Football Features

Fred finally begins to pay back price tag: Every player rated as Man Utd beat Brighton to go seventh

By Ben Green

Published: 16:04, 10 November 2019

Manchester United have leapfrogged Brighton in the Premier League table after running out 3-1 victors at Old Trafford.

Andreas Pereira got the ball rolling for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, scoring a fortuitous deflected effort with only 17 minutes on the clock, before Davy Propper compiled further misery on the Seagulls with an own goal just moments later.

Brighton came out with more drive and hunger after the restart and soon found themselves back in with a chance after Lewis Dunk netted in the 64th minute, but Man United acted swiftly to subdue that renewed hope for the visitors, with Marcus Rashford restoring the hosts’ two-goal cushion in the 66th minute.

Here’s how the players rated at Old Trafford:

Manchester United

David De Gea – 6 – Had little to do as Brighton rarely turned the screw, but could do nothing as Dunk thundered home a header in the second half.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 7 – Defensively solid again down the right, continuously crunching into tackles with inch perfection, while linking up well with James.

Victor Lindelof – 6 – Alongside Harry Maguire, the duo looked to play out from the back and initiate attacking moves, though defensively Man United struggled from set-pieces.

Harry Maguire – 7 – Forever charging forward and intercepting passes before they could reach the Brighton attack. Maguire never shied away from collecting the ball and feeding it into Man United’s frontline.

Brandon Williams – 7 – The tenacious teenager really came into his own this afternoon, looking industrious and energetic down the left flank. Williams really got stuck into challenges and was more than prepared to get his shorts muddy.

Scott McTominay – 7 – A commanding performance in the heart of midfield, McTominay was composed and looked to control the tempo, while also having a massive hand in Man United’s second.

Fred – 8 – Could this be a turning point for the Brazilian? He has started to really ramp up the performances in recent weeks, but this afternoon he looked every bit the £50m player Man United thought they were getting last year. He was controlled, confident and dictated the play.

Daniel James – 8 – An electrifying showing from Man United’s pace-merchant. James was ferocious down the right, causing Dan Burn significant problems while linking play exceptionally well with Anthony Martial and Rashford.

Andreas Pereira – 7 – A more assured display from the Brazilian. Pereira broke the deadlock with a rather fortunate deflection, but played with a panache and verve that summed up Man United’s silky display. He picked the ball up in key areas and looked to unlock doors.

Marcus Rashford – 8 – Imperious and positive. Rashford excelled as an inside forward, giving Montoya a very difficult afternoon, which culminated in his half-time substitution. The England international was exceptional cutting in on the byline and was duly rewarded for his efforts with a thumping goal.

Anthony Martial – 8 – The Frenchman put in a stellar performance, registering two assists while giving Dunk and Duffy little respite at the back. This was the type of No. 9 performance Solskjaer has been praying for, having opted not to invest in a forward over the summer.

Substitutes:

Jesse Lingard (for Pereira  70) – 6 – Came on for the final 20 minutes and linked play nicely as Brighton started to push men forward.

Marcos Rojo (for Williams) – N/A – Brought on just to see out the closing stages.

Mason Greenwood (for Rashford) – N/A – Came on for the final few minutes.

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Brighton

Mathew Ryan – 5 – Didn’t look overly assured as Man United launched wave after wave of attack, and perhaps could have done a little better for Propper’s own goal.

Martin Montoya – 4 – A difficult 45 minutes for the Spaniard, who struggled to contain Rashford and offered little threat when surging forward before being withdrawn at the interval.

Shane Duffy – 5 – This was a tough match for Brighton’s defence, with Man United intent on pushing men forward from minute one until the final whistle. Duffy did make some key tackles, but this was not his finest showing.

Lewis Dunk – 5 – Found the back of the net in what looked like a turning point during the game, but Man United quickly re-established their two-goal lead minutes later. Another who endured a very busy and strenuous game.

Dan Burn – 4 – Had a torrid afternoon in trying to deal with the pace and directness of James. Such was the Welshman’s success down Brighton’s left that Potter had to tinker with his tactics at half-time.

Davy Propper – 4 – Looked to keep possession and set the tempo for Brighton, but there were simply far too many sideways and backwards passes, not to mention finding the back of his own net.

Dale Stephens – 5 – Saw a lot of the ball and played with his usual tenacity but really struggled to drive his side forward and penetrate Man Utd’s midfield.

Steven Alzate – 5 – Had a few flashing moments of trickery and skill but no where near enough to cause consistent problems for Williams.

Leandro Trossard – 5 – Another who looked deadly when in possession but just couldn’t find that moment of magic to really spark Brighton into life.

Neal Maupay – 4 – Quiet and rather isolated, Maupay had one golden moment in the second half, but fluffed his lines and that was pretty much the story of his afternoon.

Aaron Connolly – 5 – Looked to cause the Man United backline problems with his relentless pressing but the Red Devils were scarcely threatened during his time on the pitch, bar an untimely missed header which the Irishman couldn’t direct towards goal.

Substitutes:

Solly March (f0r Montoya 45) – 5 – Tried to bring an invention and creativity and while it seemed to work at first, his performance waned.

Glenn Murray (for Connolly 45) – 5 – Came on the bring a new dimension to Brighton’s game, but only provided a threat from set-pieces.

Pascal Gross (for Trossard 59) – 6 – Perhaps should have started from the off, Gross set up Dunk’s header and looked lively when pushing forward.

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