Player ratings as late double gives Red Devils win
FROM ELLAND ROAD – Two goals in the last ten-minutes gave Manchester United a 2-0 win over manager-less Leeds, sending them second in the Premier League table.
Leeds had their chances throughout a close encounter but their search for a league win over their bitter rivals from Manchester, which dates back more than 20 years, continued.
Marcus Rashford headed home Luke Shaw’s cross on 80-minutes to continue his brilliant run of form and just moments later the game was put to bed as substitute Alejandro Garnacho broke clear of the Leeds defence before finishing with great composure.
Things could and should have been different for Leeds if they had indeed taken one of their chances and the best was possibly their first which came just four minutes in and it fell for for the recalled Crysencio Summerville, but he fired over from just outside the six-yard box after David de Gea blocked an effort from Patrick Bamford.
Replays suggested that Tyrell Malacia’s challenge on Summerville was worthy of a penalty – but VAR nor referee Paul Tierney thought it worthy.
After 20 minutes Man Utd had their first sight of goal as Bruno Fernandes’ run into the box was picked out by Jadon Sancho but he pulled his shot well wide. Fernandes then had another chance which Max Wober blocked – he appealed for handball but again Tierney waved away the claims.
Minutes from half-time and Summerville was again causing trouble, this time down the right he got the better of Malacia and got his shot away, but De Gea saved well and United captain Harry Maguire was back to scramble the ball away.
Fernandes then missed a gilt-edged chance to put the visitors ahead. Wober, under pressure from Wout Weghorst, sent a clearance straight to the Portuguese. He broke clear into the box but could not beat Illan Meslier who parried it wide. Luke Ayling then deflected the corner just wide, as the first-half ended goalless.
Just a couple of minutes after the restart and again Summerville had a chance as he tested De Gea from the edge of the box but the Spaniard is equal to it as he pushes it wide. Just moments later and United’s number one almost gifted Leeds a chance as he cleared the ball straight to Summerville, but Bamford could not convert his ball into the box.
Leeds’ pressing continued and Ayling saw an effort deflect off Luke Shaw and just wide as the home side continued to look for the crucial breakthrough.
Changes arrived for both teams on the hour with Lisandro Martinez and Garnacho on for the visitors and record signing Georgino Rutter entering the fray for Leeds.
Soon after, Garnacho was involved as he combined with Fred to tee-up Dalot who struck the bar from the edge of the box.
Summerville again had a chance to break the deadlock as Martinez missed the chance to clear and he broke into the box but De Gea was again there go block.
And then the opener came when Shaw cut inside on the edge of the box and floated a brilliant ball into the box for an unmarked Rashford to head home from six-yards out.
The visiting fans had barely finished celebrating before the second arrived as Garnacho broke beyond Robin Koch and fired beyond Meslier.
Weghorst thought he’d added a third in stoppage time, but it was ruled out for offside. Nevertheless, United managed to seal a brilliant win, while Leeds’ quest for a league win in 2023, like their search for a new manager, continues without success.
GK: Illan Meslier – 7/10 – Rarely tested in truth but when called upon he did well, including nice block from Fernandes in the first-half and could do little with either goal.
RB: Luke Ayling (C) – 7/10 – Good contest against Rashford and he was more than up to it, and also looked dangerous going forward.
CB: Robin Koch – 6/10 – Very solid in contest with Weghorst – did nothing wrong, but was shown a clean set of heels from Garnacho for United’s second goal.
CB: Max Wober – 5/10 – Some good some bad, defended well but distribution at times was questionable and he will have been disappointed on the goal not to be nearer to Rashford.
LB: Junior Firpo – 6/10 – No mistakes, wasn’t able to get forward too much but pretty solid from the Brazilian although could he have been closer to Rashford on goal?
CM: Tyler Adams – 8/10 – Really got stuck in, and clearly appreciated what the game meant to the fans – the heart and soul of the Leeds side.
CM: Weston McKennie – 7/10 – Really combative in the middle, formed a good partnership with Adams but didn’t get forward much.
RW: Crysencio Summerville – 8/10 – A thorn in the side of United all day, an another day could have had three.
AM: Jack Harrison – 6/10 – Put in a good shift but doesn’t look particularly comfortable or threatening as a number ten.
LW: Wilfried Gnonto – 6/10 – Really quiet from the Italian, had a couple of breaks in the second-half but well marshalled by Dalot for most of the game.
CF: Patrick Bamford – 5/10 – The ball didn’t really stick for the England international and no real shock he was taken offer before the hour.
Georginio Rutter (58′ for Bamford) – 3/10 – Offered little when he came on.
Brenden Aaronson (73′ for Harrison) – N/A
Ross Greenwood (84′ for McKennie) – N/A
Manager: Michael Skubala – 6/10 – Got the best out of Summerville, but others were not at it.
GK: David De Gea – 8/10 – Questionable clearances at times, but he will blame some statuesque teammates in front of him – but made some very good saves too to keep Leeds at bay.
RB: Diogo Dalot – 7/10 – Defensively excellent, won his battle with the dangerous Gnonto and almost scored.
CB: Harry Maguire (C) – 7/10 – Some good blocks, cleared his lines well when required. Solid.
CB: Luke Shaw (C) – 9/10 – The best defender and player on the pitch, excellent in central defence and also at full-back. Class act. Also popped up with the assist for the opener.
CM: Marcel Sabitzer – 6/10 – Worked hard enough, but offered little going forward and was well shackled by Leeds.
CM: Fred – 8/10 – Really busy, never gave Leeds a moments piece in the middle of the mark – good performance.
RW: Jadon Sancho – 6/10 – He tried a few things and had his moments, but was taken offer on the hour.
AM: Bruno Fernandes – 7/10 – Like Summerville had numerous chances, should have scored. As ever moaned at the officials from start to finish but at least played at times.
LW: Marcus Rashford – 8/10 – Like Sancho on the other side, had some moments but never really got the big chance he was looking for – until 10 minutes from time when he headed home. Clinical.
CF: Wout Weghorst – 4/10 – Won a few headers but contributed very little – although United’s attempts to find him in the box were negligible. Provided an assist.
Alejandro Garnacho (61′ for Sancho) – 7/10 – Great finish to kill the game off.
Lisandro Martinez (61′ for Malacia) – 4/10 – Almost cost his side with missed clearance.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (73′ for Dalot) – N/A
Anthony Elanga (90′ for Rashford) – N/A
Manager: Erik Ten Hag – 7/10 – Subs made a real difference.