Historical Transfer News and Team Gossip has been archived below:
Sir Alex Ferguson once again look to strengthen is squad for next seasons campaign after a largely disappointing season which saw the side from Old Trafford end the season with no silver wear for the first time in many years. The manager feels his squad over achieved last season due to their huge injury list and did extremely well to only lose out to Manchester City for the title on goal difference.
The managers first signing of the year was former Crewe Alexandra playmaker Nick Powell who is thought to have cost the Red Devils a fee of around six million pounds. Sir Alex has long been an admirer of this young and talented player who is believed to be a long term hot prospect for the side as they once again go on their usual charge for honours and silver wear.
Another signing that has been made which Manchester United fans will be extremely happy about is Shinji Kagawa from Borussia Dortmund who has himself been in sensational form for his previous club inspiring them to win the German Bundesliga title last season. The player has been welcomed with open arms at Old Trafford as his capabilities as an attacking midfielder are well known throughout Europe and he is now seen as a long term replacement for the ageing Paul Scholes.
There has also been a link lately to want away Arsenal striker Robin Van Persie with Manchester United as Sir Alex has long been an admirer of the talismatic Dutch striker. Utd will have to beat off opposition from many of Europe`s top clubs for the players signature as Juventus and domestic rivals Manchester City are both extremely interested in obtaining the Dutchman’s signature this summer.
Another player who is thought to be firmly on Sir Alex`s radar is creative midfielder Lucas Moura who currently plies his trade at Sao Paulo as he is now one of the hottest prospects in world football and has received much attention this summer from many of Europe`s top clubs. The player can offer both attacking and defensive play and is seen as the perfect addition to the red Devil`s squad after they lost out on Eden Hazard who has of course signed for Chelsea.
Dimitar Berbatov is one of the most high profile players to leave Old Trafford this summer as he has been told he no longer has a future at the club sparking much interest from around Europe. The player who has been at Manchester United for five years is now thought to be the top target of Ac Milan yet the Italian giants have been very coy on stating this. A fee of around the five million pound mark is thought to be required by Utd for his services and Ac Milan may have to fight off interest from Turkish giants Galatasaray if they wish to gain his signature.
Young left back Fabio has also departed from Old Trafford during the closed season on a year long loan at QPR as Sir Alex believes it will provide him with vital experience for his career amid fears he may find it hard to gain a regular place in the current Utd squad.
Chelsea players have taken active roles for charitable causes
‘It is going to help massively for kids,’ says Rashford
Marcus Rashford has praised Chelsea’s Reece James and Mason Mount for their “amazing” charitable work during the pandemic and believes it will help drive significant social change for the next generation.
Rashford, 23, has become a leading figure in the fight against child food poverty in Britain, with the Manchester United striker only last week calling for the government to launch a major and urgent review into the free school meals system.
Paul Pogba made the difference again as Manchester United came from behind to secure a 2-1 victory over Fulham. A stunning strike midway through the second half continued the midfielder's good form in front of goal. 'He does everything. We know Paul can do more or less everything that's asked of a midfielder. Now he's putting all the elements together in the same performance which is great to see' said manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjær
Yes, it was a big win because it was a hard game. They press and they stay compact behind. We conceded a goal early and we knew it would be hard. We got the win the hard way. I hit it well. I didn’t expect the left foot would be like this. It was a beautiful goal and a beautiful win and that’s the most important thing. [On Liverpool] It’s not like I apologised but I was really mad, maybe I should have done better. It’s beautiful to win like that. No, we didn’t know [about City]. We just have to get our results. I have said this before: I love winning. It’s always about winning I would always been happy if we win. If we lose I win be angry again; this is me. This is the Premier League. It’s always hard.
Here’s the table, with United above City, who have a game in hand, and Fulham burning up one of their games in hand on their fellow strugglers.
United are top of the league, and that’s thanks to Paul Pogba’s brilliant winner. They’ve gone 366 days without losing away and haven’t lost at all for three months. Fulham gave it plenty but suffered for a lack of attacking quality.
90+4 min: United look very nervous but hang on to win. They make a final sub, and it’s Matic for Bruno. Fulham have a long throw. Matic does his job by getting the ball clear and chasing up to support Rashford, and that’s the final action.
