Man Utd’s meeting with Newcastle United in the League Cup at Old Trafford is a repeat of last season’s final, which the Red Devils won and Erik ten Hag will be keen to retain the trophy.
8 months ago Erik ten Hag danced jubilantly on the Wembley pitch with Antony and Lisandro Martinez as Manchester United celebrated their first trophy in six years. The victory in the League Cup final against Newcastle United is considered the first milestone on Ten Hag’s journey to bring the Red Devils back to the top. But since then Man United have made a series of missteps.
The joy of that February night vanished when this season got off to a terrible start. Man United have been lethargic, lackluster, listless and sometimes downright worrying in the early months of this season.
And so, as they prepare to face Newcastle in the League Cup once again, Ten Hag and his players must find an answer to their current difficulties. The derby defeat to Manchester City has left the mood at Old Trafford low. Antony went from a cheerful dancer to a hot-tempered player, shaking his head in annoyance when he was left on the bench against Man City and then luckily avoiding a red card when he came on. Martinez, a talisman for MU, is injured again and Ten Hag is facing questions about everything from his playing style to recruitment and conflicts in the dressing room.
All combined makes MU look like a derailed ship. Ten Hag seemed to be on the right track last season but now it is not. They are about to return to play in the League Cup – a tournament that is often overlooked, but it was very important for the Red Devils last season and could be again this season. Man United are the defending champions and this is the easiest trophy to achieve this season as they are only 4 wins away from winning it.
This title could bring salvation to a season. Man United’s only perfect performance this season was in the most recent League Cup round against Crystal Palace. If the Red Devils can recreate a similar performance against Eddie Howe’s team then they will win again. pump hope.
A win would guarantee a place in the last eight and a favorable draw could see them progress to the semi-finals. Lifting the League Cup title may not be enough to get people dancing in the streets of Manchester, but it could help change the mood around Old Trafford.
Thanh Vu | 18:48 November 1, 2023