Financial Fair Play is rubbish but Manchester United must reach top four, says Paul Parker
The sceptics will say Manchester City were always going to be in the Champions League, because as much as UEFA try and do something with Financial Fair play (FFP), ultimately it doesn't work.
Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of Manchester United walks off after during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Southampton FC at Old Trafford on July 13, 2020 in Manchester, England. Football Stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the
They need to get rid of FFP, it's a load of rubbish. They can't take down the bigger teams because the moment the bigger teams take them to court they are going to lose.
Queens Park Rangers paid the price for FFP while the biggest clubs didn't so something is wrong. Sanctions only happen when they suit UEFA and it suited them to attack QPR, but other clubs have been threatened and they haven't been able to follow through. They're like bullies, they bully little clubs and the big clubs get away with it because they've got expensive lawyers.
UEFA have got to look at themselves and wash themselves down before they start looking at other clubs. FFP should be run by a more reputable organisation, someone independent who can look at things with impartiality rather than siding with different clubs.
Manchester United's English striker Mason Greenwood walks around the pitch having been substituted during the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Southampton at Old Trafford in Manchester, north-west England, on July 13, 20
Image credit: Getty Images
Now, the season will be defined by finishing top four, everyone is going to look at that. Anything but top four will be seen as failure for Manchester United, unless they win the Europa League and get into the Champions League from the side. Everyone was content with that, but because they gave themselves a chance of top four and had the opportunity to get there and failed, if they don't get there now everyone will look at the Saints game and throw it at Manchester United.
One of the reasons why everyone is upset is because everything's gone so well. It's gone well pre-lockdown, post lockdown, but you have to say the previous two performances against Bournemouth and Aston Villa weren't as assured as the Brighton game where they were very, very clinical. There was too many passes in the final third against Bournemouth and maybe the same can be said for the game against Southampton.
When you look at Saints' form, they're decent, it's going to be their most difficult game maybe left, and it proved to be that way. The first goal United gave away was awful, you can question Paul Pogba in possession but also the weaker part of defence is on the left-hand side of defence, Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw were found wanting. At this moment in time, the weak spot in United is the defence.
I think the back four needs organisation and leadership and at this time there's no one holding it together. They need another centre-half, and he heeds to be left-sided because Maguire can't play on the left side. And Brandon WIlliams needs to come in at left-back too. I thought he deserved an opportunity pre lockdown and now he should start playing regularly, it's important he gets more game time.
You also have to look at what happened to United when their best two midfielders came off the pitch, they just had nothing going forward and everything was backs to the wall, they just sat so deep and went defensive.
It's a shame they couldn't get three points, but a draw was a fair result.
The top four is still in their hands though, and broadcasters will love a United vs Leicester top four showdown at the end of the season.