Manchester United’s young side surrendered a one goal lead to lose 2-1 to Astana in Kazakhstan.

United took the lead through captain on the night Jesse Lingard and went into half-time looking comfortable and dominating possession.

But after Tahith Chong missed a sitter in the second half, the hosts went down the other end to equalise.

Debutant Di’Shon Bernard was unlucky to inadvertently deflect the ball off his chest past Lee Grant.

Angel Gomes nearly equalised with a stunning free-kick and Mason Greenwood was also denied, but the hosts held on for a famous victory.

Here are the players who took their chance to impress.

Ethan Laird

(Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

Making his senior debut for the Red Devils, Laird didn’t look overawed, he continued where he left off for the under-23s with a number of powerful runs down the right side.

His pace and power was worrying Astana and every time he got the ball in an attacking area, the oppositions left-back backed off.

Off the back of one of his trademark lung-busting runs, Laird showed great energy and endurance to set off on another, but this time jinked inside and set up Lingard on the edge of the box, but the captains shot went over the bar.

The 18-year-old was solid defensively and his performance should warrant further opportunities to get valuable senior game time against Colchester United and AZ Alkmaar.

Dylan Levitt

(Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

Playing alongside his good mate James Garner, Levitt looked comfortable on his debut.

The Welshman was composed in possession and was always looking forward with penetrative passes, which broke the Astana lines.

He was constantly demanding the ball and wanting to inject urgency into United’s play.


Levitt has great vision and a wonderful footballing brain and that was showcased on his debut for the senior side.

Him and Garner dictated the tempo of the match and Solskjaer must have been impressed with the pairs performances.

There will be further chances for Levitt and Garner to make themselves regular starters in the United first team.

James Garner

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Despite not yet making a Premier League start, Garner found himself in the position of being one of the senior players in the United starting line-up.

Garner relished being reunited with his good pal Levitt, and the midfield duo carried on where they left off when dominating Premier League 2 teams for Neil Wood’s under-23 side earlier this season.

Garner was a bundle of energy and moved the ball with intent, there were times in the first half where Astana simply couldn’t get the ball off Levitt and Garner.

Whenever United lost possession, Garner was quick to get back into position and hassle and harry the hosts every time they got on the ball.

If McTominay is still injured for the Aston Villa clash, Garner could be given his first start.

Jesse Lingard

(Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

After making a positive impression from the bench against Sheffield United, Lingard was named Manchester United captain for the first time.

He looked sharp from the very first whistle and was eager to link-up with Greenwood with quick interplay.

His first goal since January will do wonders for his confidence, and he will be targeting a recall in United’s starting line-up against Villa in the number 10 role.

The defeat will be difficult to take for United’s young academy graduates and it will be up to Lingard to show his experience and leadership qualities to lift their spirits.

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