For the first time in nearly two years, Phil Jones started the Manchester United squad to replace the injured Harry Maguire. In attack, Ralph Rangnick decided once again for the stellar quartet around Jadon Sancho, Mason Greenwood, Edinson Cavani and Cristiano Ronaldo. However, the Red Devils did not come in front of the guest goal for long as Wolverhampton Wanderers were initially the decisive team for the game.
Goalkeeper David de Gea, who was named United’s Player of the Month for the December pre-match, was challenged right from the start. First, the Spanish goalkeeper saved a shot from the Portuguese Daniel Bodens from an acute angle (12), before his compatriot Ruben Neves moved away. De Gea was able to guide that ball over the bar (13th position).
The Red Devils got into the game better the longer they played, but only in the second round did the audience see an even match. About an hour later, United boss Ralf Rangnick almost showed a golden hand by replacing Bruno Fernandes. The Portuguese took the lead after just seven minutes – but fired a shot from about ten meters into the crossbar (67th place).
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Despite the increased performance of the home team, Wolves by no means gave up control of the match. On the contrary: after Roman Sais hit the crossbar with a free kick (75), Joao Moutinho stab in the heart to the fans of Old Trafford. The veteran hit with a precise shot from the edge of the penalty area in the lower left corner to take the initiative (82). He saved those wolves in the end and thus snatched three valuable points from Manchester.
Luke Shaw (Manchester United): “When I was on the field, I had no feeling that we were all there together. It was hard.”
Ralph Rangnick (Manchester United coach): “We didn’t play well at all, either individually or as a team. We still had a lot of work to do, especially against the ball. But we also made a lot of unnecessary mistakes in the first half, when we had the ball.”
Tweet about the game:
It sounds crazy, but Phil Jones will likely battle international Harry Maguire for a place in the starting line-up after his strong performance against Wolverhampton.
Observed: Defensive Top – Offensive Flip
This has been true of both teams for a long time. Wolves’ last eight matches have ended either 1-0, 0-1 or 0-0. The Red Devils have conceded only four goals in their last six matches. But there’s a problem up front: despite a total of 28 shots on target (United 9, Wolves 19), only one hit goal on Monday. A big surprise when you consider the offensive qualities of both teams.
The Wolverhampton Wanderers won for the first time in at least 42 years (!) at Old Trafford.
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