Player Ratings: Manchester United 2-0 Swansea – Januzaj reigns supreme

by Tom Parker

David de Gea 6 – A quiet game for Dave who barely had a save to make as Swansea struggled to carve out any meaningful openings. Dealt with everything that came his way with ease.

Rafael 7 – Rarely troubled in defence where he did well against the tricky Wayne Routledge and managed to create some decent chances down the right flank. Produced a clever cutback in the first half for Welbeck who couldn’t finish and a barnstorming run put it on a plate for Kagawa late on but he missed.

Chris Smalling 6 – Mopped up well in his preferred position of centre-back and had a fairly trouble-free game after a week to forget off the pitch. Solid but should have added to United’s tally when he blazed over from pointblank range in the 65th minute.

Nemanja Vidic 7 – United’s skipper would have relished the physical test up against Wilfried Bony and looked near his best against the big Ivorian, marshalling him well. Should have put United ahead in the first half with a header.

Patrice Evra 5 – Had a quiet first half but left himself too exposed at the back and Swansea’s attacks came through his mistakes. Did link well with Adnan Januzaj.

Antonio Valencia 6 – Saw plenty of the ball in the first period but lacked quality in his final ball. Valencia was on hand to slot home United’s opener but was far from his best.

Michael Carrick 6 – Calm and composed in the engine room, Carrick read the game well in the centre alongside Fletcher and although him and his midfield partner were guilty of being too static at times, United’s metronome was smart in possession and started attacks effectively.

Darren Fletcher 7 – Kept it simple in the centre and was solid if unspectacular as he continues his recovery from illness. The Scotsman might have scored in the first half but shot wide. However, he did show his skill at retaining possession.

Adnan Januzaj 8 – Crashed a curling free-kick off the bar early doors and while it didn’t entirely work out when Januzaj was deployed behind Welbeck, the 18-year-old was little short of sensational from the left-hand side, where he linked adeptly with Evra and caused all sorts of problems.

Shinji Kagawa 7 – Struggled to get involved once more as a makeshift winger but had a much greater say in the game as a No. 10. Demonstrated his precision in and around the box but really should have scored when Rafael set him free late on.

Danny Welbeck 7 – Worked hard and ran the channels well. Notched his sixth goal in six games to give United a two goal cushion. Squandered a great chance from a Rafael cut back in the first half but continues to emerge as a key player and show a predators instinct in front of goal.

Substitutes

Alex Buttner 5 – Tried to get forward and support Valencia but showed his porous defensive nature and suspect positioning as usual.

Javier Hernandez n/a – Brought on too late to have any real impact on the game.

Image: Twitter/squawka

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