Saturday 24 February 2018

'I wouldn't begrudge United': Dunphy impressed by 're-energised' Red Devils - and even has praise for Pogba

Paul Pogba scored during Man United's 4-0 win over West Ham.
Paul Pogba scored during Man United's 4-0 win over West Ham.
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

After the first weekend of the Premier League season, Eamon Dunphy is predicting that the title race will come down to a battle between the Manchester clubs.

United and City both enjoyed comfortable wins during the opening gameweek, with Jose Mourinho's men thrashing West Ham 4-0 at Old Trafford while Pep Guardiola's side patiently exposed Brighton to leave as 2-0 victors.

Both clubs have spent heavily during the transfer window, and although the Red Devils have already boosted their goal-scoring threat with the signing of Romelu Lukaku, Eamon Dunphy feels Mourinho needs to dip into the market once again to claim the Premier League title.

"They drew ten games last year against the likes of West Ham. This is what's changed I think. I think Lukaku is a good signing," Dunphy told RTÉ 2fm's Game On.

"I thought it was very poor opposition. You have to say that, but I wouldn't want to begrudge United. They did well. Lukaku made a good start.

"Pogba was better. He didn't look like a £90m player but he looked a bit more useful. This is going to be decided when the big teams play each other.

"Lukaku will give them something, and what he'll give them is in the box. He will score goals and he'll get chances. Do they look like a championship-winning team? Not at the moment, but by a process of elimination I'd say it's them and City.

"United need two more really good players. They don't look right at the back and they need a real quality midfield player still.

"Think back two years to when Van Gaal was there. They had terrible seasons under him. He bought badly; the team was lifeless. Mourinho has re-energised them.

"I'm sure they'll finish in the top four this year and I wasn't sure last year. Whether they're good enough to win the Premier League, I doubt at the moment, but  I wouldn't rule them out because I saw City have a lot of possession against Brighton but they still have problems at the back.

"On Sunday, United did something they failed to do last year - put away ordinary teams at Old Trafford."

United travel to Wales to play Swansea this Saturday at 12.30 while Man City host Everton in the first Monday Night Football clash of the new season at 8pm.

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