that Spurs let them off the hook. Despite De Gea’s heroics, the London side were wasteful in front of goal. Had Spurs come back and got the draw (or even won), there could have been little argument they deserved it.
If United had lost to Spurs it would have just looked like Solskjaer’s team could hammer the also ran’s, but not the big boys. The win over Spurs at Wembley puts that theory to bed.
United Still Rely Too Much On David De Gea
There was something of the United of old in the second half against Spurs though – the over reliance of keeper David De Gea.
Like in so many of the previous seasons, De Gea was outstanding, taking the Man of the Match award. The statistics showed that De Gea made more saves in the second half than any keeper has made in a whole 90 minutes of a Premier League match all this season.
Can United Make It Into The Top 4?
They have certainly given themselves a good chance. They are now level on points with Arsenal, and they are 6 points off the Champions League places. Given that Spurs and Chelsea haven’t been overly convincing, if United could keep this run going, then why not!
They have a stronger looking squad than Spurs (if not first XI). Just looking at the bench yesterday, United had the services of Romelu Lukaku and Juan Mata to call on. Spurs only really had Erik Lamela as a game changing option.
The players are there for United, and a top 4 finish is back within their grasp. It just remains to be seen if they are the real deal under Solskjaer, or if this is just a mini revival that will turn out to be a flash-in-the-pan.