Manchester United make for uncomfortable viewing in recent weeks but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side deservedly moved back into the Premier League’s top two with a 1-0 win against West Ham.

The Reds looked tired on Sunday but could have won more comfortably had it not been for the good performance of West Ham goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski and the post at either end.

Harry Maguire thrives in United defence

Maguire particularly impressed in blocking low crosses. Time after time, the England centre-back hooked away dangerous crosses, many of them low. His aerial quality, of course, impressed too. Against the threat of Soucek and Antonio, Maguire constantly saw off the threat. This was a game built for him, in a way, which played to his strengths.

LEICESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer manager of Manchester United with Harry Maguire after the Premier League match between Leicester City and Manchester United at The King Power Stadium on December 26, 2020 in Leicester, United Kingdom. The match will be played without fans, behind closed doors as a Covid-19 precaution.
(Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

Maguire contributed more than 15 blocks, clearances, interceptions and aerial wins without giving away a foul. West Ham didn’t have a single shot on target. That’s a clean defensive display.

 

Luke Shaw

Luke Shaw continues to be one of United’s main creative forces, creating two chances while he worked hard with Maguire to deny the threat of Coufal down the right-wing.

Mason Greenwood

Two shots coming off the post, one of which was pushed onto there well by Fabianski, was a sign of an unlucky afternoon for Mason Greenwood. The 19-year-old moved across the front line and impressed in all positions. His dribbling, taking on players one-on-one, was typically exciting if not always perfectly effective.

The two shots he dug out were good; only a matter of inches denied him a brace. Greenwood will find goalscoring form again soon.

For now, his general performances are good enough to give him credit and have faith he’ll hit the back of the net soon.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 14: Mason Greenwood of Manchester United shows his disappointment during the Premier League match between Manchester United and West Ham United at Old Trafford on March 14, 2021 in Manchester, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors.
(Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)
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