Tonight, Manchester United played BSC Young Boys in their Champions League opener. The game started in the most scripted fashion you can imagine, with Bruno Fernandes setting up Cristiano Ronaldo for a tap-in opener with a brilliant outside of the foot pass.
However, the match took a turn when Aaron Wan-Bissaka got himself sent off. The game took a complete turn and Young Boys started to dominate, with some very clear cut chances almost handing them an equaliser. Fortunately for the Reds they went in to half time a goal up, but the second half was set up to be a hard-fought battle.
Going in to the second half, Ronaldo had the first real good chance as he managed to break free after a waivering ball dropped to him, however there was contact in the area that made him go down before a penalty was not given. After knocking on the door since the 37th minute, Young Boys finally found their equaliser via a poachers effort from Nicolas Ngamaleu.
The match seemed destined for a stalemate after United fought so hard to keep it that way, but a last minute error from Jesse Lingard sold David de Gea short and Young Boys grabbed a last-minute winner. The last minute invidual error was harsh on the United defence, as throughout the game they worked tirelessly to keep United in the match.
David de Gea – 7/10
de Gea was very good tonight. He sustained a lot of pressure towards his goal, and did well to prevent as much has he could, but both the goals he conceded felt doomed to go in.Embed from Getty Images
Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 2/10
Well… not much to say about this one, he get himself sent off due to his poor touch just before the tackle. Only reason it isn’t a 1 is because he put a pretty decent cross in to Ronaldo before he got sent off.
Victor Lindelof – 5/10
Lindelof’s return to the side was not the best. He was being targetted by the Young Boys attack to a certain extent, and had a lot on his plate, and although there was no outstanding errors, it felt a little like he was being shielded by Varane and Maguire.
Harry Maguire – 6.5/10
Maguire had a fairly solid game, especially aerially. He was dealing with balls in to the area all evening and won 6 of his 8 duels.Embed from Getty Images
Luke Shaw – 6/10
It was not the most exciting of nights for Shaw. He won all 4 of his aerial duels and had an 89% passing accuracy, but he was mostly resigned to defensive duties so was unable to show his attacking capabilites in the way he normally does.
Fred – 6/10
A bit hit and miss in the first half, but it was his energy that won the ball back for Ronaldo’s opening goal. Fred had a very stressful game, as he was the only man in midfield with a primarily defensive role, and even more so when the red card happened. Contextually, he did fairly well to limit a lot of damage through the middle, meaning Young Boys had to go down the flanks to attack.Embed from Getty Images
Donny van de Beek – 7/10
van de Beek looked good in his half. He completed all 4 of his attempted long-balls and retained a 92% passing accuracy, and was unfortuante to suffer from that red card.
Bruno Fernandes – 5.5/10
There is no doubt that his assist was sublime. Probably assist of the season so far, it was unfortunately pretty much his only contribution to the game. Due to the red card he had to play a restricted game, and that can only be at detriment to him.
Jadon Sancho – 5/10
I feel a bit for Sancho, and I think it’s harsh to give him a real rating, so I gave a neutral one. Today seemed a great game to slowly bring that baller we know to the fore, and as he was starting tentatively he almost certainly have grown in to the game, but Wan-Bissaka’s red card stopped that.
Cristiano Ronaldo – 7/10
Grabbing United’s opening goal, he played a vital part in the opening 37 minutes. However, his game pretty much came to an end after that as he became incredibly isolated up front, and although he did kind of have another chance to score, he tried to win a penalty to no avail. Ronaldo had the only two shots of United’s game.Embed from Getty Images
Paul Pogba – 5/10
Pogba didn’t have a great night. Playing on the left like he did at the very start of the season, it was his worst performance of the season so far, although that can be attributed to him being isolated.
Diogo Dalot – 5/10
Dalot was full of energy when he replaced Wan-Bissaka, but that could not be transpired in to any attacking momentum.
Raphael Varane – 6.5/10
Varane was great at his task when he came on. He battled well and distrupted the Young Boys’ final ball on a number of occasions.Embed from Getty Images
Jesse Lingard – 3.5/10
Lingard replaced Ronaldo with the idea that he can give United a counter attacking threat that the Portguese cannot always provide. He was involved in a winning goal, however not the one United hoped for, as it was his short backpass that directly led to the Young Boys winner. If I was being reactionary it’s probably a 0, but it’s never a good idea to be reactionary, no matter how you feel in the moment.
Nemanja Matic – 5/10
Matic was brought on to add some defensive stability to the side, however ultimately he had little actual effect on the game.
Anthony Martial – N/A
Martial did not come on in good enough time to affect the game in any way.