Ratings: United beat Derby 2-1; Chong and Pellistri score with Heaton, Elanga, Mata and Shoretire also doing well


Manchester United beat Derby County 2-1 at Pride Park in the opening pre-season match this summer. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side was youthful, in both halves but they did the job and got the win, although fitness was the main thing to gain from the match. Tahith Chong opened the scoring in the 18th minute of the match with Tom Heaton making a few good saves in the first half. Facundo Pellistri scored United’s second goal, assisted by Shola Shoretire in the 59th minute. Colin Karim-Richards scored a consolation for the home side in the 70th minute of the match. Queens Park Rangers are next for United, playing on Saturday afternoon.

It was a good opening display from both United and Derby in their opening friendly of the summer. Solskjaer named a very young side with little experience but the signs were good from the off. Derby did try to get something from United in the early stages of the match by Tom Heaton made a good save to deny the home side from taking the lead. United then started to get themselves into the match, pushing forward through Juan Mata, who looks like he still has something to give this team, even if it is just experience. Derby nipped the attack down by Tahith Chong managed to punish the defender, grabbing the ball and slotting it into the back of the net to put United ahead in the 18th minute.

Juan Mata congratulates Tahith Chong for opening the scoring against Derby County

In the 37th minute of the match, approximately 20 minutes after the United goal, derby were building something in the United box, putting pressure on the defence. Heaton, once again, made a superb save to deny the home side from levelling the score. It just goes to show that even with a majority youth team on the pitch, United still have what it takes to get the better of some teams. Derby will no doubt be frustrated so far not to get a goal back, having ample opportunity to do so. United then started to pressure Derby once again, sitting on the edge of their box, pushing forward to find another opening. The half ended with United still 1-0 up after a decent first half for this toughly United team.

At the start of the second half, Solskjaer made nine changes to his starting XI. Lee Grant replaced Heaton, Ethan Galbraith, Alex Telles, Nemanja Matic, Andreas Pereira, Shola Shoretire, Facundo Pellistri, Jesse Lingard and Joe Hugill replacing Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Brandon Williams, James Garner, Dylan Levitt, Anthony Elanga, Juan Mata, Tahth Chong, and Mason Greenwood. It did not take long for United to double their lead with Pellistri, who spent last season on loan with Alaves in Spain, putting United 2-0 up in the 60th minute of the match. It was a good finish for the Uruguayan. Solskjaer made two further substitutions with Di’Shon Bernard and Will Fish replacing Axel Tuanzebe and Teden Mengi.

Facundo Pellistri scores Manchester United’s second goal against Derby County

Derby got a goal back in the 70th minute of the match with Colin Karim-Richards thundering an effort past Lee Grant, who used to play for Derby before signing for United a few years back. The goalkeeper could not stop the effort from hitting the back of the net, which excited the Derby supporters in the stadium. Minutes later, Jesse Lingard almost restored the two-goal cushion for United, launching a strike on goal, which hit the crossbar and went back out into play. It was an unfortunate miss for the former academy player, who had a good loan spell with West Ham United in the second half of last season. It was a shame he did not score the goal, or the chance he had later in the match.

United had a few chances to score more goals but they never came. Derby seemed to tail off after their goal, which will give Wayne Rooney some problems ahead of the season commencing. He will be impressed with Teden Mengi, who he will want at Derby for the new season and Solskjaer will allow that to happen as the lad is a good prospect and will be seeking to achieve in the not too distant future. The match ended 2-1 to United with Tahith Chong and Facundo Pellistri scoring the goals and Colin Kazim-Richards scoring the consolation for the home side. United face Queens Park Rangers next Saturday in their second pre-season match. They will then face Brentford and Everton at Old Trafford with a trip to Preston North End in between.

Manchester United

22 Tom Heaton

Made a few good saves to deny Derby in the first half of the match, which gives the impression that Heaton is not here to be third choice goalkeeper. Replaced by Grant in the 46th minute.


29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

His defensive work rate is great but in an attacking sense, he needs to start improving on his crosses. However, with Jadon Sancho set to arrive this summer, this might help him, especially on the right flank. Replaced by Galbraith in the 46th minute.


38 Axel Tuanzebe

Played 60 minutes against Derby and did well defensively. I like Tuanzebe and think he's better than Jones but he's not played many minutes of late, which is why a loan spell seems to be a big option. Replaced by Bernard in the 60th minute.


