Manchester United 0-2 PSG: 5 Talking Points from Solskjaer's first defeat as United Manager
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's first European Night at Old Trafford as a manager promised to be a huge occasion. French Champions Paris Saint Germain travelled to Manchester for the first leg of the round of sixteen in the UEFA Champions League.
It would be Solskjaer's toughest test of his managerial career so far, however, the fact that the Norwegian also had a FA Cup tie against Chelsea on Monday night to think about made team selection quite interesting.
As expected, Solskjaer made quite a few changes to the team that won over Fulham in the midweek. De Gea continued in goal, while Young, Lindelof and Bailly joined Luke Shaw in the back four.
The midfield three of Herrera, Matic and Pogba remained the same, while up ahead, Lingard and Rashford were reinstated alongside the in-form Anthony Martial.
Both teams started well, with United matching PSG all around the park in the initial stages. However, the French Champions soon gained control of the game and started pegging United back. The first half ended 0-0, but PSG looked the stronger team.
At the start of the second half, United tried to press with renewed vigour, but Kimpembe scored for PSG in the 53rd minute to pile the pressure on the home team. In the 60th minute, Mbappe doubled the lead, causing United further misery.
The game ended 2-0 in favour of the away side, but Pogba received his marching orders in the dying minutes of the game, after picking up his second yellow card.
As such, Solskjaer's United were finally defeated, and go into the tie with a 0-2 deficit. PSG have 2 away goals, which makes it tougher for United, who will be missing Pogba in Paris. It was a dismal European night at Old Trafford and here are the five talking points from the game.
#5 PSG dealt with United’s attackers well
Ever since Solskjaer took over, the front three has been magnificent for United. Their movement, speed and their tactical play have blown the opposition away in the Premier League as well as the FA Cup.
The UEFA Champions League brought with it a new challenge for the Norwegian, who went with his favoured front three of Martial, Lingard and Rashford.
PSG, however, had done their homework and Tuchel set up a three-man midfield to counter the United front three. Also, every time United went on the attack, Marquinhos dropped deep to help his defence out.
The French Champions stayed compact at the back and gave Lingard and Martial very little room in the wide areas. As a result, Rashford was often isolated and the three of them failed to gel on the night.
When Lingard picked up a knock at the end of the first half, Solskjaer sent on Alexis Sanchez. Mata started in place of Martial in the second half, after the Frenchman had picked up an injury too.
However, neither substitutes made an impact. Lukaku came on in place of Rashford for the last 10 minutes, but was ineffective too. PSG had an answer to everything United threw at them and it helped them win the game.