As the season enters its sixth month and final stretch it seems as though elder statesmen dominate the tale. Events of the last few weeks bear this out and it was the old fellas who finished the weekend having the last laugh.
Last week’s article suggesting that Fergie may retire at the end of the season was met with strong resistance from you readers. However, whether I’m right or wrong, Fergie himself said recently that he wanted to go out on a high. He will no doubt be influenced by the torrid time Arsene Wenger has been experiencing lately.
The Frenchman is getting torn apart in the press and he doesn’t deserve it. There can be no denying his impact on English football has been both enormous and hugely important. Having his methods questioned by precocious journalists under the age of thirty must be galling for him. I must admit I was delighted to see Arsenal’s stupendous victory at the weekend.
The side Arsenal beat, Tottenham, are United’s opponents this weekend in a fixture Fergie has already described as being “massive” for the title race. Spurs have been terrific under the experienced guidance of Harry Redknapp. Unfortunately for them, the FA have been batting their eyelids in Redknapp’s direction for the England job and it has destabilised the club. It is far from a foregone conclusion, but I am more confident than I would have been a few weeks ago.
Despite the fact we lost our captain, Nemanja Vidic, in October for the season and our most effective midfielder, Darren Fletcher, the squad has been immense this term. This is in no small amount due to the contributions of the returning Paul Scholes and 900-man Ryan Giggs.
How Giggsie is still playing at the top of this league at his age is anybody’s guess. I can’t even think of anything I have done 900 times in my life, let alone anything as mammoth as playing for United. A few more performances like the one at the weekend and we could have another trophy to celebrate in May too. Then it really would have been a season for the old stagers.
Follow Mark on twitter.com/markjpayne