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Busy week ahead

Happy Monday y’all.

I tell ya what I had good old-time at the Rosso Bianco Nero new product launch on Saturday, held at the Mark Addy. If you’ve not heard of RBN before, where have you been? It was bobble-hat-tastic at Old Trafford last winter and it’s pretty much entirely down to these lads. They’re bringing a little bit of the high quality terrace wear-culture to wearing ‘colours’ at the game. Being United that means going as mad as having like a red button on something. You know how we do. Anyway. I added a pair of the Tricket socks to my collection yesterday and I’m eying up a couple of them over shirts for the coming season too. Their collaboration with Joe & Co is a producing gorgeous matchday clobber that you really should check out, they’re local lads who are working with high quality local manufacturers, a worthy cause. So for a free plug, clicky linky – www.rossobianconero.com

Saturday night I wasn’t at the big house, but there was around 110,000 people who were, wow, what an incredible turn out for a pre-season friendly. I’d never heard of Ann Arbor before this tour was announced but evidently, the city is home to the largest stadium in the States, third largest in the world and we packed it out for a meaningless game. But besides that, what we’re seeing on the pitch is far more impressive. I’m not one who buys into the fact it’s ‘only’ pre-season. This is our preparation time. I’ve said several times results aren’t as important as seeing how the shape works, as it was clear that Van Gaal was going to change the shape. But the results and the performances have been great. Even the 0-0 with Inter Milan we completely dominated the game. Last night we took apart a Madrid team that was ‘weakened’, but still included Bale, Ramos, Casillas, Pepe, Modric, and Ronaldo later on. Yet in our team? The much maligned Welbeck, Young, Fletcher and the youth of Keane, latterly Lingard, Zaha, Blackett and Cleverley. I’ve been an admirer of Blackett virtually since I first seen him play and always felt his physical attributes meant he’d move centrally from the left back position. He’s had a wonderful tour and as it stands I think he might be the player whose stock has risen the highest. He’s shown composure and potential to slot into this three man system Van Gaal is going to employ. He’s going to grow into his frame and could end up a colossus like Stam if he learns how to use it. So all positive so far in terms of what we’ve seen and I’m starting to love Van Gaal more and more each time he speaks. He’s great. Would we be so besotted with him if we hadn’t had the darkness of the short and not sweet David Moyes era? Would he have looked so great following Fergie himself?

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The coming week looks to be a full one for the diary. Tuesday morning (or late on Monday if you’re gonna stay up) we face the Scousers in the International Champions Cup final. No such thing as a friendly against this lot and I hope that now we’re hanging about to play them in Miami we treat it like it’s a Cup Final and go out to put them to the sword. Last season’s Liverpool side was a fluke for them. Let’s get this straight. That squad, especially with no Suarez reeks of average. We flattered them with shite performances last term and it took about 12 penalties for them to win at Old Trafford. So let’s not kid ourselves or allow them to think they’re any better than us. I want to Louis Van Gaal to prove this by giving them a good old slapping.

We’ve also got the Class of 92 vs Salford game next week and I’m hearing a little whisper that a certain Mr David Beckham will be playing. No-one is really certain what to expect from the CO92 boy’s takeover of Salford. So we all watch with eager anticipation of what is to come. Either way what looks like a sell-out for a pre-season for Salford City can only be a good thing and hopefully the supposed plan of them giving young local lads a chance to get first team football at a decent level (I believe they’re aiming at conference) is a good thing that I support.

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Once all that’s out the way we’re less than 1 week to go to the season. Feels like it’s come around so fast. My season ticket arrived on Weds, so I’m all set for the new season. The football has been fantastic on tour. You’ve all seen the highlights and know the sequences I’m talking about, that form should carry us through the first few matches. But time’s running out. We need those new signings or we’ll not have the quality to compete across the whole season.

Enjoy your week and I’ll be back next Monday for those subscribed to the mailing list, or Tuesday it’ll go on the site.

Stephen

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