Manchester City vs Manchester United Match Analysis and Player Ratings

Image result for manchester united vs man city

After all the build-up to this game and City already having a huge lead after cruising to a 1-3 win at Old Trafford, Manchester United knew it would take a monumental performance to equalise let alone win. Although United won on the night, City progressed on aggregate. Here’s how it went down:

Team Selection:
Manchester City made five changes from the FA Cup tie with Rodri, Walker, De Bruyne, Sterling and Aguero coming in and played in a 3-2-4-1 formation with Cancelo, Walker and Otamendi acting as the defensive three. Manchester United adopted a similar albeit more defensive lineup with Luke Shaw pushed narrower at centre back alongside Lindelof and Maguire with Wan-Bissaka and Williams both coming in from the 6-0 win against Tranmere. Nemanja Matic was deemed fit after a late scare and alonside Fred and Lingard made the midfield three. Up front, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood looked to continue their scoring form after both netting against Tranmere.

Bravo, Cancelo, Otamendi, Walker, Rodri, Gundogan, Mahrez, De Bruyne (c), B. Silva, Sterling, Aguero

De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire (c), Shaw, Williams, Matic, Fred, Lingard, Greenwood, Martial

Manchester United started differently to the game at the Etihad in December as City blitzed them and could have scored five goals but David de Gea denied them thrice, Harry Maguire made a superb tackle and Sterling failed to make the chances count. Manchester United took this and from a freekick that deflected into Matic’s path, the Serbian hammered the ball past Claudio Bravo and opened the scoring against the run of play. In the second half, Mason Greenwood took a knock and was replaced by Daniel James at the start of the second half. Manchester United played better football but could not seem to find the second goal which was not helped by the contentious decision to send Matic off for two yellow cards despite only fouling three times. Lingard and Shaw came off for Pereira and Mata to try and get a goal and despite having a last minute freekick to equalise and send the game to penalties, Fred missed it poorly and United lost.

To sum up, it was a bizarre game in which United played well and if this was a Premeir League game, they would have had praise heaped on them but the fact that United lost overall marred an impressive performance to stay in the game despite being down to ten men for the last fifteen. Most the players should be proud of the performance but ought to have created more chances against City’s flimsy back three. The fact that United have announced Fernandes today has acted as a smokescreen for this result and so no one is focused on it as much. Nevertheless, United are out of the Carabao Cup and have to go for the Europa League and FA Cup and win some silverware this season, but now on to Wolves with a chance to catch up on an injury-hit Chelsea side who face Leicester next.

Player Ratings:
David de Gea 9/10 
Magnificent again and when we needed him, he shone. Magnificent saves to deny Aguero twice and Mahrez and didn’t put a foot wrong.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka 6/10
Struggled to attack well and Sterling came off better in the duel defensively at times but did defend well overall.

Victor Lindelof 7.5/10
Competent defensively and dealt with most threats well.

Harry Maguire 7.5/10
Same as Lindelof and made a fantastic last ditch tackle to stop Sterling. Had a good chance to equalise the tie but missed the goal with his header.

Luke Shaw 6/10
Nervy at the beginning but grew into the game. Got subbed off to win the game but he should feel happy with his performance.

Brandon Williams 6.5/10
He seems to struggle when playing as a LWB as he does not always know where he should positionally be but he is young and will adapt. Got into some good attacking positions at times but failed to make it count.

Nemanja Matic 8/10
Stunning strike and unlucky with the cards as he only made three fouls and got booked twice. Played well too and will be a big miss for the Wolves game.

Fred 6.5/10
Played well at times but his passing needed to be better and more crisp. Poor freekick at the end.

Jesse Lingard 3/10
Absent again and honestly should have been playing for his position with Fernandes coming in but was awful. Won a foul that lead to the goal but that was his only contribution to the game. Came off for Pereira and Solskjaer was clearly unhappy with his performance.

Mason Greenwood 5/10
Rarely got a sniff and came off at half time, should not be a problem for the Wolves match.

Anthony Martial 4/10
Should have been more impactful but struggled again. He will want to exorcise some demons against Wolves and score a goal as he will be vital for United to score goals without Rashford.

Daniel James 5/10
Caused problems but not enough. Needs a goal or assist soon as he is struggling for them right now.

Andreas Pereira 5/10
Energetic but not enough quality.

Juan Mata 5/10
Should have taken the freekick but that’s all I can remember about his performance.

Author: TUD Author