Ratings: Ronaldo & Fred poor against Magpies, Sancho only a little better; Varane & Martinez both did well – draw feels like a defeat

United now need to make it could against Spurs on Wednesday

Manchester United were held to a 0-0 draw against Newcastle United in the Premier League at Old Trafford. It was not a very good match for Cristiano Ronaldo. Fred had the chance to get a goal at the end of the match, missing the target. Marcus Rashford also missed a late header.

United started well against the Magpies with Fred launching an attack in the third minute of the match but he shot was well off the target. Ten minutes later, Jadon Sancho had a shot on goal but missed the target. He was lively against Omonia Nicosia on Thursday evening.

David De Gea had some problems to deal with as Bruno Guimarães saw his shot on goal saved by the Spanish goalkeeper. A minute later, Jacob Murphy saw his effort on goal saved by De Gea. Antony then had a shot on goal in the 18th minute, but he was off target.

Newcastle seemed to get a foot into the game and Kieran Trippier saw his effort blocked as they looked to add pressure to United. Joelinton then hit the woodwork. The following minute, Callum Wilson missed the target with a header. It was not good for either team so far.

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In the 27th minute of the match Cristiano Ronaldo was caught offside as Luke Shaw tried to play a through ball to him. After a period of battling, there was nothing going for either side, who looked like they were balanced in this match.

Joelinton saw his attempt on goal blocked in the 38th minute of the match as he tried to put the Magpies ahead. In the same minute, Antony saw his effort on goal saved by Nick Pope. Bruno Fernandes then saw a shot blocked in the 41st minute of the match.

Dan Burn was booked for a foul in the 43rd minute of the match – it was the first booking of the match. United needed to be more clinical in attack in this match, something which has been prevalent this season. They struggled on Thursday evening for a goal too.

Fernandes saw another shot blocked in the third minute of added time at the end of the first half. United tried to get the better of their opposition in this match but at the end of the first half it was 0-0 with all to play for in the second half of the match. United need the points here.

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There were no substitutions for either team at the start of the second half. It was Newcastle that took the first chance of the second half with Wilson missing the target. In the 48th minute, Fred tried a through ball, but Cristiano Ronaldo was caught offside – having had the ball in the back of the net.

Ronaldo scored again seconds later as it seemed the free-kick had been played with Pope having the ball at his feet. Ronaldo stole it, rounded the keeper and scored. He was booked for his protest at seeing a second goal taken away from him.

Ronaldo missed the target again in the 54th minute of the match, which was the story of his season so far. Now he’s got that 700th club career goal, it seems to be harder for him to add more to that future. Sancho was then fouled on the edge of the box, no penalty given by VAR.

Newcastle made their first substitution in the 59th minute with Ryan Fraser replacing Jacob Murphy. Antony then had another shot saved two minutes later. Fernandes was booked in the 65th minute after a foul – but nothing given for the foul against him minutes earlier!

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Casemiro became the third United player to booked in the second half. Ten Hag made his first substitution of the match with Marcus Rashford replacing Ronaldo in the 72nd minute of the match. Ronaldo was not happy coming off the pitch.

Newcastle made a triple substitution in the 78th minute with Matt Targett, Joe Willock and Chris Wood replacing Burn, Guimarães and Wilson. United won a free-kick in the Newcastle final third, Rashford took it and sent it over the top of the crossbar.

Rashford and Casemiro both saw chances missed and blocked in the last ten minutes and Fernandes started an attack with Rashford, who got through, past the keeper and played the ball into Fred, who sent the ball wide. What an embarrassing miss that was for the Brazilian.

Newcastle made their last substitute with Jamaal Lascelles replacing Fabian Schär in the first of five minutes of added time. Rashford had a great chance in the dying second of the match, heading his shot wide of the target. It was all over, Ten Hag had his first draw of the season.

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Player Ratings

David De Gea: It was his 500th appearance for United, a big occasion. But he seemed to irk the Old Trafford crowd with poor distribution. Yes, he kept a clean sheet but United were terrible in front of goal too. De Gea was not tested much, which was a good thing. ★★★★★

Diogo Dalot: The Portuguese right-back was off the pace from the start of the match. United need to get some competition for him in January. He improved a little in the second half. Perhaps made a mistake when he was fouled at the end and should have got something from that. ★★★★★★

Raphael Varane: I feel he led the backline well for United. It was not a good game at all for the Old Trafford club. A win would have been great for them but at least the draw is not a defeat – although it feels like it. He looked like he cared, which was all that matters. ★★★★★★★

Lisandro Martinez: The Butcher of Manchester was consistent against the Magpies. He showed a lot of urgency in the first half but when probing to make the pass, it was cut out more often than not. His teammates could take a leaf form his book – and should. ★★★★★★

Luke Shaw: He did not lack any effort in this match. He was caught out a few times but seems to be returning to some kind of form after a season of injury, which should not be behind him. He needs to show more threat in the final third to get United ticking again. ★★★★★

Casemiro: Seemed to be off the pace in the first half but still made plenty of challenges. He was booked for a challenge that he made. He should have perhaps had an assist for the ball he played into Rashford, which he should have scored from. ★★★★★★

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Fred: The Fred that plays for Brazil never seems to make many appearances for United. He was terrible in this match. Off the pace and a liability with the ball. If Eriksen was fit, Fred would have been benched. Terrible miss at the end of the match. Embarrassing. ★★★★

Antony: Provided United with some attacking impetus at times and seemed to thrive on the right whilst looking to attack. Played a few chances on goal but got nothing from the match. He needed to have the pace to beat Burn at left-back. He will get there. ★★★★★

Bruno Fernandes: The captain did not dress himself gracefully. Had some chances and created some also. Played a great ball into Rashford for Fred to miss – not his fault. Needs to do more though. He seemed to float about on his own against the Magpies. ★★★★

Jadon Sancho: Energetic at the start of the match but by the end he seemed out of it. Did not get any joy against Trippier and could have won a penalty had he not done a Hollywood dive. After his efforts on Thursday, I am annoyed that he did not produce today. ★★★★★

Cristiano Ronaldo: Had the ball in the back of the net twice. He was offside for the first and played the ball before a free-kick was taken for the second, and booked for his protest. He has some chances but nothing special. Replaced by Rashford. ★★★★

Substitutes

Marcus Rashford: Replaced Ronaldo 72′. Came on with energy but could not find anything against the Magpies. Had a great chance which Fernandes provided, playing the ball to Fred, who missed the target. Also missed the winner at the death by heading wide. ★★★★★

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Match Information

Goals: N/A

Assists: N/A

Manchester United: De Gea; Dalot, Varane, Martinez, Shaw; Casemiro, Fred; Antony, Fernandes, Sancho; Ronaldo (Rashford 72′)

Substitutes Not Used: Heaton; Lindelof, Malacia; Pellistri, Iqbal, Mainoo; Elanga, Garnacho

Bookings: Cristiano Ronaldo 49′, Bruno Fernandes 65′, Casemiro 69′; Dan Burn 43′

Written by John Walker

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About John Walker 1822 Articles
I support Manchester United, the greatest English football team to have ever existed. Bruno Fernandes is the latest in a long line of players with great ability to play for the club. I idolised Bryan Robson, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, and Eric Cantona growing up.