3 Winners and 3 Losers With Poch at United

Manchester United Specials

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Poch now 4/5 to join United

With Ole Gunnar Solskjær finally losing control of the wheel following Manchester United’s 4-1 humbling to Watford on Saturday, rumours sparked as to who could replace the Norwegian at Old Trafford.

A few days may have only passed but Mauricio Pochettino looks ready to jump ship at the Parc des Princes and return to the Premier League for his third job in England. But who would benefit from the Argentine upping sticks to the North West and who could potentially fall down the pecking order?

Manchester United Specials

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Winners: Donny van De Beek

The most notorious player to suffer under Solskjaer's reign was Donny van de Beek, who quite unbelievably ironically, scored the final goal of the Norwegian's reign at the club as the Dutchman only started three out of a possible 50 games since his £35.7m purchase from Ajax in August 2020.

Whilst many would say any manager but Ole would give van de Beek a chance, Pochettino could be his match made in heaven. Having worked under Erik ten Hag at Ajax, a club synonymous with playing high pressing and attacking football since the days of Johan Cruyff, van de Beek could easily fill in a space in Poch’s United midfield and reciprocate his 2:1 goal involvement he had in his final season in Amsterdam.

The ex-Ajax man proved such excellent ability and unrivaled passion in the match with Watford. At the same time, he is about as versatile as it gets, and you only have to look at the exceptional form of players like Christian Eriksen (also formally Ajax) and Delle Alli to see how van de Beek could finally kick on.

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Winners: Edinson Cavani

After signing his contract extension in May this year, Edinson Cavani must have been relishing a chance to be the main striker at Old Trafford. A signing of a certain Cristiano Ronaldo put an end to that dream, restricting the Uruguayan to only one goal in the Premier League so far this season: an excellently taken goal against Tottenham Hotspur where he now has three goals in two games.

Were Pochettino to come to United, Cavani would potentially enjoy a fruitful final season in England, being able to press defences high up the pitch and stifle any potential teams looking to play out of the back. This attacking, confident style of plays is synonymous to Pochettino, having learnt from his playing game under teacher Marcelo Bielsa.

Similarly to van de Beek, the emphasis on this position under Pochettino will only benefit the 34-year-old and to this day, Harry Kane's most impressive days remain under the Argentine which surely only adds to the pleasure of this deal for Cavani.

Winners: Jadon Sancho

Seen as United’s big hope having finally signed for Manchester United for £73m from Borussia Dortmund in 2021, Jadon Sancho has so far failed to spark to life in playing in the Premier League for the first time, having yet to contribute any goals or assists so far.

This vastly contrasts his final year at the German giants, where he managed 20 goal involvements in 26 Bundesliga games, helping the side to win the German cup but in reality, it all but comes down to the simple fact that signing Ronaldo has halted everything for him, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood.

His control of the ball would benefit from either plays from central midfield or sprays from the defence, two alternating styles Pochettino can adopt to help his teams break down the opposition. At the same time, the young English philosophy we saw him adapt at Spurs with the likes of Alli and Kane would potentially work wonders, while in Pochettino's famous 4-3-3 and 4-2-3-1 styles - similar to that what is played at Dortmund - Sancho would be able to hug the right wing once again and flourish in his own way.

Losers: Harry Maguire

The captain of the club Harry Maguire can either show brilliance, highlighted in helping England get to the Euros final, or petulance, shown through two yellow cards in seven minutes against the Hornets on Saturday.

Many have been calling for his removal from the first XI but Ole stuck with him. However, in a team that has conceded more than 18th-placed Burnley so far this season, Maguire might be looking over his shoulder at Pochettino's arrival.

With Varane and Bailly confident enough on the ball to either pass into the midfield or switch to either wing, the world's most expensive defender might be looking at some time on the sidelines if the Argentine came to Manchester.

Losers: Paul Pogba

Paul Pogba will be playing under his third manager and while other players like Maguire have been subject to topsy-turvy times at the club under one manager in one period, the Frenchman is now five years into his spell at the club and is yet to completely fulfill his insane price tag.

While in a Pochettino team Pogba may flourish with his creativity with the forward line, the emphasis on a defensive midfielder, work rate, and defensive ability in general likely puts one of either Pogba or Bruno Fernandes at risk. Naturally, given the form of the two, the World Cup winner would miss out, no questions asked.

This doesn't mean he will be dropped, but in a 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 system, the two just don't seem to work and the midfield consistently gets cut open right now. In fact, the forwards and the defence seem set in stone regardless of who comes in, and it is in fact the midfield that seems to be up in the air right now, and as of now, the man in the worst form probably drops out.

Losers: Fred

A long-standing argument is that Ole used to be too defensive having both Fred and Scott McTominay and many would speculate that Pochettino would oust one to gain that attacking flow as he did at Spurs when he brought in Eriksen and Alli alongside one another brilliantly.

However, when you have one of the worst defences in the league, a defensive midfielder is vital to help the defence and Fred will most likely fall to the wayside. Pochettino was well known throughout his Premier League tenure for having a defensive midfielder who could win aerial duels and dig his defence out of a hole, whether it be Eric Dier at Spurs, Victor Wanyama at Southampton, or even Idrissa Gueye and Ander Herrera with PSG.

With McTominay able to win authority in the air as well as block and shadow potential threats size, stature and mobility, the Brazilian's time at Old Trafford may well come to a rapid end under Pochettino.

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