Manchester United vs Wolves Match Analysis and Player Ratings


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The January transfer window concluded, and all transfers completed, the signing of Bruno Fernandes and obtaining the services of Odion Ighalo on a 6 month loan has given Solskjaer some much needed options to add to the depleted injury-wracked squad to fight for the coveted 4th place finish in the Premier League. However, Marcos Rojo has returned to Argentina on a loan deal with Estudiantes for the rest of the season. Bruno Fernandes made his official home debut against a well drilled and formidable Wolves team. Having played eachother no less than five times in the past calendar year, Wolves looked to impose themselves at the Theatre of Dreams. They are really well balanced and are particularly dangerous on the counter attack.  Wolves have an impressive record against the Red Devils. In fact, in the past meetings in all competitions Wolves hold the upper hand having won twice drawn twice and lost just the once in the FA Cup replay. Solskjaer made three changes to the team that lost to Burnley, these were Bruno Fernandes in for suspended Nemanja Matic, Luke Shaw came in for Brandon Williams and  Victor Lindelof replaced Phil Jones.


The game at Old Trafford was tense with both teams trying to create openings the first half was a tight affair with few actual chances. Bruno Fernandes had a shot on target which brought the fans to their feet and tested the Wolves goalie Rui Patricio. Wolves were defending deep and restricting the Red Devils to long distance efforts. Second half both the teams had half chances with David De Gea having to be at his best with Raul Jimenez looking to add to his goal tally for the season. Mason Greenwood was brought on late in the second half and had a deflected shot almost sneaking into the Wolves goal, another half chance by Juan Mata was seen going agonising close to the outside post of Wolves.  In stoppage time Diego Dalot also had a header sizzle just wide of the target and a 0-0 result probably reflected the game as a whole. Manchester United are now three without a win in the Premier League and a winter break may be exactly what the Red Devils need in order to try and challenge for the top four in the Premier League.


Player Ratings

David De Gea  - 7
Marked his 300th appearance and also marked it with his 105th clean sheet, kept Man Utd in the game with a few critical saves.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 6.5
Created Mata’s 60th minute chance by showcasing clever movement. Sent in an inch-perfect cross in the 94th minute but robbed off an assist. He kept pegging forward & harried Wolves with his tenacity. He again impressed with his tenacious tackling.

Harry Maguire Captain - 7  
Lead by example by making emphatic tackles. Aerially dominant had a scary moment where a penalty may have been awarded against him with a clumsy challenge on  Diego Jota. Stamped  his authority over Wolves’ dangerous attackers. 

Victor Lindelof – 6
Brilliant block in added time to deny a late scare.  Seems to be forming a formidable partnership with Maguire in central defense. Had a good consistent game managed to keep Jimenez fairly quiet.  

Luke Shaw - 6
Had a solid game managed to shackle Adam Traore Put in an energetic showing running up & down, being defensively sold with timely challenges. Not so inspiring going forward though. 

Fred – 7 
Had a great game easy to see why he was voted at United’s January Player of the Month His set-piece delivery was much better today. Fred remained a vigilant figure in the middle, recovering the ball cleverly and putting in compelling tackles. 

Andreas Pereira- 4.5
Certainly not his best game his is struggling to establish the authority required in   central midfield   Needs to work harder on his defensive positions and not being overrun. Another disappointing performance where he created nothing and frustrated by losing possession. 

Bruno Fernandes – 6.5
Not the dream debut everyone hoped but had a few attempts at goal and whipped in a ferocious free kick which tested Rui Patricio. Very encouraging signs I think he will prove to be an amazing asset and look forward to him delivering on his promise.

Juan Mata – 6.5
Went close to getting the opener with  a shot from range just wide  of the post. Was really hard working and probably the most attacking player. Unlucky not to get the goal he deserved.  

Daniel James – 4.5 
James has been struggling with is form recently and loses the ball all too easily.  He did make his blazing forward runs at times, but never found a proper cross. Bullied by Wolves physicality. He seems to be lacking confidence and probably needs the winter break to reflect and come back stronger.  

Anthony Martial –5   
His hold-up play has been impressive. But apart from that, he was kept very quiet by Wolves. Moved to a natural left-wing role after Greenwood’s introduction, but barely able to penetrate through that side. Was not his best performance. 

Substitutions
Mason Greenwood – 6
Almost made immediate impact, with his 78th-minute long-ranger almost deflecting its way into goal. Troubled Wolves with his clever movement but unable to find that winner. Question why Solskjaer does not start with Greenwood as he looks to be most likely to score goals.

Jesse Lingard – N/A
Came on in the 88th minute  for Juan Mata not given enough time to impact the game

Diogo Dalot N/A
Came on in the 88th minute for Daniel James had the chance to become Old Trafford’s hero late on, but placed a header agonisingly wide late on. 

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