Football News

Tottenham 2-0 Man Utd: Player ratings as Angeball has well and truly arrived

By Mohamed Moallim

Published: 19:30, 19 August 2023

Tottenham entertained Manchester United in the marquee game of matchday two.

Ange Postecoglou’s side came across like a work in progress last time out at Brentford while the Red Devils rode their luck against Wolves earlier this week. Erik ten Hag’s men, though, ran out 1-0 winners and sought back-to-back wins. Spurs, still adjusting to life without Harry Kane, were presented with an opportunity to make a statement.

And one they did. Following an even first half, Spurs were a class above in the final 45 minutes, Pape Matar Sarr put the hosts in front before a fresh Ben Davies helped to put the game beyond a lethargic United team.

As the dust begins to settle here is how the players rated:

Tottenham

Guglielmo Vicario – 8.5 – Started nervelessly but settled into the game and produced an early contender for save of the season through an incredible acrobatic, one-handed save to deny Casemiro before the hour mark.

Destiny Udogie – 6 – A strong debut home performance from the 20-year-old Italian full-back.

Cristian Romero – 7 – You’re never shortchanged with Romero who made up for lost time after last weekend’s brief outing against Brentford.

Micky van de Ven – 6.5 – Perfect test for the speedy young Dutch centre-back who dealt with United’s pacy frontline.

Pedro Porro – 7 – Smacked the woodwork following a vicious long-range effort.

Yves Bissouma – 9 – Followed up his standout outing against Brentford with another steely midfield display, no one won more tackles (four) than him in this game. “Bissouma is my player of the match. He’s been brave, gone past people, broke play up. An all-round performance,” came Neville’s verdict.

Pape Matar Sarr – 8 – Encouraged to get forward and could have put Spurs in front deep into the opening half before scoring the deadlock-breaking goal four minutes after half-time.

Son Heung-Min – 7 – This was more like it from the South Korean forward who constantly drove Spurs forward and was unfortunate not to contribute with a goal or assist.

James Maddison – 8 – He’s assimilated well into Spurs’ midfield and when afforded space there are few better than Maddison whose range of passing is exemplary.

Dejan Kulusevski – 6.5 – His brilliant run led to Spurs’ opener but this was far from a vintage Kulusevski performance though it didn’t need to be given the haphazard nature of the opposition.

Richarlison – 4 – Too careless in possession as he was often isolated.

Substitutes:

Ben Davies (for Richarlison 70) – 6.5 – Came on and scored, what more could you ask from your full-back?

Ivan Perisic (for Udogie 70) – 6 – Provided the assist for Davies.

Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (for Sarr 75) – N/A – A late sub.

Emerson Royal (for Kulusevski 88) – N/A – A late sub.

Manor Solomon (for Porro 88) – N/A – A late sub.


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Man Utd

André Onana – 6.5 – Brings so much to Man Utd’s game as their ball-playing goalkeeper. If not for some crucial saves then it would have been another humiliating away loss for Ten Hag’s side.

Luke Shaw – 5 – His one-on-one defending was more impressive than his off-the-ball defending. Stepped out a couple of times when he hasn’t been able to win the ball and exposed the space behind him.

Lisandro Martínez – 3.5 – Had a relatively quiet outing before the ball, unfortunately, deflected off him into Sarr’s path before embarrassingly putting the ball into his own net.

Raphaël Varane – 5.5 – United’s match-winner against Wolves couldn’t repeat his trick when presented with two early opportunities.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 4 – The first to enter Michael Oliver’s book after not retreating following a tussle with Son in front of the Tottenham dugout.

Casemiro – 5 – Came agonisingly close to equalising, but the bigger picture is concerning if you’re a United supporter.

“Ten Hag wants a number six who can play alongside Casemiro and at the moment the club can’t get players out to be able to fund that,” Gary Neville said on Sky Sports commentary.

“If they look at the first two weeks, they have to fund it or there will be big problems. What’s clear is that Ten Hag doesn’t want to revert back to McTominay. He has seen him for a year, and he has played alongside Casemiro, and he is doing everything but get him on.”

Alejandro Garnacho – 5.5 – Another who disappointed in red against Wolves but this was a far more encouraging performance. Inconsistency, though, is expected from the young Argentine forward.

Mason Mount – 4 – Tasked with bringing a semblance of balance to Man Utd’s midfield and making sure Casemiro didn’t get exposed as he did against Wolves last time out. He struggled to get into the game and ultimately ended up being a passenger.

Bruno Fernandes – 5 – Unbelievably missed a close-range header on the stroke of half-time. 

Antony – 5 – A more aggressive performance from the Brazilian forward. Eventually booked following a trip on Udogie in midfield. Unlucky to see an effort hit the post.

Marcus Rashford – 4 – Somewhat better showing from Monday but he should have got on the scoresheet before 30 minutes had been played.

Substitutes:

Diogo Dalot (for Garnacho 66) – 4 – Hardly touched the ball after coming on.

Jadon Sancho (for Wan-Bissaka 66) – 4 – Came on with United on the back foot and never really got involved.

Christian Eriksen (for Antony 66) – 4 – Couldn’t bring anything resembling control to United’s midfield.

Anthony Martial (for Rashford 85) – N/A – A late sub.

Facundo Pellistri (for Mount 85) – N/A – A late sub.

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