Before the starting XI was released, there were rumours about possible injuries to both Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba. The Mirror’s claim proved to be false as the partnership was named in the Starting XI, causing relief to Manchester United fans worldwide. United thrashed Bournemouth 5-2 with a brace from stalwart Mason Greenwood. Bruno played an instrumental part in the massive victory with his 2 assists and a goal as well.
United didn’t have the best start to a game but the turnaround was absolutely spectacular. Let’s discuss the key aspects to take away from the game:
A Shaky start
United fielded a strong XI for the game with the famed ‘Bruno-Pogba’ partnership named. The first 10 minutes seemed to be dull as Bruno and Rashford tried to create chanves but not being able to finish them or even play the final key pass. Eddie Howe had instructed Bournemouth to sit deep and counter attack. United had previously struggled a lot with teams that sit deep, the FA cup game against Norwich is a recent example. Bournemouth has a pretty active left wing, creating a few good chances which were denied in the initial 15 minutes. In the 16th minute, Stanislas wreaked havoc when he nutmegged Maguire and then scored from a very tight angle, which left David De Gea no option but to try his best. It almost felt as though United had gone back to be their old self but the match turned around.
After the first goal, United reacted differently than usual and created urgency in their game. This lead to a few chances but non were scored, a prime example is the 19th minute Rashford set piece which was saved by Ramsdale. In the 29th minute, Matic maneuvered a pass to Bruno who in turn passed it to Greenwood. The 18 year old pushed forward and shot the ball after a few step overs leading to a goal. This gave United the confidence to threaten the Bournemouth defence.
The United attacking trio
The young trio of Rashford, Martial and Greenwood meant business as each of them scored goals to get their name on the score sheet. Bruno Fernandes and Pogba did excellent work in the midfield to keep supplying chances. One man who isn’t quite mentioned when United wins is Nemanja Matic, who has been in extraordinary form ever since the season began. Nemanja has been a rather underrated star in a team full of blooming talents.
Controversial VAR call
Around the 48th minute, referee stopped play to check for Bailly’s controversial handball. The ball touched Bailly’s shoulder area while he misjudged the flight of a receiving ball. This lead to a penalty which was scored by veteran striker, King but the few minutes between the penalty and Martial goal showed United’s vulnerability. Bournemouth had already scored a equalizer to bring the score to 3-3 but it was called as an offside.
Martial seemed to have turned into prime Arjen Robben for this particular strike. Martial received the ball off Bruno in the left wing, then Martial pushed himself forward. While still being outside the box, Martial shot the ball with finesse. The ball curled towards the top right corner and Ramsdale couldn’t help but watch the ball go inside. Bruno then also scored a spectacular freekick from the inside of his boots.
United had a shaky start but then caught on very well after Greenwood gave the team something to build upon. United then lead comfortably at half time but the Josh King penalty lead to show United’s vulnerability which was covered up by Bruno and Greenwood’s goals.
What do you think about the game? Do you think Greenwood could become a United legend? Do let us know in the comments below
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