Manchester United have made a promising start to the season, being unbeaten in the Premier League, after the first two matches, and having already defeated the defending champions, Leicester City, to claim the Community Shield.
That said, is Jose Mourinho able to get the club back to the winning track for the first time since the end of Sir Alex Ferguson’s era?
When Mourinho took over Manchester United a few months ago, the team was coming from another disappointing season, having failed not only to win the title, but also finish within the top four.
Consequently, and because the squad will not play in the UEFA Champions League, the administration decided to make drastic changes.
After signing his contract with the side, the Portuguese coach had plenty of work to do in order to impose his playing style.
Starting with the roster, Mourinho decided to acquire players that would be ready to endure the pressure and be effective immediately.
And that’s why he signed Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba, who will certainly be the leaders this year, along with striker Wayne Rooney.
With the other members of the squad (Juan Mata, Antonio Valencia, Anthony Martial) also being in good form, United seems to be strong offensively and in the midfield line.
However, Mourinho’s main target is to be solid defensively, as this is the only way they will remain title contenders until the end.
As a result, and according to reports, Mourinho wants to sign Southampton’s defender, Jose Fonte, in his effort to strengthen his defensive line.
During the two matches against Bournemouth (1-3) and Southampton (2-0) for the championship, the team had a high level of balance between the offensive and defensive end of the pitch, managing to claim comfortable victories.
Based on their quick transition, they were functioning really well, attacking very quickly from both the centre (Pogba, Ibrahimovic, Marouane Fellaini) and the wings (Martial, Valencia and Luke Shaw).
And that’s Mourinho’s biggest accomplishment so far, as the team’s identity is already clear, despite the little time the 53-year-old manager has spent at United.
That said, and with the transfer period ending at the end of August, the Portuguese coach should make a decision about the players that will be let go in order to have a clear idea about the quality of the roster.
Until now, neither Phil Jones (defender) nor Bastian Schweinsteiger (midfielder) seem to be among the players that will leave the club.
With Ibrahimovic being very impressive and Pogba having more freedom in the squad’s tactics, Manchester United seems to return to the winning track, although it’s still too early in the season.
With the roster being talented and deep, and with Henrikh Mkhitaryan being expected to have more playing time in the upcoming matches, Mourinho shows he will fight tooth and nail to lead the team to the top again, both in England and Europe.
And although he seems perfectly capable of doing that, he should be careful enough to endure the pressure he will face in order to avoid any negative situations that may affect the club during the season.