Manchester United vs Atletico Madrid : Match analysis

Manchester United hosted Atletico Madrid at Old Trafford as the sides battled it out for a place in the quarter finals of the Champions League. In the first leg, Manchester United held their own in a 1-1 draw. After a late equaliser from Anthony Elanga, all Manchester United had to do is win against the Spanish champions to progress.

Manchester United should have confidence after beating top four rivals Spurs 3-2 on the weekend. They should also be confident because they held their own against this opposition back in February. Winning the Champions League is important as it is not guaranteed by any means that Manchester United will get top four.

Ralf Rangnick’s side were without Luke Shaw, who was out with Covid 19. As a result, Alex Telles got to start the last 16 tie. Throughout the game United managed to have 61 per cent possession, having 11 shots, five of which were on target. In comparison, the reigning La Liga champions had 39 per cent possession with a total of eight shots, three of which were on target.

Manchester United have mixed first half

The match was only three minutes old when Anthony Elanga headed over from Diogo Dalot’s cross. Shortly afterwards he collided with keeper Jan Oblak in the aerial duel and was harshly penalised for the challenge.

The Reds Devils had momentum and 12 minutes into the encounter Elanga missed from point blank range from Bruno Fernandes low cross to the near post. His shot hit the face of Oblak, and then the woodwork. A few minutes later De Gea tipped Raul De Paul deflected shot over the bar. The shot took a deflection of Fred.

On the 33rd minute, Joao Felix scored an offside goal from Llorente’s cut back. Five minutes before halftime, Renan Lodi scored a header unmarked from Griezmann’s cross making it 0-1 to Atletico. The goal was controversial because Reinildo seemed to foul Elanga when the Red Devils were attacking. Just before the end of the first half, Bruno’s shot outside the box forced a save from Oblak.

Manchester United improved 2nd half showing

Elanga driven low shot went wide of the far post after he got on the end of an amazing Fernandes backheel. 53 minutes into the game Dalot’s cross went straight into Oblak’s hands.

Six minutes later Sancho had a volley which flashed wide from Dalot’s cross. Sancho’s volley skimmed the bar but would be cancelled for offside had it went in. Nonetheless, it fuelled belief in the Old Trafford crowd. Atletico, however, came close after 63 minutes when a Gimenez header flew over the bar from De Paul’s corner. Atletico had a chance of their own when Joao Felix cheekily tried to chip De Gea.

On the 72nd minute Telles set piece went straight into Oblak’s hands. Five minutes later Varane’s header from Telles’s set piece went straight into Oblak’s hand’s. Dalot also had a go after 80 minutes when he fired off target from long range.

Full time – Manchester United 0-1 Atletico.

Rangnick on a night of frustration

”I think we played a good first half,” said Rangnick. ”All those things we planned to do we did. The only thing we did not do was convert that energy into scoring the first goal ourselves. One thing we cannot do against Atletico is concede the first goal.”

Rangnick was frustrated that the officials did not award the foul on Elanga in the build up to the game’s only goal. ”I did not think we should have been 1-0 down,” he said. ”For me that was a foul on Elanga. That was the only really dangerous moment, apart from the offside goal that they scored,” he said on BT Sport.

Author: Edward

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