Devastated. Plenty positives to take (which we discuss here) but a tough one to take when 2-0 up with just over 20 minutes to play.
Here’s my thoughts on each player’s performance and my marks out of 10.
NUFC XI – (4-4-1-1): Dubravka – Yedlin, Lascelles, Fernandez, Manquillo – Ritchie, Shelvey, Diame, Kenedy – Perez – Muto
Dubravka – 8 – Was commanding from crosses and made a few brilliant stops to deny them in the second half.
Yedlin – 7 – Did very well to keep Martial quiet for the main part and made some brilliant bursts forward too.
Lascelles –7 – Won just about every ball that came his way in the box, made a countless number of clearances and battled until the end. Another very strong display.
Fernandez – 6 – Good to have him back. Read the play well – although he gave Rashford a few free headers that were not punished. We wilted under the pressure in the end, but I have faith moving forward in him and Lascelles as a partnership.
Manquillo – 6 – I worried when I saw he’d be up against Rashford but he ended up getting the better of him. Could and should have done better and stopped some late crosses coming in but he was out on his feet. Did better than I expected.
Ritchie – 6.5 – Used the ball well and got back well to help out Yedlin on several occasions. Deliveries from corners were very good too.
Diame – 7 – Got the better of Pogba in the first half, breaking up the play well and covering just about every blade of grass on the pitch. He tired in the second half, however, and missed a huge chance to head in from a corner at 2-2. Gave away free-kick that lead to Mata goal (making it 2-1) but he put in a good shift overall.
Shelvey – 8 – Put a good ball into the box for Muto’s goal and dictated the play from midfield for us. Was allowed far too much space but he took advantage of that very well in the first half. Didn’t shirk his defensive duties either.
Kenedy – 8 – Took his goal brilliantly, making a great run in behind and curling a shot right into the bottom corner past De Gea. Did very well defensively at the other end too, getting back to help out Manquillo. Immediately looked more confident and energetic after his goal and gave us an outlet and genuine threat down the right. Good to see him looking in the mood again.
Perez – 7 – Did brilliantly to slip in Kenedy for our first goal. Worked hard and was a nuisance but sometimes lacked that killer instinct in the final third, scuffing shots and lacking composure in and around the box. A big improvement on his showing against Leicester however – with more support Muto’s movement ahead of him likely to have helped that.
Muto – 9 – Man Utd couldn’t handle him in the first half. His movement was brilliant, his pace was electric and his hold up play / use of the ball was solid too. Took his goal well with a sharp turn and powerful shot and gave us real energy and intensity up top. Could’ve got himself two, with De Gea saving from a close range header.
Murphy – 5 – Offered considerably less than Kenedy, which was so noticeable after he was forced off. Tried to get back and help Manquillo but got nothing going at the other end, with us being on the back foot while he was on.
Atsu – 0 – I’m not giving a 0 because he wasn’t on long enough to make an impact, I’m giving a 0 as he did absolutely nothing but set us back when he came on. Couldn’t even make a 5 yard pass
Joselu – N/A – Not on long enough to make any impact at all.