90+3 min: Great control by Lookman, great recovery from Wan-Bissaka to block the ball to concede a corner. And then, oh my, Bailly almost deflects a Mitrovic cross past De Gea. All they could do was watch it drift by.
90+2 min: Four minutes added on. Cavani and Rashford combine but Rashford again gives the ball back to Fulham.
90 min: Rashford and Wan-Bissaka are a tad hurried in the Fulham box when they had the option of killing the ball or taking it into the corner.
89 min: Desperation on those benches. “Don’t foul him” is the cry to Fulham’s players. Scott E doesn’t want them to waste time.
88 min: Bailly heads out as Fulham launch the ball down the channels. Eventually they get it out left but beyond the wingspan of Reed.
86 min: Bailly plays a hospital pass that asks a lot of De Gea, who is up to the task. Pogba commits a tired foul but surely not enough to get another yellow. In actual fact, the foul goes against Fulham.
85 min: Two United changes. Martial and Greenwood off, Rashford and McTominay on.
84 min: Fulham are pushing on. This time it’s Lemina having a shot blocked.
83 min: Final Fulham change: Aina off, Mitrovic on. No United change as yet.
Fulham meanwhile have a chance. Shaw’s tackle is desperate and the ball comes to Loftus-Cheek whose shot ends up somewhere in the Hammersmith area.
82 min: Yet another United corner forced by a Greenwood slalom. Cavani goes down, but is not hurt just not rushing. It’s taken and Fred launches a shot that’s blocked.
81 min: Fulham free kick, and Fulham players are queuing up. It’s wasted as Bailly lets it drift out.
79 min: Another United corner, which Bruno takes his time over. It’s played short and Fred tries to play in Maguire with a “diag”. The skipper fails to reach it.
Fulham sub: on comes Lemina for Zambo Anguissa.
77 min: United’s turn to look a little tired? Or have Fulham lifted the tempo? Bruno loses the ball then runs all the way back to collect it back from Kamara.
75 min: Oof! Fulham go close. Loftus-Cheek escapes again and his shot is saved by De Gea. RLC might perhaps have done better there. Scott E certainly thinks so.
74 min: Patient build-up from United. Are Fulham a little tired by their defensive exertions. Another United corner, Andersen heads away.
72 min: Fred wins a corner. United slowing up their act and taking their time. On this occasion, Maguire does not climb highest. Fulham get the ball away.
71 min: Fulham sub:Cavaleiro off, on comes Kamara.
69 min: Ola Aina is booked for what looks like repeated infringements. Bailly does well to stop Cavaleiro in his tracks. Another look at the Pogba goal suggests it is an absolute peach.
68 min: Cavani is baulked by Andersen; those two have had quite a battle today. Cavani has been excellent tonight. He looks so suited to English football.
66 min: That, then, is what Paul Pogba can do. And he’s doing it more often for United...it’s almost three when Cavani heads at goal and Areola has to make a full-length save. The former PSG colleagues have had quite a battle tonight.
The ball drops, Pogba kills it like a feather, whips past two players and smashes beyond Areola. What a goal!
64 min: Fernandes and Greenwood conjure a chance. Martial heads at Areola but was offside in any case. Slow momentum building. And it is pretty slow.
63 min: United are looking a little slovenly. Surely reinforcements are to come. Rashford one of them.
61 min: Fulham camping deep. Bruno is looking for the pass, while Pogba also lurks with intent but there’s numbers to get through. Loftus-Cheeks sets off on a jaunt again and it’s Cavani who robs him.
59 min: Loftus-Cheek on another of his runs, but his pass is read by neither Lookman nor Cavaleiro. He’s been an increasing danger to United.
57 min: It’s a pair of tense benches. Scott E still talking incessantly and there’s the odd squawk in a Scandi/Manc accent from United’s boss.
56 min: Bruno header, great save from Areola but also offside. Bruno again looks very unhappy. It was a fine cross from Pogba that set up that passage of play.
54 min: Bruno shoots, but his shot is blocked. His face is like thunder when Adarabioyo gets in his way. Then Greenwood’s cross is headed out by Andersen, and then Shaw’s volley goalwards is blocked by Andersen.
52 min: Suddenly, Loftus-Cheek escapes down the flank. He does so twice in fact. The first time, the ball flies across goal, with no takers. Then he plays in Lookman who shoots straight at De Gea.
