For the second time this week, we have just scraped a win, this time against West Brom. On Wednesday we managed to secure a 1-0 win over Bournemouth at Old Trafford with a less than convincing performance. Today’s opponents drew 0-0 with Liverpool midweek and if Liverpool’s attack couldn’t break them down, we knew it would be tough for us. Nonetheless, we still managed a 2-1 victory and in the end, it is the three points which matter most.
The first half was by far the better half for us and although there weren’t many chances created, we were the team that took our chances. The deadlock was broken in the 27th minute by the big Belgian who is continuing to prove his critics wrong by getting on the score-sheet for the second game running. Lukaku got ahead of Gibbs to head home beautifully Marcus Rashford’s cross. 8 minutes later Jesse Lingard, this week’s birthday boy, found the back of the net again. His shot from just outside the box was deflected which caught out Foster who, due to the deflection, had no chance of saving the shot. The first half finished 2-0.
It’s a shame that the second half did not follow the same pattern… We started off well, creating chances and Rashford and Lingard should have probably scored. In the 65th minute we were forced to make a change with Antonio Valencia coming off injured. He was replaced by Marcos Rojo who made his 100th appearance for the Red Devils. According to Mourinho, Valencia picked up a “December injury” and he is unsure of how serious it is. However, on Twitter, Valencia tweeted saying that he was okay. Hopefully it is not as bad as it looked with him holding his hamstring, especially during this time of year where the fixtures are very congested. From that moment, the game turned completely in West Brom’s favour and they were creating chances but failing to convert them. In the 77th minute, Barry pulled one back for the Baggies but they couldn’t get the equaliser and the game finished 2-1 to us.
Overall, again, this wasn’t the prettiest performance and we didn’t look great. But what’s most important is the three points which we managed to win. We haven’t looked great in our last three league games and we all know why that is – Pogba. However, he has now seen out his three match ban and will be available for the rest of our fixtures. This will be a huge boost for us.
Our next fixture is away to Bristol City in the Carabao Cup quarter final on Wednesday. This is a must-win game and we cannot hold back in our team selection. Although Lukaku is getting back into a good bit of goal-scoring form, I would love to see Zlatan Ibrahimovic start this game. With Pogba back and an incentive to reach the semi-finals of the league cup, we have a lot to look forward to!
I’d like to end on two interesting stats I found out:
Points after 18 Premier League games:
Chelsea’s record season: 43
Arsenal’s Invincibles: 42
United this season: 41
— DILLINGER 👹 (@DillanMUFC) December 17, 2017