Manchester United have made a strong start to their first WSL season. They’ve got some good xG numbers despite a fairly tough opening and look as though they can continue to grow and build – particularly as a lot of their players are still quite young.
They play in a way that’s quite fun to watch and almost feels like a nice mix between old school and new school. Elements of how they defend and press feel quite modern, but then their directness and use of wingers and crossing feels a bit more old school. What’s important though, is the fact it’s working for them. They’ve got some strong individuals, who all seem to have a role in the system that helps bring out their strengths.
In addition to this, they seem to have some nice options in certain positions. There doesn’t seem a huge quality difference between the likes of Hanson and Sigsworth on the right, Toone or Groenen in midfield and James or Ross up front, but each option brings something slightly different to the team that can help them over the course of the season. It feels like they have a clear identity, without being too single-minded in how they play, allowing for some slight variations now and then.
I’m looking forward to seeing how they do across the course of the season and whether they can take the 4th spot – or even push closer to the top three. Writing this piece has made me lean towards them being able to finish comfortably in 4th and I would probably put them closer to the top three than the rest of the league, but I’m also telling myself it’s still only five games and to not get carried away.
Regardless of all that, they definitely seem worth following and watching this season.