Manchester United vs Huddersfield Town Match Analysis and Player Ratings

Picture taken from Manchester United's Twitter Profile


Today was all about the homecoming of a Manchester United legend, who goes by the name of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. An excited crowd welcomed their legend home by giving him a rapturous reception as he walked out on to the pitch before kick off. If it was even possible Solskjaer had made himself more popular by leading the team to an impressive 5-1 win at Cardiff City in his first match in charge last weekend. Today, the new manager would have been looking for his United team, who showed three changes to their side to put in another dominant performance and take the three points against an Huddersfield team who started the game bottom of the league.

United started the game with the same vigour as they finished the game in Cardiff last weekend, with lots of energy in the play and a quick tempo to their passing. United fans who firmly believe they are seeing their team play the way they should, responded to the vibrant start with songs and chants getting behind the team and the manager. Although the first 25 minutes of the game didn't offer too much in the way of goal mouth action for United, it was Huddersfield who had the clearest chance and one they should have scored from. 

In the 28th minute United had their breakthrough when Marcus Rashford whipped a corner towards the near post which was met by a flick on from Victor Lindelof and there was Nemanja Matic to tap home from close range and only heightened the feel good factor even more inside the ground.

United who were missing Anthony Martial today after he had to withdraw at late notice with food poisoning struggled to gain any attacking rhythm without their star Frenchman and were not able to use Matic's opening goal as a catalyst to kick on in the first half as they laboured their way to a 1-0 half time lead.

The second half started the same as the first, with United not offering much in the way of an attacking threat and if had not been for a great fingertip save by David De Gea from Huddersfield striker Laurent Depoitre it would have been 1-1. This save only served as a wake up call for United though who two minutes later doubled their lead when good work by Rashford down the right side was finished off with aplomb by an impressive Paul Pogba.

Pogba, who now has three assists and two goals in Solskjaer's first two games in charge, looks a different player from the one we have been seeing this season under Jose Mourinho and this can only be positive for United as they move forward in to the second half of the season. Pogba then capped off his quality performance by getting his second of the game and United's third, firing a strike in to the near post to give the reds some much needed breathing space allowing them to enjoy the rest of the game.

Mathias Jorgensen grabbed Huddersfield a scant consolation in the 88th minute tapping home from a couple of yards out. But this wasn't going to spoil Solskjaer's return to the Theatre of Dreams and United roll on to their next game against Bournemouth AFC at Old Trafford on Sunday, where United fans will be excited to see their team take to the pitch again. When was the last time we could say that?

See below my player ratings for todays games:


De Gea: 7
Made a fantastic save to keep United in front early in the second half. Little else to do, could not have saved the Huddersfield goal.

Dalot: 6
Struggled at times today defensively and was subbed after 55 minutes, but got forward well and should have scored in the first half.

Jones: 7
A solid centre back performance from Jones with strong tackles breaking up opposition moves and brought the ball out of the defence effectively. 

Lindelof: 7
Like Jones, Lindelof put in a solid performance but should have been part of a clean sheet so will have been disappointed to concede, but read the game well and shows quality in possession.

Shaw: 7
Showed great energy to get up and down the left hand side for united and looked a threat when delivering balls in to the box.

Fred: 6
Disappointing performance from the Brazilian today, shows plenty of endeavour but gave the ball away too frequently and lacked composure in the middle of the park.

Matic: 7
Surprisingly fitting in to this United team well moving the ball much quicker while adding a useful physicality to the midfield. Showed good instincts to get the crucial first goal. 

Pogba: 8
Pogba did what the fans have always wanted to do he ran the midfield today and looked a constant goal threat playing higher up the pitch. Scored two very good goals today and seems to be gaining in confidence.

Lingard: 7
Lingard had a quiet game today in large patches, but did link up well with team mates on the edge of the oppositions area and credited with the assist for Pogba's second.

Mata: 7
Mata showed his usual quality on the ball and suits this new attacking United style, fitted in to the team seamlessly.

Rashford: 7
Put in the corner that led to United's first and was a constant threat with his pace on and off the ball but in a couple of great deliveries from wide areas and could have had more assists. 

Substitutes:

Herrera: 7 
Replaced Fred on 55 minutes and brought extra quality to United's midfield and his introduction strengthened the team. 

Young: 7
Replaced the inexperienced Dalot in the 55th Minute and his experience helped to keep United in front and helped United kick on after their second goal.
  
Gomes: 6
Came on for the last 10 minutes, didn't influence the game but had some nice touches and lifted the crowd with him being one of their own.

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