Ratings: Mata the MOTM in 1-1 draw against Club America; Chong can hold his head up high too…


Manchester United drew 1-1 with Mexican side Club America in the first pre-season match of the summer, played at the University of Phoenix Stadium. It was a goal-less first half with the Mexican side scoring on the hour after a number of changes. Juan Mata scored United equaliser after hitting the post in the first half of the match.

It was a game of two halves for United. The first half was both sides displaying their stronger teams, testing each other to find the opening goal of the game, which never came in the first half. Lee Grant, on his debut, kept a clean sheet during his time on the pitch, Club America scoring with Joel Pereira in goal, which was unfortunate for him.

Juan Mata, after hitting the post in the first half, found United’s equaliser and was named the Man of the Match. However, Tahiti Chong was one of the standout performers in the second half, making his debut for United’s first team, getting himself involved from the off, with will have not only impressed his teammates, but also his coaches and the manager.

There were some things to learn for the next game but with United’s squad missing 15 players this summer, due to the FIFA World Cup, injury and administration issues. However, Alexis Sanchez seems to be heading over to Los Angeles ready for the latter matches in the tour and David De Gea, Nemanja Matic, and Fred will join up with the squad next week. There was something to be excited about in this young team.

Manchester United

13 Lee Grant

The debutant had a good half, making a few good saves and looking like a commanding goalkeeper. We all know what he is capable of and it could mean United have three decent goalkeepers in their ranks ahead of the new season. Grant was replaced by Pereira at the start of the second half.


25 Antonio Valencia

The captain had a good performance after a summer break. Got forward at times and did what he needed to do in defence. Tried to play the ball into space, using his space to get to it but the clearance was made by the Mexican side. Valencia was replaced by Fosu-Mensah at the start of the second half.


3 Eric Bailly

Solid in defence, doing what he needed to do, mostly when he needed to do it. A solid and composed defender. Not sure why he really ended the season on the sidelines but I hope he impresses Mourinho, as during his debut season, he was the best defender at the club by a mile. Both Bailly and Smalling were caught on the hour with a player getting between them and scoring from a header.


Chris Smalling

Club America pressured the defence at times but Smalling and his defensive partner, mostly cleared the danger. What was not cleared was dealt with by Grant, who made more than one good save. Red faced on the hour after the Mexican side scored from a header, getting in between Bailly and Smalling to go 1-0 up.


23 Luke Shaw

The left-back has seemingly won his place for the foreseeable future with Mourinho confirming this back four will start the new Premier League season. Shaw did what he needed to do and broke forward at times to add more pressure to the defence and the goalkeeper, seeking a goal for his club. Was booked in the 73rd minute for a foul. Was replaced by 16-year-old Greenwood in the 76th minute.


21 Ander Herrera

Played a good half in midfield and looked to try and be the creative player in the midfield trio. Could have done more, but for a first game, after a seemingly long summer, the Spaniard did alright. Sloppy in possession at times in the second half but it was early days and this seemed to be a tough test for United.


39 Scott McTominay

After a breakthrough season, McTominay will be looking to impress Mourinho and he started doing just that. The midfield may have been missing Matic and Pogba but the young Scottish international helped his team counter the Mexican side and aimed to control the midfield, which did and didn't happen. Was unable to continue after suffering a head injury inside the last five minutes. Was replaced by Tuanzebe.


15 Andreas Pereira

Seeking to impress Mourinho after a season on loan at Valencia, the Belgian-born Brazilian took his chance and got stuck in to try and earn his stripes ahead of the new season. Unsure whether he will be defensive or creative, or a bit of both, will come out in the wash during pre-season. It seemed Mourinho was testing the player, to find his true position in the team. He certainly has something to offer this club.


8 Juan Mata

Unlucky not to find the opting goal of the match after launching his shot just inside the box but hitting the post. Played well after his summer break. Scored the equaliser in the 78th minute, saving some face for United. Was replaced by Gomes in the 87th minute.


9 Anthony Martial

Led the line through the middle, just as Mourinho did suggest at the tail end of last season, not that there was much choice at this period, with Lukaku on holiday after a good World Cup. Had a few chances, but nothing that could have changed the game in the first half. Martial played 15 minutes or so in the second half, had a good change to find a goal before being replaced by Darmian in the 62nd minute.


35 Demetri Mitchell

Had a great start to United's pre-season. Playing in a more advanced role on the left-wing, with Martial playing centrally, the young defender-cum-attacker took his chance and gave the Mexican side something to think about. Played some of the second half, continuing where he left off before being replaced by Chong.



40 Joel Castro Pereira

Replaced Grant 46'. Made a good save, rushing out of his area to deny the Mexican side from an opening goal. Minutes later, conceded through a rocket header which could not be thwarted. Cool headed and kept his composure despite conceding.


Matteo Darmian

Replaced Martial 60'. Played as the left-back in the second half. United ended much better than they started the half. It could be the last time we see Darmian, or one of the last times.


24 Timothy Fosu-Mensah

Replaced Valencia 46'. Seemed to be a bit rusty, which is to be expected this early into pre-season. Was unable to get the better of his man on a few occasions. His inexperience is not to blame and I fully believe that he will get better. Seemed to get better as he got more involved in the game. United ended the game much better then they started the second half.


38 Axel Tuanzebe

Replaced McTominay 87'. Came on late into the game to replace the injured McTominay. United pressured the Mexican side in the final few minutes.


28 Angel Gomes

Replaced Mata 87'. Game on for the goalscorer for the final few minutes. Did not really get involved but will be thankful for the chance. Will get more of them during this tour.


Tahith Chong

Replaced Mitchell 60'. Played like a bat out of hell. Pressed his opposition and really took the chance he was given. Some say it may be too soon for him, it might be. He looked full of confidence and got involved from the off.


11 Mason Greenwood

Replaced Shaw 76'. Put in a good display in his first match for the first team. Mourinho will be happy to see another youth player blood themselves into the team. The future looks great for this lad.


Goals: Juan Mata 78′

Manchester United: Grant (J. Pereira 46′); Valencia (Fosu-Mensah 46′), Bailly, Smalling, Shaw (Greenwood 76′); Herrera, McTominay (Tuanzebe 87′), A. Pereira; Mata (Gomes 87′), Martial (Darmian 60′), Mitchell (Chong 60′)

Substitutes Not Used: Williams; Hamilton, Garner; Bohui

Bookings: Luke Shaw 73′

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