My 2014-15 lineup (realistic).
GK- David De Gea (Anders Lindegaard)*
RB- Rafael (Guillermo Varela/ Marnick Vermijl promoted)
RCB- Phil Jones (Chris Smalling)
LCB- Jonny Evans (Stefan De Vrij) **
LB- Luke Shaw (Daley Blind)
RCM- Ander Herrera (Michael Carrick)
CAM- Juan Mata (Shinji Kagawa)
LCM- Arturo Vidal (Tom Cleverly)***
RW- Antonio Valencia (Adnan Januzaj)****
ST- RVP (Danny Welbeck/James Wilson)
LW- Rooney (Adnan Januzaj) *****
On loan: Nick Powell, James Wilson, Will Keane, Reece James, Jesse Lingard
Sold: Luis Nani, Patrice Evra, Anderson, Bebe, Chicharito.
*I just realized we have an Ander Herrera and an Anders Lindegaard. Anyway...
**De Vrij likely, but will need time to adjust to the EPL. Also, recent reports have linked us with Mats Hummels. Easily will slide into our starting XI if that happens.
***Vidal move possible. Many options available: Khedira, Carvalho, Kramer, etc.
****Di Maria the best option, but likely going to PSG. Zaha and Lingard may also be looked at, but not looking likely at the moment.
*****Rooney as an inside forward more than a LW. Griezmann or Depay as possible alternatives.
My DREAM signing:
MARCO REUS (LW, AM, RW) - The next great #11
Also....Phoenix Suns. University of Arizona athletics (basketball, football, baseball).
Herrera, Mata and Welbeck have been amazing. Evans has looked extremely comfortable on the left side of the back 3. Shaw looks out of his depth a bit, while Valencia has been okay.
The biggest point for me so far is that Rooney, based off this showing, doesn't look like an LvG player at all. He looks fairly lost in the system, and is having almost no impact on the build-up at all. Oddly enough he has 2 goals but looks like the least involved player on the pitch from United. Kagawa would play his role better, hands down.
If Welbeck can continue to play like this then RvP better be worried, because he's been all over the pitch and fantastic throughout.
With Fletcher rounding out our midfield we can be pretty much sure that this will be the midfield if we get Vidal, with Vidal obviously replacing Fletcher. Stylistically Fletch is definitely the closest thing we have to Vidal, so in this setup Vidal would really just slot right in.
The energy throughout the team has been fantastic, and the way we've been pressing for the ball has been remarkable. This is what United should look like, though the shape will take a bit of getting used to lol.
2 words: Ashley Young!
Fantastic performance from the team throughout. Galaxy were poor, no 2 ways about it, but the team looked excellent.
Loved the role LvG had for Young. It's exactly what I've been calling for. He was adventurous and played centrally, and his best form started to show. Phenomenal performance, best player in the second half after Herrera. 1 assist, 1 sort-of assist, and 2 goals. Excellent runs throughout and some cool finishing. Terrific performance, and I hope he keeps this up all season long.
Nani looked better than he really was by contrast. He made some good passes, and made a couple good runs, but really had nothing to show for it. Still, the forward role does seem to be a good fit for him.
Kagawa looked good, but he was used in a deeper role than I thought he'd be used in. I thought he'd be used more as a forward, and didn't really impress until he got more into an attacking midfield role. Still a largely positive performance.
Clevs looked decent too. His role was more 6 than the 8 I would have liked to see him in, which may be down to player availability. He looked more confident and had good energy, and it was a decent start to the preseason for him.
Reece James was very opportunistic on the left hand side. He wasn't too great outside of his goals, but showed a real predatory instinct and good finishing to get his brace. We may just have our Shaw deputy right here.
The back 3 had it's shaky moments but looked good for the most part. Keane looks like he's ready to make the step up, and Fletcher was excellent in organising them.
Rafael looked more like the player he was 2 seasons ago than the one from last season, which is good. He still has some ways to go to recapture his best form, but it looks good.
