Manchester United: Do they deserve more credit?
Manchester United opinion: It could be argued that Sir Alex Ferguson's current squad is the best he has assembled
Last week, Manchester United wrapped up another Premier League title under Sir Alex's Ferguson's guidance in relatively comfortable fashion.
Although, despite winning the title the team have come under a lot of scrutiny and criticism - but have reason to believe they are possibly the strongest team that has been gathered by the manager.
The first argument for this is the fact they won the Premier League title with a comfortable four games to spare and a record points tally by a Manchester United team in the Premier league era at the 34 game mark - 84 points.
Also, combine that with the most goals scored by any team under Ferguson at this stage of the season, shows the attacking threat they possess, with a certain signing partly to thank for that.
With the rise of such teams as Everton, Tottenham, Manchester City, constant top-four finishers Arsenal and Chelsea, and a resurgent Liverpool side means this could be the hardest competition in the Premier League they have had to face.
More teams are capable of taking points off the big teams at home. Combine that with the consistent performances from Manchester United and their comfortable winning margin and this could very well prove the team are the best England has ever seen.
Europe is the benchmark that great teams will always be measured by. Some teams have used this as a strong defence for a poor domestic league performance in the season - e.g. through a strong performance in Europe, Chelsea supporters were given the chance to have something to show for the season after their triumph.
As you can see from Manchester United's exit in the Champions League Round of 16 they shouldn't really be compared to great teams in the past who have made finals and won; yet when you look back you need to say that they were still very successful in European competition.
During the group stages they won four out of their first four matches and had already guaranteed top spot, so had the option to use the last two games as ways to blood youngsters in less pressurised situations in the Champions League.
That was then followed by a very respectable 1-1 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu which could have very easily been a 2-1 win if a reliant Robin van Persie had taken a chance which would very often have been a goal for him.
Then, after going 1-0 up at Old Trafford, Nani was shown a controversial red card for a challenge which has been debated hugely by fans, pundits and journalists alike. As similar challenges like Javi Martinez's against Arsenal and Karim Benzema's against Galatasaray ending up in a yellow cards being given means that they have good reason to believe they were hard done by - and you have to speculate whether they would have gone on to win if it was only given as a yellow.
Having a squad like this years means that the real strength is being able to rotate your team and keeping big players fresh for big games. Having a record amount of different goalscorers - 19 - proves that the success that Ferguson has produced has been all to do with rotation of the squad.
To be able to do this and still have such a great morale in the dressing room is very impressive and could be another point to show this could be the best squad assembled.
Obviously you need to take into account the fact you can't know what team would be better. Would this team stand a chance against the treble winners of 1999, the Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired double winners of 2008 or the dominant class of 2000/01, who won the league with five games to spare?
There have been many great teams for Manchester United and a few years where they have under-performed, but this year's team filled with stars such as Van Persie, Rio Ferdinand and Michael Carrick show that this team doesn't deserve the criticism it has received.
Praise would be much more appropriate.
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