Reds overcome Brugge in Academy friendly
A Manchester United Under-19s side gained some invaluable European experience on Thursday afternoon, by playing out a tight and keenly contested friendly match against their Club Brugge counterparts.
Undeterred, United produced a professional performance and earned a 2-0 victory over the talented Belgians, thanks to second-half goals from Tahith Chong and James Garner.
The Reds began brightly and moved the ball around confidently, as D’Mani Mellor ran hard while leading the attack, and Chong unleashed a shot from close range that was blocked by a defender.
However, it was the hosts who arguably created the better first-half chances.
Jarno Vervaque had an early shot palmed over the bar and Arne Engels hit another long-range effort wide, before the same player brought out an excellent save from Matej Kovar moments later. The ball then dropped kindly to Wilkims Ochieng, whose shot flew wide under pressure from Chong.
Kovar was clearly in good form and our young goalkeeper produced another impressive moment towards the end of the first period, when making a one-handed save to deny Samuel Asoma.
Aidan Barlow, who recently returned from a loan spell in Norway, concluded an entertaining first half of action when the left-sided forward hit a shot off target when suddenly played through on goal.
The action continued to be engaging and Kovar made another top save to block a low shot from Rabbi Mwenda. That directly led to a United attack up the left wing and the deadlock was soon broken, as Mellor’s left-footed cross was calmly finished by Chong at the back post.
The Reds' victory was sealed when Garner drove from the halfway line, ploughing through the heart of Brugge's midfield and defence, before beating the keeper to register a glorious solo goal.
United: Kovar; Mengi, Garner, Bernard (Taylor), McGhee; Levitt (Mejbri), Gomes, Galbraith; Chong, Mellor (Shoretire), Barlow (Traore).
Reading this in our app? If not, you might miss some exclusive features not found on ManUtd.com. Download the Official App here.