Man Utd 1-1 Young Boys: Player ratings, man of the match, heroes & villains as Greenwood nets a beauty
An under-strength Manchester United drew to Young Boys in the Champions League on Wednesday night.
Admittedly, the circumstances surrounding Wednesday’s wet and windy 1-1 draw at Old Trafford were very different from September’s loss in Switzerland.
United approached the game knowing they’d already topped the group, and this showed in their selection, with Ralf Rangnick making 11 changes from the team that beat Crystal Palace at the weekend, while giving minutes to several youngsters off the bench in the second period.
The hosts began the game well and took a deserved lead when Mason Greenwood scored an acrobatic strike after just nine minutes, but their dominance over proceedings dipped as the game continued.
Fabian Rieder pounced on some poor defending from the Red Devils just before the break and curled a brilliant effort beyond the helpless Dean Henderson.
The second half was a much closer affair with both sides missing good chances, although neither team did enough to win the game. The result also means Young Boys are eliminated from all European competitions this season.
- United’s academy: Four of Wednesday’s starting XI have come through the fabled United youth ranks, while all seven substitutes were academy graduates. That doesn’t include the likes of Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba.
- Ralf Rangnick: The result was never of serious consequence for the German, but his team selection means he rested all of the starters from the win over Palace and got to see an entirely new XI.
- Mason Greenwood: The youngster scored a spectacular overhead kick to give United a first-half lead. He’s netted some crackers in his fledgling career, but that’s up there among his best and means only Ronaldo has scored more goals for United this season in all competitions
- Tom Heaton: Aged 35, the goalkeeper, who came through the club’s youth ranks, made his United debut. It was also his first ever outing in the Champions League, and he was forced to make one hurried, but important, clearance.
- Aaron Wan-Bissaka: The full-back was restored to the side after Diogo Dalot started the last two, but the No.29 didn’t give a good account of himself at Old Trafford. Wan-Bissaka was poor on the ball and misplaced several passes. He also was partly at fault for Young Boys’ equaliser and could have done more to stop Rieder’s shot. The defender also collided with a pitchside advertising hoarding in the final seconds and had to be taken down the tunnel on a stretcher while looking dazed.
- Young Boys: After such a positive start to their Champions League campaign, Young Boys drop out of Europe altogether and will definitely finish in last place, even though the other game in the group, Atalanta v Young Boys, was postponed due to heavy snow.
- Manchester United (4-2-3-1) Henderson 7 (Heaton 68;6); Wan-Bissaka 5, Bailly 7, Matic 6, Shaw 6 (Mengi 61:7); Van de Beek 7, Mata 6 (Savage 89); Amad 6 (Shoretire 68:6), Lingard 5 (Iqbal 89), Elanga 6; Greenwood 7.
- Young Boys (4-4-2): Faivre 6; Macerias 7, Camara 5 (Lauper 77), Lustenberger 6, Lefort 5; Ngamaleu 6, Martins Pereira 7, Aebischer 6 (Sierro 62; 5), Rieder 6 (Hefti 62; 7); Elia 7 (Maier 87), Siebatchu 7 (Kanga 62; 5).
Man of the Match
We’re just going to give it to Greenwood after his spectacular goal, although Eric Bailly also had a good game. But, Greenwood’s match-changing moment, coupled with a few too many nervy touches from Bailly, means the former is our Man of the Match.
Rangnick’s men face Norwich City at Carrow Road next, when the Red Devils play at 5:30pm on Saturday. Dean Smith is now in charge in Norfolk and he’s already beaten United this season, when in charge of Aston Villa.