'Manchester United need to look at Manchester City with admiration': Former Red Devil explains how to catch rivals

 Josep Guardiola (R) head coach of Manchester City FC reacts in celebration at his team's team's UEFA Champions League triumph after the UEFA Champions League Final 2023 between Manchester City FC and FC Internazionale Milano at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium, in Istanbul, Turkey on 10 June 2023,
Josep Guardiola (R) head coach of Manchester City FC reacts in celebration at his team's team's UEFA Champions League triumph after the UEFA Champions League Final 2023 between Manchester City FC and FC Internazionale Milano at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium, in Istanbul, Turkey on 10 June 2023,
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Manchester United might have won their first trophy in six years during the 2022/23 season, but watching Manchester City match their achievement of winning the treble certainly won't have gone down well at Old Trafford.

The Red Devils even had an opportunity to halt City's treble chances at Wembley during the FA Cup final, but a 2-1 defeat - courtesy of two Ilkay Gundogan goals - meant their cross-city rivals moved one step closer to the coveted triple crown of trophies.

Gordon Strachan, who played for Manchester United between 1984 and 1989, believes his former club should try and learn from Manchester City, rather than turning a blind eye to their achievements.

"If I was a Manchester United player, I wouldn’t look at them and think, ‘I hate everything about them,’ I’d look at them with admiration," Strachan told Genting Casino.

"United need to look at City and figure out what they are doing differently. Are they working harder than them? Are they fitter? Have a look at them and analyse what you can do as an individual player to get closer to that level."

Strachan doesn't believe that means Erik ten Hag should attempt to copy Pep Guardiola's style of play at City, though. Instead, he suggests the Dutchman discovers his own blueprint for how to succeed, hence the signing of Mason Mount.

Manchester City lift the 2022/23 Premier League title
Manchester City lift the 2022/23 Premier League title

"I don’t think United can start playing the same football as Manchester City. I don’t think they have the players to do that.

"Perhaps that is one of the reasons why they are signing Mason Mount. Maybe Erik ten Hag wants more mobility in his midfield and wants midfielders that can get up and support the striker.

"I think United need to look at getting more out of their midfield for a start. They don’t get enough players up and around the pockets and running in behind. They need more creativity in the team."

Manchester United player Gordon Strachan of Manchester United in action during the Canon League Division One match between Ipswich Town and Manchester United at Portman Road on September 1, 1984 in Ipswich, England. (Photo by Duncan Raban/Popperfoto via Getty Images)
Manchester United player Gordon Strachan of Manchester United in action during the Canon League Division One match between Ipswich Town and Manchester United at Portman Road on September 1, 1984 in Ipswich, England. (Photo by Duncan Raban/Popperfoto via Getty Images)

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Manchester United transfer news is doing the rounds, with the Red Devils said to be in the market for several stars this summer. 

Andre Onana is wanted in goal, Rasmus Hojlund and Randal Kolo Muani are wanted up front, while wonderkid Vitor Roque has been linked, too. Portuguese teen Joao Neves is on the radar, while his countryman Goncalo Ramos is in the crosshairs. United have also enquired about Theo Hernandez, while Jadon Sancho has been put up for sale.

Meanwhile, Marcus Rashford looks set to remain with a bumper new contract.