Football Features

“Nothing less than a liability” – Player ratings as disastrous De Gea lets Everton come from behind twice to draw at Old Trafford

By Muhammad Butt

Published: 22:32, 6 February 2021

In a wild night of football, Everton shocked Manchester United with two comebacks at Old Trafford to draw 3-3.

Everton went 2-0 down in the first-half but came storming back to 2-2 in the second period. United took the lead again but Everton didn’t give up and equalised with almost the last kick of the game.

Here’s how the players rated at Old Trafford:

Manchester United

David de Gea – 2 – Had nothing to do first-half. Then in the second Everton had three shots on target and scored three goals; and while you’d think that would give you a picture of how bad De Gea was, you’d be wrong, because he was worse.

Palmed a harmless cross out into Abdoulaye Doucouré’s path for Everton’s first, and while he was helpless for James’ equaliser, his cowardly behaviour standing on his line shimmying around like a 97-year-old trying to do a TikTok dance as Dominic Calvert-Lewin waltzed into space and tapped beyond him uncontested was as embarrassing as it was sad.

That this washed-up shadow of a colossus continues to be selected ahead of the genuinely promising Dean Henderson is both baffling and insulting. Manchester United will win nothing with David de Gea in goal. He avoids a 1/10 only because he didn’t get sent off or concede a penalty, but he is nothing less than a liability.

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Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 7 – Solid in defence, unpredictable in attack. Team-high 4 tackles and 2 interceptions. As you expect, really.

Victor Lindelof – 5 – Another display that proved when he is a glaring weak point for Man Utd, especially alongside Maguire. Doesn’t compliment his captain at all and is lucky Eric Bailly is out injured.

Harry Maguire – 5 – Very solid in the first-half, not quite as good in the second and played everyone onside for Everton’s second equaliser. Clearly misses Eric Bailly, a partner who covers for him rather than exposes his flaws.

Luke Shaw – 4 – Active in attack including the game-winning assist, but was partly responsible on all three Everton goals. Lost track of Doucouré for Everton’s first, did the same again and failed to close him down for Everton’s second and then was beaten in the air by Keane for Everton’s third. He’s become a true threat in attack but is a defensively liability.

Scott McTominay – 7 – Tackled, got stuck in, but exposed by some of Everton’s smarter movement. Still, managed to score again with a neat back-header, albeit one that profited off bad goalkeeping.

Paul Pogba – 6 – Looked bright, moved the ball nicely, but had to go off injured and that was clearly a loss.

Bruno Fernandes – 7 – A relatively quiet night by his standards but still scored a thunderously magnificent goal to give United a two-goal lead. Has had a magnificent talismanic effect on the United team, but especially the attack. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s only lament is that he hasn’t been able to sign “a Bruno Fernandes” for his defence.

Mason Greenwood – 6 – Some lovely dribbling. Caused Everton loads of problems with his movement but didn’t.

Marcus Rashford – 6 – An excellent cross for Edinson Cavani’s opening goal was his best attacking contribution but his movement and energy constantly gave the Toffees problems. However he missed two fantastic chances to score in the second-half and that ultimately cost United the three points.

Edinson Cavani – 7 – Stupendous movement and header to open the scoring. Was a constant thorn in Everton’s side.

Substitutes:

Fred (for Pogba) – 6 – Buzzed about the field but was even sloppier than usual and United clearly missed Pogba.

Axel Tuanzebe (for Greenwood 93′) – 4 – Came on late to help secure the defence but ended up giving away a needless foul that led to Everton’s last second equaliser.


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Everton

Robin Olsen – 3 – Could do nothing about United’s first two goals but completely ruined his night with his miserable effort to save their third goal. His feet seemed to collapse beneath him as he simply fell beneath what was a tame header from Scott McTominay.

Mason Holgate – 8 – A quiet night in attack but very solid defensively. Team-highs for interceptions (3) and possessions won (11) plus 4 clearances and 3 tackles. Did so well to deny United down their favourite flank.

Michael Keane – 8 – Completely lost Cavani for United’s opening goal but defended well in general (team-high 5 clearaces) and capped the night off with a big leap and assist for Everton’s last gasp equaliser.

Ben Godfrey – 6 – Did well albeit struggled to handle McTominay for United’s third goal.

Lucas Digne – 7 – Struggled to handle himself defensively and was quiet in attack until his majestic cross led to Everton’s equaliser.

Abdoulaye Doucoure- 8 – Started the second-half in furious form. A great run led to an opportunistic to give Everton hope, and then another great run led to a sublime cross to give Everton an equaliser.

Andre Gomes – 6 – Neat and tidy in possession and battled hard to make Bruno Fernandes’ life difficult. Team-high 4 tackles.

Tom Davies – 4 – Ran around a bunch to no effect.

James Rodriguez – 7 – Kept out of the game in the first-half but roared Everton back into the game with a truly spectacular equaliser.

Richarlison – 6 – Several superb runs went un-found in the first-half and, indeed, in the second-half.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin – 8 – Helped create Everton’s first goal with a nice run and cross and then scored a last second equaliser with a incredible touch and finish.

Substitutes:

Gylfi Sigurdsson (for James 69′) – 6 – Ineffective.

Alex Iwobi (for Davies 75′) – 5 – Decent energy.

Josh King (for Doucoure 81′) – 6 – Some nice dribbles.