Manchester United knocked Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa out of the FA Cup on Monday night thanks to an early goal from Scott McTominay.
The Scotland midfielder has now scored twice in his last three games and manager Ralf Rangnick sung his praises after the 1-0 win.
He is an Academy boy, his energy is amazing. He’s now also started scoring goals, and also with some leadership skills. I wouldn’t be surprised if, in a couple of years, he would be the captain of this team.
United take on Villa again at the weekend away from home but will be without the suspended McTominay, and Luke Shaw, after he picked up a booking in our defeat against Wolves last week.
Rangnick identified the issue with our midfield being outnumbered at times against Villa and will be looking to make the necessary changes ahead of the league game on Saturday night.
I think everybody expected a reaction to the Wolves game. I think the team showed a reaction. We didn’t miss out on intensity, but we still had difficult moments in the game. First half, I thought, was good. We played a lot of diagonal balls; we kept the Villa team moving from one side to the other, scored a beautiful goal, but on the other hand, we were still struggling to get control in midfield. We knew that they are very flexible, Villa, with their midfield, with their two no.10s and their three no.6s and no.8s, so at times we were struggling.
We decided to play with a 4-2-3-1 with Edi up front, and with Bruno our no.10. But again, against a flexible midfield, at times, it was difficult, because with their 10s behind our sixes, ahead of our central defenders, it’s not too easy to defend that. It’s pretty challenging. As I said, after we changed to a diamond, it got better.