Man Utd have started their season with a very hot match when scoring 5 goals against Leeds United, and their main author is none other than Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba.
- Time: 6:30pm, August 14th
- Location: Old Trafford
Manchester United: Bruno (31′, 54′, 60′), Greenwood (52′), Fred (68′)
Leeds: Ayling (48′)
Manchester United: De Gea: Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw; Fred, McTominay; James, Fernandes, Pogba; Greenwood.
Leeds: Meslier; Ayling, Struijk, Cooper, Dallas; Klich, Koch; Raphinha, Rodrigo, Harrison; Bamford.
Before this match, Manchester United had the advantage of head-to-head stats when they were unbeaten against Leeds in the last 4 encounters in all competitions. This is not only an opponent with many charms, but the Leeds match also means a lot to Manchester United in confirming its progress and ambition for the new season. Although the squad is still incomplete after the summer break, 3 points is certainly the goal of Ole’s teachers and students. Meanwhile, Leeds United with the extension of coach Bielsa has confirmed how much they trust the Argentine strategist. But they need to find the first victory after 4 friendly matches with all draws and losses.
The first day of Manchester United’s match saw the absence of a few pillars such as Cavani, Henderson and Rashford for different reasons. Meanwhile, for physical reasons, Jadon Sancho can only appear on the bench. Therefore, Solskjaer decided to use a safe 4-2-3-1 formation with the only striker being Mason Greenwood, supporting him under the trio of Pogba, Bruno Fernandes and Daniel James. Overall, Solskjaer intends to keep the pace slow during the early game and spend a lot of time getting to know the opponent before making the next adjustment move.
Meanwhile, at the top of Leeds United’s attack is still Bamford. Bielsa used a familiar formation last season of 4-1-4-1, with Raphinha and Harrison as the wingers. Koch is still Leeds’ only holding midfielder in this formation. From the beginning, this promises to be a game where they actively press and find a way to win the ball of Man Utd players in the opponent’s half, where the midfielders Fred and McTominay are in charge.
Just before the opening whistle took place, Man Utd officially announced their new signature – Raphael Varane. Varane greeted the field with the number 19 shirt before returning to the Old Trafford tunnel.
As expected, in the first 15 minutes, Man Utd played slowly to probe the opponent. But the Leeds defense suddenly became more distracted than usual and helped the home team have dangerous opportunities. The most regrettable phase is Greenwood’s touch and Pogba’s cumbersome handling when the French midfielder is qualified to finish but sends the ball out ungracefully.
In the following minutes, Solskjaer’s team was more active in competing for the ball right in the opponent’s yard. However, Man Utd’s subsequent coordination phases are still not really sharp to create a highlight. Daniel James still shows no effect other than his speed in the attack of the Reds. Meanwhile, Fred fouled Rafinha to help Leeds enjoy a direct free kick about 30m from the MU goal, the ball was hung in and Bamford headed bravely to send the ball wide of the post.
However, whatever comes must come. In the 31st minute, right after the cross for Greenwood failed to cross, Bruno Fernandes became the first Man Utd player to score this season after receiving a great pass from Pogba.
The next dangerous situations still favor the home team. Meanwhile, Leeds often had to gather troops to defend and did not have many opportunities to implement their quick counterattack. The first half of the match ended with a score of 1-0 in favor of MU.
However, at the beginning of the second half, in the 50th minute, Leeds equalized Luke Ayling, who suddenly launched an extremely tight shot from outside the box, causing goalkeeper De Gea to give up. But just 3 minutes later, Pogba’s talent continued to shine when there was a slot for Greenwood to hit the ground with a super standard finish to defeat Meslier.
The madness of the second half still did not stop, it was still Pogba with a pass to Bruno for the midfielder to handle wisely and finish right in the Leeds penalty area, raising the score to 3-1 for MU. at the 54th minute.
But the party of the Devils didn’t stop, and when Pogba had a hat-trick of assists, Bruno also completed his hat-trick with a powerful foot from Lindelof’s long cross in the 60th minute. At this point, Leeds had almost completely lost the game.
In the 68th minute, Pogba continued to make Old Trafford explode with a pass for Fred to finish at close range, beating Meslier to make it 5-1.
In the 75th minute, the change that MU fans were waiting for also came when Jadon Sancho and Anthony Martial came on to replace Paul Pogba and Daniel James. However, at this time, Man Utd took the initiative to slow down and let Leeds United attack, so there were not too many dangerous situations. Sancho had a very nice technical tackle, while the visitors had a remarkable situation when Tyler Roberts released the ball beautifully for Raphinha to finish, but the ball went incorrectly.
The result is kept until the final whistle blows. Man Utd with a destructive 5-1 victory temporarily climbed to the top of the table. A great start to the week for the Red Devils, especially with Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes.
Sports No. 247
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