The consensus after last Saturday’s defeat to Wolves was, oh well, they were better than us – but only just.
The game showed how far United have come in less than two months but it also highlighted the improvements they have yet to make. Where Wolves were better was in the accuracy of their passing, their movement off the ball and their cleverly shared-around cynicism. Several of their players fouled until they got booked, then had the good sense not to foul again.
It was fitting that United were playing Wolves - a proper, traditional football club - on the day of the club’s 125th birthday. It wouldn’t have been quite the same against Stevenage or MK Dons.
Wolves moved to their current ground the same year United were formed; the two teams have played each other over 100 times. Wolves were in the same division as United for our 100th and 75th anniversaries too.
The hair was thinner and the waistlines broader of the parade of former players who welcomed the teams on to the pitch. It was pity that the heavens opened as they were standing in line as part of a guard of honour.