Lindegaard looked fantastic. Brave, commanding, splendid. It's a shame DDG is so good because Lindegaard really deserves to start. I wouldn't begrudge him leaving because he is 1st choice material.
And last, but the opposite of least, Ander Frackin' Herrera. That was some way to hit the ground running. Man of the match in his first United appearance IMO, slightly ahead of Young because he was involved all game and was amazing throughout. He controlled the midfield masterfully, and we could be looking at the PL signing of the season right here.
I would give the front 4 edge to RM for now out of those 3 clubs because they have proven they can play together and mesh well (aside from James, but they still have Modric, and Di Maria for now, to replace him with if necessary) whereas we have no idea how well Suarez and Lewa will work in their new teams. I think that for Bayern though it might be Mueller and Goetze and no Ribery this next season as he looked like he was finally past it towards the end of last season. He could still push through it, but an injury that bad at his age and with his past could very well have ended his career at the highest level of play.
As for us, I would take out Rooney or RvP and throw in a winger and we'd be right up there too. I'm still not convinced the two of them can really work together without throwing off the team, and Kagawa can play the FW role quite well anyway and links up better with Mata so only one of the other two would be needed. Maybe Januzaj will really step up this next season though (or even Zaha) in which case we'd be pretty much set and wouldn't need to sign anyone.
I do agree on the WB bit though. I think we have the perfect players for it, plus our CBs would probably do well in a 3 man CB line, and I think LvG will definitely end up using WBs regularly. Shaw and Rafael could become quite amazing WBs IMO, so I'm actually really excited to see it.
Badstuber made his return from injury! He played 58 minutes in a preseason friendly, and it seems he looked pretty good (I missed the game). Rode is a solid DM player from what I know, good at passing but not exceptional. I think he has an all-action kind of style and is a bit of an engine, if I recall correctly. He does seem suited to a RB role if this description of him is accurate.
Yeah I've noticed Jong Kook seems to be quite bad at sports lol. In the Asia Dream Cup (I think that was what it was called) he wasn't actually *that* bad though. Gary was definitely the worse of the pair lol. When they were playing with Park Ji Sung, Gary actually looked like the best of the bunch though so maybe it was just nerves.
You know who's surprised me recently? Gwang Soo. He has suddenly built up his strength and confidence, and he has been recently winning his 1v1 nametag ripping battles (or at least tearing off the other person's at the same time). He was such a weakling at the beginning, but he's been gradually getting stronger, relatively speaking of course since everyone has improved, as the show has progressed. His piggy-back displays, for example, put all others to shame, even Jong Kook.
But the most improved award definitely has to go to Jae Suk lol. At the beginning he was a twig, and now he looks like an Expendable! It's as if he spent a summer training at Carrington or something, because he looks like he went through the United strength building regiment. He was also generally quite bad at all physical activities, but suddenly became top tier. Crazy how he managed that at his age, especially considering everyone on the show aside from Suk Jin is younger by a few years at least.
That is really interesting about HaHa. He must be an excellent showman to be able to encapsulate the "childish" image so well if he's really nothing like that, and when you see his home it certainly doesn't look like it is. Early on he also didn't really do the childish thing either, so maybe he just decided that it'd be the kind of "character" he wanted to be on Running Man? How is he on other shows, is he also childish and goofy (aside from the one you mentioned of course)?
Ooohh those shows do sound great. So many different shows, so little time lol. I saw Lee Hyori in the first episode of RM and she was great. Super attractive, great at the games, and really entertaining as well. I'll have to check out Family Outing at some point because I thought she would have made an excellent RM regular.
How old are you by the way, if you don't mind me asking. I thought I read on your profile before that you were 23-24, but I could be wrong and thinking of someone else's. I'm 23, turning 24 later this year, and I know the feeling of feeling old. I try to talk about old shows like Hercules, Xena, He-Man and such, and only draw blank stares indicative of the person I'm talking to having no idea of what any of those things are.
