19 passes completed in 79 minutes: Scott McTominay is not good enough for Manchester United

Scott McTominay ended last season bereft of form and the 2022/23 campaign has begun in the same manner. While he was not the only Manchester United player to perform poorly in the opening game defeat to Brighton, the Scot is one of the team’s biggest issues.

McTominay simply is not good enough to be a regular starter for Manchester United. Yet it seems once again, he is destined to play a pivotal role.

He lasted 79 minutes, and was fortunate to do so. During this time he managed to complete only 19 passes.

Fred by comparison managed to complete 32 passes in 53 minutes, while substitute Donny van de Beek completed 10 passes in 12 minutes. Goalkeeper David de Gea even made 21 passes.

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Photo by Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images

19 passes completed in 79 minutes

19 passes completed in 79 minutes is simply not a good enough statistic for a Manchester United central midfielder playing at home at Old Trafford.

It’s made worse by United managing 63 per cent possession, and United made a total of 445 successful passes.

McTominay therefore was responsible for just 4.2 per cent of United’s passes, a number you would expect from a late substitute rather than a starter.

The game simply passed McTominay by. United need a central midfielder to be somebody who can dictate games and influence the attack. McTominay does neither.

Defensively McTominay offered little either. He managed zero successful tackles and just one interception.

Roy Keane told Sky Sports after the game that United need to move on from McTominay and Fred. He said: “Not good enough [Fred and McTominay – they won’t get United back to the top, they are not up to it.”

Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Erik ten Hag does have alternatives, despite the lack of investment. It should be time for James Garner to get his long awaited opportunity, while it would also be preferable to see teenager Zidane Iqbal get a chance.

Iqbal showed in pre-season he is keen to get on the ball and pass it around. McTominay lacks the guile required for a player in his position.

He will have better games than this, its difficult to play worse, but it is pretty clear he is not the answer for United. Erik ten Hag is going to have to learn this the hard way.

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