8 Ups and 2 Downs of PSG 1-2 Man UnitedGriffochaz
That right there, was football. Manchester United have just beaten PSG in Paris in Ole’s best game as manager hands down. Take your Cardiff 5-1s, your City 2-0s and even your PSG 1-3s and throw them in the bin because that game yesterday was nothing short of a managerial masterclass from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
If Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp or even Mikel Arteta had a performance like that, then it would be painted on billboards up and down the land and maybe the media need to sit up and take note from Ole who seems to have found a rhythm now.
But, let’s not get carried away and pretend we’ve won the whole thing, at least not yet. Let’s look at all the ups and the downs of Manchester United’s masterclass in Paris.
DOWN – BOX TO BOX CALAMITY
Looking at the starting team, you would have thought Anthony Martial was going to run the show for the ‘Red Devils’ but unfortunately he didn’t and it’s not just because of the bullet header that went into his own net, and let’s face it, it’s refreshing to see a United player winning a header in our own box. That own goal is just one of those things, but he was just out of the game and I am a big fan of Tony, but I didn’t think he had a particular good performance, well compared to the rest of the team. Maybe a rest due to suspension is what Martial needs after only having a red card and an own goal to his name this season thus far.
DOWN – RASH DECISIONS
Yes, Dr. Marcus Rashford MBE scored the winning goal in extraordinary fashion but a lot of his play was off in the Parc de Princes. A can pinpoint a few times in the match where he was through on goal and either took too many touches or a heavy one that Keylor Navas claimed and let’s not forget his decision to pass to the linesman when he and Martial where 2 on 1 with the keeper. He came good in the end and had good spells but needs to clean up those rash passes and touches and then we are dreaming.
UP – A SPANISH GOD
David De Gea has been a regular in the ups column this season despite conceding 13 goals and failing to keep a single clean sheet, but that number could be way higher if it wasn’t for the Spaniard. Against PSG was probably his best performance for a long time in a United shirt and every shot PSG had he made it a comfortable save, just needs to start saving shots from our own players. In all seriousness, there was a time last season where I along with many fellow United fans watched through our fingers every time De Gea had the ball or faced a shot but he is quickly restoring that confidence back into the Manchester faithful.
UP – RING-A-RING A ROSES POCKET FULL OF NEYMAR
In the Ups and Downs for the Newcastle game, I said Aaron Wan Bissaka was back. Those words were a risk and could have gone one of two ways. One, he drops a diasterclass against PSG and let’s Neymar look like the player he was at Barcelona and Santos or two, fully pick up Neymar and shove him in his pocket and drop one of the best European displays of any right back in a long while. He chose the latter. Honestly, that AWB performance was just perfect. Pocketing two of the best players in world football in Mbappe and Neymar all while his personal life is in the spotlight is nothing short of legendary. A true 10/10 performance from The Spider.
UP – ONE HUNGRY HIPPO
Axel Tuanzebe doesn’t just hold the record for clearing a game of Hungry Hungry Hippos the fastest but also holds the accolade of shutting out PSG for a full 90 minutes after 10 months on the shelf. Looking at this match on paper, you would outline a young previously injured defender as a potential weakness, but he put in a masterclass today. Everything he did was just perfectly timed and was like a god at the back. If he can stay fit, and it’s a big if, then he can be the answer to our pace problems at the back.
UP – LUKE WHAT HE CAN DO AT CENTRE BACK
Luke Shaw’s days as a left back may be counting down fast after the very exciting purchase of Alex Telles but if you are a Luke Shaw lover then don’t fear because he might keep his starting xi spot, just in a different position. The Englishman looked so natural in his new defensive role and adding reas-SHAW-rance to the back was needed against a solid attacking side. There’s nothing else to say really because he had a similar game to Tuanzebe but it’s just nice to see Shaw doing well in the team after a few sticky months at left back.
UP – A TELLES-ING DEBUT
Ok, that pun didn’t work but the Alex Telles signing looks to be. After just an hour of football in his new shirt, he proved just why he is touted as one of the worlds best left backs. A long free kick suddenly turned into a chance, every corner was a big chance and any wide ball had the fans on the edge of their seat and that is all done to his creative flair. Defensively, it wasn’t a showstopper but we didn’t sign him for the blocks and tackles, we bought him for the assists and that is what we get with the Brazilian. Imagine Telles pinging balls onto a Slabhead like Maguire. Pure gold.
UP – YABBA DABBO DOMINATE
Talk about turning up for the occasion, Frederico Rodrigues de Paula Santos or known in the Manchester streets as Fred ran the show. I can’t think of a single thing Fred did wrong that game and it wasn’t even against players like Jonjo Shelvey and Joelinton. I don’t want to turn this onto Pogba but that’s the type of performance we thought £89m was getting us in 2016. It was by far the Brazilian’s best display in a Man United game and his best display dressed as a zebra. Has Fred just played himself into Ole’s first team plans?
UP – COMETH THE HOUR, COMETH THE MAN
Marcus Rashford has already earnt himself a down but that is far outweighed by this up. What we have been crying out for in recent months is for Rashford to be a sort of leader in the team and grabbing a late winner when we have been by far the better team counts as being a leader. Marcus is starting to hit form on the pitch and if he can stay injury free then the whole of Europe needs to watch out because an on-form Marcus Rashford is world class. Period.
UP – HE’S THERE AGAIN
If you boarded a bus with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer driving, get off immediately because he is sometimes at the wheel and other times not. However, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer should be praised massively following that win. Playing a back 5 to shut out PSG and then when they started to turn up, changed to a back four to regain control in the game. It was like Ole was a puppeteer and the game was his show, he just had control of it from the first whistle to the last. I have no doubts in saying that was his best managerial game ever and considering there were some key injuries, that’s not bad. All the haters have sat up and taken note that our Norwegian mastermind isn’t going down without a fight. Ole is in and he is at the wheel.
What a performance and what a result. What were your views on the game? Let us know by dropping them down below.
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