In the first leg of Manchester United‘s Europa League quarter-final against Granada where the Red Devils (arguably unfairly) recieved 5 yellow cards, it was a fairly quiet but solid performance. Facing a low block, it took a beautiful long ball from Victor Lindelöf and a very well taken touch and finish from Marcus Rashford to break the deadlock in the 31st minute. Bruno Fernandes then wrapped the game up with a 90th minute penalty to give United a significant 2 goal advantage in the tie.
David de Gea – 7/10
In his first match for United in 39 days, de Gea had a good performance. Saving 3 shots from range comfortably, he kept a clean sheet on his return to the side.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 6.5/10
Making 3 tackles and 4 clearances, it was a standard but good performance from Wan-Bissaka. Yet again he probably could have done more to add to United’s attack, however no real complaints from a defensive perspective.
Victor Lindelöf – 8/10
Producing the magic moment of the game, Lindelof played a commanding and authorititve game. His pass for Rashford’s goal was sublime and a real showcase of his passing ability. He also made a vital clearance in the final minutes to stop Granada from clawing one goal back.
Harry Maguire – 6.5/10
Following on from his impressive performance against Brighton, Maguire had another game of well timed passes, tackles and clearances. He made a few driving runs to try and open up a low Granada defence. It is unfortunate but right that he is ruled out from the 2nd leg by giving away a needless yellow card.Embed from Getty Images
Luke Shaw – 5.5/10
Considering his outstanding form this season, tonight was a sub-par performance from Shaw. Losing possession 9 times, winning only 1 of 5 duels and giving away 2 fouls, he recieved a yellow card which has ruled him out for the 2nd leg. Not sure if a half-time substitution was warranted, but with United playing Tottenham away on Sunday, you can understand why Solskjær would want to rest one of his key players for that fixture.
Scott McTominay – 6/10
An alright but fairly unnoticable performance from the Scotsman was unfortunately overshadowed by a yellow card that has ruled him out for the 2nd leg at Old Trafford next week. He did well to retain posession and spread the ball, and also drew 3 fouls to maintain dominance in midfield.
Paul Pogba – 6.5/10
Attacking wise, tonight was a good night for Pogba. He completed all 8 of his attempted long balls, created 2 key passes and retained an 87% passing accuracy. However, his defensive contribution was limited, conceding 3 fouls and recieving a yellow card. We’ve seen better from Paul, but it was far from his worst performance.
Bruno Fernandes – 7/10
Doing what he does best, Bruno Fernandes wrapped the game up by winning and converting a penality to give United a crutial 2nd away goal. He created 4 key passes in the game, however he also had a few moments where his passes did not quite fall correctly to his teammates. He also missed a big chance to make it 2-0 earlier on, however there was an offside in the build up so his goal would most likely have been ruled out anyway.Embed from Getty Images
Marcus Rashford – 7/10
Despite carrying an injury, Rashford played a good game. His run, touch and finish for United’s opener were a touch of class, and secured the Red Devils a very important away goal. He was substituted most likely to make sure he will be fit for United’s weekend clash against Tottenham.Embed from Getty Images
Mason Greenwood – 6/10
Having scored in his last two appearances, tonight’s One to Watch was somewhat underwhelming. He tried to create space and chances, however he was kept quite quiet up front for United this evening.
Daniel James – 6.5/10
James’ game today was nothing spectacular, however the ever hard working winger managed to draw two fouls and win 6 of his 8 duels, and seemed somewhat dangerous when he switched to his favoured left hand side towards the end of the match.
Alex Telles – 6.5/10
Replacing Shaw in the 46th minute, Telles was full of energy, attempting 4 crosses and 2 long balls during the 2nd half. He put in a few lovely crosses that were unfortunately not met by and United players, however it is quite obvious that he doesn’t have as good a connection with Rashford as Shaw does on the pitch.
Edinson Cavani – 5/10
Despite coming on with 25 minutes to play, Cavani did not really do anything of note. His passing and link up play seemed a little better than it was against Brighton, however if he wants to be Solskjær’s main man while Anthony Martial is injured, he needs to put in better performances than that.
Nemanja Matic – 5.5/10
Brought in for Pogba to add some defensive assurance, Matic did his job with releative ease and was harshly booked while challenging for a header. He made one clearance in the game but did nothing much else of note beyond adding some extra security and hight as United’s tried to seal victory.
Donny van de Beek – N/A
Coming on with only a few minutes left to play, van de Beek was not given enough time to have too much of an impact on the pitch beyond providing some fresh legs at the death to help maintain United’s lead.