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Player Ratings: United beat Brighton 3-0; Mata MOTM, Pogba took free-kick well, Henderson’s fine performance

Manchester United beat Brighton and Hove Albion 3-0 in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup on Wednesday evening. Scott McTominay opened the scoring at the end of the first half with Juan Mata doubling United’s lead in the 73rd minute of the match before Paul Pogba scored from a free-kick in the 80th minute of the match. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be happy with the victory which sees United into the quarter-final draw which will happen after the Liverpool v Arsenal match on Thursday evening, which is the day United also find out their fate in the UEFA Champions League this season.

It was a similar match against Brighton as the match against Luton Town last week. There was not a lot going on in the first half, then at the end of the half, United manage to open the scoring. United won a free0kick with Juan Mata taking it with his left foot. Scott McTominay was there unmarked to head the ball across goal and into the back of the net scoring his first goal for the club since that long-range goal against Manchester City at Old Trafford before the coronavirus lockdown.

Despite being 1-0 up in the game, United were not getting the better of this Brighton side in a game that was a polar opposite to the match at the same stadium at the weekend. Solskjaer made a double substitution in the 69th minute with Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba replacing Odion Ighalo and Daniel James. United doubled their lead through Mata in the 73rd minute with an assist by Donny van de Beek with Mata starting the move, playing the ball to Brandon Williams with Van de Beek getting the flick to fins Mata for his to score United’s second of the game.

United tripled their lead in the 80th minute after Joel Veltman became the second player of the match to be booked after taking Rashford out giving United a free-kick, Pogba took the set-piece which took a heavy deflection from the Brighton wall then in off the post to put United 3-0 up in the game, which seemed to be game over for Brighton. It was a polar opposite of Saturday’s match which saw United score three goals, one after the full time whistle was blown. It would seem United had done enough to get into the draw for the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup on Thursday.

Manchester United

26 Dean Henderson

Solid display from the 23-year-old making his second appearance for the club. His save to deny Trossard will be something he will be happy with.

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Diogo Dalot

Made some forward bursts during the match but it was not a performance to suggest he should be playing ahead of Wan-Bissaka.

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2 Victor Lindelof

Booked in the second half. It was an easier match for United than the match on Saturday but he still looked flustered.

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3 Eric Bailly

A great displayed from Bailly who should have put himself into contention to replace Lindelof against Spurs on Sunday.

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33 Brandon Williams

It was a good game for Williams. He may have cut inside too often but I am sure he will have learned from that.

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39 Scott McTominay

Had a good game for United and got himself a goal which was assisted by Mata, who also got one for himself. It was good to see him back to the ability we all know he has.

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17 Fred

Kept the midfield ticking over but in terms of what he offered, he should be putting a bit more so he can get back in contention to take the place of Matic, or Pogba in the midfield regularly. Replaced by Lingard in the 81st minute of the match.

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8 Juan Mata

Man of the Match for me. Most creative player for United with a goal and an assist. His pace is not quick but his mind is.

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34 Donny van de Beek

Made some nice touches of the ball throughout the match and linked in well for United. maybe it is time to get excited about what he could offer the club going forward. Got an assist for Mata's goal.

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21 Daniel James

Struggled. Seems to be out of sorts and a great distance away from the form he started in at the club. Rightly replaced by Pogba in the 69th minute of the match.

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25 Odion Ighalo

Missed a good chance to get United going. The Nigerian does not seem to be performing well for United, which is alarming with the transfer window about to close and United not reinforcing their attack in any way, shape of form.

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Substitutes

10 Marcus Rashford

Replaced Ighalo 69'. Made some excellent runs into the box and won the free-kick which Pogba scored the third goal of the game.

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6 Paul Pogba

Replaced James 69'. Scored a great free-kick in the 80th minute of the match to put United 3-0 up in the game and into the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup.

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14 Jesse Lingard

Replaced Fred 81'. Had little involvement in the game and what he did was typically frustrating, as has been the case from Lingard.

