So today, United played their last game of the year. Ironically, it was a 1-0 home win against Boro, which was in contrast to the flamboyant year we've had but more in tune with the recent performances. I would be highly lucky if I get to witness another year as successful as this one. We beat off Chelsea to the two most important trophies and capped it off with a World Club Cup which just validates that we were the best football club of the year.
Next year though, presents it's own challenges. Ronaldo is yet to hit his peak form. Our pace has slowed down from last season and we aren't moving the ball that fast. Our goal scoring form is no where near last season and sees us trail the top two in the GD column. Add to that the Tevez situation - he was not even on the bench today. This is the 2nd time he has been dropped right after scoring a winner for us. It makes me suspect either he is in on the mega secret plan that Fergie has for him or he is off in January. Time will tell. Either way, we need to find answers up front quite soon as these string of 1-0s are not going to last forever.
Having said that, we find ourselves just a point off the pace (if you consider we win the two games in hand) and that's a massive boost given the distractions of the World Club Cup and the fact that we haven't hit top gear yet. It would have been highly realistic to be 12-15 points off the pace at this time. Luckily though, nether Chelsea or Liverpool have taken their chances along the way.
We do have the luxury of playing at home more than the other two in the upcoming fixtures, but the next one at home is a big one. A win against Chelsea will put us in a great position to put direct pressure on Liverpool. The scousers haven't been in a position to win the league in a long long time. When the pressure of the CL and the league builds up, I don't expect them to hold up. When you play a knock out game away in Europe sandwiched between tricky leagues games on either side, that's when the teams are really tested and squad depth and quality comes into play. I'd have to say, both Chelsea and us have the squad and the experience on that front to cope with such pressures.
Anyways, it's a bunch of cup games next before the big one against Chelsea. A long way to go till May and I'm sure there will be a few surprises along the way! We can just hope that the next year is as good as this one, if not better!