Rio Ferdinand fears Manchester City will win league ‘by minimum of six points’

first_imgFormer Manchester United captain Rio Ferdinand is worried Manchester City are much closer to winning silverware this season than Louis van Gaal’s side. While City have started the season in fine fettle, United have amassed seven points from their first four games and scored just three goals. Skipper Wayne Rooney has yet to break his duck and Van Gaal was told by Rooney and Michael Carrick that the dressing room was feeling ‘flat’. The Dutchman is now in his second season at Old Trafford but, despite leading United back into the Champions League, he has been criticised for his tactical approach. Ferdinand says supporters need to accept the change in approach from the days of Ferguson and Sir Matt Busby, and believes they would still be perfectly happy if trophies were won with Van Gaal’s more possession-based football. “The philosophy is completely different,” the former England defender said. “Manchester United supporters now have to go away and re-educate themselves on how to watch Manchester United. Don’t go there expecting to see free-flowing, attacking, gung-ho football. “It’s methodical, side to side, wait for an opportunity to come. It’s a different type of football, very methodical, clear-cut pattern of the way he wants the team to play and it’s totally different. “I’m not saying that is the wrong way – it is the way he chooses to play and it is not the way Manchester United are used to playing. “If it brings success, Manchester United fans will be delighted, I will be delighted. It is just a different way of playing football. “People who are old enough to remember those times (Busby, etc), they want fairytale and they’re going to reminisce about old times and want to see what they’re used to. The younger generation, they’re not so attached to that and they can move on, but they’re going to want to move on to a style that they like.” Ferdinand also revealed he and former defensive partner Nemanja Vidic had discussed the recent transfer business at United – with Van Gaal having spent over a quarter of a billion pounds on new recruits – and also questioned why a new centre-back was not signed over the summer. “I just think, with Daley Blind playing centre-half every week, you think you’ve spent all that money, where is the centre-half?,” he added. “Because you didn’t buy Blind as a centre-half. I was talking to Nemanja Vidic the other day on the phone and we were both saying the change is unreal in terms of the personnel and the transfer policy. “We were saying, ‘If they’d spent £50million when we were there, we’d have won how much more?’. If you’d got somebody at that time who was worth that. But the landscape changes. We were just reminiscing about old times and imagining if we’d had that amount of money to be spent on our squad. “It is totally different and it doesn’t look like anything that I knew when I was there. It’s just all changed. Even the sponsor that’s been there how many years, Nike, and now it’s Adidas. Everything’s changing, other than the groundsman and the chef.” :: Watch PSV Eindhoven v Manchester United on Tuesday 15 September live and exclusive from 7.30pm on BT Sport 2. BT Sport is the new home of European football, with all UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League matches exclusively live. Visit bt sport.com/europe Press Association City have won their opening four Barclays Premier League fixtures as they go in search of their third title in five years, and Manuel Pellegrini will also be hoping to progress deeper into the Champions League this term. United are without a trophy since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013, and are already five points adrift of their neighbours. Ferdinand, talking in his role as a BT Sport pundit, reckons that pattern is likely to continue over the remainder of the campaign as Pellegrini has now figured out his best system. “City’s problem has been their system – not the players,” he said. “They have got Sergio Aguero, Vincent Kompany, Yaya Toure – they are all great players, but the system failed them. “They have got players who are getting older and need to get closer to winning the Champions League to have a hope of winning it. “We will see – City are our best hope this year and that hurts me. On current form you can’t look any further than them. They look like they are going to sweep the league. “Chelsea will be their biggest rivals and they can’t get out of the blip they are in, but I just think City will win the league by a minimum of six or seven points. “I think Pellegrini got it wrong last year. I think he has held his hands up. He’s got the way that everyone was telling him to go for the last 18 months. “Don’t play 4-4-2 in the big games – you get outnumbered in midfield. You’ve not got the personnel to cope with it. So he’s changed that system and it seems to have really helped him.” last_img read more

What we learned from Syracuse men’s basketball’s 71-50 win over Monmouth

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ No. 18 Syracuse (3-0) came away with a 71-50 win over Monmouth (1-2) at the Carrier Dome, but it didn’t come with as much ease as SU’s two prior wins. Monmouth tied the game at 20 and was within eight points at halftime. Thanks to a strong defensive performance in the second half, Syracuse pulled away.Here’s what we learned from the game.Monmouth’s one-man press bothered Frank HowardMonmouth point guard Justin Robinson pressed Frank Howard the length of the court throughout the game on Friday. Howard finished with eight points, six assists and two turnovers in 23 minutes. The press didn’t affect Howard much in the box score, but he said it’s “annoying” to deal with and it tired him out.“It’s annoying as a point guard especially when you’re kind of tall and you got a little guy getting up under you full court,” Howard said. “He’s quick, athletic, strong. So it’s annoying. And that’s what they’re doing, if they catch a mistake, get the ball off the turnover, speed you up. I just got to take my time, go at my own pace. I think I do a pretty good job of that.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe 6-foot-5 Howard said he expects more teams to deploy the strategy against him because he’s a point guard with more size than most. He cited Louisville as a team that often presses and could use point guard Quentin Snider similarly to how Monmouth used Robinson.Since Howard often has a size advantage over the players that guard him, he said refs tend to allow the defenders to be more physical on him. He has to combat the pressure by staying low to the court to keep his leverage and dribbling strong. It takes more energy to fend off a defender for the length of the court and could wear Howard down in more challenging circumstances. Facing the scheme against Monmouth was a good test, he said.Tony D. Curtis | Staff PhotographerAndrew White can carry Syracuse’s offense but he doesn’t have toAndrew White put up 18 points in the first half as the Orange held on to an eight-point lead at the break. He went 3-of-7 from behind the arc, including back-to-back triples to turn a tie game into a 26-20 SU lead. By halftime, he had just one less point than all of his teammates combined.“I thought in the first half we did a really good job of getting Andrew the ball,” SU head coach Jim Boeheim said. “He was our offense. He kept us in there when we were struggling a little bit offensively. But he made big shots and got us some separation.”But in the second half, White didn’t score a single point as he went 0-for-5 from the field. Still, the SU offense managed 34 second-half points. Its defense led the way after halftime and White’s production wasn’t needed. In tougher situations against more challenging opponents, Syracuse’s reliance on White may change. But for now, when the Orange’s defense played the way it did holding the Hawks to 21 in the second half, SU can afford a scoreless half from its leading scorer.Jim Boeheim isn’t tolerating turnovers from his point guardsAfter John Gillon drove from the right wing, bumped into a Monmouth defender and fumbled the ball out of bounds, Boeheim immediately pulled him. He yelled, “Are you crazy?” to the fifth-year transfer and continued yelling once Gillon sat on the bench three and a half minutes into the second half.Gillon and Howard combined for four turnovers. SU had 16 overall and 10 in the second half. Gillon’s two turnovers were the most he’s had in a game through three contests.“Ten turnovers in the second half. We can’t have our point guards just giving the ball up like that,” Boeheim said. “… I think what happens is we play teams that can’t guard and you just go by them. Now you’re playing a team that can guard people. That team’s a good team.”Right before Boeheim ripped into Gillon, Howard had also been subbed out six seconds after committing a turnover. Comments Published on November 19, 2016 at 12:51 am Contact Paul: pmschwed@syr.edu | @pschwedslast_img read more