Manchester United required a flurry of late goals to beat Newcastle United but in the end it was a comfortable 4-1 victory.
Three players stood out for the Reds.
Fernandes has a remarkable ability to play at nothing better than an average level for the majority of the game but still win it for United.
The Portuguese midfielder was fine throughout but came into his own in the final 15 minutes as he scored United’s second and played a part in the third and fourth goals.
He had more touches than anyone else on the pitch, completed 23 passes in the final third and created six chances.
That’s what United want from their best player and that’s what they got.
He also won eight duels, made five recoveries, four tackles and three interceptions.
An all-round performance from Fernandes and it came to life in the closing stages.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer chose Rashford as his main striker for Saturday evening’s game. Martial was suspended and Greenwood wasn’t in the matchday squad.
For a long time, it looked as if Rashford wouldn’t deliver. He had three good shots kept out by an impressive Karl Darlow.
Eventually, though, his persistance paid off as he netted United’s fourth in injury time. It was a good run and a smart finish.
More important, though, was his pass for Bruno Fernandes to score United’s second. Rashford can miss as many chances as he likes in the game as a whole as long as he comes up with the key contributions before the end. He did. He made two assists and scored a goal. That’s a great display.
Mata was United’s main man in the first half. He completed 94% of his passes (59 out of 63) despite playing high up the pitch and constantly looking to play the final ball before a chance.
28 of those completed passes were forward. Mata was the key cog in United’s attacks.
His influence waned in the second half but since United were trailing, his importance cannot be underestimated in grabbing a control of the game for the Reds.