MADE IN ENGLAND: City will be much stronger with Haaland, I’m a little worried about United

“The first round brought some surprising results, but the season is just starting, for example a draw at Fulham I wouldn’t see as tragic for Liverpool. Fulham are full of energy after promotion, they wanted to prove themselves and I have to say I liked his performance. He played compactly, Mitrovic scored both goals up front, kept a lot of balls, opened the scoring with his head, then won a penalty.

But Liverpool will be strong, they bought a good striker, I was impressed by Darwin Núñez. He scored before in the English Super Cup against City and now in the league. Although he is not as mature as Haaland, who came to City, I think Liverpool will not be weaker after Mané’s departure. It could be the other way around with Darwin.

I’m a bit worried about Manchester United, especially from the point of view of how things will work there with Ronaldo staying. Now he started on the bench, only coming on during the second half as United lost 1-2 at home to Brighton. I don’t want to diminish the quality of Brighton, I have respect for them, but this is the kind of opponent United should be beating. Such a start will not help them and I am curious about the reaction in the next round.

Foto: Toby Melville, Reuters

Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo gestures towards the referee’s first leg league match against Brighton.Photo: Toby Melville, Reuters

There has been a lot of talk about whether or not Ronaldo will leave. From the way I watched everything, I got the impression that he probably doesn’t want to stay at United very long. It’s hard when the season is barely over and he starts talking about leaving right away. I don’t want to say that the fans take it as a betrayal, but it certainly does not add to him in their eyes.

In Manchester, they won’t allow him to leave just like that, and honestly, who will buy him for some rocket, even if it’s just for a year, even though he still has great quality? The atmosphere in the club was definitely not good when it was always being discussed what would happen to him. I think all this took the team’s concentration away from work.

New coach Erik ten Hag did not start happily at United. I see a lot of questions. How will the fans receive and support him? How will the owners behave and what trust will they give him? Will they grant him freedom? If they have it set up so that they give him half a year or a year to settle everything, it can be fine and the team can rise. But I have a crazy feeling that United won’t want to wait a year to miss out on the Champions League again.

I tell myself that it doesn’t start creaking right away and that he doesn’t deal with the departure of the new coach soon. I think he has a good philosophy from Ajax, he knows how to work with young players, but he needs time to embed his ideas in the boys and to show himself. I hope he gets the space and it works. He needs results to back him up. If he has them, everyone will take him immediately. If not, the pressure will mount and be far greater than he experienced at Ajax.

Manchester City started the season with a win at West Ham. I would be happy if the home team got at least a point, after all, the Czech boys Tomáš Souček and Vláďa Coufal are working there, and one wishes for them. But when I saw the game, West Ham de facto had nothing. City held the ball and dominated throughout the game. They needed to perform better than a week ago in the Super Cup when they lost to Liverpool, and they did.

It’s a joy to watch when you see how De Bruyne combines it with the others or what action they play before the penalty foul on Haaland. I’ll stop at City’s new striker, Haaland is an incredible player. He has shown it and I have no doubt that he will succeed. West Ham scored two straight goals.

I think City will be much stronger with Haaland than last season. I like him, I like him. He is huge, strong, fast, he will hold the ball. He is simply a complex striker and can score a goal from any situation. In my opinion, he is probably the best striker in the Premier League at the moment. Now it will be up to him to prove his qualities.”

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