Newcastle vs Manchester United: Match Summary
Manchester United performed exceptionally but left it late to win 1-4 against Newcastle. On the back of the humiliation at Old Trafford this is a massive win for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Five changes for United and already questions raised over the lineup with many expecting Van De Beek, Telles and Greenwood to start. Despite conceding after just 2 minutes from a freak Luke Shaw own goal, United reacted very well and equalised from a Harry Maguire header. United continued to push for the lead but could not take their chances and often squandered their good play. The Red Devils could have gone behind twice again but for exceptional saves from David de Gea to deny Saint-Maximin and Wilson in both halves.
United had a chance to get the lead after Marcus Rashford won a penalty. However Bruno Fernandes failed to convert with a smart save from Karl Darlow denying the Portuguese international. Newcastle eventually gave in and United won the game late on and guess who? Great linkup play with Van De Beek, Mata and Rashford found Fernandes in the box and he finished the move exceptionally. United piled on the misery and sealed the game with emphatic finishes from Wan-Bissaka and Dr. Rashford. A big three points for Ole and United ahead of a busy and difficult run of matches.
Newcastle vs Manchester United Player Ratings (base is 6/10):
David de Gea – 9/10
Some criticism has been given for the own goal but I think that would be harsh. He performed exceptionally and made three excellent saves. Notably clawing away Callum Wilson’s point-blank finish. Much better distribution too. Big performance from the Spaniard.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka 7.5/10
Much better. He was lively, energetic and solid in defence. He had to deal with a tough mismatch and overall dealt with it well. A great goal capped off his 50th United performance and really pleased for him. Final delivery remains an issue regardless. Not a big issue in this match though.
Victor Lindelof 5.5/10
He was culpable for the goal as he rushed in on Saint-Maximin and left space ahead of him at times. He did grow into the match but I felt nervy when he had the ball at times. I reckon he won’t start against PSG but if he does, he will have to sharpen up and keep his focus.
Harry Maguire 7.5/10
He needed that. A big header to equalise and he caused more problems in attack and could have had a hattrick! He was overall very good in defence bar one moment which De Gea saved his blushes. However this result and performance against Newcastle is a big step in the right direction for the United captain.
Luke Shaw 5/10
This could be lower as there was a big mismatch at times down the Newcastle right and the own goal was totally avoidable. However Shaw did play better as the game went on and did cause problems in attack for United. Not a good performance but he did kick on as the game progressed.
Scott McTominay 8/10
A very good performance from McTominay. A lot of pressure on him to perform as he replaced Matic and he was robust and energetic in his play. He added aggression and did a good job in mopping up scraps left by the rest of the team. Needs to work on his distribution a bit more if he is to replace Matic fully, but a great game from McSauce.
Again there was a lot of pressure on Fred as he replaced Pogba but rose to the challenge well. He was sharp for the most part and was smart with his play and defensive positioning. He got a bit sloppy later in the match and was replaced by Pogba after 69 minutes but played very well.
Bruno Fernandes 9/10
A mixed bag for Bruno today. He was sharp and creative all game and linked up well with Mata and Rashford but did look a bit sloppy in the later stages of the game. He missed the penalty which was at an easy height for Darlow and did misplace a few passes later on in the game. However…pivotal in the counter attacks and won the game with a magnificent finish and killed the game off once and for all with a sublime assist for Rashford. Many fans likened Bruno to Mkhitaryan in that he tries to play attacking football but it doesn’t come off. The difference is, is that Bruno’s head doesn’t drop and he will keep going – as he did today.
Juan Mata 9.5/10
I was surprised to see Mata on the right with Lewis and Saint-Maximin on the left hand side but am very happy to say my doubts were proven wrong. Mata was brilliant all game and despite his age and lack of pace, his intelligence and movement caused problems all game. He set up Maguire’s equaliser brilliantly and was crucial in the winning goal. El Mago showed he has a lot to offer United, especially without Martial, Cavani and Greenwood today. Class is permanent.
Daniel James 6.5/10
I am a bit stuck with James. It certainly was not a bad performance from James as he ran at Newcastle and did cause problems with his pace and drive. The final ball was not the best but certainly not the worst. Did a good job but I expect he may miss out against PSG. Still plenty to offer United as a squad player.
Marcus Rashford 9/10
Again questions raised as Marcus Rashford MBE led the line for United for the first time since the defeat to Manchester City in the Carabao Cup Semi-Final. However he had a great game. He drifted wide every now and then and created chances and space every time he got the ball. Two assists and an emphatic goal at the end of the game to cap off a great performance from the Englishman. Will need to replicate this in the big matches to come.
Paul Pogba 6.5/10
Controlled the play. Did not put a foot wrong and looked much better. I do not expect him to be ready to start in Paris. But progress made by Pogba.
Donny van de Beek 7/10
Perfect bit-part performance from the Dutchman. 12/12 passes completed and vital in two of the goals scored late on. It is a shame he did not start the game but I do expect him to be in the starting XI soon.
Nemanja Matic N/A
Not enough time for a rating.
Man of the Match: Juan Mata
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: 8/10
Many including myself did question the lineup but for the most part he got it and his tactics right. Mata and Bruno controlled the attacking play and Fred and McTominay complimented each other very well in the middle of the park. Lindelof and Shaw were question marks which makes the rating just 8. His job could have been on the line if United dropped points and I think the United side of the last few years would have dropped points in this game. The attacking dynamism and mentality Solskjaer has brought to this side has galvanised this win and can hopefully kickstart this season.