51 min: Cavani working back like a Trojan. Bruno gets a ball through the gap and Martial is again casual with his shot. A pass inside might have been the better part of valour. From the resultant corner Harry Maguire climbs highest but Ola Aina does just enough to put him off.
49 min: Martial and Fred fail to break through the Fulham wall. Then Martial reads a Shaw run that never comes. Martial looks to the heavens but should be blaming himself in truth.
47 min: Pogba is slow on the uptake in sweeping up a headed clearance from Bailly. Lookman steals in and Reed whacks a shot wide. The ball fell for him and glory was seen, and soon lost.
46 min: Away we go again. As in the opening minutes of the first half, Fulham press up, clearly on Scott E’s instructions.
A big 45 minutes coming up for both teams here...Ole seems quite smiley as he comes out. Scott Parker makes his way across the field in his dapper jacket, his quiff unshaken by the wind.
Fatsani has his say: “I am not a soothsayer nor a prophet but I will easily join the bandwagon of those taking Man United as serious title contenders if they successfully negotiate the Parker’s Parked Bus and get a result tonight. They tend to struggle against such!”
Peter Kingsnorth has an observation to make and also a prediction. “Pogba looks like a walking red card, already on a booking and almost catches a Fulham player with a high boot. But with Ole needing him to break down the Fulham defence, he if subs him it may cost united the game..”
Two minutes of time added on tick on without too much incident. They go in at level pegging. Lookman’s goal was well taken, and had United rocking but once Bruno Fernandes got into the game the visitors took hold. Cavani’s goal was slotted in after a mistake from Areola. Fulham have been ragged at times while still not allowing United to get into too much of a flow.
45 min: Greenwood chases down the ball, down his lonely furrow down the right, but can’t prevent a goal kick.
43 min: Wan-Bissaka gallops to the byline and bombs a cross into the back post that has Fulham scrabbling. From the opposite flank, Martial heads over. Fulham conceding territory and chances.
42 min: Lookman wins a free kick for Fulham. It’s not very well worked and the ball eventually makes its way back to De Gea.
41 min: United haven’t been great, as has been their pattern a little bit of late. It is their quality that has carried them this far.
39 min: United’s momentum has abated a little, though they nearly stole a goal when Areola failed to notice that Bruno had sneaked up behind him.
37 min: Fulham chance...Zambo Anguissa beats a couple of men, then passes the ball through to Cavaleiro who, well, takes a very heavy touch. A real waste.
36 min: Bruno Fernandoes and Tete clash and the Fulham player looks to be in pain. He gets up, and rather quicker than would be expected.
34 min: Fernandes is fouled and United have a free-kick on the left-hand edge of the area. Few questions over who will take it. He spots the ball Ronaldo-style and hoofs it over in the style of Neil Jenkins.
32 min: Lovely spinning pass from Bruno to Shaw but the full back can’t get the ball across. Mason Greenwood has been quiet on the flank. Cavani is the centre forward and perhaps cramping his style.
31 min: Scott Parker chewing wildly and asking a question of the assistant referee. Another draw isn’t a great deal of use to his team.
29 min: The Cavani goal owed much to Areola’s fumble of a Bruno’s cross. Wan-Bissaka sorties forward and Martial heads the ball off Tete’s head. From the corner, Maguire climbs highest and misses. Fulham had gone to sleep. That counts as a miss.
27 min: Something of a lull. United are sitting a little back and looking for the long pass rather than pushing forward en masse.
25 min: United supplying Bruno the ball all the time, and he is demanding it too. Pogba is very much in a supporting role. These days, and when he’s in this mood, everyone is in a supporting role to Bruno.
24 min: Fulham now looking much more nervous than before. Bruno Fernandes has got their number at the moment.
22 min: Ole himself would have approved of that goal, a real poacher’s goal. Fernandes though is now in the mood. His crashing shot is well saved by Areola. United smell blood.
21 min: Fulham take their time over a throw-in. Shaw begins a United move and gets almost to the byline and he releases Fernandes, whose shot cracks off the post. United recycle the ball. A cross from the left rebounds to Cavani and United are level!
19 min: Martial and Shaw having a row now? United are very tetchy. Bruno and Pogba both fail in their attempts to play defence-splitting passes.
