In Jose’s first game against us since leaving Old Trafford, Rashford continued his remarkable form with two goals in a surprisingly comfortable win over Spurs, who got their goal with excellent play Alli.
It seems like such a long time ago that there was a debate about the form, in terms of his starting berth at United, and overall ability of Rashford but he has managed to dispel both of these ridiculous notions by the best goalscoring form he has gone through in the Red Devils’ shirt. Today was his best performance in what a collection of good ones he has been building in recent weeks. It was not only his willing runs, which are a given with the Wythenshawe lad, but it was things that he done correctly today that in times before the immediate recent, were going awry. His cannon of a right boot has had its sight remeasured and it has been causing trouble to keepers with his unique swerving dipping shot technique, which he somehow manages to produce if he is running or standing. The English international was a Gazzinga fingertip away from having a shot as described roaring its way into the Old Trafford net, after a Gazzinga hand hit the post to divert a pretty speculative effort into the net from Marcus. Aurier and Sissoko will know they have been in a game when they tuck themselves as they were run ragged on the left hand side because of Rashford’s mazy runs with the ball, one of which produced the penalty that the aforementioned calmly dispatched.
Moments at the back
Even with perhaps the most accomplished performance of the season, when you consider the factors, our wait for the third PL clean sheet of the season goes on as Alli scored an inventive goal. Lindelof and Maguire did not contest well for the header, something of a weak point this season. Fred and Young were duped by Alli’s flick but still had to do much better than what they gave. It is these moments that undermined a pretty comfortable defensive display as Tottenham struggled to make runs in behind a tight knit defensive shape. Nothing elucidated this more than the fact Harry Kane was found dropping into incredibly deep areas as there went long periods of the game where he didn’t see the ball. Fred and McTominay gave a good shield in front, winning the ball on several occasions in the middle of the park to spark food counter attacking situations. Wan Bissaka was as solid as usual on his right hand side while Young oscillated between good and bad, in both defensive and offensive scenarios. Overall, it was a promising display but the centre back partnership of Maguire and Lindelof does not look like it is budding as many thought it would and sooner or later, Solskjaer will need to bring through Tuanzebe as his performances merit a spot in the starting defence.
Possession again was an Achilles heel for the side today and both passes and first touches were short of what they should be. Lingard and Greenwood in particular were lacking in receiving the ball. The whole team were not great in passing but we won the ball back enough for it to not to be too much of a concern.
Greenwood, all in all, for this first start done well. Up top as a number nine against Sanchez and Alderweireld would be difficult for a seasoned striker so a youngster was always going to find it difficult. In flashes, he showed his quality and his best moment came when he dropped deep to collect to begin play in the final third, ending up on the move he helped progress, which the keeper stopped with his legs. Hopefully, as the games come thick and fast, this will be his integration period into the first team as being able to play him would give us the option to perhaps play Pogba deeper and help in getting the ball forward in games where we will dominate the ball.
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