Manchester United still have a long way to go to catch up with Manchester City, much further than we hoped before 2021.
At the start of the calendar year, United were even at the top of the Premier League table, and while that proved to be short-lived, it gave fans a taste of hope.
The promise made at the start of the year compounded the collapse that followed, with United ending last season with an honorable second but still 12 points behind City.
United can close the gap by 22 points
City’s narrow victory at Brentford puts them 22 points ahead of United – despite United having three games in hand.
Three wins for United can narrow that gap to a 13-point gap, which doesn’t seem so bad.
But the way United play, no wins are guaranteed, and it’s much better to have points on the table rather than games in hand.
United’s current matches are against Burnley, then Brighton and Brentford.
Catching up with City is beyond United this season, unfortunately, and we’ve seen at Old Trafford what the rift between the two teams looks like. The current standings are representative of the performance of both teams that day.
United are currently competing for a top four spot and are by no means guaranteed to secure one. If United win all games in hand, the team will only be placed in fifth place.
Whereas if Tottenham also win their three games in hand, they will push United to sixth.
The worst part is that at this moment it does not seem surprising. United fans can hardly bear to look at the standings.
But the growing gap is more likely
City are in great shape right now and Pep Guardiola’s side look likely to win the title again with Chelsea and Liverpool dropping points this week.
Even though United are able to win all three games in hand and narrow the points gap on City to 13 points, it’s hard to see the chasm between the two teams shrinking to single digits as the season progresses.
United just don’t look convincing at the moment and haven’t been through the entire season, and the gap between City and United is more likely to drop to 22 points or more – when all 38 games have been play.
This chasm between the two sides shows how much United’s next permanent manager has to do.
Ralf Rangnick is trying to change the fortunes of the squad and get United to close the gap again, but the first signs are that it won’t be easy and there will be more bumps in the road.
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