Oh I actually assumed you were equally fluent in English and Korean TBH. I love Korean movies and luckily you can get subs for anything online. I've seen "I Saw the Devil" and it was quite good. I didn't enjoy it as much as most, but practically everyone else who's seen it loves it. I was hoping for more mystery a little like Memories of Murder and Oldboy, and was more so disappointed that it wasn't what I expected rather than it not being a good movie. Even so, I definitely really liked it, with a couple scenes in particular really standing out. I definitely recommend you watch it.
Another Korean movie I loved was "The Good, The Bad, The Weird". I've got Tae Guk Gi on my HDD (twice in fact lol) but never got around to seeing it. I've meant to see it for a long time but it just never happened. I never really heard of JSA but I'll check it out, thanks for the suggestion. I've never really given Asian rom-coms a chance, do you think they are any good? I watch quite a few American ones (the ones which have a male audience in mind as well and aren't complete chick-flicks), so it's not like I hate the genre.
Do you watch a lot of Chinese movies? Some of my favourite movies are from the Hong Kong cinema scene. Sha Po Lang is probably what I consider the greatest Asian movie of all time. Some other movies I classify as classic tier include Red Cliff 1 & 2, Tai Chi, Shaolin, House of Fury, Ip Man 1 & 2, Fist of Legend... there are too many lol.
Thanks for clearing that up about the names. It makes sense now.
I checked out those songs from Epik High, the first one and the freestyle were really good, but unfortunately I can't fully appreciate the last one as it is in Korean. I'm a stickler about understanding the actual words I'm listening to in a song, and subtitles I feel don't really do the art form justice. Too much of the wordplay and such gets lost in translation that I prefer to just not listen to it that way.
Judging from what I've picked up based on the songs you've shown me, it seems the kind of hip-hop you prefer is a bit different from a lot of what I listen to. It seems you're more into the 9th Wonder, Q-Tip, Talib Kweli kind of sound, which isn't really anything like the artists I listed before. I don't listen to a lot of that kind of hip-hop TBH. What I usually listen to falls under 1 of 3 distinct types of hip-hop: really gritty street rap, '90s boom bap style, or somewhat electronic semi-nerdcore blog-raps.
You might like Pro Era though, check them out. Peep the Aprocalypse is a good starting point.
My brother really appreciated the suggestions. Anyway, off to watch the game now!
Real Madrid do go overboard, don't they? I'm hoping Kroos gets replaced next year and he can come to a team I actually like.
Lahm will definitely still be the best RB in Germany in 2 years, I completely agree. As for replacements, it's a bit tough. In a conventional RB for RB replacement, Jung seems to be the frontrunner. Boateng is the best CB option to play RB, which could happen if Badstuber (who just returned from his horrendous injury period) can regain his pre-injury form. In that scenario we'd have Boateng at RB and Hummels/Badstuber partnered at CB.
The more out-of-the-box, yet entirely plausible scenario is actually that Rode replaces him. Bayern just signed him and he's been playing as a DM, but there has been word that the plan is for him to be used as a FB. Quite a few believe that he was brought in as the intended heir for Lahm at Bayern, and if it works out that way then he'd probably also replace him in the NT.
It's too difficult to say who will replace him because there are options and none are really clear-cut as being better than the others, but ideally I'd want Boateng at CB (where I feel he is one of the best) so I'll rule out the option of using him at RB. Between Jung and Rode I'd give the edge to Rode because he's at Bayern (and the NT loves to pull from Bayern players) and because he'll be playing under the man he could replace himself, learning from the best in the business in the process.
I'm okay with grey, black and white for away/alternate kits, but blue is really the opposite of red in terms of footballing kits. Usually a team is either blue or red, and it just seems so strange to me to see a "red" in any kind of blue. I dunno, maybe I'm just weird.
Ji Hyo is generally one of the best, but she's pretty terrible at trivia stuff lol. They did that a lot more early on in the show, but whenever they did she was average at best. I think her main strength is her alertness and attention to details, which is also what I find Jong Kook to be best at.
