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The Busby Babe 13 hours ago

Milan confirm talks with United over mid-season friendly

It looks as though Manchester United will be jetting out to the Middle East this winter. So who saw this coming? Oh, right, everybody. Still, here's confirmation that Manchester United are pressing ahead with their plan to fill the empty, Europe-free weeks with prestige friendlies. Via the Manchester Evening News, here is AC Milan director Umberto Gandini on a purported meeting with United This is something we have been talking about for a few weeks and we have a committed interest to do something together. It's just a question to find the right date and then to find the right place. The...
The Busby Babe Oct 29, 2014

Rooney may not be fit to face Manchester City

According to the papers, Manchester United's captain may not return for the derby. Wayne Rooney, club captain and all round inspiration, has missed Manchester United's last three games after being suspended for punting Stewart Downing squarely in the balls. But last Sunday's draw against Chelsea was the final match of his ban, and he should in theory be back to lead from the front this weekend against Manchester City. In theory. In practice, His Excellency is a Manchester United player, and so he may be injured. At least, that's what the Telegraph are saying. Apparently he is "battling" to...
The Busby Babe Oct 28, 2014
Two United youngsters nominated for Golden Boy award

Two United youngsters nominated for Golden Boy award

Adnan Januzaj and Luke Shaw have both been shortlisted for Tuttosport award. Awards! More awards! Shiny things for everybody! Further to FIFA's nomination of Angel di Maria for the Ballon d'Or, and Louis van Gaal for the World Coach of the Year, Italian newspaper Tuttosport have unveiled the forty-person not-actually-that-shortlist for their Golden Boy award. And look who's included? Why, it's only Manchester United's Adnan Januzaj and Luke Shaw! Well done them! The Golden Boy award has been running since 2003 and is apparently quite prestigious. Recent years have seen it go to the likes...
The Busby Babe Oct 28, 2014

United scouting Ghanaian wonderkid

According to the papers, United have been doing some scouting in Turkey. It's always a big day when a new name arrives on the Manchester United transfer rumour radar, and so it's TBB's pleasure to formally welcome young Ghanaian striker Abdul Majeed Waris to the family. *firm handshake* *beaming smile* *polite applause* According to the Mirror, Ryan Giggs travelled to Turkey last Thursday, to see Waris play for Trabzonspor against Lokeren in the Europa League. (They won, he started, he didn't score, he got booked after 77' minutes.) The 23-year-old forward also travelled to Brazil with his...
The Busby Babe Oct 28, 2014

One United name on the Ballon d'Or shortlist

Ángel Di María is in the running for football's most prestigious individual award. It's awards season again, folks, and there's good news for Manchester United's Ángel Di María. The versatile, adorable Argentine has made the 23-man shortlist for FIFA's Ballon d'Or. He's not going to win of course; this is the Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi show and will be forever more, but still. Well done him. Louis van Gaal, Manchester United's manager, has also made an impression on FIFA's judges, and is one of ten managers named to the World Coach of the Year shortlist. Again, he's probably...
The Busby Babe Oct 27, 2014
Fellaini brilliant, Mata disappointing: Player ratings from the Chelsea game

Fellaini brilliant, Mata disappointing: Player ratings from the Chelsea game

United grabbed a last-second draw against Jose Mourinho's table-toppers. But who played well and who didn't? Here's what we thought ... David de Gea: 8 Let's talk about that save, shall we? In particular, let's talk about David de Gea's left hand, which shoots up and to the left as he advances towards the ball. That's ... odd, right? Odd enough that, unless De Gea's developing some kind of weird nervous tic, it must have been deliberate. Does it perhaps make that side of the goal look, to the attacker, less appealing than the other side? Does it then make it more likely that the shot will...
The Busby Babe Oct 27, 2014
Louis van Gaal: Robin van Persie's celebration was 'stupid'

Louis van Gaal: Robin van Persie's celebration was 'stupid'

