It was a much-needed win at Goodison Park for Ole Gunnar Solksjaer as his Manchester United team put a bad week behind them to take three points from their Premier League encounter with Everton in today’s lunchtime kick off.
The Red Devils came into this fixture on the back of two poor performances in defeat to Arsenal last weekend and Istanbul Basakeshier on Wednesday leading to rising pressure surrounding the United manager’s future. But two goals from Bruno Fernandes and a late Edinson Cavani strike helped to move them up to 13th in the Premier League table.
For Carlo Ancelotti and his Everton team, it did not turn out to be a good afternoon as they slumped to their third defeat in a row. The first time in the Italian’s managerial career since November 2006.
The Toffee’s had an opportunity to reclaim top spot with a win and things were looking promising when they took the lead after Brazilian winger Bernard hit a well-placed strike past David De Gea from the edge of the area after 19 minutes. But in the end, they were well beaten and remain in fifth place.
Here are the player ratings from today’s game.
JORDAN PICKFORD – 5
Impressive distribution set up the first goal and could not really be blamed for any of the three goals. But questions were raised again as he was lucky not to give away a penalty for kneeing Harry Maguire in the chest after dropping a routine free-kick. Still far from the reliable pair of hands that Ancelotti will be looking for between the sticks.Embed from Getty Images
SEAMUS COLEMAN – 5.5
Had a poor first half like the rest of his defensive teammates with both goals coming down his flank as he was isolated and exposed to a two v one by Marcus Rashford and Luke Shaw throughout. More opportunity to go forward in the second half and looked more threatening, creating Everton’s best opportunity in the final minute which Abdoulaye Doucoure wasted.
MICHAEL KEANE – 3
Poor positioning for both goals giving too much space to Fernandes and Rashford respectively in the first half meant that his side went in trailing at the break. Looked in trouble every time United attacked with questionable decision making and lack of coordination with the rest of the back four.
MASON HOLEGATE – 3.5
Extra half a rating for being better on the ball then his centre-back partner. Looked off the pace in his first game back from injury, with his marking for both first-half goals nonexistent and found constantly playing United attackers onside throughout the game. Question marks will be raised as to why he was thrown straight into the starting line up.
LUCAS DIGNE – 5
Little issues defensively. All of Everton’s attacks in the first half came down his flank and he was full of energy throughout, but lack of quality in the final third let him down, especially when blasting a shot against the post when it looked easier to square the ball to Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
ABDOULAYE DOUCOURE – 5.5
Struggled to get on the ball and influence the game in the first half. Played a more advanced position in the second half which helped him influence the game more. But missed two big opportunities in the last 10 minutes to get his side back into the game.
ALLAN – 6
Also struggled in the first half. But was more like himself in the second, winning 50/50’s and setting Everton attacks in motion. Just a shame there was no quality in the final third shown by any of his teammates.
GYLFI SIGURDSSON – 4
Difficult to see what the Icelandic midfielder brings to Everton anymore. Was too easy to dispossess and allowed midfield runners to escape from him. Substituted just after an hour after giving the ball away non-stop.
JAMES RODRIGUEZ – 4.5
As always the Colombian provided us with some lovely touches and crossfield passes. But the lack of defensive work left his right-sided partner Coleman exposed in the first half and was unable to create any meaningful chances before being substituted by Ancelotti.
DOMINIC CALVERT-LEWIN – 6.5
Was living off scraps the whole game and found it difficult to make a real impact. But was a constant threat, bullying Victor Lindelof in the air and assisting the first goal with a fantastic header.
BERNARD – 6.5
The Blues most dangerous player and took his goal beautifully with a shuffle onto his right foot and a low driven shot past David De Gea. Linked up well with Digne for the rest of the half down the right flank. Became less influential as he ran out of steam in the second half.Embed from Getty Images
ALEX IWOBI (ON 65 MINS) – 5.5
Gave Everton a new sense of energy and dimenson but lacked any end product.
CENK TOSUN (ON 80 MINS) – N/A
MANCHESTER UNITED RATINGS
DAVID DE GEA – 6
Only faced one shot on goal and could do little with Bernard’s effort. Quiet day at the office for the Spaniard
AARON WAN-BISSAKA – 5
Was at fault for the first goal as it was far too easy for Bernard to move the ball onto his right foot and shoot. His normally sound defensive game was shaky from then on in which Everton tried to expose often, especially in the first half.
VICTOR LINDELOF- 4
Could not deal with Calvert-Lewin in the air as evidenced by the first goal. Was fortunate that he was not threatened more by quality service to the frontman.
HARRY MAGUIRE – 8.5
An outstanding defensive performance from the United captain. Won everything in the air, with an especially impressive header to prevent Calvert-Lewin from scoring late on. His positioning and timing of tackles gave United a solid defensive foundation to be able to deal with heavy Everton pressure in the second half.Embed from Getty Images
LUKE SHAW- 7
A first assist in over a year and a half with a sumptuous cross for Fernandes. Was impressive until forced off with injury, taking up high attacking positions exploiting Rodriguez’s lack of defensive work and allowing Rashford to take up more central positions and make United a greater threat going forward.
SCOTT MCTOMINAY – 7.5
Formed a formidable central midfield partnership with Fred that allowed United to dominate the game with a quality range of passing and intelligent defensive positioning giving Fernandes the licence to take up positions further up the field.
FRED – 8
Provided a similar role and performance to McTominay. Never positioning himself too far away from the young Scot allowing them to both win and retain possession easily off of the Everton midfield. His determination to play the ball forward quickly also contributed to United playing on the front foot and scoring two goals before half time.
JUAN MATA – 7
The quietest of the midfield four. But didn’t put a foot wrong and rarely gave the ball away before being substituted in the 81st minute.
BRUNO FERNANDES – 9 MAN OF THE MATCH
Two goals and an assist mean that the Portuguese talisman has now had a hand in 15 Premier League goals in his last 10 away games. On this performance, you can see why. Tenacious throughout and two goals that showed his class in different ways, finished off by an assist in injury time highlighting his unselfish characteristics.Embed from Getty Images
MARCUS RASHFORD – 6.5
A mixed bag for the young England international. Took up good positions throughout and worked well with Fernandes for the second goal. But missed a one-on-one in the second half he should have scored, while poor decision making meant he lost the ball far too easily.
ANTHONY MARTIAL – 5
Still yet to score in the Premier League this season and missed a glorious opportunity in the first half when firing wide past Pickford’s goal. Had little effect on the game beyond this and was taken off with 10 minutes to go.
AXEL TUANZEBE (ON 66) – 6
Solid enough dealing with the threat of Coleman and Iwobi down the United left.
Edinson Cavani (ON 80) – 8
Only played 10 minutes but gave United a new lease of life in attack with his non-stop running. Should have won a penalty after beating Keane to the ball and took his goal well. Which is likely to be the first of many.
PAUL POGBA (ON 80) – N/A