Everton vs Manchester United Summary
Manchester United answered a lot of questions today with a massive win at Goodison Park. Even though United played on Wednesday night in Turkey, they travelled again to Everton on Saturday morning. Everton on the back of two straight defeats knew if they won against United, they would climb to first for at least one day. After defeats to Arsenal and Basaksehir, Manchester United had to win or potentially face the dismissal of their manager and sink as low as sixteenth. The pressure was on from the get-go but arguably since the end of last season.
A brace from Bruno Fernandes cancelled out an early lead from Bernard and gave United a first half lead. United sat deep and countered a hit and miss Everton attack. Mostly resulting in Everton possession. Controversy hit with a few meaty challenges, notably by Jordan Pickford. Again. However, United held out and sealed the game late on with Cavani’s first United goal.
United won and deserved the win. Ole was furious at the officials for their fixture list and rightly so but will be happy with United’s performance. United may go into the international break in the bottom half of the table but it was a much-needed win and hopefully push the team forwards with a tight fixture list in the next stage of the season.
Everton vs Manchester United Player Ratings
David de Gea 6.5/10
Relatively untested. Nothing he could do with the goal and other than that, David’s confidence clearly has grown and was commanding and composed on and off the ball. His long distribution was very good and something to consider for the rest of the season. Three points on his 30th Birthday!
Aaron Wan-Bissaka 7.5/10
The reason his rating is lower is due to the sluggish manner he closed down Bernard. I think he should read the movement from the winger and cut out the pass. Other than that moment, he was solid and happy to sit back and let the attackers have at Everton. Had a difficult task of the left wing overlap and did deal with it well.
Victor Lindelof 8/10
Lost the header that resulted in the Everton goal. Aside from that minor hiccup, Lindelof was very good and dealt with everything else he had to do. He has returned to his best form, hopefully he can maintain it as we need him to be consistent in the next stage of the season.
Harry Maguire 9/10
Dominant. Could have found another goal but he kneed it over the bar and should have won a penalty if not for another controversial VAR moment. The crosses Everton put in were his meat and drink and clearly is more suited to the style United played today.
Luke Shaw 8/10
A little bit suspect defensively but a fantastic cross to tee up Fernandes. A shame to see him injured again but with Telles back in training, we have a chance to see the Brazilian next match.
Scott McTominay 7.5/10
While I do think his energy and strength were needed in the midfield, I do think he was sloppy on the ball and did give the ball away in dangerous areas. However, his engine and positioning in midfield became so crucial to United’s win today and some of the risks he took did pay off.
Magnificent again. He is perfectly suited to the 8 position in a pivot. Where he does struggle, is as the anchor because if he gives the ball away there is no one there to help in midfield. Brilliant today and I hope this continues after the break too.
Bruno Fernandes 10/10
A stellar performance from Bruno. A Rooney-esque header, a fortunate cross-shot goal and an unselfish assist to Cavani. He was brilliant and a tiny bit mad. United fans love him for this and much, much more. A mood leader and a game winner today.
Juan Mata 6.5/10
I thought his defensive contributions outweighed his attacking play but was a crucial cog in the system today. While not an impressive performance it is warrant of some praise.
Marcus Rashford 8/10
Rashford ran the right hand side ragged for most of the game. His runs and chance creation was really dangerous and a slight glance on his hair could get him a goal instead of an assist. Looks
Anthony Martial 6.5/10
Two big chances but no shot on target for Martial. His hold-up play was underrated but I think he has to do better with Cavani clearly breathing down his neck.
Axel Tuanzebe 8/10
He came on as a left back and played very well. Cannot remember a time he was beaten. Good cameo after a shocker against Basaksehir.
Paul Pogba 6.5/10
Almost came on to play a Fellaini role. A decent outing and helped to see out the game.
Edinson Cavani 8/10
His energy in pressing and positioning caused Everton problems and on another day could have won two penalties. Sealed the game with an emphatic finish and could start against West Brom with Telles set to whip crosses at him.
Man of the Match: Bruno Fernandes
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer 8/10
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer raised heads once again with an interesting lineup, including my own! No Greenwood, Van De Beek and Pogba benched and Juan Mata starting were surprises to most people but it worked a treat. The engine of Fred and McTominay wereso crucial and Mata dropping deep to defend against Digne and Bernard was equally important. It also allowed Fernandes, Martial and Rashford to have more freedom, especially since United bossed the midfield so effectively.
The subs came on and were important to the win and even though we did not get to see Van De Beek, it was the right call as long balls to Pogba did keep United in possession and Cavani certainly made an impact. He cannot control what the players do, good or bad, but he set up a team to frustrate Everton and cause them problems and they did. They played for him when he needed them to and he got a big win. Extra credit for the Sir Alex-like post-match interview which I loved every minute of. He has earned himself more time and I do hope United can kick on after the international break.