Manchester United know that a win against West Ham can help them take one step into guaranteeing Champions League qualification for next season. But they couldn’t thrive under pressure, playing out a 1-1 draw with the Hammers which sees them move into the top-4, but they need to get a positive result against Leicester City to finish the Premier League season in a Champions League spot.
The Red Devils dominated the first-half before Paul Pogba had an embarrassing moment towards the end, making a blatant handball trying to clear Declan Rice’s shot to award the Hammers a penalty. Michael Antonio put it away well to give West Ham a very fortunate lead.
But the Red Devils started the second half with aplomb, getting the equalizer in the 50th minute thanks to a brilliant finish from Mason Greenwood. However, they couldn’t pick up their game after that and were unable to get the winner, being forced to split points in a frustrating night for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
Manchester United Player Ratings
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (5.0) –
Solskjaer made a mistake going with Fosu-Mensah ahead of Wan-Bissaka, which created problems for United in the first-half. Not stringent enough taking off Pogba when he was performing poorly and too late with his substitutions. OGS now has the chance to prove himself as a worthy United manager by getting a positive result against Leicester, which will decide whether United’s season is a hit or miss.
David de Gea (6.0) –
De Gea has a lot to do to make up for his nightmare against Chelsea. Makes a decent save to deny Antonio in the 43rd minute. Then again pulls off a stunning save in the 62nd minute. Was compelling with his handling of crosses and showed no signs of nerves at all. A good response from that terrible performance on Sunday.
Timothy Fosu-Mensah (5.0)-
Back-to-back starts in the league for Fosu after making a good impression against Palace. But he looked uncomfortable at right-back, having no attacking impact whatsoever. His poor foul also led up to the free-kick before the penalty and he was subbed for Wan-Bissaka after the break.
Harry Maguire (7.0) –
Maguire had a shocker against Chelsea but looks much more composed today. Distributing the ball well and dominant inside the penalty area. Made a number of crucial interceptions to deny West Ham goal-scoring chances and saved his teammates’ blushes on numerous occasions.
Victor Lindelof (6.5) –
Lindelof’s much more comfortable in a 4-man backline, covering well for the galloping Fosu-Mensah and having a feisty tussle against Antonio. Was energetic with moving forward with the ball, but couldn’t really create anything definitive. Composed defensively and helped clear dangerous on a few occasions.
Brandon Williams (6.5)–
Looks pumped for the occasion, showing a high work-rate down the left-winger. Skit his way into the box before showcasing impressive trickery to create a good chance for Greenwood in the 38th. Had a feisty tussle with Jarod Bowen and mostly came on top, making crunching challenges and covering a lot of ground. Helped move the ball out of defence well but wasn’t helped by his teammates’ sloppiness.
Nemanja Matic (5.5) –
The Serbian is at his bullish best again today, snatching away the ball really well from the players and moving the ball into the tight attacking areas pretty well. Got a bit frustrating towards the end, making too many unnecessary fouls trying to win back the ball. Not as accurate or commanding as he normally is.
Paul Pogba (4.0) –
After getting a rest against Chelsea, Pogba is demanding the ball often to dictate from deep. After a decent first-half, he had an absolute brainfade moment with a clear hand-ball to concede the penalty before the break. Couldn’t really do anything to undo his error in the second-half, not looking at his sharpest nor fittest. Poor performance in which he possibly cost United two points in a vital game.
Bruno Fernandes (5.0) –
Bruno played a sweet through-ball to create Martial’s early chance. Could’ve scored in the 14th after he through on goal, but he couldn’t control Rashford’s pass properly. He had a lot of the ball, but Bruno had a very erratic night with his creative passes just not connecting well. Got booked later on for losing his temper, which summed up his frustrating performance.
Mason Greenwood (7.5) –
The youngster looks more free-flowing with his movement today. Had a weak shot saved early but had a big chance to score around the 38th minute, only for his strike to get blocked by a defender. Superbly linked with Martial to create a shooting opportunity in the 50th before slotting past Fabianski with conviction. Later created Ighalo’s chance with some brilliant movement and even though Greenwood was sloppy with his first-touch & passing, he was United’s biggest threat in attack.
Anthony Martial (7.0) –
Struck a whipped shot through Issa Diop’s legs to force a strong save in the 3rd minute. Moved around really well with the ball and showcased impressive passing ability in tight spaces to assist Greenwood’s goal. Was later moved into the left-wing, where he couldn’t really dazzle forward as he usually does.
Marcus Rashford (5.0) –
The Englishman played a brilliant defence-splitting pass in the 13th but Fernandes couldn’t score from it. Stung the goalkeeper with a powerful attempt later on. But he just ran out of energy in the second half and was ousted by Ben Johnson. Unable to make those surging runs and quite sloppy on too many occasions.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (6.0) –
Sparked up United’s right-side with his clever movement. Defensively still not perfect, but seems to be getting better and working harder. Needs to find his creative jewel in the final third.
Odion Ighalo (N/R) –
Had a great chance to score seconds after coming on but skitted his shot wide. Used his physicality well but couldn’t really make the impact he’d like to.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Greenwood ended up being United’s saviour with that stunning goal and looked their biggest attacking threat all game long. He fully deserves today’s MOTM for reaching double-digits for goals scored in the PL.