Manchester United: Stoke Game Critical with Tricky Set of Fixtures Approaching
It has been well documented that since the arrival of David Moyes at Old Trafford, things have not exactly gone to plan for Manchester United.
After a difficult set of opening fixtures which saw the champions playing against the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City, things were meant to pick up with a string of "easy" games to settle down the early nerves.
Unfortunately for United fans, that didn’t happen.
The days of Sir Alex Ferguson’s Old Trafford fortress seem well and truly behind us.
This weekend the Red Devils have a chance to get what has thus far been a rather pitiful season back on track.
A home tie against a struggling Stoke City side could be precisely what they need to reclaim the form that saw them stroll to the Premier League title last year.
The Potters currently lie in 16th place in the table, sitting only a solitary point above the dreaded drop.
With another set of tough-looking fixtures on the horizon, United need to exploit this matchup against a weaker side in order to carry the form garnered from a solid victory into their harder run of games.
David Moyes’ tricky start to life at Old Trafford just doesn’t get any easier.
The Scotsman, hand-picked as his successor by Sir Alex himself, has had a torrid start to life in Manchester.
Currently residing in eighth spot in the table (a whopping eight points behind early leaders Arsenal), Manchester United look like a shade of their former selves when they take to the hallowed green turf these days.
Whether you want to blame that on the players, the absence of Sir Alex or—more commonly—on the somewhat sorry figure of Moyes, the fact remains that the team just aren’t performing as well as they used to.
If the club doesn’t want to end the year as far away from the top slot as they are at this current moment in time, then these next five or six fixtures will be imperative.
To achieve their fullest potential, United will have to expel Old Trafford of any bad omens against Stoke’s fairly mediocre defensive unit.
The longer this bad run at home goes on for, the longer and more difficult it will be for the side to regain the form that saw them claim their 13th Premier League crown with such consummate ease back in May.
A confident victory against Stoke has the potential to kick-start United’s 2013-14 campaign in earnest.
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