Louis van Gaal described Robin van Persie's celebration in the wake of United's last-gasp equaliser against Chelsea as 'stupid'. Today's Almost Certainly Going To Be Exaggerated In the British Press story comes courtesy of Louis van Gaal's comments in the aftermath of Robin van Persie's last-gasp equaliser against Chelsea yesterday. Quoted in the Guardian, the United boss CHASTISED and LAMBASTED the STUPID van Persie by saying: "He did a stupid reaction after the goal. You can be excited but you don't have to pull your shirt off because then you have a yellow card. It is not so...
The Busby Babe Oct 24, 2014

Two key players fit to face Chelsea

Louis van Gaal has confirmed that Angel di Maria and Ander Herrera will be available for selection on Sunday. Some good injury news, Manchester United fans. Both Angel di Maria and Ander Herrera will be fit to face Chelsea this Sunday. Speaking at his usual Friday afternoon press conference, Louis van Gaal confirmed that the two players, who were both taken off against West Bromwich Albion on Monday night, will be available. Ander Herrera was already fit and Di Maria said after the game that it wasn't so heavy and it's not. It was only the first day he didn't train, so it's no...
The Busby Babe Oct 23, 2014
Victor Valdes invited to train with Manchester United

Victor Valdes invited to train with Manchester United

The Spanish goalkeeper has been invited to work his way back to fitness with United's medical staff. Who says there's no heart in football any more? According to the club website, noted philanthropist Louis van Gaal has offered former Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes the chance to complete his recovery from injury with Manchester United. Should he accept, his recovery will be supervised by United's doctors, and he will then train with the first team. Van Gaal was head coach at Barcelona for the first few months of the 2002-03 season, the season that Valdes first began to emerge as a...
The Busby Babe Oct 23, 2014

Keane hits out at United's "mafia situation"

Leave the gun. Take the cannoli. Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in. When I look at United there's just a lot of propaganda now, a lot of nonsense gets spoken. A lot of ex-players now work for the club, they are on contracts, ex-players from the 60s and 70s working for United and they always try to kid you on. Never hate your enemies. It affects your judgement. I had it with all the Nani stuff. My opinion was Nani meant it, he saw the guy coming, and he definitely meant it — the guy deserved to be sent off. But I remember Robbo the next day. Robbo, who works for Man...
The Busby Babe Oct 23, 2014

Di Maria will be fit to face Chelsea — reports

According to the papers, Manchester United could well have their best player back for their biggest game of the season so far. Exciting news from the Telegraph this morning. All-round genius and beautiful human being Ángel di Maria is "winning race to face Chelsea". Di Maria, who limped off against West Bromwich Albion on Monday night, is apparently "untroubled by the problem", and has been receiving treatment. Which is good news. Apparently Michael Carrick — an unused substitute against the Baggies — is also getting stronger, and Louis van Gaal is debating whether to play him against...
The Busby Babe Oct 22, 2014
Why Manchester United must drop Robin van Persie

Why Manchester United must drop Robin van Persie

There are some players who are able to help the team even when their own form is lacking. Robin van Persie is not one of them. It's probably isn't the strongest way of opening an article, to tell the reader to immediately go and read something else, but here we are. The really rather wonderful Rob Smyth wrote this piece on Robin van Persie for Eurosport last week. Go and read it. TBB will still be here when you get back. Go on ... There have surely been times in the last year when Robin van Persie has resented the constant focus on Wayne Rooney. Yet he must be glad of it now. The intense...
The Busby Babe Oct 21, 2014

Shaw acknowledges he has room to improve

Manchester United's young defender believes he hasn't been dreadful, but knows he can get better. Luke Shaw, Manchester United's left-back elect for the next ten years, has made a slightly sticky start to his time at Old Trafford. Issues with fitness delayed his introduction to the team, and last night against West Brom, he had what we might politely call an interesting first half. Anyway, it turns out Shaw himself isn't entirely happy with his game. I know I haven't been up to my full potential and I think maybe people can see that at the moment. I am trying hard and it's about getting...
The Busby Babe Oct 20, 2014
West Bromwich Albion 2-2 Manchester United: Reds twice come from behind to nick point

West Bromwich Albion 2-2 Manchester United: Reds twice come from behind to nick point

