Five things we learned as Manchester United beat Burnley 2-0
Goals from Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford gave Manchester United a much needed win over Burnley.
The impressive 2-0 victory for now moves us up into fifth place in the table, one point behind Chelsea who travel to Arsenal on Sunday.
Here is a look at five things we learned from the victory…
Won the midfield battle
Even with Paul Pogba a surprise absentee, United’s midfield had enough to get the better of Burnley.
United dominated possession and asked the right questions in attack. At the half, United had more than 70 per cent of the ball and more than 60 per cent by the end.
It was a battle to break the home side down, but Fred and Nemanja Matic worked well to give the attackers a platform.
Anthony Martial’s opening goal was only a matter of time before Rashford wrapped it up in the final minute.
Fred’s importance to the side grows
A Manchester United midfield at the start of the season without both Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay would have caused serious worry.
So long as Fred is in the side, United have a level of assurance about the standard of play in midfield.
This was unthinkable at the start of the season, when the Brazilian was still an enigma.
Now he has become United’s key man in midfield. That’s terrific progress.
Williams deserves more chances
Brandon Williams has not had enough game time this month since Luke Shaw returned from injury.
The young left-back was back in the side against Burnley and he was a real threat going forward.
A first half cross from Williams nearly led to United’s opener, with Phil Bardsley clearing an effort from Anthony Martial off the line.
He is United’s most exciting left-back and deserves more opportunities. A very interesting decision against Arsenal awaits in the next game.
Pereira to Martial combination hits
Back in pre-season Andreas Pereira played a defence splitting ball to Anthony Martial to score against Tottenham.
It was a promising sign from both players, and that link up was finally replicated at Turf Moor. Perhaps we might see a bit more of this.
Pereira is growing in confidence in an attacking midfield role and this was a positive sign, his third assist of the season.
Martial’s goal was clinical and he is now up to 10 goals for the season. It is a great milestone to hit by the end of 2019, especially considering he missed several weeks with injury.
De Gea makes amends and clean sheet finally
David de Gea’s error against Watford was a sickener and cost us the game last week.
He made amends here with an outstanding diving save from ex-Red Phil Bardsley in the second half.
United had been on a run of 14 league games without a clean sheet and this has finally come to an end.
It is a very unwanted record off our hands heading into a crucial month, and this was just our third league away win of the season.
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