Thursday, January 23, 2020

Manchester United 2-1 Watford: Red Devils Earn Lucky Win Over Hornets

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Manchester United didn’t have a good performance this Saturday against Watford. However, good teams usually find ways to win even when they can’t play at their best. And that’s exactly what happened at Old Trafford. Goals from Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial were enough to see United knock off the challenge of a resilient Watford side.

The Hornets looked quite comfortable on possession and even though there weren’t many scoring chances, it seemed as if the visitors were the better side. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men were struggling to create chances, but they found themselves on top in the 28th minute when an excellent through ball from Luke Shaw found Marcus Rashford. The England international coolly placed the ball past Ben Foster to put the hosts on top. Martial had a golden chance to double the lead before the break, but Foster won the battle this time. Although the French winger would get his revenge.

Martial was the focal point of the sequence that finished with United’s second goal. The French winger started the play on the left wing, drifted towards the middle and ended slotting the ball following a cross from the right side. There was a degree of controversy on the play, though. Martial collided with the opposing keeper and while a foul could’ve been called, the referee decided to let the play go on and the French forward found the back of the net and into the open goal.

One would’ve thought that Manchester United would control the game thanks to a two-goal lead, but it wasn’t the case. In fact, Watford kept moving the ball around and they pulled one back when Abdoulaye Doucoure capitalised a nifty passing sequence with a nice finish from close range. The Hornets had the chance to equalise in the 93rd minute with a free kick from outside the box, but there was a foul on the play that killed the sequence.

Manchester United got the win and the three points. However, their performance was sub-par – at best. It’s not a secret that they must improve massively considering their upcoming challenges, but right now they must celebrate. The three points put them in the Top 4 once again. And that’s enough reason to feel happiness, cheer and joy for United’s players, coaching staff and fans.

Match Report

Manchester United: De Gea (6); Young (5), Smalling (6), Jones (6), Shaw (7); Herrera (5) (Andreas (5), 63′), Matic (6), Pogba (5); Mata (6) (Lingard (5), 63′); Rashford (6), Martial (7) (Rojo (-), 77′)

Bench: Romero (GK), Fred, Dalot, Lukaku

Watford: Foster (5); Janmaat (5) (Kiko (4), 55′), Kabasele (5), Britos (6), Masina (4); Doucoure (7), Capoue (6); Pereyra (5), Hughes (4) (Success (-), 90′); Deulofeu (6) (Gray (-), 73′), Deeney (6)

Bench: Gomes (GK), Cathcart, Holebas, Domingos Quina

Goals: Rashford (1-0, 28′), Martial (2-0, 72′), Doucoure (2-1, 90′)

Referee: Stuart Attwell. He admonished Andreas (MU), Hughes (WAT) and Masina (WAT)

Attendance: 74,543


Juan Pablo Aravena

A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.



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