Kenna’s Red view Match Review : Man United 1vs Stoke city1
Hi There guys.
Here to analyze the united game vs stoke and give a detached perspective on the game.
For a bit of context , I felt that united were beginning to pick some form after a disastrous week typified with 3 losses. The previous game against leicester gave me a glimmer of hope that things ( may ) be coming together.
It isn’t lost on me that the dropping of rooney by Jose coincided with an iteration of united that showed a lot of attacking verve and disposed of the former champions with consummate ease. Depending on how much you love or hate rooney you can decide if his absence made the team more fluid or it was just coincidence.
Now back to the game – I was impressed by the starting line up . My only objection being lingard who I feel is absolutely stealing a living at united. The rest of the team looked to me like the core of a team to build consistency on. Herrera in in front of the defense particularly impressed me because it gives Pogba (the dabbing sissoko) , the license to join attacks and fluidly transition midfield play into attack . As with every match , I had fully expected Stoke to put on a barca-esque perfomance despite being absolutely abysmal all season. The game started with united on the front foot, firmly in control , bossing possession and overall game play .
There were so many gilt edged chances in the first half with Pogba , Mata , zlatan and rashford particularly guilty of wasting chances. I had an eerily sinking feeling in my stomach that it was going to be “one of those days” . We pressed and pressed and had wave after wave of attack repelled. Stoke city were resolute in defense but our biggest adversary was our own profligate finishing. The chances we buried easily vs leicester were just not going in despite , ironically , playing better.
As a fan of the overall game ,I was impressed by our play in the first half but for banter and title aspiration purposes, I needed a win. The second half pretty much was a drop in replacement for the first , with the added inconvenience of an emboldened stoke city.
The ball would just not go in. Eventually Jose decided to bring the changes and introduced Rooney and martial. It seemed to be an inspired pair of subs because they combined ( albeit fortuitously ) to give united the first goal . At that point it felt like it would be an avalanche of goals. Sadly it was not to be as a moment of goalkeeping madness gifted stoke the equalizer and try as we may , we could not find a winner.
My overall assessment is that the gameplay was impressive and a far cry from the dire football that typified the God awful LVG era. I can see some consistency in the starting 11 and Jose is beginning to settle on his best line up. Im optimistic that things will fall into place in due time.
De Gea (5) – Howler cost us 3 points
Valencia (7) – Solid performance while not spectacular , put in a decent shift
Bailly – (8.5) Joint man of the match with mata
Smalling – (7) Solid but not spectacular
Blind (6) -good performance but his poor clearance ultimately led to the goal
Herrera (8) – Outstanding perfomance screening the defense and was tidy in possession
Lingard (5) – average performance , needs more guile in his predictable play
Mata – (8.5) MOTM performance, his vision and spatial awareness in the final third was the reason our attack was so fluid.
Rashford (6.5) – Not his best game. Had occasional flashes of brilliance but was not as deadly as we know he can be
Zlatan (6.5) – Could easily have had a hatrick but for poor finishing. Happens to the best of them.
back after the international break…Glory glory Man united!