Episodes
So, here it is, the season finale. Unfortunately, the Premier League has not ended as we would have liked, and Erik Ten Hag's men will need to win the FA Cup final if they want to play in Europe next season. Under normal circumstances, that would be a good distance short of what is expected from a Manchester United manager and he would be seeking employment elsewhere. Of course, these are not normal circumstances. So, the full podcast team get into the nitty gritty of United's least fruitful...
Published 05/20/24
Manchester United's men beat European rivals Newcastle in their last home game of the season to rekindle hope of European qualification via the Premier League (for a few days at least). After Chelsea won at Brighton, though, the only route to the Europa League is by winning the FA Cup. Manager Erik Ten Hag delivered a rousing speech to the crowd after the game, thanked the fans, and reaffirmed ALL his players' commitment to the cause. Tributes were paid to this season's successful Academy...
Published 05/16/24
A podcast very much in three parts for you on a stormy Sunday night in May with Andy and Ian braving the Manchester rain and Carl looking nervously out of his twentieth floor window... Arsenal did what was expected of them at Old Trafford, winning for just the second time in seventeen attempts, despite a slightly brighter performance from Ten Hag's men. Meanwhile, at Wembley, Ella Toone inspired Manchester United's women to a performance that absolutely validated their favouritism in the FA...
Published 05/12/24
Another full house but we're a bit more relaxed now, a few days after that chastening result at Selhurst Park. One member of the team has even been brave enough to watch the game back again! Now that everyone has calmed down, we have a more measured look at where Erik Ten Hag stands as Manchester United manager, whether there are any threatening candidates (or not), and whether he gets a slightly raw deal from the media. ...And there's a 'Super' Sunday in store with the potential for an...
Published 05/09/24
It's another unwanted inquest on Talk of the Devils with Laurie Whitwell back in the UK and Manchester United back in the mire. In fact, the whole podcast team are on hand as we dig into some heavy questions prompted by Crystal Palace's dismantling of a depleted United side. The biggest of those is whether the performance was bad enough for Erik Ten Hag to be relieved of his duties before the end of the current season. Casemiro's form hit a new low but the whole team was some distance below...
Published 05/07/24
It looks like Sir Jim Ratcliffe's INEOS team have really taken the rudder at Manchester United, and the latest in a series of changes at executive level demonstrate just that. But, with many football clubs close to the edge of their budgets, a quiet summer of transfer activity is expected and that means recruiting players will be challenging. We asked for your priorities and used the answer to go through the current squad to try and shed some light on which players are likely to leave and who...
Published 05/02/24
Another Monday podcast, another day trying to defy the gloom after Erik Ten Hag's men made it one win in six games in the Premier League with a draw at home to relegation candidates Burnley. We're actually talking about the performance, especially the first half, in fairly positive terms. Does that tell a story of lowered expectation? Is the Premier League proving, literally, too strong for this squad to excel? Ten Hag's substitutes drew some ire in the stadium as well. Not so much who came...
Published 04/29/24
Ian, Andy, and Carl are all feeling a bit better about Manchester United, football, and life in general after Bruno Fernandes inspired a 4-2 home victory against Sheffield United. There was a landmark moment during that game as Ethan Wheatley became the 250th academy graduate to feature for the first team; we get into the nitty gritty of the world's most successful youth system. We also have a brief update on developments at executive level, look at the 17/19 rule on season tickets, and the...
Published 04/25/24
How can an FA Cup semi-final win at Wembley leave fans feeling empty, if not despairing? That's the conundrum we try to unravel on this podcast. Recorded late on Sunday evening, in a state of serious fatigue, it's a riddle that tests our panel to their limits. What turned this performance from a stroll in the park into a near-catastrophic collapse. So, from substitutions to celebrations, from the sublime to the ridiculous, and from Mongolia to Manchester, we cover plenty of ground trying to...
Published 04/22/24
We're looking for positives today on Talk of the Devils, and not just from Real Madrid. The U18s won their league this week and there's plenty of talent coming through. We also saw the first meeting of a new committee charged with planning the regeneration of Old Trafford. And, of course, it's Wembley this Sunday for an FA Cup semi-final against Coventry. Swedish sensation Jesper Blomqvist joins us to remember one of the greatest semi-finals in the history of the competition, 25 years...
Published 04/18/24
Andy is feeling a little low after his ambitions were thwarted in dramatic fashion in the Manchester Marathon. Unfortunately, Erik Ten Hag's Manchester United hit roadworks of their own at the Vitality Stadium. A draw, and they were arguably lucky to escape with a point, means the team's Champions League hopes are hanging by the finest of threads. We've a full report on the match and rumours of a press conference spat involving the manager. The FA Cup offers hope for Manchester United's men,...
Published 04/15/24
Laurie Whitwell is called away from the airport departure lounge to fill us in on his breaking story, that Manchester United's Football Director John Murtough has left his post this week. Promoted internally and given a subtly different job title to many of his supposed equivalents, he has been viewed as a Glazer man by some with all the baggage that brings. But, as Andy and Carl explain, things are rarely as straight-forward as they appear from outside. Meanwhile, it looks like INEOS are...
