United v Spurs: The main talking points
Manchester United beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 in the Premier League on Wednesday night, thanks to a Marcus Rashford brace.
As well as Marcus’s outstanding performance, there was plenty more for fans to be delighted about after the game, such as the return of Scott McTominay and the continuation of our impressive run against the league’s top sides.
Here are all the main points of interest from an excellent night under the floodlights at the Theatre of Dreams…
United’s first goal of the game was actually our quickest strike this season. Rashford’s sixth-minute bullet eclipsed our previous earliest opener, which he also netted, after eight minutes against Leicester City in September. The Reds began the second half even quicker, with our no.10 earning a penalty just two minutes after the interval and, after a lengthy delay, slotting it past Paulo Gazzaniga.
Wednesday’s game was a first, of course, with it being the maiden Manchester United match to be broadcast live on Amazon Prime Video. The online streaming service has secured the rights to 20 live Premier League matches this year and the first round of fixtures is taking place over Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of this week. The second of our two matches to be shown live on Amazon Prime this campaign will be the Boxing Day clash against Newcastle United.
Scott was forced to sit out the Reds’ last three games due to injury, but the midfielder was fit enough to start against Spurs. As usual, the Scotland international’s driving runs from the centre of the park caused Tottenham issues all night, while again he demonstrated his dogged work rate just after the hour mark, when Scott easily shrugged Harry Kane off the ball.
Rashford’s brace means he has now netted 12 goals in his last 13 games for club and country. The Reds no.10 was absolutely phenomenal on Wednesday night and, as well as his two strikes, he also rattled the crossbar during the early stages of the match. His trickery, direct running and tireless work-rate meant he caused Serge Aurier a headache all match and, despite playing at the top level for a decade, the right-back has probably faced few tougher opponents than the one he had to deal with at Old Trafford.
Solskjaer explains the starting XI v Spurs
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Ahead of the game, a lot was made in the media of Jose Mourinho’s much-anticipated return to Old Trafford, but, in truth, once the game got going under the lights at the Theatre of Dreams, few supporters inside the ground were thinking about the Portuguese coach. The Tottenham manager received a warm reception as he first made his way out of the tunnel ahead of the game, much as Ole predicted he would in his pre-match press conference. However, Mourinho did face the odd moment of discomfort during the game - not just when Rashford’s shot hit the back of the net - but in the first half when Daniel James accidentally clattered into the former United boss, which initially looked pretty painful for the 56-year-old.
OUR RECORD AGAINST THE TOP SIDES
Wednesday’s win ensured we continued our excellent string of recent results against sides at the top end of the table. The Reds have now beaten Chelsea, Leicester City and Tottenham at home, while picking up draws against Arsenal and Liverpool - we are still the only side in the division to take league points off the latter this term. It’s a record Ole will hope to continue when we face Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium this weekend.
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