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Goals: Scott McTominay 44′, Juan Mata 73′, Paul Pogba 80′

Assists: Juan Mata 44′, Donny van de Beek 73′

Manchester United: Henderson; Dalot, Lindelof, Bailly, Williams; McTominay, Fred (Lingard 81′); Mata, Van de Beek, James (Pogba 69′); Ighalo (Rashford 69′)

Substitutes Not Used: Grant; Fosu-Mensah, Mengi; Greenwood

Bookings: Dan Burn 43′, Joel Veltman 79′; Victor Lindelof 86′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Ighalo, Mata, Van de Beek, James and Dalot start against Brighton in the Carabao Cup

Manchester United will return to the scene of controversy this evening as they take on Brighton and Hove Albion in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup at the American Express Community Stadium four days after their last visit to the stadium in the Premier League. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side won their first three points of the new season in the fixture in a game which awarded two penalties; one after the full time whistle. United will be pleased with their latest victory over Brighton, winning their last four encounters against the South Coast club. United will be happy with their return to winning ways after the victory over Luton Town also.

Solskjaer will be seeking to get the better of Graham Potter’s Brighton side for the second time in four days and earning a quarter-final place in the domestic competition, which will not be played until late December, meaning the Festive period will be a busy one for United. The Norwegian will be seeking to win his first trophy for the club and came close last season, reaching the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup, Emirates FA Cup and the UEFA Europa League last season. This season, United were expected to be much better but a last of pre-season has left the squad out of sorts and seeking to regain the pace which was lost at the end of last season.

This week could be a busy one for United with the summer transfer window closing next Monday (5 October), meaning United will have a short amount of time to get deals done. There are some areas that Solskjaer would like to strengthen this summer and some players that the club would like to offload. Chris Smalling is still linked in both AS Roma and Inter Milan in Italy and it has emerged that Andreas Pereira is subject to some interest from Lazio. The likes of Marcus Rojo and Phil Jones could also mean the club sees a flurry of activity. There is a domestic window that closes on the 16 October but Premier League clubs will not be able to sell to each other.

Manchester United:

Henderson;

Dalot, Lindelof, Bailly, Williams;

McTominay, Fred;

Mata, Van de Beek, James;

Ighalo

Substitutes:

Grant; Fosu-Mensah, Mengi; Pogba, Lingard; Rashford, Greenwood

Brighton and Hove Albion:

Steele;

Burn, Dunk, White;

Veltman, Molumby, Gross, Bernardo;

Jahanbakhsh, Mac Allister;

Gyokeres

Substitutes:

Sanchez; Roberts; Sanders, Cochrane, Jenks; Maupay, Trossard

United and Brighton have met twice in the League Cup in the history of the competition; a 1-1 draw on the 23 September 1992 with Danny Wallace scoring United’s goal and a 1-0 victory in the second leg with Mark Hughes scoring the winning goal. In the FA Cup, United and Brighton have met seven times with United winning winning five and drawing twice (both led to replays with United winning). It basically shows that United have not lost to Brighton in a cup match with nine matches played, six won and three drawn. It is a good record for United to keep alive this week as United look to reach the quarter-finals of the competition this season.

United and Brighton met at the American Express Community Stadium in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon. It was a 3-2 victory for United and there was some controversy. Neal Maupay opened the scoring for the home side from the penalty spot with United equalising minutes later through a Lewis Dunk own goal. United then took the lead through Marcus Rashford only for Solly March to equalise in added time. Harry Maguire headed into the top-left corner and cleared off the line by March. However, Maupay was judged to hand handled the ball, after the final whistle with a penalty being awarded and scored by Bruno Fernandes.

Written by John Walker

Predicted XI: [4-2-3-1] Van de Beek to add more edge to United’s midfield against Brighton in the Carabao Cup?

Manchester United will return to the scene of controversy on Wednesday evening as they take on Brighton and Hove Albion in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup at the American Express Community Stadium four days after their last visit to the stadium in the Premier League. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side won their first three points of the new season in the fixture in a game which awarded two penalties; one after the full time whistle. United will be pleased with their latest victory over Brighton, winning their last four encounters against the South Coast club. United will be happy with their return to winning ways after the victory over Luton Town also.

Solskjaer will be seeking to get the better of Graham Potter’s Brighton side for the second time in four days and earning a quarter-final place in the domestic competition, which will not be played until late December, meaning the Festive period will be a busy one for United. The Norwegian will be seeking to win his first trophy for the club and came close last season, reaching the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup, Emirates FA Cup and the UEFA Europa League last season. This season, United were expected to be much better but a last of pre-season has left the squad out of sorts and seeking to regain the pace which was lost at the end of last season.