Published 04/11/24
Manchester United will finish the season unbeaten against Liverpool after another "silly" game at Old Trafford finished in a two-all draw. After an hour, Erik Ten Hag's men had achieved an xG of 0.01, yet they were level at 1-1, Bruno's magnificent 40-yard effort cancelling out the far-post finish from Luis Diaz at a corner. The game then swung completely when Kobbie Mainoo recreated Federico Macheda's famous curler. Sadly, Liverpool did square it up at the end via a Salah penalty, and the...
Published 04/07/24
Two crucial fixtures in West London in the last five days have yielded just one point for Erik Ten Hag's Manchester United. If that wasn't bad enough, they held the lead going into the 99th minute in both games. If Brentford was bad, this was an astonishing evening at Stamford Bridge. Looking fairly comfortable having put together another remarkable comeback, the Red Devils suddenly imploded to throw away all three points. So, what does this result, and the manner of the defeat, mean for Erik...
Published 04/05/24
It may be Easter, but it feels a lot like a Monday as Ian Irving hosts Andy Mitten and Carl Anka to "pick over the carcass" of Saturday night's performance at Brentford. Such was the home side's dominance, it's easy to forget this finished a draw. But, after Mason Mount's late goal was cancelled out, it felt like a defeat, with comparisons even drawn to the horror show at the same venue last season. What price a win at Chelsea, then, and how will this squad look next season, with question...
Published 04/01/24
We're back after the international break and we are all aboard Kobbie's hype train! After the Carrington graduate bossed Belgium, it's time for the rest of the country to acknowledge what we already knew; Mainoo is the future. Thanks to everyone who sent in questions and requests; we get to as many of those as we can, covering midfield options with or without Casemiro, the future at left-back, and our podcast roles as Man United heroes. Saturday evening sees Ten Hag's men make their first of...
Published 03/28/24
Laurie Whitwell returns to the pod to make it a full complement as we bask in the glory of a magnificent, dramatic, extra time victory over Liverpool in what is being called the greatest FA Cup win in Manchester United's history. There are so many threads to follow from a day packed with drama; the comeback, the supreme performances from young players, stories of redemption, and of course denying Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool at least one trophy in his farewell tour. Enjoy this bumper edition as...
Published 03/18/24
It's a fresh looking line-up on Talk of the Devils as Mark Critchley and Jay Harris drop by to talk Jadon Sancho, money matters, and Liverpool with Ian and Andy. Sancho got his first goal back in yellow at the weekend and Jay was at Bremen to see the game and talk to various Dortmund figures about how the United exile is doing. With Antony also failing to fire in red, it could be an interesting summer for the two big-money signings. Critch, meanwhile, has had a much less interesting...
Published 03/14/24
Once again, it wasn't pretty, but Manchester United got the job done. two-nil at home with Alejandro Garnacho winning two first-half penalties, scored by different players. The same questions remain, though. Casemiro's wasteful performance with the ball was the latest worrying midfield display and a huge performance was required by both centre halves, especially this season's unexpected hero Jonny Evans. One person who didn't enjoy Saturday's game is Evertonian Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater...
Published 03/11/24
The team have relocated to Hotel Football, overlooking a very famous waterway, not that Ian Irving would know. We're going in-depth today, first on Andre Onana, the subject of 'cautious optimism' and a detailed profile by Andy Mitten and Carl Anka. Slightly less optimistic, though not without hope, is the outlook for Manchester United's Women's team. They haven't been able to recreate the magic of last season having lost key players. Might they lose an even bigger asset in Mary Earps? ...and,...
Published 03/07/24
Marcus Rashford would have been a huge talking point on Manchester derby day whatever happened after his op-ed for the Players Tribune. But, with less than ten minutes on the clock, he struck hope into red hearts with a lightning strike from thirty yards. Throughout the first half Erik Ten Hag's innovative selection had Pep and City frustrated, albeit they used the lion's share of possession and territory to carve out some decent chances, one in particular... But, Phil Foden turned the game...
Published 03/04/24
The awesome foursome are united once again on Monday morning after Manchester United scraped through to the FA Cup quarter finals at the City Ground. Casemiro's late run, late in the game, was just enough to edge out relegation-threatened Forest in a "scrappy" encounter, and Erik Ten Hag was in a scrappy mood himself, defending Bruno (who assisted the goal with inventive free-kick delivery). However, the Manchester Derby comes next and, with so many positional problems it's difficult to be...
Published 02/29/24
A Monday morning full-house from the podcast team, but there's precious little positivity on offer after Manchester United lost at home to Marco Silva's Fulham. An injury to Rasmus Hojlund in training on Friday was a huge blow and it was alarming how much that unsettled the United attack. Our main concern, though, is how familiar many of the team's problems look. Erik Ten Hag bemoaned the inability to sign an additional striker over the last two transfer windows, but there's no doubting the...
Published 02/26/24
Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS have, after an arduous process, completed their partial takeover of Manchester United and will now assume control of football operations. We'll hear from Sir Jim himself, speaking at a press briefing on Wednesday afternoon in central London. The Athletic's Adam Crafton was there, and he joins us to reflect on a wide-ranging discussion. From stadium development to corporate structure via player trading, FFP, and Monday mornings across Manchester, get the lowdown on...
Published 02/22/24