Injury plagued Manchester United was able to hold Liverpool to a nil all draw in their second premier league clash of the 2018/2019 season
Manchester United is still unbeaten in the English Premier League since the arrival of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as interim manager. The most recent Manchester United results was when the Red Devils secured a 0-0 draw with the current league leaders, Liverpool FC. The results of the match could have been much different if there were no injuries to the Manchester United players, which could have been a win. Despite the injuries, Manchester United still seemed as if they could have won the game.
Still, Unbeaten: Manchester United results
It is easy to say that the Manchester United players, despite the injuries are quite comfortable or happy to be in the position they are because they have not lost an English Premeir League (EPL) match since the arrival of their Interim manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The Red Devils were not at their best in their most recent match against Liverpool but did play well enough to prevent the Liverpool players from getting a win.
The match for the most part seemed rather boring as the Manchester United players, despite their flares now and again in the match were unable to score. The Liverpool players including Mohammad Salah were unable to answer the calls made by the United players to attack on their goal. The Liverpool players were only able to secure a shot on goal out of seven total shots made.
At the end of the match, Manchester United got 1 point to move to 52 points in the EPL table.
Eventhough PSG did end Manchester United’s unbeaten run in all competitions, the Manchester United results in the EPL are 0 losses. That’s right! Manchester United have not lost an EPL match since they took on Solskjaer as coach, and that is a very good thing! The only problem is that the club could have been on 56 points if it had won the two drawn matches.
The most recent draw against Liverpool may have been the most boring of matches in the league so far due to the ‘lack’ of much attack by either team (eventhough only Man Utd seemed interested enough to attack), but as a fan of Manchester United, I am happy that we were able to get 1 point against the current league leaders.
Injuries: how did they affect the match results?
Manchester United did have a very good chance of scoring before the three injuries, which forced the three early substitutions in the first half. Then after the three substitutions, there were about two other good chances for United to score. But, somehow, Klopp seemed to have been telling the players to focus heavily on some solid defending as there was no spark from the Liverpool players to attack- only to defend, defend, defend and defend.
Many of us are speculating that if there were no injuries to the Manchester United players then the result may have been different in the club’s favour, which means three points and Manchester United would have remained fourth in the EPL table.
Some persons watching the match may have been thinking that at the end of the first half, Manchester United would have suffered a similar fate as they did against PSG in the first leg of the Champions League second round match.
One of the players to be forced off was Ander Herrera who had scored United’s first goal against Chelsea in their 2 nil victory over Chelsea in the FA Cup fifth round. Herrera was forced off the pitch in the 21st minute of the first half due to a hamstring injury.
Juan Mata was the next to go off injured followed by his replacement Jesse Lingard, and all these three substitutions were before the end of the first half. These string of injuries caused Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to not have any substitutions in the second half, which seemed quite freakish. Marcus Rashford visibly struggled throughout the match after he suffered a knock earlier on in the match.
Ander Herrera makes post-match comments
The Spaniard player Ander Herrera has been playing a major part in the rejuvenation of the team since the arrival of Solskjaer. He has formed a very good understanding with Pogba and Matic to form a very effective midfield three in the EPL.
Herrera, now 29 will have his contract expired in the summer, but has not yet renewed it. However, he said that he was impressed with the way how United handled the situation against the premier league leaders. He did however, state that it was a disappointment to leave the pitch so early in such an important premier league match.
In an Instagram post he stated that he is proud of his teammates because they fought against the circumstances and gave everything on the pitch.
Which of the teams seemed more likely to win?
You can be the judge for yourself. Some may say none of the teams seemed more likely to win. But in my opinion, I think Manchester United seemed more likely to win due to their approach to the game, despite the injuries. However, Alexis Sanchez did not play well. The approach that Klopp had for this game was to sit and wait on United to attack, according to his post match interview.
Some persons may have felt that they wasted about 90 minutes of their time to watch a match that was very hyped up before the start of the match.
The Liverpool FC players showed no intent, they never pressed and there was never really any risks taken by the team. Milner was placed in a right back position and what this meant was to shut things up-to prevent United from scoring. A goal was scored by United but it was ruled offside. Mane and Salah never made any attempts at the runs they usually make. Liverpool had most of the ball and completed the most passes- they seemed very happy just passing the ball around.
Manchester United had injuries even before the game started, and unfortunately, the injuries continued in the first half. The players showed their intentions of scoring but there was no real spark, if any. Some critics say that if the match had continued for another 90 minutes, the game would have ended 0-0. But, I think somehow, United would come out victorious. Who knows, do you agree?
Solskjaer pleased with result despite injuries
The draw with Liverpool has extended Solskjaer’s EPL run to 10 games unbeaten with 2 draws and 8 wins, and the interim manager stated that he was delighted with how the players handled the situation in the testing circumstances. He also highlighted that in football you should expect anything. He highlighted that Marcus Rashford should have been taken off as well after the three substitutions were made due to his injury. So, at the end of the game, the Manchester United results were in their favour and they got a point with 10 and half men against a fit 11 for Liverpool.
It was a fair result in my opinion because the United team was under performing due to the injuries and hence the team had less strength than normal and they were definitely weaker than Liverpool who just sat back and were expecting United to come at them, meanwhile United was waiting on Liverpool to start the game or start their attack. In the end United’s gain of only 1 point saw the team ending up in 5th position (temporarily) and Liverpool regaining the lead (temporarily).
Now it’s time to be focusing on the next game which is Manchester United vs Crystal Palace.