Manchester United v. Leicester post-match thoughts

Here’s my thoughts on the players involved in today’s game, with a numerical rating 1-10 (5 average, 10 is absolute domination).
Man Utd:
de Gea: 7 – de Gea as usual made some fantastic stops, however, he switched off for the Vardy goal that rebounded off his post with no United player nearby. He managed to kick start the offense and he bailed out the United midfielders poor clearances a few times. Nearly kept the clean sheet, despite Maddison thundering into the Premier League and was only stopped by a freak goal coming off the post and nodded home by Vardy.
Shaw: 8 – Shaw looked like the guy United signed a number of years ago. He managed to shake off his injury past and play very well. He contributed in all phases of play, including a few nice interceptions and played some lovely through balls, getting involved in the attack and even scoring a goal.
Bailly: 8 – The only knock I can really provide for Bailly was that he (and Lindelöf) switched off at the very end. He makes some magnificent tackles and break-ups of some dangerous looking runs. I think that the two centerbacks made a great statement today about their “shortfall” in defense, I imagine these two will be the starters so long as they can stay healthy.
Lindelöf: 7 – Very solid performance with Bailly at the back. He played his role well and broke up his fair share of promising Leicester breaks. Ultimately he come son just under Bailly based on the fact that Leicester forwards are going to see Bailly in their sleep.
Darmian: 7 – Despite his stated interest in leaving the club, he filled in well for Antonio Valencia. He looked good in possession and contributed some nice crosses for the side, some of his final balls fell a little short.
Andreas Pereira: 5 – I don’t really have anything negative on Pereira, he just didn’t really seem involved in the attack aside from a few passes. Nothing dreadful, not really anything gained though either.
Fred: 7 – Fred had a nice debut for the Red Devils, he kept possession well and had great passing statistics. He put in a good shift and about all he didn’t do was get his name on the scoresheet.
Pogba: 8 – Pogba showed glances of why United paid nearly $100M for him. He was able to deter Sanchez from the penalty kick, which given his terrible day in the office was probably a brilliant move, and converted it. He was very involved from the get-go and after getting challenged by Mourinho all last season to play some defense, he did enough to get some applause from Mourinho himself.
Mata: 5 – Mata would have some moments of brilliance followed by an exceptional poor cross or a bad giveaway. Honestly, I’m surprised that Mourinho kept him on the pitch to finish the game.
Rashford: 7 – Rashford seemed to be really up for this game. He made good, dangerous runs that unfortunately for him, we’re not rewarded. He doubled back to add some defensive presence. I think given better service this could have been a two goal day for Rashford.
Alexis Sanchez: 3 – At halftime the NBCSports announcer on my broadcast said they thought this was the worst he’s played for United. I think this is a fair assessment, he was poor in keeping the ball, he was late on balls to reward Rashford’s runs, turned over the ball in bad places. The only really “positive” I can take away from this performance is that given his work rate, it’s unlikely to happen again.
Substitutes:
Romelu Lukaku – No ranking, I’m not even sure that Lukaku made it fully into this game. There was a nice cross towards him but it was headed clear. Nothing particularly wrong though.
Scott McTominay – No ranking, McTominay didn’t have time to get into the game much.
Marouanne Fellani – No ranking, played the hulking centerfield enforcer for a tackle or two. Outside of that not really time to get involved.
Leicester City:
Kasper Schmeichel: 7 – Schmeichel did his job. He denied a number of chances and half chances, clearances were wayward sometimes. Made a good effort for the penalty kick but it’s not as if he had a chance to actually stop the Pogba who’s placement was perfect. No chance to affect Luke Shaw’s goal, he was defending the near post and Shaw sent it past to the far post.
Daniel Amartey: 5 – Amartey struggles mightily basically from the start. The right-back sticks out a chicken wing that is called a handball (rightly) for a penalty, which eventually leads to the first goal. After conceding 3′ into the game, I that Leicester were forced to adapt based on that. Commits a tactful foul on Sanchez to stop a fast break – think that stopping the fast break is about all I found positive in this game for him.
Wes Morgan: 7 – Leicester’s backs did a reasonably good job at providing cover. I’m torn about giving them credit for handling Sanchez, because I think he did almost as much to beat himself. No knock on Morgan’s night though, he was solid in defense and played alright. I’m not knocking the centerbacks for either goal, Amartey put the first on a platter and Shaw made the second with a near-miraculous recovery.
Harry McGuire: 6 – Similar Story to Morgan, however, I was a little disappointed with McGuire’s involvement in defending set pieces. I think Schmeichel tried to be more involved aerially than McGuire did; which is unfortunate, because aerial battles are one of McGuires better aspects.
Ben Chilwell: 7- Chilwell seemed to pair well with Maddison and played his defensive responsibilities well. Looking forward to seeing how the partnership develops between Chilwell, Maddison, and Gray.
Ndidi: 6 – Ndidi showed some flashes of what I expect to see for the rest of the season, but he never really impacted this game.
Silva: 5 – Silva seemed to fade in and out of the game, in the end I don’t think he’s done “awful” but I don’t think we played particularly well.
Ricardo: 5 – Ricard-who? Didn’t really get involved in this match aside from picking up a yellow card.
Keleche Iheanacho: 6 – Iheanacho and Maddison had some great connections for so early on. I think there’s still more to come from that pairing.
James Maddison: 8 – I think Maddison was exceptional in his debut for the foxes. He had a few shots that forced de Gea into saved and just generally looked like he was going to force something to happen in his debut. Building great rapport with Iheanacho and Gray. Think he builds off this performance, based on how they line up — he might provide a substantial challenge to Vardy for playing time.
Demarai Gray: 7 – Aside from Maddison, I think Gray was the best player on the field for Leicester. He was dangerous, combined well and made some good opportunities. He even got a few shots off, though the ended up being either blocked or off target.
Substitutes:
James Vardy: 7 – Vardy came in with a vengeance wanting to show his manager that he should be playing with Maddison. He bagged a goal on a well-placed header after United’s defense took a break in extra time.
Vicente Iborra: – No ranking, Iborra didn’t have time to get into the game much.
Racchid Ghezzal: – No ranking, Ghezzal didn’t have time to get into the game much.

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