Ratings: First sign of cracks show as Manchester United draw with Stoke

After Manchester United’s hot start to the season, Jose Mourinho wondered how United would respond if they went down early. The answer: quickly. After a back and forth first half Stoke took the lead when Xherdan Shaqiri was played onside by Eric Bailly and put in a whipped cross that was redirected in by newcomer Eric Choupa-Moting. The first goal United had conceded all season. However, within minutes United responded with a flicked on header by Nemanja Matic towards Paul Pogba, who then knocked it onto the head of Rashford and into the goal. The teams would go into the half tied 1-1

The second half started with Stoke City on the front foot. But United continued to show their strength by weathering a Stoke storm and grabbing the second goal after Henrikh Mkhitaryan slid a beautiful through ball into the path of Romelu Lukaku. After his initial shot was saved, Lukaku tapped the rebound home. Just when you thought United had completely turned the game around, Choupa-Moting got the best of Phil Jones on a corner and headed the home team back on level terms.

United had decent chances as the game continued. Anthony Martial came on as a substitute and put in a wonderful cross for Lukaku, who managed to put the ball over the goal from a few yards out. Both teams continued to push but neither were able to get the breakthrough. Having dropped their first points of the season, Mourinho will not be happy.

Goals: Marcus Rashford 45+1′, Romelu Lukaku 57′

Assists: Paul Pogba 45+1′

Manchester United: De Gea; Valencia, Bailly, Jones, Darmian; Herrera (Mata 72′), Matic; Mkhitaryan (Lingard 84′), Pogba, Rashford (Martial 72′); Lukaku

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Smalling, Blind; Carrick

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

Had a lot more to do than in past games. Made an outstanding save on Jese, only for Stoke to score minutes later on the corner. His distribution was shaky at times, but his quick long throws continue to be a positive way to build the attack.


25 Antonio Valencia

Worked tirelessly up and down the pitch. Getting little help from Mkhitaryan meant that Valencia was often dealing with both Stokes wingback and winger. Did very well in one on one situations and put in some good crosses.


3 Eric Bailly

Was the outstanding defender for most of the first half. Covered brilliantly when Stoke tried to play the ball over the top and put in an inch perfect through ball for Rashford to run onto. However, after he picked up a knock he seemed to drift from the game. He was slow to get back in line and played Shaqiri onside for the first goal. Not as consistent performance as the rest of the season.


4 Phil Jones

Struggled with who to mark at times on the right. With the wingback playing high up the pitch, he often was in no man's land. Got caught out a few times and in the first half, but it was his poor defending on Stoke's second goal that doomed him.


36 Matteo Darmian

Had an up and down first half. Struggled with Diouf on the overlap, but improved in the second half. He won the ball that led to United's second goal and covered his wing consistently.


21 Ander Herrera

His first real action of the Premier League season was a mixed bag. Defended well in the first half, but his distribution was sloppy. Often held the ball too long and then played the wrong ball.


31 Nemanja Matic

Was again strong at the base of United's midfield. Did brilliantly to flick the cross on for the opening goal. Broke up the play well and linked the defense to attack.


22 Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Disappeared at times but showed up when it mattered. Put in a great cross for the first goal and played a beautiful through ball for the second. Needs to be more consistently involved.


6 Paul Pogba

Struggled to really stamp his influence on the game. Both Darren Fletcher and Joe Allen were really tight on him and he often had to drop deep to influence the game. Did well to head the ball off Rashfords head for the first goal.


19 Marcus Rashford

Was United's most dangerous player for the whole first half. Made some excellent runs in behind, but his finishing again needs to improve. Really did nothing for the goal, but still always seems to be in the right place at the right time.


9 Romelu Lukaku

Did well to follow up his goal, but missed a big chance at the end of the game. However, he made fantastic unselfish runs into the channel all game long. Opened up space and never stopped prodding the Stoke defense. Would have liked to have the winner, but still put in a great performance.



8 Juan Mata

Had little time on the ball and struggled to make a significant impact


11 Anthony Martial

Made a huge impact and should've set up Lukaku for the winner. Consistently got in behind the defender and gave Stoke's defender's problems the whole time he was on.


14 Jesse Lingard

Needed more time to influence the game.



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