Player of the Month: Who should win?
Three players have been nominated for Manchester United’s first Player of the Month award of the 2020/21 season, which covers the whole of September.
United lost our first game of the campaign at home to Crystal Palace, but have responded well with three consecutive away wins, scoring nine goals and conceding just twice.
We opened our Premier League account last weekend with a dramatic 3-2 win over Brighton & Hove Albion and, either side of that success, there were a pair of Carabao Cup wins, against Luton Town and Brighton, respectively, that sealed our place in tonight’s (Thursday) quarter-final draw.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has opted to rotate between competitions, so we’ve seen many players grab minutes and impress. Eric Bailly, David De Gea, Bruno Fernandes, Dean Henderson and Nemanja Matic were all represented during our nominations process, but the names that emerged as our leading contenders were Juan Mata, Marcus Rashford and Donny van de Beek.
Read on to find out why they deserve your votes - then have your say in our Official App, which is free to download...
It’s been a special month for the Spanish ‘legend’ – as van de Beek referred to him on Wednesday – who started two games and was named Man of the Match after our 3-0 win over Brighton in the Carabao Cup. He scored our opening goal in the win over Luton in the previous round too: coolly slotting home from the penalty spot after Brandon Williams had been fouled. That happily marked his 200th start for the club in all competitions and he also won Carabao's star-man accolade on the night. There was another milestone in the Brighton win this week, too. Not content with setting up Scott McTominay’s header with a wicked in-swinging free-kick, Juan then linked superbly with van de Beek before sliding home our second – and his 50th as a United player. Throughout, the 32-year-old’s determination, intelligence and composure on the ball have been an example to those around him.
After a quiet end to last season, Marcus would have been determined to hit the ground running this term, and he’s managed to do just that. He netted his first for the campaign by finishing off a superb team move at Luton, after coming off the bench to great effect. Then he fired home the club’s historic 10,000th goal in all competitions, during the Premier League victory against Brighton, after a sensational solo run in which he dumped Seagulls defenders on their backsides with glorious ease. The England international came on again in the Carabao Cup in midweek, operating centrally, to help the Reds ease through.
Rashford scores our 10,000th goal in history
Marcus Rashford’s amazing solo goal was the 10,000th in our proud history, so it’s well worth another watch…
DONNY VAN DE BEEK
Our new Dutch signing is still waiting for his first Premier League start, but he’s already making it very hard for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to leave him out. He scored on his debut for the club during the defeat to Palace with a precise finish, after coming on as a substitute, and was then named our Man of the Match in the win at Luton. In our next game, at Brighton in the Premier League, he only came on in the 91st minute, but still managed to make a big impact by forcing the corner which led to our 100th-minute winner. Back in the starting line-up for the Carabao Cup game against the same opposition, he dovetailed beautifully with Mata for our second goal, and looked bright, bubbly and threatening throughout. A very accomplished first few weeks for the former Ajax midfielder.
The Player of the Month poll is now open in our Official App, which is free to download.
Be quick to cast your vote, as the poll is set to close at 12:00 BST on Saturday afternoon, when the winner will be announced.
The new season is here. Our 2020/21 home, away and third kits are available now from United Direct.