Newcastle United 0-2 Manchester United: 5 tactics from Solskjaer that won the game
Manchester United travelled to St James' Park at the start of the new year for their first game of 2019. It was supposed to be the first real test for new boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who had won all of his first three games in charge and was looking to equal a 73-year-old record set by Sir Matt's Busby, of winning the first four games in charge of United.
Keeping in mind the busy schedule, Solskjaer made three changes to his team once more, drafting in club captain Antonio Valencia in at right back in place of Ashley Young, putting Jones in place of the suspended Bailly and replacing Lingard with Mata.
The rest of the team from the win at Bournemouth remained the same. Even though Newcastle were struggling in the Premier League, Rafa Benitez's side had the ability to upset Solskjaer's plans and the Norwegian was wary ahead of the game. The availability of Alexis Sanchez on the bench would have given him a lot of confidence.
Manchester United carried on where they had left off against Bournemouth but failed to find the back of the net in the first half. Solskjaer brought on Lukaku and Sanchez in the second half and the Belgian gave United the lead in the 64th minute. Rashford doubled the score in the 80th minute as United comfortably saw off the Newcastle pressure to earn 3 points.
Solskjaer continued his brilliant start as a Manchester United manager and will have hopes building at Old Trafford right now. It was these 5 brilliant tactics by the Norwegian that ultimately won United the game
#5 A back 4 instead of a back 5
After a fantastic start to his managerial career at United, Solskjaer could have been forgiven had he crowded up his defence in a bid to keep out Newcastle. In fact, United fans were used to seeing this under Mourinho, however, Solskjaer did not budge from his tactical preferences at all.
The game at Saint James' Park was supposed to be his first tough test in his new role at United, however, the Norwegian brushed aside any cause of concerns and fielded an extremely attacking team. He was aware of the physical presence of Rondon, yet put his trust on his two centerbacks to deal with him effectively.
United started the game well, but Newcastle had their moments in the first half. However, the pairing of Lindelof and Jones were on song to keep them at bay. Even though Jones was a little sloppy at times, Lindelof was magnificent on the night. It was Solskjaer's decision to start with a back 4 that allowed him to set his team in an attacking formation, which won them the game.