This week could be a busy one for United with the summer transfer window closing next Monday (5 October), meaning United will have a short amount of time to get deals done. There are some areas that Solskjaer would like to strengthen this summer and some players that the club would like to offload. Chris Smalling is still linked in both AS Roma and Inter Milan in Italy and it has emerged that Andreas Pereira is subject to some interest from Lazio. The likes of Marcus Rojo and Phil Jones could also mean the club sees a flurry of activity. There is a domestic window that closes on the 16 October but Premier League clubs will not be able to sell to each other.

How United have faired against Brighton and Hove Albion in the League Cup and the FA Cup, plus their last meeting.

United and Brighton have met twice in the League Cup in the history of the competition; a 1-1 draw on the 23 September 1992 with Danny Wallace scoring United’s goal and a 1-0 victory in the second leg with Mark Hughes scoring the winning goal. In the FA Cup, United and Brighton have met seven times with United winning winning five and drawing twice (both led to replays with United winning). It basically shows that United have not lost to Brighton in a cup match with nine matches played, six won and three drawn. It is a good record for United to keep alive this week as United look to reach the quarter-finals of the competition this season.

United and Brighton met at the American Express Community Stadium in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon. It was a 3-2 victory for United and there was some controversy. Neal Maupay opened the scoring for the home side from the penalty spot with United equalising minutes later through a Lewis Dunk own goal. United then took the lead through Marcus Rashford only for Solly March to equalise in added time. Harry Maguire headed into the top-left corner and cleared off the line by March. However, Maupay was judged to hand handled the ball, after the final whistle with a penalty being awarded and scored by Bruno Fernandes.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face Brighton and Hove Albion in the Carabao Cup at the American Express Community Stadium on Wednesday evening…

Goalkeeper: Dean Henderson

The 23-year-old made his Manchester United debut against Luton Town in the Carabao Cup last week and will be expected to start against Brighton on Wednesday evening, keeping David De Gea for the visit of Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday in the Premier League. Last season, whilst at Sheffield United on loan, Henderson faced Brighton twice in the Premier League. At the American Express Community Stadium, the Blades won 1-0 with the match at Bramall Lane ending up a 1-1 draw with Neal Maupay’s goal being the one one conceded by the United goalkeeper – which looks good ready for this match considering the goals conceded on Saturday afternoon.

Defenders: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw

United’s defence it the area that needs the most improvement this season. It was expected that Solskjaer would sign a central defender this summer, but that looks unlikely as the days before the transfer window closes draw to a close. United’s transfer window has been poor to say the least with no real strengthening across the squad being done, so far at least. Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw should be starting in the fullback positions with Eric Bailly and Harry Maguire starting centrally. Right now, United have just three fit and experienced central defenders in the team that seem to have a future at the club. Victor Lindelof should be benched for this match.

Midfield Two: Fred, Donny van de Beek

Nemanja Matic has recently returned after some match fitness problems and rightly needed a break after the rigours of the end of last season. He played on Saturday but will probably be needed to face Spurs on Sunday so probably should not feature for United against Brighton for the second time this week. Also, with Paul Pogba’s form as it is, which is poor, playing him means that United are effectively down to ten men, which is not fair. Donny van de Beek will do what Pogba used to do as he is eager to perform for United so playing him is a no brainer. Fred could feature in place of Matic, other than that, Scott McTominay could be an option instead.

Midfield Three: Mason Greenwood, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford

With Spurs on the horizon, many would like to see Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes and Mason Greenwood rested but the early into the season, especially with a non existent pre-season, these players will require fitness to get them into the zone required to continue for the remainder of the season. Last season, this trio who play behind the striker were responsible for 51 goals and 24 assists, so they are important for United to get the better of their opposition. Agains Luton in the third round of the Carabao Cup, the introduction of this trio made it easier for United to get the result, scoring two goals in the ten minutes they played.

Forward: Anthony Martial

The Frenchman has not yet got himself off the mark this season and will be seeking to do that as soon as possible. He has played against Crystal Palace and Brighton this season, missing the 3-0 victory over Luton in the third round of the Carabao Cup. It will be important for Martial to get to speed and get himself off the mark as it will be much needed for United to find more and more goals as the season grown on. It seems likely that United will not be signing any attacking reinforcement this season with Jadon Sancho linked the the club and too expensive so Solskjaer will have to make do with the players he has, which is not the greatest way of backing him.

