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Manchester United players as Marvel’s The Avengers

Is United’s 2018-19 season Thor 2, or Iron Man 3?

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Disney XD’s “Avengers Assemble” - Season One

Isn’t it amazing how much more time you have on weekends with no football on? Those of us lucky enough to be waiting out this pandemic stuck inside have been spending more time than usual watching movies lately. In a time of so much coronavirus-induced anxiety, watching familiar favorites has had a soothing effect. And in terms of “rewatchability,” the Marvel Cinematic Universe — most of which is now streaming on Disney+ — is a treasure trove for casual weekend entertainment.

Because the human mind can’t help but seek out patterns even where none exist, all our recent re-watching of Marvel movies could only lead to one place: imagining Manchester United players as The Avengers.

Iron Man - Paul Pogba

Billionaire Playboy Philanthropist. The guy with all the toys and tools. Still questionable whether he’d be the one to jump on the grenade for the sake of the rest of the team.

War Machine - Juan Mata

Impressive contributor. Quietly reliable. Doesn’t have the legs that he used to.

Vision - David de Gea

Really good. Really powerful. But sometimes things just inexplicably go through him. Until recently we thought he was invincible.

Spider-Man - Aaron Wan-Bissaka

We had a really good comparison for Spider-Man that wasn’t Wan-Bissaka but since it’s already his nickname that’s who we’re going with. Excellent reflexes and awareness.

Thor - Paul Pogba (2019/20)

So much more powerful than everyone else that the writers had to write him out for most of the season to make it a fair fight.

Black Widow - Scott McTominay

Really important member of the team. The glue guy, cleans up after all the #boys. No outward powers or abilities, just makes the absolute most out of what (s)he’s got. Would absolutely be willing to sacrifice themselves for the team to win.

Black Panther - Marcus Rashford

A beloved up-and-coming star expected to help lead the next phase of the franchise. All-time great team debut.

Shuri - Anthony Martial

Quietly (s)he’s what gives T’Challa/Rashford all his power (all but five of Rashford’s goals in the Ole Gunnar Solskjaer era have come with Martial on the pitch). Also capable of stealing any scene.

Quicksilver - Daniel James

What? You didn’t see that coming?

Hawkeye - Mason Greenwood

The kid doesn’t miss.

Star Lord - Bruno Fernandes

Had his own team of misfits in some far away place that no one pays attention to. When he joined up with this crew he developed an immediate rapport with all of them. Really excited to see the obvious chemistry between him and Thor/Pogba in the coming episodes.

Captain America - Harry Maguire

The elder statesman of the group, the team leader, the only one still sporting a WWII haircut.

Winter Soldier - Victor Lindelöf

Friend of the captain. Used to be really bad but now apparently is good.

Ant-Man - Fred

Little guy who gets it done. Also somehow became the most important character.

Drax - Nemanja Matić

Physically imposing, situationally useful, unintentionally funny.

Teenage Groot - Jesse Lingard

Not as young and cute as he once was. Now just really angsty.

Red Skull - Phil Jones

His quest for power left his face odd and deformed. May be better off being shipped off to another planet.

Mantis - Brandon Williams

If nothing else he woke up Luke Shaw.

The Hulk - Eric Bailly

Incredibly impressive on paper. Often inexplicably unavailable when really needed.

The Warriors Three - Angel Gomes, Tahith Chong, James Garner

We’re told they’re really strong warriors but they get no screen time so we really haven’t seen them do anything.

Agent Coulson - Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Played a huge behind the scenes role in developing the history of S.H.I.E.L.D./United, especially in the 90s. Helped bring the team together before he was killed, only to inexplicably be brought back to life so they could build a TV show around him.

Nick Fury - Sir Alex Ferguson

The man who began assembling all this years ago. No longer officially in power, but still wields a lot of influence over the group.

Alexander Pierce - Ed Woodward

The man behind the desk on the top floor. You think he’s funding this whole thing but whose side is he really on?

Red Guardian - Luke Shaw

“You got fat.”

Bonus Round

Helmut Zemo - Graeme Souness

Couldn’t destroy Manchester United from the outside so he’s now trying to get them (the fans) to tear each other apart from the inside. Has needed way too many things to go his way in order for his plan to work, which so far they inexplicably have.

Ultron - José Mourinho

Brought in by The Avengers/United to bring back some stability and winning. Ended up creating a much bigger mess than they intended.

J.A.R.V.I.S. - Mino Raiola

He’s supposed to be just in the background taking care of things for Tony Stark but somehow he becomes his own character in all this?