Who was Man of the Match against Atletico?

Wednesday 16 March 2022 00:26

Manchester United's effort to overcome a stubborn Atletico Madrid side featured some spirited individual performances, as picked out by fans voting in our Man of the Match poll.

The Reds began the game with great intensity and had a couple of early chances, the most notable being Anthony Elanga’s close-range effort following brilliant play between Portuguese trio Diogo Dalot, Bruno Fernandes and Cristiano Ronaldo.

The young winger connected with Fernandes’s cross but was denied by Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak, who put his body on the line as the ball struck his face and went out for a corner.

But despite United’s pressure, the visitors always threatened on the counter-attack and looked to have initially scored through Joao Felix, only for it to be ruled out for offside.

Who was United's Man of the Match in the second leg against Atletico Madrid?poll

Who was United's Man of the Match in the second leg against Atletico Madrid?

And Diego Simeone’s side took a 1-0 lead in at the break, thanks to another counter attack which saw Renan Lodi head home at the back post.

The second half was a cagey affair, with many fouls and stoppages hindering either side from getting back into the flow that made the first half so appealing on the eye.

Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane had big chances for the Reds, but Sancho could not find the target and Varane was denied by another sublime Oblak save.

The visitors defended well, and despite United’s exertions and Ralf Rangnick’s attacking substitutions, we could not find a leveller.

In the end, a rejuvenated Fred took the largest share of the vote - 30 per cent - in our full-time poll, ahead of David De Gea and Ronaldo.

The Brazilian was at the heart of our well-crafted forward play in the first half, producing a handful of deft touches and driving runs as Ralf Rangnick’s side searched for an early opener.

The midfielder brought United fans to their feet when he skilfully moved the ball beyond Jose Gimenez in true samba fashion.

Fred encapsulated the pace and aggression that United started the match with.

De Gea was second on 17 per cent, and produced another convincing goalkeeping display, springing well to deny Rodrigo De Paul’s long-range effort when the sides were still level.

In third place was Ronaldo, who, like his team-mates, started the match with a great deal of urgency and energy, and persistently threatened the Atletico defence throughout.