Shaw's diary: How we've prepared to face Tottenham
Hi everybody. We’re all so excited by the return of the Premier League this week.
It’s been a long, long time coming but we’re all looking forward so much to facing Tottenham on Friday evening. This is what we’ve all been training very, very hard for since lockdown started.
This week is hugely important in terms of our preparation for Spurs, and we had some good friendly games against West Brom at Old Trafford over the weekend. We split into two teams so everybody got some minutes and getting that time in was the most important aspect of the afternoon by a long way.
A few of the lads won’t have played 90 minutes for a very long time, especially the lads like Rashy and Paul who have had injuries, and getting that playing time for the whole squad was easily the most important thing. We’ve all got our minutes in, everyone’s looking sharp and hungry and we’re all really excited to be looking forward to the games again.
Exclusive West Brom friendly highlightsVideo
I’ll definitely be watching the Premier League games that are on before ours on Wednesday – I reckon most of the country will! It’s been a long time without sport and I’ve really missed watching football as well as playing it.
I’ve been tuning in for the Bundesliga over recent weeks, watching quite a lot of that, as have a few of the lads. After the game between Dortmund and Bayern we were talking about how it was a very quick pace, potentially even quicker now than before lockdown because the balls come back into play quite quickly, since there are no fans to waste time with the ball and so on. I think everything’s moving fast.
There are lots of great quality players in the Bundesliga and it was impressive to see the speed of the games over there, so it’ll be interesting to watch the English teams this week and see how everybody’s looking.
Obviously our main focus is on Spurs though. The magnitude of this fixture and how defining it could be in our season if we get a good result makes it massive for us.
We’ve just got to play the way we were playing before the break and we just need to make sure we’re up for it and get off to a good start in this final part of the season.
You'll love United's finishing on Monday!Video
We can take a lot of heart from our performance in the reverse fixture at Old Trafford this season. We’ve watched clips of that game this week and I think we were virtually unplayable at times that night.
We pressed Spurs really high, made it very tough for them to play out and when we had the ball we were really quick with our decisions and actions.
Apart from their goal, which was great but might have been handball, I don’t think they created many chances all night. Hopefully we can take a lot from that game into this one.
Highlights: United 2 Tottenham 1Video
Of course, we’re going to miss having our supporters travelling away with us, and especially at our home games. Old Trafford is such a big stadium that it’s going to be strange to have it silent.
We all just hope that everyone can still support us from their homes. I’m sure we’ll make them proud and hopefully it’s not too long before they can come back to the stadium and share that atmosphere with us again.
I’m sure nobody would be silly enough to come down to the stadium, but I should underline the importance of everybody staying at home and cheering us on from the safety of their own homes.
The more we stick to the social distancing rules, the sooner we can get back to having the supporters alongside us, which is what we all want.
Stay safe and take care of each other.