A member of the famous Class of 92 team believes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s current crop may continue to defy expectations as the season progresses
Manchester United now have “a lot of match winners”, according to Gary Neville, who hopes the Red Devils can “change Liverpool’s lineup” in the weeks to come.
United have become the closest challengers to Liverpool’s Premier League crown in the first half of the 2020-21 campaign.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have won six of their last eight games, including a 2-1 home win over Aston Villa on Friday, which saw them level on points with the defending champions at the top of the table.
Liverpool can restore their three-point advantage by beating Southampton at St Mary’s on Monday night, but United still have a game in hand to win at Burnley on January 12.
The two clubs who are currently setting the pace in the top flight will meet at Anfield five days later, with Neville relishing the prospect of a heavyweight showdown after seeing his former club return to a consistent streak.
The Red Devils legend believes Solskjaer has put together a good enough squad to compete with the best, and while he acknowledges there is still a lot of work to be done, the former defender is encouraged by the ‘spirit’ that the team has shown in recent weeks. .
“It was a big, big win for United,” Neville said of his Sky Sports podcast while assessing United’s position following their win over Villa.
“I can’t wait for this [Liverpool game]. Not because I think United can go to Anfield and win, but because United have gotten competitive out of nowhere.
“I remember sitting at Old Trafford after that Manchester derby [goalless draw], sat down with Roy Keane and Micah Richards, saying Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham are way ahead of both Manchester clubs at the moment.
“If you had said at the start of the season, or even five weeks ago, that United would be at the same level as Liverpool, I wouldn’t have said no luck, that can’t happen.
“It just goes to show how unusual this season is. What Manchester United have are a lot of match winners – Edinson Cavani, Anthony Martial, Daniel James, Mason Greenwood, Bruno Fernandes, Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford.
“They do it in moments, and they don’t always have to play well when these players are on the pitch.
“Performance is improving, it’s a work in progress, it’s not the finished article at all. Sometimes in games they hypnotize you for 10 minutes, then can turn into a nightmare for 10 minutes, but there is a confidence boost, something. grows up, there is a spirit at the end of the game with the players celebrating it was nice to see.
The 45-year-old expert added: “I think a few years ago I said quite publicly sometimes that there was a team that I didn’t like to watch wearing those red shirts. I see them now, and I felt last season that they looked a lot happier, and this season they seem happy again.
“Who knows? I don’t think they’ll win the league, I don’t think they’re quite there, but I didn’t think they would be far at this point, and they are. For that, we look forward to this trip to Anfield with great joy – and hope we can polish the tiger tail a bit more! “