United twice came from behind to nick a draw against West Brom, with Marouane Fellaini and Daley Blind getting on the scoresheet. Manchester United twice came from behind to draw 2-2 with West Bromwich Albion at the Hawthorns on Monday. It was another night of frustration for Louis van Gaal's side, with the Reds' defensive play again undermining their attacking promise. The game had barely settled into a rhythm by the time West Brom had taken the lead, when Andre Wisdom charged down the left and rolled the ball across for Stéphane Sessègnon to lash into the top corner from the edge of...
The Busby Babe Oct 20, 2014
West Bromwich Albion vs. Manchester United: Lineups and live coverage

West Bromwich Albion vs. Manchester United: Lineups and live coverage

Adnan Januzaj starts for United with Radamel Falcao dropping to the bench. Louis van Gaal has named Adnan Januzaj in his starting 11 for the first time this season, as Manchester United travel to face West Bromwich Albion at the Hawthorns. Januzaj comes in for Radamel Falcao, who is apparently suffering from jetlag after international duty. Also of note is the inclusion of Michael Carrick on the bench, and the absence of Paddy McNair from the squad. Phil Jones starts at centre-back alongside Marcos Rojo. Otherwise, there are few surprises in the United selection. Manchester United starting...
The Busby Babe Oct 20, 2014

Ahead of West Brom, Van Gaal demands a complete game

United's manager wants to see 90 minutes of football. Speaking ahead of tonight's game against West Bromwich Albion, Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has demanded a complete 90 minute performance from his team. It is the game, the style, the formation and the philosophy that we have to judge and not the points. The points are coming when we are playing well, and not only well for 60 minutes but for 90 minutes. United have dropped off noticeably in the latter stages of their games so far this season, and only a superb performance from David de Gea preserved three points against...

United injury list down to four - is Herrera fit for West Brom?

Manchester United now have only four injuries, but Louis van Gaal isn't telling who. Louis van Gaal's press conference also allowed him to give a quick injury update on the club. The good news is that the number has dwindled to four, although if you want more specifics, you'll have to whistle for it. Van Gaal also noted his pleasure at there being no international injuries. So, who's returned? Well, Ander Herrera was back in training today, although according to reports may need a painkilling injection to play against West Brom, so whether he'll play, or for the full 90 minutes, seems...
Van Gaal: United team unbalanced

Van Gaal: United team unbalanced

Louis van Gaal has spoken of the need for 'balance' at Manchester United, as fans who have been watching Tyler Blackett and Paddy McNair hold the line for Angel Di Maria, Falcao and Juan Mata may agree. Internationals are over, but we still have to wait until Monday until Manchester United travel to West Brom. That in mind, let's squeeze out what enjoyment we can - it's pre-match press conference time! Instead of merely hitting the 'send assistant' button, Van Gaal decided to take the opportunity to talk down the glorious stuff his side have been playing: "We could have done better because...
The Busby Babe Oct 16, 2014

Real Madrid unlikely to move for De Gea — reports

According to the papers, rumours linking Manchester United's goalkeeper to the Bernabeu will remain just rumours. Good news, Manchester United fans! Real Madrid are unlikely to make any move for David de Gea in the near future. At least, that's according to Pete Jensen of the Independent, who takes the view that while the Spanish may enjoy the rumours, they're pretty well stocked when it comes to goalkeepers: Real have Keylor Navas waiting to replace Casillas and could also exercise an £8m buy-back clause on talented Espanyol keeper Kiko Casilla next summer — so a move for De Gea seems...
The Busby Babe Oct 16, 2014
Internationals: A good week for Rooney, De Gea and Falcao

Internationals: A good week for Rooney, De Gea and Falcao

As proper football returns, here's a quick update on how United's international players got on around the world. Let's start with England, shall we? That's where Manchester is, after all. Though injury and squad purging meant that only one United player made Roy Hodgson's squad for the games against San Marino and Estonia, Wayne Rooney took advantage of the relatively soft opposition to add two more goals to his overall tally. England's brave and glorious captain now has 43 goals, though the record books won't note that his performance against Estonia was, free-kick aside, very much of the...