Football News

“A captain’s performance” – Player ratings as Bruno Fernandes inspires Man Utd in 2-0 win over Tottenham

By Harry Edwards

Published: 22:27, 19 October 2022

Manchester United closed the gap on the top four to just one point thanks to their 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday night.

It was a commanding performance from Erik ten Hag’s men with goals from Fred and Bruno Fernandes sealing the victory, their second win in three matches after losing to Manchester City.

Tottenham, on the other and, missed out on the opportunity to move up to second and Antonio Conte will face the scrutiny of the fans for his tactics and decision-making.

Here’s how the players rated at Old Trafford:

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Manchester United

David de Gea – 7 – Made a strong save against Kane late in the first half but really didn’t have much to do on Wednesday night.

Luke Shaw – 7 – A solid performance, especially offensively as he didn’t have to do too much attack. Tested Lloris with a good volley in the first half and will now be hoping to build on this performance.

Lisandro Martinez – 7 – Really had nothing to do in the game but was a calm presence for Man Utd at the back.

Raphael Varane – 7 – Like his centre-back partner, made sure Man Utd were solid in defence but didn’t have to do too much.

Diogo Dalot – 8 – Enjoyed himself getting forward a lot and looked to test the Tottenham defence with some good crosses. One of his better Man Utd performances, operating as a winger at times.

Fred – 9 – The star of the show. With Tottenham’s midfield lacking Fred was allowed to express himself a bit more creatively and he caused some serious problems. In the first half he was unfortunate not to have recorded an assist after an excellent pass into Rashford, but just after half-time he gave Man Utd the lead. Sure there was a tad of good fortune with the deflection but it was a goal Fred fully deserved.

Casemiro – 8 – Didn’t really have to do much in terms of protecting the Man Utd defence but his presence gave Fred a lot more position freedom to get up the pitch. An understated but integral performance from one of the world’s best.

Jadon Sancho – 6 – Found himself in dangerous areas quite a lot of the time but it was often his teammates getting more involved, with Sancho taking something of a back seat. He did show good awareness though to set up Fred on the edge of the area.

Bruno Fernandes – 9 – The Bruno Fernandes who won the hearts of Man Utd fans is back. The Portuguese midfielder was the key to unlocking a very rigid Tottenham defence in the first half and there were a few moments when he looked like doing so, only to be thwarted by Lloris. But once the game opened up Bruno shone even more and doubled Man Utd’s lead with a beautiful strike. Erik ten Hag appears to have found how to get the most out of him, and it’s by making him the focal point of the team.

“He’s been absolutely fantastic in everything he’s done,” Alan Shearer said.

“Whether that’s offensively, whether that’s winning the ball back, his pressing. It’s been a really impressive performance. A captain’s performance. And his goal was magnificent.”

Antony – 7 – A dangerous game from the Brazilian who constantly looked to cut onto his left foot from the right and curl the ball into the far corner. He hit the post with an effort in the first half and although he quietened down slightly after the break, it was another good display.

Marcus Rashford – 8 – On another day Rashford will have been taking the match ball home. The Englishman looked to stretch the Tottenham defence and got behind them at times, forcing Lloris into a handful of good saves. Although he didn’t find the net, Rashford justified Ten Hag starting the Englishman over Ronaldo.


Scott McTominay (for Antony 76) – 7 – Added stability to the Man Utd midfield as Ten Hag looked to shut up shop.

Anthony Elanga (for Sancho 87) – N/A – A late sub.

Christian Eriksen (for Casemiro 87) – N/A – A late sub.

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Tottenham Hotspur

Hugo Lloris – 8 – If it wasn’t for Lloris, Tottenham could have been facing their heaviest Premier League defeat and we’re not even exaggerating. The Frenchman made eight saves in total and some of them were fantastic, keeping Tottenham in the game. He couldn’t really do anything about either goal, beaten by a deflection and a well-placed finish, but Lloris didn’t deserve to be on the losing side.

Ben Davies – 4 – Tottenham’s defence were under fire from the start and there was nothing any of the centre-backs could really do about it. Davies found himself getting forward a few times but defensively it was a collective shambles. The Welshman also deflected Fred’s shot past Lloris for the opening goal though that was more about bad luck than poor defending.

Eric Dier – 4 – If he hadn’t got the ball blasted in his faith you might have been forgiven for forgetting that Dier was on the pitch at Old Trafford, given the way he was played around. But again, it’s worth stating that this was a poor performance as a whole rather than individual errors.

Cristian Romero – 4 – Given the runaround by Marcus Rashford. Like his centre-back partners he’ll be hoping to forget about this game very quickly.

Ivan Perisic – 3 – After years of being linked with a move to Old Trafford, Perisic had his chance to show Man Utd what they were missing on Wednesday night. Instead he had a nightmare at the Theatre of Dreams, run ragged by Antony.

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg – 3 – Usually the man you can rely on in midfield but Hjobjerg was completely overrun and lost a battle far too cheaply for Fred’s goal, pushed off the ball with ease by Fernandes.

Yves Bissouma – 3 – Bypassed by the Man Utd midfield and completely helpless. This was a tactical disaster-class by Conte.

Rodrigo Bentancur – 3 – Completed the trio of invisible Tottenham midfielders, there really isn’t much to say about Bentancur he was so ineffective. Felt the wrath of Conte more than most.

Matt Doherty – 3 – Like his wing-back partner, Doherty was constantly cooked defensively.

Harry Kane – 4 – Tested De Gea at his near post towards the end of the first half but that was his only real action aside from another shot that wouldn’t have counted anyway as he was offside. Tried dropping deep to collect the ball but it just wouldn’t work.

Son Heung-min – 3 – Barely allowed into the game with fewer touches than any of Tottenham’s starters (38, one fewer than Kane) and pulled out of a challenge in the build up to Fred’s goal. He is so much better than his performance.


Lucas Moura (for Bissouma 82) – N/A – Brought on far too late by Conte to have any chance of making a difference. A bizarre decision from the Italian.

Davinson Sanchez (for Dier 82) – N/A – A late sub.

Ryan Sessegnon (for Doherty 82) – N/A – A late sub.

Oliver Skipp (for Bentancur 89) – N/A – A late sub.

Djed Spence (for Perisic 89) – N/A – A late sub.