Yeah I'm less then halfway to where the show is now. I can't wait to see more though! Interesting to know about HaHa's family, and I think it'd be strange if he wasn't very well educated. They had a challenge early on in the show when they had to do diction in a school-setting, and he was by far one of the best of the bunch.
Thanks for the suggestions for different shows. I'll definitely write those names down and check them out when I can. They all sound really good. How are Family Outing and X Man btw? They're mentioned on Running Man a lot but I've never seen them. Actually, Running Man is the only Korean variety show I've seen, though I've watched some clips of Japanese ones on Youtube, such as the Silent Library and Human Tetris stuff. The western knockoffs of those shows are just terrible though.
You into Korean movies? I watch quite a few, though recently I've slowed down on watching movies in general. Some of my favourites have been Oldboy, The Man From Nowhere, The Chaser and Memories of Murder. I also love Chinese movies. BTW what's up with Jackie Chan having a different name in Korea? I believe it was something like Sung Reyong? I found it odd that some of them still referred to him as Jackie Chan in the Hong Kong episode, while others used the Korean name.
Tablo is one of his favourites too. I checked out that song, it's pretty damn good. Do you know any other all-English songs of his that you'd suggest? I have a suggestion for you too, which you may or may not enjoy lol. He's quite poetic in his style though, and I think you'd like it. His name is Lorenzo Asher, and he doesn't really have much material out yet but what I have heard is largely fantastic.
Those 3 are pretty much his standout tracks, IMO, out of the 5-6 he has out. I listen to more underground and blog American hip-hop all the time. Actually, it's pretty much exclusively what I listen to lol. Some artists I listen to are Flatbush Zombies, XV, IsaiahThe3rd, Pro Era, CunninLynguists, and Sadistik. If you're interested check some of them out, they are among my favourites.
My brother also really likes Zico, which is I believe the primary reason he likes Block B. He likes B.A.P. for the guy with the deep voice mostly. He's already heard of all the ones you suggested, except MC Sniper and Dumbfoundead (who I know of lol).
I have no idea who we'll buy because I don't think anybody actually knows LVG's plans for the squad however I deffo think we need a LB, CB, CM, and Winger.
I like your 2014/15 line up, however I hate Valencia he's just terrible imo. Apart pace he's pretty much useless as he literally has one foot, average dribbling skills and he refuses to place a cross a la Lahm and just shoots it into the box in the hope that it bounces against someone and knocks in. I hope Januzaj starts and he's the backup.
I really wish Di Maria would come to us but he seems hell bent on joining PSG so meh. I hope we get Griezmann though, if we did Rooney would probably still start but against teams with a really fast attack e.g Liverpool where we need our defenders deep and we need to counter-attack he'll be a more effective option out there.
What do you think about James Wilson, I think he's fantastic and can be anything he wants to be in world football. His pace, dribbling skills and finishing are fantastic for a 25 year old let alone a lad of the age of 18. If you haven't seen him I recommend you check him out: www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5dFgez6nGo
Thanks for the congratulations! I feel really bad for Reus that he missed out on this WC victory. It would be a dream though to have him at United.
Hummels was also good enough to win the award IMO, as were perhaps Schweinsteiger and Kroos. Neuer is just fantastic, I love the way he plays GK. He is probably the only truly exciting keeper in world football, maybe ever. Schweinsteiger certainly took a beat down in that game, but like a true warrior he kept getting back up and going harder. I'm so happy for him.
It's too bad his partner in crime Lahm retired from international duty. I always thought they'd retire together TBH. It just seemed fitting.
Yes indeed, your recollection is correct. I was so tired of *almost* making it. In some ways I think it's harder to swallow then being out early (like United was in the CL for example) because it builds up your hope and belief, then crushes the life out of it. Mueller will definitely break the record lol.
Saw that interview for the first time through your link, but I'd heard about what he'd said before. What a joker lol.
