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MOTM: Sergio Romero wins the point for United with stunning goalkeeping display

Manchester United played their final away game of the season, and their penultimate league game, as they make the trip down to St. Mary’s to take on Southampton. With fifth place out of reach and seventh far enough away, United have nothing more to gain or lose from their remaining league matches, which enables them to select players with the Europa League final firmly in mind, with the likes of Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Juan Mata played to keep their sharpness up, and Ander Herrera remains rested. The match did finish goalless, but not for lack of opportunities for either side, with Manolo Gabbiadini failing to convert a penalty for Southampton being just one of their many chances, and Anthony Martial struck the post for United in the second half.

 

 

Sergio Romero

Starting this match to maintain his fitness in form, in preparation for the Europa League final against Ajax in a week’s time, Sergio Romero managed to put on a goalkeeping performance that, if repeated in a week’s time, would almost certainly result in a European trophy for United. He began the game in spectacular fashion, stopping Gabbiadini’s penalty inside six minutes, and continued that early high by making several other saves to keep the game scoreless. The pick of the bunch has to be the save he made on James Ward-Prowse’s curling effort in the second half, going full stretch to tip the shot wide. Simply put, Romero single-handedly saved United from falling into defeat.

 

 

Anthony Martial

It was a poor performance once again for pretty much the whole United team, save Romero, and was especially noticeable in the disjointed attacking performance on display. Which just goes to prove how difficult it must’ve been for Martial to create what he did. He wasn’t as consistent a threat as expected, but he managed to fashion chances out of nothing and no support, as was the case with his woodwork strike in the second half.

 

 

Phil Jones

After an impressive stretch partnering with Marcos Rojo, Jones has more or less returned to being a punchline in recent weeks, but if the signs he exhibited from this game continues, he might end the season changing this perception once again. Paired up with an incompetent Chris Smalling, Jones found himself having to take up responsibility in central defence and managed to make some important defensive interventions here and there.

Conclusion

Another disappointing, if slightly better, performance from United. Which, in fairness, is understandable given they have nothing more to play for in the league. But with the final coming up in a week’s time, this could be cause for concern. That said, if Romero pulls of the same performance again, at least United can be safe in knowing they have a locked goal.

Written by Adimurti Pramana

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