making face to face appointments.
Spurs latest shambles cured Man United of their ills, while surgically removing Nuno from White Hart Lane.
Well, that’s it for Nuno and after that game and atmosphere in the stadium during and after, it’s no surprise that Levy and co. chose to move quickly, his sacking coming less than 48 hours after another toothless, clueless, display.
After a couple of weeks of being pilloried, Ole and and United couldn’t have had a better opponents than Spurs. It was damning for Nuno though, he was out coached, out thought, while his team was out fought, as they went another 90 minutes with registering a shot on target, by a manager who had spent the last week – and more really – as a laughing stock, dead man walking.
This was jokingly named El Sackico and that’s what it turned out to be.
Solskjaer got the better of Nuno from before kick-off. The Norwegian went with his get-out-of-jail formation, of a back three, and picked the right players for his formation. While Nuno stuck with the formation he’d been using of late and stuck in a couple of players who raised eyebrows, both of whom failed him on the day.
Don’t know why he picked Davies over Reguilon. Again, Spurs needed width and needed pace, neither of which Davies offered. Did he think Davies would match up better against Ronaldo than the Spaniard? Or was it the fastest way he knew of getting out of Spurs?
The latter, then well played. The former, then he deserved what he got. The boos, the chants of “you don’t know what you are doing”.
The opening goal summed Spurs up on the day. A lot of bodies standing about doing nothing, in front of the Spurs’ area, no pressing of Fernandez when he put the cross over to Ronaldo, Davies losing his man and trying to jump for the ball, which Ronaldo met with a fierce first time volley after it floated over the Welshman’s head. What summed it up even more was almost exactly the same situation played out for Spurs. Kane tried to chest the ball, floundered and fell over.
Spurs could have been ahead by the time of the visitor’s first. Romero had one chalked out for offside from a corner. While Son brought the ball down beautifully before bizarrely ballooning his shot into the stands.
And that was the thing, United were there for the taking. Score one of them and what would happen to Ole’s side? Would heads drop? Would they pack it in as they had before? Score both and surely Ole is off while Nuno has a stay of execution. But the visitors seemed to be fighting more for their manager than those in white were doing for Nuno.
And win it and Spurs go top four on the day but lose and they’re down to 8th, a win for either side in the week’s final game and it’s down to 9th. In a league that sees them with the worst goal difference out of the bottom four. Their nine goals is ranked 18th, they’re 19th for shots and chances created, while bottom for distance covered and defeats by three or more goals.
The crowd turned when he brought off Moura for Bergwijn. I was surprised it came so early in the game, the 54th minute, also surprised at the reaction. Moura wasn’t the worst player on the pitch but he wasn’t exactly as good as the reaction would have you believe. Yes he ran about as he does but again there was no end product and I mean his last league goal was in February, some 20 games ago, while his last assist was in the corresponding fixture from last season, in April, 14 games ago.
Honestly it was a like for like sub. Yes, Lo Celso had a shocker, could have played an easy ball through to Son but put it behind him. It was an odd choice to start him, with Ndombele featuring regularly recently. But then so many of them could have departed including the booed one.
One of our own booed and deservedly so. Another phoned in performance from the stroppy, pouting Kane. Sad end but a new manager will give him a new start, even though many want to see Kane relegated to the bench or the Cup understudies.
He was never gonna score, Spurs were never gonna score. United didn’t need the protection of a second or third but they got them. The second came from dull sideways play. Hojbjerg, who has had a few off days recently, needlessly passing sideways and playing Skipp into trouble. He coughed up the ball and then Cavani was through. 47 year old Cavani who got through more work in the 80 minutes he was on the park here than Kane has all season.
Then just before the end Davies floundering and playing Rashford onside for him to wrap it up and for the boos to ring out. Boos for the players, boos for Nuno, boos for Levy, all coming from that part of the stadium which boosts the “atmosphere”. Oh, I bet Levy loved that and it’ll have played a major part in Nuno’s departure.
Yup, I was happy with Nuno at the start – he seems like a nice guy, as I said before he wouldn’t be an embarrassment to the club off the field but on it, it became one – but was he hampered by everything surrounding the club? From Kane’s to Fabio Paratici saying he wanted a defensive set up? The director of football apparently made an early exit on Saturday – on the phone to Conte? – and seems to be getting a free pass but wasn’t Nuno his choice, didn’t he talk Levy into him and this dull approach, when Levy wanted action and forward movement?
Anyway, the way they’re talking it looks like Conte is a done deal… but this is Spurs… so we’ll see… and whoever it is, he’ll have the same players that were failing under Poch, failed under Jose and now failed Nuno…