Manchester United vs Istanbul Basaksehir – Match Analysis

Manchester United - Bruno, Bruno, Bruno!

Manchester United went into the game on the back of a nervy win against West Brom. After an unprecedented loss against today’s opponents, Solskjaer’s boys must have been hungry for revenge. That gaffer picked up a really attacking lineup, in contrast to the one put up against West Brom. Fans were excited to see Bruno and Van de Beek starting together, while Cavani got his first start.

The Greater Manchester outfit put in an exhilarating performance, playing some sublime football. We dominated possession, made some excellent runs, and scored a sublime goal in the first half. The Red Devils sat back and tried to protect their 3-goal lead in the second half. This resulted in more pressure from a battered Basaksehir side who showed resilience and combat. It was a good contest and a match that would help Solskjaer identify his best team. Let’s have a closer look…

First Half Analysis – Nothing much, just some Portuguese with the World at his feet

Manchester United Bruno Fernandes scores a brilliant half-volley from Telles' corner [Image Courtesy of SPORTbible]
Bruno Fernandes scores a brilliant half-volley from Telles’ corner
[Image Courtesy of SPORTbible]

Manchester United started the match in a very lively manner. Rashford made a brilliant run, skipping past almost the whole Istanbul defense in the 2nd minute. However, the Englishman couldn’t finish his effort neatly enough and the ball was cleared off after Mert’s save. Alex Telles’ corner fell to Bruno Fernandes just outside the box after a weak headed clearance from Epureanu. And oh boy, what a strike that was from our Portuguese Magnifico. Bruno hit the ball on the half-volley with the outside of his boot and the ball just whistled past the keeper. Unstoppable shot, unstoppable player. Certainly has to be a goal of the season contender.

Bruno almost added another assist to his tally after a lovely team move. Rashford slid the ball under Basaksehir’s keeper. However, he was ruled offside. A minute later, the #10’s effort fell just wide of the post after some good one-touch passing between Van de Beek, Cavani, and Bruno.

Telles put in a brilliant cross into the box for Cavani, although the keeper jumped to claim it. However, Mert spilled the ball straight into the feet of Bruno and the Portuguese bagged his brace with a simple tap-in.

Lindelof laid off a fantastic long ball for Rashford in the 33′. The Englishman’s pace got him away from Bolingoli. Manchester United were awarded a penalty after Rashford was fouled inside the box from a clumsy challenge from the Basaksehir man.

All eyes were on Bruno Fernandes, hoping that he would grab a hattrick. However, it was Rashford who stepped up and gave Manchester United a 3-goal lead in the first half.

Second Half Analysis – Manchester United Sit Back

Manchester United "Meep Meep, I want a goal" - Dan James scores Man Utd's fourth goal [Image Courtesy of Daily Mail]
“Meep Meep, I want a goal” – Dan James scores Man Utd’s fourth goal
[Image Courtesy of Daily Mail]

David de Gea was forced into his first serious save of the game as he turned a goal-bound Visca shot around the post for a corner. On the other end, Maguire missed the target after getting a free header from Telles’ corner. Manchester United had another opportunity after Dan James slipped a ball through to Greenwood. The Basaksehir defence, however, blocked off Greenwood’s effort.

The Turkish side took advantage of a Manchester United side that had suddenly lost it’s mojo. Turuc’s vicious free-kick was clawed out by De Gea and it seemed like a world-class save. But goal-line technology indicated that the ball had already crossed the line. 5 minutes later, Visca hit the crossbar almost alarming a comeback from the Turkish side.

In the 91′, Van de Beek released Greenwood with a lovely through as Manchester United hit Basaksehir on the counter. Greenwood squared the ball off to Dan James to score his first CL goal on his CL debut. That goal must do a world of good to the Welshman’s confidence.


Manchester United Another good performance from Van de Beek Also Van de Beek CAN play with Bruno [Image Courtesy of Bukipress]
Another good performance from Van de Beek
Also, Van de Beek CAN play with Bruno
[Image Courtesy of Bukipress]

Manchester United find themselves on the top of Group H, the group of death. The Red Devils are in a comfortable position to qualify for the knockout stages. Overall, it was a great performance from Manchester United and Solskjaer will hope that his players carry this form to the St Mary’s Stadium. However, there are some injury concerns for The Red Devils. Ole had to sub off Lindelof who’s struggling with back issues. An ankle issue led to Wan-Bissaka’s substitution. Tuanzebe picked up a second yellow in the league stage which rules him out of the tie against PSG.

There are a lot of positives as well. Cavani’s movement and hold-up play up front were exemplary. Martial is getting back to form, although, he seems to be performing better on the flanks rather than as a #9. Van de Beek linked up play very well with other players and was decent defensively as well. Suggesting that he CAN play as a box-to-box player with Bruno as the #10. Hence, it will be interesting to see the lineup picked by Ole against Southampton. We’re probably starting to find our best XI.

Author: Hitanshu Samantaray

Editor at The Devil's Den | Author at The United Devils | Author at The Daily Manc | #MUFC | #GGMU |

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