The Premier League is officially underway, and we’re back with a bang. Manchester United are the first side to register three points this season after edging past Leicester City at Old Trafford, in a game that could’ve swung either way – but in the end, went in the direction of the home side by a scoreline of 2-1. There was a parade of opportunities on either side of the ball to change the outcome, but eventually, the experience factor paid off with The Red Devils being able to grind out the result they required.
United faced the pressure of having to kick off the new season, against a Foxes side who will always be in the mix around the top 10. Jose Mourinho has made some bold statements, to say the least, in the last few weeks with many fans questioning whether or not he’s even the right man for the job.
Alas, they can’t have possibly been disappointed by the opening to the game as World Cup winner Paul Pogba scored a penalty within a matter of minutes to give them the lead. The penalty itself was fortunate with Daniel Amartey handling Alexis Sanchez’s deflected shot inside the box, and while many will consider it to be a harsh decision, it was still up to Leicester to bounce back in a way that would allow for them to work their way back into the game – and for the most part, they failed.
They certainly came forward with intent but they just didn’t have what it took to get the ball past David De Gea when it mattered the most, with Ricardo and Maddison both drawing good saves out of the Spaniard. United will be thanking their lucky stars that they’ve been able to keep hold of him after Real Madrid decided to move for Thibaut Courtois instead.
Late into the second half, it seemed as if Leicester were running out of steam, and then out of nowhere, Luke Shaw scored what many people thought was the final nail in the coffin after slotting the ball home from Mata’s cross to make it 2-0. Leicester’s Jamie Vardy wouldn’t let it rest without having his own say on proceedings, though, scoring a late consolation goal before Kasper Schmeichel of all people had a header that went wide – which almost created a special moment of a very different kind.
Improvements need to be made by both sides, but the main thing to focus on for United fans is that they came away from a tricky looking fixture with the win. They’ll aim to take that momentum into their next game against Brighton next weekend, whereas the Foxes will try and rebound against Wolverhampton Wanderers next Saturday.
Man United: De Gea (7.5), Darmian (5), Bailly (7), Lindelof (6), Shaw (7.5), Pogba (8), Pereira (6.5), Fred (6.5), Mata (6), Sanchez (6.5), Rashford (6), Lukaku (6), McTominay (N/A), Fellaini (N/A)
Leicester: Schmeichel (6.5), Amartey (5.5), Morgan (6), Maguire (6.5), Chilwell (6.5), Ndidi (7), Silva (6), Ricardo (6.5), Maddison (7), Gray (6.5), Iheanacaho (6), Ghezzal (6.5), Vardy (7), Iborra (N/A)
Referee: Andre Marriner
Goals: Pogba pen, Shaw :: Vardy
Yellow Cards: Fred, Pereira, Amartey
Red Cards: N/A
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