MATCH RATINGS: Manchester United 0-0 Aston Villa Reserves (3-1 on pens)

by Sam Peoples

Sam Johnstone (7) Aside from some poor kicking, a fantastic performance from him. He dealt well with every cross that came his way, although usually opting to punch clear. Pulled of two magnificent saves towards the end to keep us in the game and was the hero of the penalty shoot out, saving three.

Michele Fornasier (6) Got forward well and saw a lot of the ball up the right flank. Defensively, he was faultless, coping well with everything that was thrown his way. But his attacking let him down. It was clear that he was a centre half being played out of position, as his passing and decision making in the final third were poor.

Michael Keane (8) Another outstanding performance from Micheal. He was rock solid at the heart of the defence, nothing got passed him all game and aside from one of two sloppy passes, his distribution was very good. Last night I saw a player that could very well have a career here at Old Trafford.

Scott Wootton (7) A very solid performance from Scott. He was as reliable as ever, and hustled and harried players well. I was somewhat disappointed with his distribution, he seemed often seemed keen on hitting a long ball up to lone striker Will Keane.

Zeki Fryers (7) In the opening stages of the match, he seemed a little nervous and gave away some really poor passes. But when he settled down, he continued his great run of form. He was always looking to carry the ball out of defence, often beating a man in the process. The only part of his game that disappoints me is his crossing, which he really needs to work on.

Larnell Cole (5) Definitely not one of his better performances. He really struggled to get the better of his man and at times was dispossessed very easily. He is usual crisp close control deserted him last night and he was often giving away sloppy passes. Not a good night for Larnell.

Ryan Tunnicliffe (8) (MOTM)* He was absolutely magnificent. He covered every blade of grass and never stopped closing people down. It was a real box to box masterclass. His crunching tackle on a Villa centre half, which he really had no   to make, really got the crowd buzzing. Top notch performance from Ryan.

Davide Petrucci (6) Not a lot to report on Davide to be honest. He really struggled to make an impression on this game and saw very little of the ball while he was on the pitch. We he did have the ball, he used brilliantly as usual, but his touches of the ball were few and far between. Subbed.

Tom Thorpe (6) It was one of his better games in central midfield. He closed down the opposition well and was snapping at heels. His passing was flawless, always opting for the simple pass. His immobility and off the ball movement really drag him down though. A good performance.

Jesse Lingard (6) Jesse saw a lot of the ball, but rarely did anything meaningful with it. His usual craft and guile just weren’t on the money last night. He had our best chance, catching a  sweet half volley, only to see the Villa keeper parry it away. Overall, I would have expected more from Jesse.

Will Keane (6) Playing as the lone striker he found it quite difficult. Whenever he got the he was surrounded by white shirts but more often than not retained possession. He wasn’t helped by our poor service and the fact that the the gap between our midfield and Will was simply far too big. He did well under difficult circumstances.


Marnick Vermijl (7) on for Michele Fornasier.

Robbie Brady (7) on for Tom Thorpe.

Josh King (7) on for Davide Petrucci.

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