Manchester United secured their first win of the season in the league in dramatic fashion against Brighton. United suffered a late first half deficit as Bruno Fernandes conceded a penalty which Maupay converted expertly. The Portguese was involved in both goals to get Manchester United the lead before United conceded late on by Solly March after Brighton hit the post five times and denied a penalty by VAR. It looked a point but United went straight up the other end and won a corner. Fernandes again whipped in the corner to the back post and Maguire initially failed to score with his header with the last kick of the game but protested Maupay’s hand blocked the shot. Upon review the refereee found this to be the case very obviously and a penalty was issued for United. In the 90+10th minute Bruno Fernandes emphatically hammered the penalty into the top corner and won the game for United. Mixed emotions about this game but what can we take from it? Here are the 5 things we learned from Brighton vs Manchester United:
1) Lack of sharpness
The first of the 5 things we learned from this game is the biggest concern for United right now. For most parts of the game, almost the whole squad looked berift of fitness.
Having just 1 pre-season game against Aston Villa, United are significantly affected by a lack of fitness and sharpness. Specifically worth mentioning would be Pogba. The Frenchmen being tested positive for Covid-19 was another setback on top of it. The lack of penetrative play and the fluidic interplay combined with a number of misspasses are just some indicators of the issue.
2) Rashford in fine form
Rashford sat the entire Brighton defence down, to slot in an absolute peach of a goal reminding everyone to not write off the Englishman. Luke Shaw’s inclusion into the first team after his successful recovery from an ankle problem has a synergistic effect on his play down the wing. With the continues support offered by Shaw, or even Telles hopefully, expect more from Rashford.
3) The defence – A crisis
Nowhere near the standards for a top team. To allow the opponent to hit
the woodwark 5 times shows how much of an ineffective job the defenders did. Specifically the inability to stop the crosses from the wings. Aaron Wan-Bissaka was culpubale for not marking his man well, many a times even though he did tackle well throughout the game.
Manchester United did show their character. Once Brighton scored their first goal, the Red Devils hit back in no time to level it up. The team still attacked after the Seagulls scored late on, and successfully won a penalty against all odds. Our defence might be not at the bad, nor the fitness levels, but that show of character is worth praising – to concede at the last and still not lose hope! Something we haven’t seen from this crop of players for a long long time.
5) The Portuguese Magnifico
To be honest, our midfield along with talisman, Bruno Fernandes didn’t have a good game. From a string of misspasses to countless dispossessions, the whole midfield looked out of their depths. Inspite of the uninspiring performance, Bruno came out with a hand in every single one of the goals the Red Devils scored. A perfectly placed freekick, an immaculate through ball and of course the nerves of steel.
What a gem this man is! Respectable attitude on and off the pitch too.
This concludes the 5 things we learned about United’s 3-2 win against Brighton, now they travel to…Brighton! They face the Seagulls in the Carabao Cup before facing Spurs on Sunday.