Two great English football clubs, but are Manchester United suffering what could be called ‘Liverpool Syndrome’ and facing a long spell of domestic failure? Imagine 25 years with no league title to celebrate at Old Trafford…
It’s certainly possible, Liverpool so successful during the 1970/80’s, have failed to win the domestic league title in over 25 years. Overtaken by Man Utd during their most successful spell under Sir Alex Ferguson during the 1990’s up until his retirement in May 2013. David Moyes, Louis Van Gaal and now Jose Mourinho have been tasked with overseeing a new generation at Old Trafford, with the previous two spells ultimately ending with a push out the door.
Mourinho has enjoyed success wherever he has gone, but now he faces his greatest managerial test, how can he possibly live up to the high expectations left by Sir Alex?
At Liverpool many high-profile managers have come and gone, they have enjoyed success in cup competitions and on the european stage but the Premier League trophy is the one that has eluded them for all this time.
Man Utd fans after a spell of long-term dominance and watching the worlds grace Old Trafford now face a potential long spell of Champions League exile and losing further ground on city rivals Manchester City. Something Liverpool fans have been all too familiar with, finishing as low as 8th during the 2011/12 season.
Failure to qualify for the Champions League is almost unthinkable for Mourinho having splashed on marquee signing Paul Pogba for a world record fee, surely that is the minimum target. The problem he has is fitting big names into a working system, with talented players such as Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial forced out wide or benched to accommodate Ibrahimovic and Wayne Rooney, who seemingly appears to be coming to the end of his influential best.
In defence Daily Blind, Eric Bailly and Chris Smalling are incomparable to the likes gone by such as Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand and Jaap Stam. The money spent on Pogba shows they are still a financial force to be reckoned with, however surely the amount spent could have been invested in two or three players to strengthen the team as a whole? They are crying out for a Matuidi or Kante in that midfield.
Mourinho has a decision to make, does he finally drop his captain in order to get the best out of other players or will he persevere. Whatever happens it is hard to ignore the fact that this is no longer the Man Utd of old, much as Liverpool fans will accept that their dominance during the 1980’s finally is long gone in the history books.
Both Man Utd and Liverpool are in for hugs seasons, Klopp is truly trying to build a legacy on Merseyside with legendary status promised if he ends the long wait for league success. Mourinho on the other hand has possibly the biggest few months ahead of his managerial career.