Talking points: Istanbul Basaksehir 2 United 1
Manchester United suffered a disappointing 2-1 loss to Istanbul Basaksehir on Wednesday night.
Former Chelsea man Demba Ba and Edin Visca scored for the hosts in the first half, while Anthony Martial grabbed our sole effort of the encounter.
On a frustrating night for Ole’s men, here are some of the major points of discussion from the match….
Battle in Istanbul Gallery
Check out our selection of shots from the Reds' Group H tie in Turkey.
DEANO’S EUROPEAN DEBUT
Solskjaer selected Dean Henderson for his third senior United start on Wednesday and his first in a European competition. While it wasn’t the ideal start for the England international, it demonstrates Dean’s development in recent years that Ole felt confident selecting him to feature at the highest level of club football.
The 23-year-old did also pull off a smart save to deny Danijel Aleksic just after the half-hour mark.
DONNY SHOWS HIS VERSATILITY
It seems a long time since the footballing headlines were dominated by how Donny hadn’t started for the Reds. Since then, the boss has selected the Dutchman from the off in three consecutive matches, including at the Basaksehir Fatih Terim Stadium. In the prior two matches, Donny started at the top of a midfield diamond and regularly pushed forward to offer support to our two strikers. However, in Turkey, van de Beek started in a two-man centre-midfield partnership and, while Nemanja Matic was the deeper of the pair, our summer signing played more of a box-to-box role. Our no.34 was one of our strongest performers in the first half and was always eager and willing to get himself on the ball, before he was replaced after an hour.
On a frustrating night, Anthony did offer the best moment for the Reds in Istanbul. The striker nodded in Luke Shaw’s excellent cross just before the break to half the arrears, but it didn’t prove to be enough against the Turkish champions. In netting against Basaksehir, Martial actually scored in consecutive Champions League games for the first time in his career, following his penalty conversion against RB Leipzig last week.
Images of Istanbul Gallery
Looking for some culture before kick-off? Our photographer Ash Donelon has got you covered...
It’s five years since Rafael left United to move to Lyon. Since then, of course, the full-back has joined Basaksehir. Rafa - a firm fans’ favourite at Old Trafford - lined up against the Reds for the first time in his career on Wednesday night.
The South American put in a solid performance for the hosts and there was no room for sentiment from the Brazilian as he put in several crunching tackles and fought for every ball. No doubt, the 30-year-old will be looking forward to the reverse fixture in three weeks' time.
HOW THE TABLE STANDS
Despite a poor result in Turkey, the Reds do remain top of Group H after gaining six points from three games. Even with RB Leipzig and Paris Saint-Germain set to lock horns in Germany later on Wednesday night, United will still remain top given our superior head-to-head record.
Leipzig or PSG would move level on points with United with a win, given they had three points apiece prior to matchday three, while Basaksehir are now also on three points.