January 25, 2012

Michael Carrick: The Silent Master

I am a Carrick fan. Back in the 2008 and I’ve always admired his composure on the ball and the ability to pick a short pass rather than the Scholesy sixty yard switch.

Carrick watches every move of his opponents
I’ve always been someone that doesn’t go down the mainstream route of adoring Rooney/Ronaldo which is probably the reason why I support the lesser known players such as Carrick, Gabriel Obertan and even Kiko Macheda.

Carrick for me is a deep lying playmaker (sorry for the Football Manager terminology) that can pick a pass and can keep the move flowing, his ability to not be forced into playing the Hollywood ball I find an asset that some don’t admire. Now 30, this for Carrick isn’t a major issue due to his play style; he has started to gain some plaudits and in particularly from Sir Alex Ferguson who described Michael as “outstanding” after his in my opinion, man of the match performance against Swansea where Michael completed 92/96 passes.

Carrick is someone that also hasn’t been recognised in terms of International level with Michael collecting just twenty-two caps due to Gerrard and Lampard’s dominance which is odd because Carrick against European opposition is excellent. In a European game you normally end up with more time on the ball, something that suites Michael down to the ground. In the Premier League you’re hassled and are hunted in packs which could be a reason why Michael has started a large majority of Champions League games since his arrival.

One thing Michael lacks is aggression but in my view that could be solved with the people around him. Many suggest Michael passes just back-wards and side-wards, well; Michael has played 2.6x more forward passes than backwards + sideways combined. With that in mind, with a more tenacious midfielder beside him, Carrick could easily do the ‘Modric style’ job but from a deeper position/

Michael certainly isn’t any Iniesta or Xavi but I still think he has a place in the England team and certainly a place in the United team for years to come. His experience is invaluable for the likes of Cleverley and Pogba and his tactical knowledge is far superior to other members in the squad. Hopefully this hasn’t come across as a love letter to Michael Carrick but I do feel a little bit of recognition is in order.

Article contributed by @ManUtdUpdate


Anonymous said...

i agree actually last season Carrick played better football in Europe than in the premier league and had more completed passes than Iniesta.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but it sounds exactly like a love letter. Carrick is a good player but has too many limitations in his game to be able to help united reach the next step. We need a great midfielder at this great club...who we get or rather who can we afford is anyone's guess. All I know is some of the criticism aimed at carrick is warranted...we can't all be wrong. Think we as united supporters must pull our heads put of the sand & stop sugar coating everything the club & manager do. We desperately need to rebuild this side now otherwise I fear we will slowly fade away. I'm really concerned at the moment.

Anonymous said...

Right now he is our best passer of the ball, his accuracy is admirable. But again, he is not the best in the game and line Anonimous has said, he cant take us to the next level. We surely need a great play maker and a defensive midfielder. Carrick can remain as a somewhat reliable backup

Anonymous said...

A good player not a great one : What we need now is leadership on the field .Guile, vision and guts.in the middle of the park .

Quentinho said...

I've never been a huge fan of Carrick, and I've downright slated him on other forums but I have to admit I've been impressed with him in the last 5 or 6 games, where we've needed to keep possession, build up slowly and have used the wide players to deadly effect. However, in the beginning of the season Carrick looked very out of sorts in a midfield that was much more dynamic and direct, such as when Cleverley and Anderson were tearing teams apart. In fact, if we look to out first tie against Benfica I think Carrick slowed the play down a little too much. Your contention that he needs a more aggressive midfielder alongside him to be more effective is somewhat valid, however I think he has failed to shine even when played alongside someone like Fletch. To me, Carrick's main assets are his positional awareness and his ability to pick a clever short pass when under pressure, but he rarely finds a great ball when we urgently need to break - barring that stunner to Welbeck the other week, can anyone else think of another instance where Carrick has done so? For me, United need a little more of a creative spark at times in the middle, as all too often I've seen Rooney dropping too deep in the hopes we can find a gap in the final third, only to be rushed into a pass out wide or into a shot. This is where a midfielder that plays slightly more of an advanced role would be of great benefit, as this would allow Rooney to push further up (as he did to deadly effect in his legendary 30 goal season) and we would effectively match their defence one for one, rather than allowing our second striker to be double marked. I think Cleverley can do the job for us, and I hope he gets back soon. Even a consistent Anderson would be great at that, it was his favoured position at Porto after all, but alas he is still a little too hit and miss. Carrick is at best a decent stop-gap until we find such a player, but I hope he continues his rich form and proves me wrong in the coming weeks. Let's 'ave it lad!

Anonymous said...

I am also a big fan of the underrated players...Obertan,Kiko,Park,Evans are some of the players i like and wish they could get some recognitions...i have defended Park for a long time and he has proved a lot of people wrong with his performances...Evans has been doing great this year, but getting one yellow card will make every fan start complaining how terrible it is(i have started nitpicking and showing them whenever he does a good job)...Obertan had the talent but never had the character to make it in old trafford...hopefully kiko will improve in qpr as he is a talented player with great finish.

Anonymous said...

Carrick deserves some respect especially this year he has put in a performance when given the chance that is worthy of plaudits through out. To say more than that though would be unfair to other players he has given the team a boost with his positive play this year last 2 years after he was at fault for a pass back that lead to a goal he was passing back trying hard not to make mistakes. I also agree he could be a bit more aggressive but i think his calmness is his asset but in recent seasons he has not really given the ball away and he is consistently supporting the back 4 with great timely interceptions and tackles. In that area of defense he is underrated.bim

Anonymous said...

For me Michael is Sergio busquets but he will never win the Oscar.

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