Man Utd: The first six fixtures of the new Premier League season
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Manchester United missed out on the chance to make it two Premier League wins from two matches on Sunday as Southampton held them to a draw. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side went into the game looking to claim all three points. But that didn’t happen, with the Red Devils unable to emerge victorious from a physical contest at St Mary’s.
Southampton found themselves under the cosh against United early on.
But it was the hosts who took the lead in the 30th minute, with Che Adams’ effort hitting Fred and trickling past David De Gea.
United appeared rocked from that goal, with the Saints beginning to take control of the contest.
Yet Mason Greenwood levelled for the Red Devils, with the result then finishing 1-1.
Express Sport will now take a look at four things we learned from the contest, with Solskjaer’s side missing out on the chance to clock up two consecutive victories.
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Greenwood is United’s newest leader
United seem to have found another leader in Greenwood, who again impressed following his fine performance against Leeds last time out.
The England international bagged the crucial goal last week, putting the Red Devils ahead three minutes after they’d seen their lead chalked off.
And Greenwood came to United’s rescue yet again today.
The 19-year-old now has eight goals from his last 10 appearances for the club, going back to last season as well.
And even though Edinson Cavani is their main No 9, their teenage talent is giving Solskjaer plenty to think about.
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Martial looks a shadow of his old self
When United signed Anthony Martial from Monaco in 2015, they thought they’d signed a future Ballon d’Or winner.
He’s certainly had some good times with the club, especially when he notched 23 times in the 2019/2020 campaign.
But Martial, these days, looks a shadow of his old self.
Initially deployed up top against Southampton, the France international put in a lacklustre performance.
And with United chasing a winner, it was no surprise to see him make way for Jadon Sancho around the hour mark.
Matic’s best days are over
There came a time where Nemanja Matic was one of the best holding midfielders on the planet.
But while he wasn’t particularly dreadful against Southampton, his performance was tame.
United needed energy and Matic, at the age of 33, has lost the legs he had during the peak years of his career at Chelsea.
When compared to Scott McTominay’s enterprising display against Leeds, it was telling.
Matic will be useful to have around but, playing away from home against a team with Southampton’s energy levels, it was a gamble that failed to pay off.
De Gea emerges as a hero
With the clock ticking down, Southampton had a glorious chance to win the game.
Stuart Armstrong was sent through on goal after Harry Maguire was dispossessed at the back.
But the former Blackburn striker saw De Gea save his effort, with the Spain international parrying it away.
It was a massive moment for the Red Devils.
And it also suggests De Gea won’t give up his No 1 jersey without a fight following Dean Henderson’s recovery from coronavirus.
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