Club Brugge 0 - 4 United
Darmian Smalling Blind Shaw
Mata(Young) Januzaj (Schweinsteiger) Memphis
|Hat-trick of goals for our captain|
Well that was bound to happen. Club Brugge, unlike Newcastle last weekend, were going out to get the goals they needed to win this game. With so much space at the back, we were always going to run out comfortable winners as our players' quality prevailed. In the end we scored four goals but it could have easily been five, six or even seven as we missed some golden opportunities, including an open goal and a penalty.
After quite a few posts and comments on twitter and facebook, LVG finally made a lot of United's supporters' wishes come true as he opted for Ander Herrera instead of either Schweinsteiger or Schneiderlin. I love Herrera but I must admit that he was very sloppy during the first half. He gave the ball away a couple times and was a tad reckless in his challenges. His fortunes changed in the second half when he played further up the pitch instead of Januzaj and managed to score a goal and provide an assist before being substituted. Will probably see him feature vs. Swansea in a position similar to the one he played during today's second half. Schneiderlin will get back to the starting XI though.
The back four were excellent once again. Five games, four clean sheets. Brilliant. Today we were playing a side whose intentions were to score at least two goals. Blind, Smalling and the impressive Shaw and Darmian managed to keep Brugge's strikers at bay. Romero made a brilliant interception on the only occasion our back four were caught out. Swansea will provide a sterner test this Sunday, we'll see how our defenders cope.
Carrick started a bit shaky but recovered. His 94 passes, 24 more passes than the game's second best passer, speak heaps of his contribution today. Mata was his usual self. He played a part in Roo's second and set Rooney up for his third. I do feel that he should show more goalscoring drive. Nevertheless, Mata was probably one of United's liveliest players today. On the other side, Memphis had another great European game. He helped Rooney get back to scoring and also played a role in the second goal. Hopefully, he'll be able to reproduce this form in the Premier League.
Januzaj was very disappointing and I don't think we'll see him start the game against Swansea. He didn't do much wrong but he didn't do too much right either. He was subbed off at half time as he didn't really manage to support Rooney. His replacement, Schweinsteiger, produced a world-class assist for Herrera's goal and should have also scored his first Manchester United goal. His United goals will come.... eventually.
Chicharito should have scored two goals but fluffed his chances spectacularly. I don't think he'll be a Manchester United player come September, we'll see.
Finally, Rooney got his name back on the scoresheet. He scored a hat-trick. Each of his three goals were presented to him on a plate by his team-mates. However, his movement to get in goal scoring positions was second to none and his finishes were exquisite. All goals were finely worked out by Roo and the boys. I'm glad to see him back amongst the goals. Hopefully, his confidence will be sky high after his hat-trick and it will inspire him to more goals. Well done Roo!
Back in the Champions League proper, well that's where we really belong. A club of this magnitude deserves to be gracing the biggest club competition in the world. We'll see who we'll draw tomorrow, hopefully we'll avoid the likes of Bayern and Barcelona. Swansea next. Tricky.