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Brentford 1-3 Manchester United: player ratings & man of the match as Elanga, Greenwood & Rashford score

The Red Devils responded brilliantly in the second half to take all three points from their first visit to the Brentford Community Stadium.

Manchester United boosted their top-four hopes on Wednesday as they beat Brentford 3-1 away from home.

The Red Devils had David De Gea to thank in the first half with the Spaniard making several great sides to keep out Brenford, who dominated the opening 45.

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But it was a different story after the break as United pulled the strings. Firstly, Fred’s great ball into the box picked out youngster Anthony Elanaga, who headed it past Jonas Lossl on 55 minutes.

Then Mason Greenwood finished off a breakaway goal soon after, while substitute Marcus Rashford added a third with a powerful late finish.

Brentford did find a consolation in the 85th minute when Ivan Toney poked home from a long throw-in, but it was too late for the hosts to mount a comeback.

Manchester United player ratings

David De Gea- 8

Made two good saves with his feet to deny Mathias Jensen shots in the first half and then punched away a looping effort from Vitaly Janelt. He also made several saves in the second 45, the best of which was to again keep Jensen out, but it was his showing in the opening period that eared him our Man of the Match award.

It was another superb performance from Davd De Gea. Credit: Getty.

Diogo Dalot- 7

On his 50th appearance for the club, Dalot put in a solid display. He produced United’s best shot in the first half which fizzed wide of the near post and also dealt well with several floated crosses into the box. Wednesdays was perhaps Dalot’s most impressive defensive display of the season so far.

Victor Lindelof- 7

Gave a good account of himself on Wednesday and played repeated long passes. Lindelof got his foot in and made several good tackles, with his speed helping him nip in front of the Brentford attackers. He also was not fazed by Brentford’s physical frontline.

Raphael Varane- 6

The defender blocked Tony’s second-half shot which looked destined to end up in the back of the net, and was good in the capital. He looked composed on the ball and was rarely flustered despite Brentford’s movement at times.

Alex Telles- 6

Deflected a Mads Bech Sorensen shot wide early on and put some dangerous crosses into the box throughout the night.

Scott McTominay was taken off late due to injury. Credit: Getty.

Scott McTominay- 8 (off 85)

Had to battle and fight against Brentford’s industrious midfield, and gave away several clever fouls during the first half. After the interval he was brilliant, bossed the centre of the park and saw a powerful shot saved on 57 minutes. The Scotland international also played a huge role for Rashford’s goal with a bulldozing midfield run.

Fred- 7

Struggled with Brentford’s energy early on, but his superb curled pass set up Elanga for the game’s opener on 55 minute. Fred was less wasteful in possession than usual, although his sloppy clearance led to Tony’s strike in the final stages.

Bruno Fernandes- 7

Was cut a frustrated figure in the first half at the Brentford Community Stadium and regularly dropped deep in search of the ball. But the No.18 was much improved after the break and he found more space in the centre and, with it, claimed much more possession. Fernandes did superbly to set up Greenwood and Rasford’s goals in the second period.

The result moves United to within two points of the top four. Credit: Getty.

Mason Greenwood- 6 (off 71)

Was much better in the second half after a quiet opening 45 minutes. He got on the ball and dribbled at Brentford’s full-backs and knocked in a simple finish on 62 minutes to double the Red Devils’ advantage.

Cristiano Ronaldo- 5 (off 71)

Hit the crossbar with a header in the 47th minute and did brilliantly to lay the ball to Fernandes for Greenwood’s goal, but in general put in a poor performance. The Portugal star did not react well to his withdrawal late on and was left huffing on the bench.

Anthony Elanaga- 6

Saw a headed shot cleared inside the box in the first period, but managed to nod in the opener 10 minutes after half-time. Overall, the youngster didn’t have a huge impact on the flow of the game, although he will have been delighted to play the full 90 minutes.

Marcus Rashford- 7 (on 71)

Took his goal well and looked direct and dangerous in his cameo appearance. Rashford also operated centrally for United.

Harry Maguire- 6 (on 71)

Had one awkward touch, but dealt well with most long balls from a left hand-side of a back three.

Nemanja Matic (on 85)

Brentford player ratings

Lossl 6; Pinnock 6, Jansson 7, Bech 6; Roerslev 5, Jensen 7 (Wissa 67;5), Norgaard 6, Janelt 6 (Baptiste 67;5), Canos 7 (Henry 67;5); Mbeumo 6, Toney 7.