43 Teden Mengi

Played well against Derby, the club he was on loan with last season. A great prospect in defence for United. Solskjaer will be proud of him. Replaced by Fish in the 60th minute.


33 Brandon Williams

Guilty of some rash challenges, as has been the case when he has played. If he gets rid of that from his game, he might be more of a choice at the club. Did well in the first half though. Replaced by Telles in the 46th minute.


37 James Garner

Put in a shift in the midfield in what could be a breakthrough season for him. A loan spell could be the best option but you never know what Solskjaer has planned. Did well against Derby. Replaced by Matic in the 46th minute.


35 Dylan Levitt

Played well against Derby following his loan spell away from United last season. Will be seeking another chance this season. Did what he needed to do as United led in the first half. Replaced by Pereira in the 46th minute.


36 Anthony Elanga

Looks to be a start coming through the ranks and will get minutes this season, if he stays at United. A loan spell could be good for him though. His runs were top notch, as was seen in the last Premier League match last season. Replaced by Shoretire in the 46th minute.


8 Juan Mata

Looked to still be seeking to offer something to United, even if it just ends up to be experience and leadership. His footballing brain is still working well. Started United's attack for the opener, but was disposed with Chong getting the ball and scoring. Replaced by Pellistri in the 46th minute.


44 Tahith Chong

Opened the scoring in the 18th minute of the match. Mata started the attack but was dispossessed and Chong then bullied the defender, won the ball and found the back of the net easily. It was a good demonstration of his skill and ability. He will show more at Birmingham City on loan this season. Replaced by Lingard in the 46th minute.


11 Mason Greenwood

Made many runs against Derby but in terms of scoring goals, it is early days for the teenager. He will grow in fitness and stature as the weeks progress. Replaced by Hugill in the 46th minute.



13 Lee Grant

Replaced Heaton 46'. Conceded United's first goal in the 70th minute through Kazim-Richards. He was not going to save that though.


54 Ethan Galbraith

Replaced Wan-Bissaka 46'. Played at right-back which is one of the many positions that he can play. Did well against Derby.


27 Alex Telles

Replaced Williams 46'. Set pieces, he is good but had a chance to score in the opening stages of the first half, but missed. Good left-back to have in the squad though to give Shaw a rest now and again.


15 Andreas Pereira

Replaced Levitt 46'. He normally turns up in pre-season but in this game, he did not. Not sure what his future has to offer him, but it won't be at United, most likely.


31 Nemanja Matic

Replaced Garner 46'. Was the most experienced player on the pitch in the second half, at least outfield. Did well against Derby and will be pleased with his fitness levels.


47 Shola Shoretire

Replaced Elanga 46'. Played in a great ball to Pellistri for him to find United's second goal of the game. A real talent in this squad and Solskjaer will have big plans for him this season.


28 Facundo Pellistri

Replaced Mata 46'. Got United's second goal minutes after coming on, played in by Shoretire and slotted him to aplomb. A great talent to have, even if he will be loaned against to Alaves, or wherever.


14 Jesse Lingard

Replaced Chong 46'. Could have scored United's third, after conceding one, but he hit the crossbar. Will be annoyed about that.


52 Joe Hugill

Replaced Greenwood 46'. Came on at the start of the second half. Did not seem to fit into the game and was replaced by Hannibal in the 79th minute of the match.


48 Will Fish

Replaced Mengi 60'. Did well in the second half. Conceded a goal though but fitness is the major issue here. It was a win for United though.


58 Di’Shon Bernard

Replaced Tuanzebe 60'. Did well for 30 minutes or so. United conceded after the defensive change was made but this will give the pair (Bernard and Fish) more experience for the future.


46 Hannibal Mejbri

Replaced Hugill 79'. Brought more energy to the team after replacing Hugill. United had more of the ball but could not do anything with it. Early days for him though, and United.


Goals: Colin Kazim-Richards 70′; Tahith Chong 18′, Facundo Pellistri 59′

Assists: Isaac Hutchinson 70′; Shola Shoretire 59′

Manchester United: Heaton (Grant 46′); Wan-Bissaka (Galbraith 46′), Tuanzebe (Bernard 60′), Mengi (Fish 60′), Williams (Telles 46′); Garner (Matic 46′), Levitt (Pereira 46′); Elanga (Shoretire 46′), Mata (Pellistri 46′), Chong (Lingard 46′); Greenwood (Hugill 46′ (Hannibal 79′)

Substitutes Not Used: Bishop

Bookings: Lee Buchanan 55′, Louie Sibley 68′

Written by John Walker

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