Manchester United vs Brighton – 5 things we learnt

Manchester United have mastered the art of comebacks. It was no different against Brighton and Hove Albion. Despite a very disappointing first half, United put on a performance worthy of those 3 points against Brighton. Goals from Rashford and Greenwood guided United through.

Divided Focus

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – APRIL 04: Danny Welbeck of Brighton & Hove Albion scores their team’s first goal during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Brighton & Hove Albion at Old Trafford on April 04, 2021 in Manchester, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Phil Noble – Pool/Getty Images)

The game started off well for United as they made several attempts in the Brighton penalty box early on in the game. They held a great deal of possession during the early minutes of the game. Brighton soon began to counter United’s efforts. They scored in almost their very first attack. Lindelof and Wan Bisakka failed to cut off an incoming cross, but only for Dean Henderson to make a great first save from a shot by Danny Welbeck. However the Former United player was present for the rebound and give Brighton a lead.

It was then that the Devil’s realized to take risks and make most of the possession.

Rusty United struggled against Brighton in the first half

In total, United displayed a disjointed performance. Reminiscent to their opening day defeat to Crystal Palace. They had very little training in both the games. International Break was the cause prior to the game against Crystal Palace. But for the game against Brighton, many players lacked form and fitness. Pogba was sloppy and was dispossessed often. Cavani’s presence was barely felt throughout the game. Rashford fitness is still in doubt evidently as he was subbed for Dan James with the score being 1-1.

Brighton couldn’t deal with United attackers

With Rashford’s goal, United finally have a forward with double figures in league goals. Rashford has now registered 19 goals this season, 10 being in the Premier League. The 10 is just 2 fewer than Cavani, Martial and Greenwood have combined. This is not an ideal situation for United’s forward line considering the dependency on Rashford especially while he is injured. With Martial and Cavani rumoured to leave, The Devil’s must keep an eye for forwards in the Transfer Window.

VDB-Game Time

It was just another day in the office for Van De Beek, starting on the bench. He was on the field for only the final 10 minutes replacing the ineffective Cavani. This was his first game since February 14th match against West Bromwich when ended as a draw. Van de Beek got less time in that game as well. He nearly made an immediate impact, as he rushed to receive and tap-in the ball. Only for Greenwood to beat him to the ball. Van De Beek’s presence provided enough distraction for Greenwood to nip in.

Tough Win

Early on it, the game felt like an opportunity wasted for United. The team deserves credit for consistently trying to get the 3 points and not sit back. United are now 4 points clear of third placed Leicester City and 9 points clear of 5th placed Chelsea. The Champions League seat is almost confirmed for United, a victory against Tottenham would almost seal it.

Author: Aditya Desai