17 min: Scott Parker is very vocal on the sidelines. His Fulham team concede a soft corner which doesn’t amuse him. United try to be too clever and make a mess of it. Soon enough, they are back in defence and try to build up an attack.
15 min: More Bruno rage as Luke Shaw fails to read his pass.
14 min: Fred’s ball is skewed by an exasperated Fernandes. Cavani is making a nuisance of himself in chasing shadows. It is going to take something to unpick this lock.
12 min: All of the action in Fulham’s half but they look comfortable. Bruno Fernandes has been an absentee, suffering with a severe lack of space.
11 min: Pogba’s down. And it looks like an ankle problem before he’s resurrected. He took a rap but it looks to be an impact injury.
10 min: United penalty claim as Fred falls. Fulham break and Pogba is booked for a cynical foul. Both were correct decisions.
9 min: Loftus-Cheek, back defending, stops a Shaw cross in the left-hand corner.
8 min: This is a test for Manchester United, who really don’t like to play against a massed defence. Fulham have retreated into their shell already and will probably use Lookman as their outlet.
6 min: For Manchester United, that goal was the definition of sloppy. For Fulham, that was a well-executed springing of the offside trap.
Long ball out to Lookman who surges through. He’s onside, played there by Wan-Bissaka, and scores. Great finish. And a big shock. Scott Parker punches the air in delight!
4 min: The television coverage has allowed a decent earful of the benches and their exhortations to the players. Fulham’s crew and bringing the ruckus. United have two sniffs, first Greenwood and then Cavani.
2 min: It’s cagey but Fulham have pushed up from the start. Wan-Bissaka comes under some pressure with the ball on the edge of his box. Fulham then press hard once more, and Lookman gets space to shoot. It’s a low skidder and David de Gea is happy to claim it with his body behind the ball.
1 min: And away we go.
OK, we are go at the Cottage...Scott Parker and Ole exchange pleasantries to the sound of Insomnia by Faithless.
Richard Hirst has been in touch. “Venturing into the land of inappropriate comparisons, I feel this game is the perfect follow up to the inauguration. Quiet and moderate Biden/Fulham about to repudiate narcissistic and self-entitled Trump United. It will be good to feel that we are playing our part in knocking them off their ....... perch. Not that I think we will, anymore than the red half of the USA will accept Biden, but in both cases one can dream.”
Richard may not be a Manchester United fan.
Here’s where Ole Gunnar Solskjær earns his corn by urging his men to great things on what looks a stinking night. The rather antsy buildup music that visitors to Craven Cottage are used to hearing is blaring out to the empty stands. So, here come the teams.
Manchester City have won 2-0 against Aston Villa, though had to work hard. They are top of the league and thus United must win to leapfrog City and Leicester City.
For Fulham, Bobby Decordova-Reid makes way for Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Joe Bryan steps in for Antonee Robinson.
For Manchester United, Eric Bailly replaces Lindelöf at the heart of the defence. Edinson Cavani and Mason Greenwood replace Marcus Rashford and Scott McTominay, with Paul Pogba, who played off the flank at Anfield, is playing in midfield.
Should Manchester City - currently playing Aston Villa at the Etihad - win then United will have to climb over both them and Leicester to top the table. Scott Murray has the latest from that.
Johnny Haynes. Ole’s Army makes its way down to what will be a brass monkey’s night out on the banks of the Thames. Manchester United need to win to leapfrog Leicester as Brendan’s boys have a better goal difference. They come up against a home team who have improved their performance level while won since November - against Leicester - but only lost twice, with creditable defeats to Liverpool and Manchester City bookending six straight draws. It’s still far from impossible that Scott E Parker’s Fulham pull themselves out of the mire if they find out how to win matches. United’s performances at Burnley and Liverpool were not exactly scintillating but grinding along seems as a good a policy as any this season. Last time Fulham were in the Premier League they lost 7-1 on aggregate to United, losing 3-0 at home in February 2019 to two goals from Paul Pogba - including a penalty - and one from Anthony Martial. Johnny Haynes.
On a sodden, freezing Wednesday night in west London Manchester United came from behind to claim a fiercely fought 2-1 win against an impressive, resilient Fulham team.
The result leaves United top of the Premier League table, and extends to 17 matches their unbeaten away run, equalling the all-time club record. Best of all it arrived thanks to a moment of the highest quality from Paul Pogba, who was a quietly majestic presence in midfield.