Manchester United claimed a 4-1 victory over Newcastle United on Saturday evening, thanks to three late strikes which put the gloss on a difficult 90 minutes for the Premier League giants.
The Magpies took the lead in comical style after only two minutes, when Emil Krafth’s seemingly harmless cross took a wicked deflection off Luke Shaw’s leg, diverting the ball past a stricken David de Gea.
Bruno Fernandes thought he had equalised with a smart finish from the edge of the box, but his effort was ruled out for an offside infringement. The Red Devils did pull level on 23 minutes though, when captain Harry Maguire rose highest to meet a corner and flick a wonderful header into the net.
The Red Devils then had a great chance to take the lead, after Marcus Rashford was fouled in the box by Jamal Lewis, but Fernandes missed his first ever spot-kick for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.
The Portuguese star had his revenge on 85 minutes though, when he began and rounded off a great Man Utd team move, stroking the ball past Karl Darlow to break Newcastle hearts. Full-back Wan-Bissaka then clinched the result with a superb finish, and Rashford added a fourth to send the visitors home with all three points.
Let’s have a look at the ratings from a dramatic evening at St James’ Park.
Karl Darlow (GK) – 6/10 – On his toes to divert Wan-Bissaka’s cross away from goal. Flapped at several corners and looked far from comfortable. BUT SAVED A BRUNO FERNANDES PENALTY!! Didn’t know that was even possible. Respect. Could do little with the late goals, while carrying an injury too.
Emil Krafth (RB) – 5/10 – Supplied the cross for Newcastle’s early strike. Slice of fortune? Definitely. Dealt with James’ pace well and got forward when possible. Collapsed at the end.
Federico Fernandez (CB) – 5/10 – Suffered slightly more than his partner at the back, and crumbled as the game got away from the Magpies.
Jamal Lascelles (CB) – 5/10 – Missed a first-half interception which could have proven costly. Found Rashford a handful and was eventually shown up the Englishman.
Jamal Lewis (LB) – 5/10 – Pitted against the intelligent Mata, and was caught out by the Spaniard’s quick-thinking on a few occasions. Gifted Man Utd a penalty with a stray leg on Rashford’s shin. Not pretty.
Jeff Hendrick (RM) – 6/10 – Tucked inside to play a more central role, and battled alongside his fellow midfielders against the equally combative Red Devils.
Jonjo Shelvey (CM) – 6/10 – Showed some adventure in breaking lines and carrying the ball towards the opponents’ goal.
Isaac Hayden (CM) – 6/10 – Got stuck in and marshalled the dangerous Fernandes. Substituted with an injury early in the second half.
Allan Saint-Maximin (LM) – 8/10 – I love this man. Destroyed the Man Utd defence time and time again, drawing fouls and sucking clusters of players into his path. Produced some show-stopping skills and tricks. A genuine shame there was no one in the stadium to enjoy his performance.
Callum Wilson (ST) – 6/10 – Struggled to get his foot on the ball in the first half. Touch often evaded him. Probably still wondering how De Gea clawed away his toe poke from two yards out.
Joelinton (ST) – 5/10 – Deployed in more of a wide role on the right-hand side, and was utterly anonymous. Not much else to say, really.
Fabian Schar (CM) – 7/10
Ryan Fraser (LM) – 6/10
Miguel Almiron (RM) – N/A
David De Gea (GK) – 8/10 – Caught off guard by the comedy own goal. MASSIVE save to deny Wilson from point-blank range on the line. Brilliant stop, with the ball almost past him. Game changing.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (RB) – 7/10 – Tasked with containing Saint-Maximin, and had a proper ding-dong. Won some tackles, lost some, but never gave up. Scored a goal, which doesn’t happen often – or ever.
Harry Maguire (CB) – 8/10 – Looked much, much better than his previous outings. Confident in possession, striding out and joining the midfield. Crashed home the equaliser with a vintage header.
Victor Lindelof (CB) – 7/10 – Got back to dig his side out of a hole with a nice block when Wilson was clean through on goal. Struggled with Saint-Maximin. Not the only one, though.
Luke Shaw (LB) – 7/10 – In need of a good performance with newly-signed Alex Telles breathing down his neck. Scored a hilarious own goal inside two minutes. Recovered to look pretty decent after that.
Scott McTominay (CM) – 6/10 – Didn’t do a great deal in defence or attack for the Red Devils, but provided a sturdy presence in the centre of the pitch.
Fred (CM) – 7/10 – Charged about and tried to keep the game moving. Had a crack at goal in the second half which wasn’t too far away.
Bruno Fernandes (CM) – 8/10 – Buried a lovely curler into the top corner, but was overturned by an offside flag. Continued to link the play and try to make things happen in the final third. Missed a penalty. I repeat. He did not score a penalty. Made amends with a brilliant finish to gain the lead.
Juan Mata (RW) – 8/10 – Denied an assist by the offside flag, but got his revenge with a well-flighted corner kick. Offered something a little different to the usual blood and thunder with some cute guile. A nice player.
Marcus Rashford (ST) – 9/10 – Always looked threatening when charging towards the Newcastle defence. Stretched the backline and created some decent chances for himself. Won the penalty which was ultimately squandered, but got the double assist and a goal in the final ten minutes. Class.
Dan James (LW) – 6/10 – Very lucky to escape with a yellow card for an assault on Saint-Maximin. Showed plenty of heart – maybe too much. Lacked end product.
Paul Pogba (CM) – 7/10
Donny Van de Beek (CM) – 7/10
Nemanja Matic (CM) – N/A