Watford 1-2 Manchester United: Player ratings

by Leo Nieboer

David de Gea 7 – Made a wonderful save in the first half to keep the scores level but could do little about Andre Gray’s pearler of a strike. His stop in stoppage time was nothing short of breahtaking.

Antonio Valencia 5 – Defended diligently for the most part down the right hand side but Watford’s goal stemmed from the Ecuadorian drifting out of position. Lacked the same danger from crosses provided by Young.

Victor Lindelof 6 – Started the game positively, moving the ball through to midfield on several occasions, but his positioning still has to improve.

Chris Smalling 7 – Another powerful and accomplished performance from the Englishman: provided a big presence in the box and scored his fourth goal of 2018.

Ashley Young 6 – Made his presence felt throughout the game, supplying a number of pinpoint crosses including an assist for Romelu Lukaku. Faded going forward in the second period and could have been more disciplined at times.

Nemanja Matic 6 – Occasionally looked overwhelmed by the speed of the game in the second period but effectively did his job, circulating the ball well to ensure United kept position and making a series of important interceptions.

Marouane Fellaini 7 – Jose Mourinho picked the Belgian to combat Watford’s physicality and it worked well: always an outlet going forward, assisted Smalling’s goal, and served as a vital extra man in defence. Passing accuracy faded in the second period.

Paul Pogba 6.5 – By anyone else’s standards this was a top display, replete with accurate passes – long and short – throughout the game and fundamental to building attacks, but the Frenchman’s final product was once again lacking.

Jesse Lingard 6 – Performed superbly in the space between Lukaku’s goal and half time, laying on a wonderful ball for Pogba, but aside from that had scant impact going forward.

Alexis Sanchez 6 – Started the game superbly, finding teammates easily and playing with real thrust, only to become a bystander after half time.

Romelu Lukaku 6.5 – His link-up play can certainly improve but this was a true performance from the hear: held up the ball to bring United up the pitch, scored his fourth of the season, and ran like a warrior all game.


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