10-man Manchester United side hang on to a 2-1 advantage at home as they beat West Ham yesterday evening. Goals from Robin van Persie and captain Wayne Rooney ensured all three points for Louis van Gaal’s side at Old Trafford.Here are the 5 key talking points from the clash:
#1 Paddy Mcnair and Luke Shaw show promise
Every time the ball was sent into the United box, Old Trafford held its breath in uncertainty. The Red Devil’s defensive situation has become desperate, with 3 of the first choice centre backs being out injured. Rafael and Rojo were the oldest defenders for United, both 24 years old.
While United did look shaky at times, some encouragement can be taken from the performances of youngsters Luke Shaw and Paddy Mcnair.
A senior debut for Mcnair was greeted with positivity and concern, but the 19 year old performed admirably.
A good game for the youngster, however the highlight of his performance was an incredible defensive header towards the end of the game, where he was forced to adjust his body to head away a dangerous cross.
Mcnair has shades of Rio about him, being very comfortable on the ball. There were times where he would carry the ball from the defensive third all the way to midfield searching for options. Something, which Van Gaal was craving: a ball playing center half.
Luke Shaw also performed well, but this was less of a surprise as his quality was evident at Southampton. His smart passing was there for everyone to see, rarely giving the ball away. Also his one-on-one ability was evident as he rarely lost his balance or jumped early into a tackle. West ham found it difficult down that left hand side.