Scott McTominay was given the highest rating by French publication L’Équipe after impressing in Manchester United’s Champions League defeat to Barcelona.
The Red Devils lost 1-0 to the Spanish giants in the first leg of their quarter-final tie, courtesy of a Luke Shaw own-goal in the 12th minute.
No Man Utd player completed more take-ons (2) or won more aerial duels (3) vs. Barcelona than Scott McTominay.
OGS' settling presence in midfield. 🧖♂️ pic.twitter.com/aEgho2X1yb
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) April 10, 2019
How did McTominay fare against Barca? Five key things to know…
- McTominay started alongside Fred and Paul Pogba in a three-man central midfield.
- The Scotland international caused Barca a number of problems in the middle of the park.
- He disrupted their play, consistently closed down, and broke up their rhythm with the occasional foul.
- Barca underperformed by their standards but take a 1-0 aggregate lead to the Camp Nou for the second leg.
- After the match L’Équipe gave McTominay the highest rating (7) and Paul Pogba the lowest (3).
Barcelona were noticeably off pace, particularly Lionel Messi. The greatest footballer of all time, according to some, struggled to influence proceedings in his typical style. Nonetheless, his club take a slender lead and an all-important away goal to Catalonia for the second leg next week.
Ernesto Valverde’s side started the brighter of the two teams, but United slowly grew into the match and started to cause Barca one or two problems, despite not registering a single shot on target.
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However, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be encouraged by his side’s performance, notably that of McTominay, who did an exceptional job to hold the fort behind his attacking teammates and eliminate danger from Barca’s occasional attacking forays.
His stand-out showing garnered plenty of attention and admiring glances after the match, with French publication L’Équipe – known for its harsh player ratings – rewarding the young Scot with the top mark of any player on the pitch.
Fred also received a high mark, and many United fans feel their summer signing produced one of his best performances in a Red Devils shirt.
Elsewhere, Paul Pogba was given the lowest score. The French publication not holding back in their criticism of their World Cup hero, who received a 3/10 for his efforts in the middle of the park.
For Barca, Messi received the lowest rating with a 4/10. The diminutive maestro was unable to dictate play in his typically authoritative manner, although this was, in part, down to McTominay’s relentless press, and potentially lingering effects of the clattering Chris Smalling gave him early into the game.
How fans reacted to the ratings…
Some United fans were unhappy with the rating of Ashley Young – who received a 4/10 – with the England full-back often wasteful in possession and underwhelming with his delivery.
Sergio Busquets’ 6/10 rating was also met with strong criticism, with many believing the Spain international failed to influence the game in the same way that Fred did.
How Pogba gets a 3 and Ashley Young gets a 4 is beyond me.
Also, how is Busquets a 6? Really?
— John Shin (@MrJohnShin) April 10, 2019
Bit strange of them to take 3 points away from Scott McTominay and give them to Ashley Young.
— Tom Coast (@thcoast) April 10, 2019
Busquets same as Fred?? Pogba a 3? So funny 😂😂😂
— Lee Eaton (@lee_eaton10) April 11, 2019
Busquets and lenglet had terrible games.
— Uzair Gori (@uzzi_87) April 11, 2019
Pogba was underwhelming , 4 for Young is generous, Fred was excellent
— Ray Vincent (@RedVin8) April 11, 2019
Pogba 3. All tactics for him to wanna leave
— Khalifa M (@YMagashi) April 11, 2019
How the f young gets a 4 and pogba 3 😅?? Busquets 6???? Spot on for Mctominay.
— Zoldyck (@Scholes_88) April 10, 2019