Connect with us

Match Coverage

Luton 1-2 Manchester United – Five things we noticed, including “pathetic” moment



| Last Updated:


Manchester United defeated Luton Town 2-1 thanks to an early double from Rasmus Højlund in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon.

For the first time since August, Erik ten Hag was able to select an unchanged XI as Manchester United faced Luton Town away from home, with Rasmus Højlund, Alejandro Garnacho, and Marcus Rashford making up the front three.

It took less than two minutes for Højlund to open the scoring, leaping off a terrible early error from Bell that handed the Danish striker the easiest chance he’s scored all season – he still decided to round the keep and slot into an empty net.

Read More: Player Ratings – Luton Town vs Manchester United (Premier League)

Just minutes later, a deft second effort saw the striker put the club 2-0 up, but Calrton Morris’ header saw Luton equalise by minute 15.

Despite their brilliant opening goals, United seemed to spiral out of control as the first half came to a close, with the side lucky to be winning once the referee blew his whistle.

The second half saw Scott McTominay and Jonny Evans replace Casemiro and Harry Maguire, who were both on yellow cards, and the second half ended goalless, but United missed a whole host of chances.

#1 – A new Premier League record

Højlund’s opening goal set a new Premier League record – he is now the youngest-ever player to score in six Premier League games in a row.

The record is a testament to just how brilliant he has been since Christmas, having scored in seven of his eight games across all competitions. The £72 million seems to be becoming a better investment every week.

His second was a brilliant little movement, guiding the ball past Kaminski with his chest after Garnacho’s shot flew towards him. Some player, he is…

#2 – Complete control is still a problem

Despite United’s 2-0 lead within 8 minutes, United allowed Luton to get back into the game through a brave header from Carlton Morris.

United have struggled to maintain complete control during most games this season, often allowing clubs to claw a goal or two back, with the games against Wolves and Newport examples of this.

As the first half went on, United seemed to spiral more and more and more, with the side looking like a mess towards the end of the first 45 minutes, and the second half was certainly an uphill battle to retain their lead. To qualify for the Champions League next season, they must do better in future.

#3 – The Shaw gamble

Erik ten Hag gambled starting Shaw for the game, but despite the 45 minutes he played, it clearly didn’t work as the England international had to go off after the first half for a second game in a row.

It was Victor Lindelöf who came on to replace Shaw at left-back for the remainder of the tie, who looked repetitively okay in the position, but Ten Hag will be hoping that Tyrell Malacia can return from injury as soon as possible.

#4 – A pathetic physical moment

In the 56th minute, there was a period of time where seven or eight areal duels were there to be won, with Luton looking to bring the ball under control in United’s defence third. United, in the mess that they were, failed to win a single one of them.

It’s not like Luton’s physicality is a surprise – it has been their main weapon all season – but with players such as Varane, Evans, Lindelöf, McTominay, Dalot and Højlund all on the pitch, it’s a little pathetic to see – these are not small or weak players.

#5 – Wasting chances

Of all their problems during the game, perhaps the most impactful was the fact that the side was so wasteful with their chances. Bruno Fernandes, Alejandro Garnacho, and Højlund all had clear-cut chances in the second half to give United breathing room, but they failed to do so.

United are lucky that it did not come back to bite them, but, in future, they must be more clinical because this will not always be the case.