Manchester United beat Southampton 3-2 at St Mary’s in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be relieved after seeing his side go 2-0 down in the first half and lose David De Gea to a knock, which saw Dean Henderson make his Premier League debut for the club. Bruno Fernandes got United back into the game with his goal in the 60th minute of the match and a brace from Edinson Cavani (74′ and 90+2′) got United another three points on the road this season, which is where they have played their best football, only winning at home to West Bromwich Albion for the first time in the league this season last weekend.
United started well against the Saints and were seeking to pressure the home side from the very start of the match. Mason Greenwood had the chance to open the scoring in the seventh minute of the match but his left-footed shot was wide of the target. Bruno Fernandes then had a chance nine minutes later, shooting wide of the target. The Saints took the lead in the 23rd minute of the match from a corner taken by James Ward-Prowse which found Jan Bednarek inside the box for the Polish defender to head past David De Gea. The Saints seemed to have risen to United’s challenge and were pushing to ensure they cause maximum damage.
United did not recover from the opening goal with the Saints turning the tide and pressuring United and their shaky defence, which seemed inept at times in the first half. The quick passing and the attacking threat made United look poor and ten minutes after the opening goal, Ward-Prowse scored himself from a free-kick with De Gea reaching the ball and getting half a hand on it but was unable to stop the strike from being scored. United were 2-0 down with a lot of soul searching to be done to get back into the match. United never really got themselves back into the match before the end of the first half. There will be a lot to play for now.
At the start of the second half, United made a double substitution with Dean Henderson replacing De Gea and Edinson Cavani replacing Greenwood. Seven minutes into the second half, Marcus Rashford has a chance on goal which was saved by Alex McCarthy. Cavani had a chance, winning a corner for United, which came to nothing. United eventually scored in the 60th minute of the match through Fernandes, assisted by Cavani whose cross picked out the Portuguese midfielder who showed his clinical edge to get United back into the match. Cavani scored the equaliser for United in the 74th minute of the match with a superb header.
Despite looking settled for the draw and a point, United continued to break forward and create. Cavani scored the winning in the second minute of stoppage time, despite other chances to do the same. Like his first goal in the match, the winner came off his head. United seemed dead and buried as they conceded the second goal of the match to go 2-0 down by Fernandes’ goal in the second half, followed by the equaliser gave United the impetus to continue breaking forward and find that winning goal. They have shot up to seventh in the league with this win and will now be getting ready to face Paris Saint-Germain at Old Trafford in the Champions League on Wednesday evening.
Goals: Jan Bednarek 23′, James Ward-Prowse 33′; Bruno Fernandes 60′, Edinson Cavani 74′, 90+2′
Assists: James Ward-Prowse 23′; Edinson Cavani 60′, Bruno Fernandes 74′, Marcus Rashford 90+2′
Manchester United: De Gea (Henderson 46′); Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles (Williams 84′); Fred, Matic, Van de Beek; Fernandes; Greenwood (Cavani 46′), Rashford
Substitutes Not Used: Fosu-Mensah, Tuanzebe; Mata, James
Bookings: James Ward-Prowse 16′
Written by John Walker