Old Trafford was the place where Man United got a visit from Villarreal in the Champions League. We have tonight’s player ratings.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is in deep trouble after Man United’s latest Champions League against Villarreal at Old Trafford. Even though he’s improved over the last few years, he hasn’t been up to standard with the club’s recent upgrade. Arrivals of players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane, or Jadon Sancho only evidence his lack of quality as a manager. Today, he again ordered his players to offer a defensive performance. Perhaps it was last season’s Europa League final defeat that keeps haunting him.
But this Villarreal side was superior to Manchester United despite the Red Devils’ star-studded lineup. Cristiano Ronaldo is lost as a lone striker if no balls come to find him. Villarreal played a fantastic first half with David De Gea’s multiple saves that prevented United from going to the break with a disastrous result. Ole needed to make some important modifications but he wasn’t able to comply. The second half started with another disaster at Old Trafford.
Telles and Cristiano save Solskjaer’s job.
After the break, Villarreal maintained their control and dominance but Manchester United held the result for the majority of the second half. Most of the action came during the last 30 minutes of the match, which was exactly when United equalized the game. Alex Telles scored an incredible volley after a brilliant assist from Bruno Fernandes. Cristiano Ronaldo wasn’t lucky during most of the 90 minutes, but we know he only needs one chance to score a goal.
After making history by becoming the most capped player in Champions League history, he obviously wanted his goal. In the last moments of the game, Fred sent an elevated cross to Ronaldo’s head. The number ‘7’ passed the ball to Lingard, who was generous enough to return the favor. With practically no angle, Cristiano released the Kraken with a potent low shot to score the winner in front of an exploding Old Trafford. Sir Alex Ferguson was enjoying the moment from the stands. It was a perfect way to celebrate for the star and an ideal scenario for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. United is back in the game after their previous defeat in the opening match.
Manchester United: De Gea (9), Telles (8), Varane (7), Lindelof (6), Dalot (4), McTominay (6), Pogba (7), Bruno (7), Sancho (5), Greenwood (5), Ronaldo (9).
Bench: Cavani (7), Matic (7), Lingard (8), Fred (7).
Villarreal: Rulli (6), Foyth (7), Albiol (6), Torres (6), Moreno (6), Parejo (6), Capoue (6), Trigueros (7), Groeneveld (6), Alcacer (7), Pino (7).
Bench: Dia (7), Estupiñan (6), Gomez (7), Mandi (8), Peña (6).
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