I usually like darker kits too, but I'm not a fan of us wearing blue TBH. We're the Red Devils, and it always struck me as odd when our second kit was blue. I feel like white or black would be better options. But generally I do prefer darker kits, like the Bayern CL one from the year they won it. That one was fantastic.
Park was such a natural. Song Ji Hyo is probably my next favourite after Lee Gwang Soo. She's got the perfect mix of funny and skilled, plus her "violent" outbursts kill me. It also doesn't hurt that she's incredibly cute.
It's not that I don't like Gary, it's just that his persona, so to speak, on the show doesn't appeal to me. He's funny and tries to be the lovable klutz, but he acts too dumb for my liking. You can see that he's performing well below his actual capabilities when he does put the effort in, because the then looks like a totally different person. Also, it's practically impossible to be a good hip hop artist without being rather intelligent. Ji Suk Jin is fairly useless too, for example, but it doesn't bother me because that's pretty much as well as he can do.
I'm at about episode 105, but is it just me or is HaHa much smarter than he lets on? It seems almost like he's acting like a clown to get the others to sort of put their guard down around him (and for the entertainment of course), but he often ends up saying or doing something really smart. His mom is also an author so I would be stunned to find out he didn't have a rather academic upbringing.
All in all though I really love the show. It's got the right mix of competitiveness, hilarity, lovable contestants and "personas", and games. Can't say I've ever seen a better game-show. Are there any others kind of like it when I do eventually run out of episodes and have to wait for new ones?
Oh, and on the topic of Korean hip-hop, my little brother is really into it. Are there any lesser known artists/groups you can tell me about? He likes the ones that aren't completely mainstream and "idol"-ish, and there are probably a bunch of acts he doesn't know about since I would bet it's mostly the more popular ones that have come to his attention. He likes B.A.P., B2B (I think that's what they're called), Epic High or Kai or something, Most Incredible Busters (some of these names...) and Block B to give you an idea of his preferences. I'm also a hip-hop head, but I only listen in English (and the occasional German song) because I think you need to know the language to truly appreciate good hip-hop. You can't catch double entendres, word play, and cultural references otherwise, which makes half of what rappers say irrelevant IMO.
Oh this is Jihoon's friend, Atlanta Hawks Fan was my name.
Can't believe Germany won the WC! I'm still through the roof with excitement and joy!
Anyway, I'll finally get back to you with my response lol.
That's a good point about Messi vs Ronaldo. You know I don't rate him as the best, but like I said before you've made some great points and I can fully appreciate why he's the best for you. BTW, what'd you think of him winning the golden ball? I think it's complete lunacy. He had a good WC, he scored some important goals and made some good chances, but at the end of the day he wasn't the best player. I would have given it to Lahm, Hummels, Schweinsteiger (even though he wasn't on the shortlist), Mascherano, Robben, or Mueller ahead of Messi. Even Maradona, who is probably Messi's biggest fan, was disappointed with him winning it because he also felt he didn't deserve it.
Yeah I was so happy for Klose to break the record against Brazil, seeing as how Ronaldo set the record against Germany, and then one-up the whole thing by winning the WC in Brazil. It's just fitting that a player of his calibre gets to lift the trophy once, and I'm so glad he came back for this WC.
Being a Nike guy, how do you feel about our last few kits? I thought the one from the year we came second on goal differential was stunning, but some of the others have been rather plain and boring.
No problem, I love Park Ji Sung. I also feel he's underrated too much. He'll always have a special place in my memories for all his hard work, his impact on the pitch, and his general likeability. We probably never had someone who worked as hard as he did, and he made a big impact wherever he was needed. I would love it if he become a permanent member on Running Man lol. He fit in seamlessly!
Love to Cavs? But I don't think Cavs would be willing to let go of Wiggins.
Your Suns are stacked... especially in the PG position. Bledsoe Dragic and now Thomas LOL
Well I've always rooted for Germany after we got knocked out, and I think Germany wll indeed take this one. All the more if di Maria does not play. Germany is too deep, too stacked for Argentina imo.