Inside Old Trafford

Friday 7 December 2018 12:00

Manchester United season ticket holder Tom Mylles explains why he has a soft spot for Fulham, and assesses what we can expect at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon.

United’s results have certainly been mixed – what’s your take on the season so far?   

It’s been a very disappointing season so far for United, with not much to cheer about other than a couple of late fightbacks and last minute winners. I thought we would have kicked on after Juventus away, but it hasn’t happened.

Why do you think things aren’t quite clicking?

It’s hard to explain why things are not clicking. There doesn’t seem to be any continuity with team selection, although injuries always play a part in this. The defence has had so many combinations of players and of course this can lead to a lack of understanding on the pitch.

Who have been United’s better performers?

United top performers have been David De Gea, as usual, Marcus Rashford has a great attitude every time he plays, Anthony Martial when he wants can change a game, and Luke Shaw has done very well.

You have a family connection to Fulham, so does that mean you have a soft spot for us?

Yes, I’ve always loved going to the Cottage, it’s a great place to watch football. We were fortunate enough to be at the Play-Off Final at Wembley against Aston Villa and the fans were brilliant. Some of the football the team played last season was exceptional. My nephews have been fans since they were children and are regulars at the Cottage. The soft spot is so great that my wife is buying a half-and-half scarf on Saturday. I’ve never understood them… 😀

What have you made of Fulham?

It was always going to be difficult for Fulham this season. The change in personnel, the breaking up of last season’s squad, and the standard of teams in the Premier League are all contributing factors. However, they competed very well at Liverpool and Chelsea recently and hopefully can take confidence from these performances. Home form will be crucial for Fulham.

How can we expect Jose Mourinho to set his side up?

It’s hard to say how United will set up with so many injuries at the moment, but hopefully we’re set up to attack from the first whistle and take the game to Fulham.

Which Fulham players do you think could cause United problems?

I think Aleksandar Mitrović is a great player; hard working, tough, skilful and clever. Tom Cairney can influence games, and I like the way Kevin McDonald plays. Ryan Sessegnon will be a star in the future.

Do you have any standout memories from previous United-Fulham encounters?

My favourite was Ruud van Nistelrooy’s hat-trick against Fulham at Old Trafford. My worst was a 3-0 defeat at the Cottage and then being stranded at Gatwick for 26 hours.

What sort of match are you anticipating at the weekend?

I expect a good quality attacking game from both sides. Fulham are not the type of team to sit in and defend and United really need to do something to please the fans who, despite the performances, are giving the team great backing.

Can you recommend a good place for away fans to get a pre-match pint?

Fans could do worse than heading over to Media City for a pint. A very good selection of bars and restaurants, and a short walk to the ground and tram links to the city make it ideal.

What score prediction are you going for?

I’m going for 3-1 United. I think Fulham will score and Mitrović will be a danger if he gets service, but I just think United will be too strong and experienced on the day.

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