Michael Carrick: We are in a better place than last year


Manchester United’s Carrick is optimistic ahead of the new season with expectations raised higher in Mourinho’s second year in charge.

The English veteran has echoed his manager with setting the bar higher for his club this season but insists the squad is better off than last year. Carrick appeared to be on his way out with his contract up and a testimonial but managed to grab, possibly, one last extension.

“It is difficult to say what our chances in the league are but we are setting out to be on top. We have certainly improved the squad, we look stronger, we are a year further ahead with the manager and his staff, we are in a better place than we were last year, so things are on the up.” said the defensive midfielder.

Carrick continued, “For large spells of last season, we felt we should have been higher up in the league than we were and performances certainly warranted that for large periods as well. But it is too easy to sit here and say that.”.

manchester united captain michael carrick
LONDON, ENGLAND – FEBRUARY 26 (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images) /

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“We need to improve because we ended up a distance away from the top. Hopefully this season we will be right up there challenging. The league is special because it is such a tough division to win. When you come out on top it is an unbelievable feeling to know you are the best team in the country, and you have gone through all sorts of things along the way to win that.” said the former Tottenham man.

Carrick added, “Cup competitions are special because it is a slightly different feeling. Winning a trophy is winning a trophy and the feeling you get from it is incredible. There are obviously bigger competitions than others, but we will certainly be fighting on all fronts to win as much as we can.”.

The Englishman was a part of many Manchester United winning sides and as his career dwindles down, he’s remained at Old Trafford in the hopes to help raise the club back to it’s previously high standards. Last season the Red Devils managed to win 2 trophies excluding the Community Shield but finished a lowly 6th in the Premier League.

Mourinho has seemed adamant at improving the squad’s league position this time around and it appears like the message has been well received by his players. Carrick has spoken about what the targets are for the club this season but he’s not the only United player to do so.

Star signing Paul Pogba has also spoken of the need to win everything possible in order to propel the club back to it’s previous heights. Mourinho himself has spoken about how the reputation and stature of a club is different to it’s current ability to perform on the pitch and the need to close the gap between these two important aspects.

Should the Red Devils continue their pre-season form and should key players perform, there’s no reason why a title challenge can’t be achieved. While an outright ‘we will win the league’ statement has been avoided, it’s clear the players and manager are on the same page of at least attempting to challenge.

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In comparison to last year when the club were a little more reserved in their ambitions, perhaps not to shoot themselves in the foot with bold statements. Champions League was the aim and that was achieved by winning a European trophy none the less. Time will tell if last years results can be beaten