FA Cup 2016/17: Blackburn Rovers 1-2 Manchester United, Player Ratings
Manchester United, after having made a number of changes to their visit to Ewood Park had to leave it until the 75th minute to earn a 2-1 win over Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup Round of 16 tie on Sunday.
The home side started the game very well and used that momentum to open the scoring after a well-worked move. However, it took Manchester United only 10 minutes to respond to that and level things up. Blackburn, who were excellent throughout the first half, were not able to keep up that intensity in the second half as United kept much of the ball.
As a last throw of the dice, Jose Mourinho threw in his best goalscorer (Zlatan Ibrahimovic) and his best playmaker (Paul Pogba) to change United’s fortunes. Both of them were involved in the winner and helped the Red Devils reach the quarter-finals of the competition.
Blackburn Rovers (4-4-2)
Jason Steele (Goalkeeper): 6/10
Steele only had one save to make from a powerful Ander Herrera strike. However, he did have a few good moments as he latched on to crosses. He could have probably done better with the first goal.
Jason Lowe: 6.5/10
Lowe helped out his attack along the right flank as he sent in a few crosses. He also played a few crossfield passes to switch play cleverly on certain occasions. Defensively, he did fairly well against Martial first and later on Rashford.
Gordon Greer: 6/10
Greer did not have an easy outing as he had to deal with the pace of Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial. For the second goal, he was unaware of Zlatan Ibrahimovic making a run behind him.
Darragh Lenihan: 6.5/10
Lenihan had a fairly decent game. Although he did not make many tackles, he was able to pass the ball to his midfielders and, at times, the forwards aiding Blackburn's attack. He could have done better for the first goal as he did not spot Rashford's run.
Derrick Williams: 6/10
With a lot of Manchester United's attacks coming from their right wing, Williams had to stay in his defensive third and did not offer much in attack for his side.
Liam Feeney: 7/10
Feeney was one of Blackburn's best players as he was a constant attacking threat through the right flank, sending in dangerous crosses on a regular basis.
Danny Guthrie: 6/10
Guthrie had a lot of defensive work to do with the opposition keeping much of the ball and was not able to contribute much in attack. He was overrun a few times in midfield.
Charlie Mulgrew: 7/10
Mulgrew did show a good range of passing from midfield. One of his passes picked out Conway perfectly, however, the winger fired it over.
Craig Conway: 7/10
Conway was energetic on the left wing for Blackburn throughout the game. He tracked back to defend as well as contributed to the attack. He had a couple of good chances to score that he failed to make much of.
Marvin Emnes: 7.5/10
Emnes was brilliant for Blackburn, easily their best player on the pitch. He closed down Michael Carrick many times in the first half and made life difficult for the United midfielder. He provided the assist for Graham's goal and could have had a couple of goals to his name if not for Sergio Romero's saves.
Danny Graham: 7.5/10
Graham gave Blackburn the lead in the first half with a well-taken finish after making a good run. After that, however, he was involved less in the game as United kept more of the ball.
Connor Mahoney: 6.5/10
Mahoney only came on during the 73rd minute, however, it was enough for the youngster to trouble the United defenders and create chances for Blackburn.
Anthony Stokes: 6/10
Stokes had a goal rightly ruled out for offside after a good spell of Blackburn attacking. He tried to add pace into the game after he replaced the goalscorer, Graham.
Willem Tomlinson: NA
Tomlinson only played for the last 9 minutes and did not have much of a chance to make any kind of impact.
Manchester United (4-2-3-1)
Sergio Romero: 7.5/10
Romero could not have done anything about the goal that Blackburn scored. But, the United custodian made some important saves, especially two really good ones in the dying moments of the match to deny Blackburn a chance of a replay.
Ashley Young: 7/10
Young was involved in a lot of United attacks as well did a fairly good job as right-back. He could have done better with some of his crosses and decision making in the attacking third.
Chris Smalling: 7/10
Smalling had a solid game at the back except for the goal conceded as he won 8 aerial battles. He could have done better to track Graham's run but it was too late before he could do anything to stop the striker from scoring.
Marcus Rojo: 6/10
Rojo had a decent game after having been out of action for a while. He did much of the passing from the defence to midfield.
Matteo Darmian: 6.5/10
Darmian had his work cut out at left-back with Feeney and Lowe sending in crosses and long balls from the Blackburn right flank. He was not able to deliver much in the final third.
Michael Carrick: 6.5/10
Carrick sat deep and sprayed balls around to his forward players. He was pressed and put under pressure for much of the first half. He did send some good passes that helped create some chances for United.
Ander Herrera: 7/10
Herrera played with much more attacking freedom as Carrick had the deeper midfield role. He took a few shots and was probably unlucky not to have scored a goal. He could have done better with a few of his set-piece deliveries.
Jesse Lingard: 6/10
Lingard did not have a particularly good game as his decision-making in the final third was below par. He also got himself a yellow card to stop a Blackburn counter-attack which was probably necessary.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan: 8/10
Mkhitaryan sent in one of the through balls of the season as his outside-of-the-boot pass perfectly found a sprinting Rashford to help United score the equaliser. He had a few good chances to score himself but poor decision making let him down. He also made a few tackles to help his side defend counter-attacks.
Anthony Martial: 6/10
Martial had a quieter game than he has had in the recent past. He made a few threatening runs into the attacking third but could not make much out of them.
Marcus Rashford: 7.5/10
Rashford started the game up front and although he took a while to get acclimatised, he did that well as he finished well to help the Manchester United equalise. He used his pace a few times to run past the defenders but could have done with his decision making at times.
Paul Pogba: 7/10
Pogba came on as a sub after the hour mark and sent in a fabulous ball to find Ibrahimovic who scored the second goal for United.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic: 7.5/10
Ibrahimovic cannot seem to stop scoring and proved to be the matchwinner again as he made an excellent run behind the Blackburn defence and scored the winning goal.
Juan Mata: NA
Mata came on in the 89th minute and had very less time to make any impact.