Substitutes: Lee Grant; Teden Mengi, Brandon Williams; Juan Mata, Daniel James, Scott McTominay; Odion Ighalo

United will have just three substitutes domestically this season and this will increase to five in the UEFA Champions League. Solskjaer will probably rest David De Gea from this match, keeping him fresh for the weekend. In which case, Lee Grant will take his place on the bench in case he is needed. In defence, academy graduates Teden Mengi and Brandon Williams could be called up. In midfield, Juan Mata, Daniel James and Scott McTominay could play a part in the game, if needed. Mata scored the penalty against Luton last week and might start in this game, like he did then. Odion Ighalo will be the only attacking player on the bench. He has not scored since June.

Written by John Walker

Preview: United to play to their strengths against Brighton with Pogba dropped due to poor fitness and form

Brighton and Hove Albion -v- Manchester United

Carabao Cup

American Express Community Stadium, Brighton

Wednesday 30 September 2020, KO 19:45 BST

Referee: Graham Scott Assistants: Daniel Robathan, Derek Eaton

Fourth Official: Simon Hooper

Manchester United will return to the scene of controversy on Wednesday evening as they take on Brighton and Hove Albion in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup at the American Express Community Stadium four days after their last visit to the stadium in the Premier League. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side won their first three points of the new season in the fixture in a game which awarded two penalties; one after the full time whistle. United will be pleased with their latest victory over Brighton, winning their last four encounters against the South Coast club. United will be happy with their return to winning ways after the victory over Luton Town also.

Solskjaer will be seeking to get the better of Graham Potter’s Brighton side for the second time in four days and earning a quarter-final place in the domestic competition, which will not be played until late December, meaning the Festive period will be a busy one for United. The Norwegian will be seeking to win his first trophy for the club and came close last season, reaching the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup, Emirates FA Cup and the UEFA Europa League last season. This season, United were expected to be much better but a last of pre-season has left the squad out of sorts and seeking to regain the pace which was lost at the end of last season.

This week could be a busy one for United with the summer transfer window closing next Monday (5 October), meaning United will have a short amount of time to get deals done. There are some areas that Solskjaer would like to strengthen this summer and some players that the club would like to offload. Chris Smalling is still linked in both AS Roma and Inter Milan in Italy and it has emerged that Andreas Pereira is subject to some interest from Lazio. The likes of Marcus Rojo and Phil Jones could also mean the club sees a flurry of activity. There is a domestic window that closes on the 16 October but Premier League clubs will not be able to sell to each other.

Manchester United: WWLLLW

Brighton and Hove Albion 3-2 W, Luton Town 3-0 W, Crystal Palace 3-1 L, Aston Villa 1-0 L (F), Sevilla 2-1 L, FC Copenhagen 1-0 W

Brighton and Hove Albion: LWWWLD

Manchester United 3-2 L, Preston North End 2-0 W, Newcastle United 3-0 W, Portsmouth 4-0 W, Chelsea 3-1 L, West Bromwich Albion 0-0 D (F)

Top Scorers: United and Brighton have started the season by scoring many goals with Brighton ahead, having played more matches.

Manchester United Goals: 2 – Marcus Rashford, 1 – Bruno Fernandes, Donny van de Beek, Juan Mata, Mason Greenwood, Own Goal

United started the 2020/21 season with a stutter and the last of a pre-season is showing with many players not hitting the ground running. That was visible against Crystal Palace in the 3-1 defeat at Old Trafford. It was even plain to see against Luton Town last week with United going 1-0 up because of a penalty, which was scored by Juan Mata. In the final ten minutes of the match Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood finished the tie with two more goals, winning 3-0. Against Brighton, United seemed laboured with many problems. They got the victory but it was not easy at all and came with a bit of help from VAR and a fair amount of controversy.

Brighton and Hove Albion Goals: 3 – Neal Maupay, 2 – Alexis Mac Allister, Alireza Jahanbakhsh, 1 – Aaron Connolly, Bernardo, Solly March, Leandro Trossard, Viktor Gyökeres

Brighton have started well this season having played at least two pre-season matches before the start of the season. It may have been down to hard luck that they did not beat United in the Premier League on Saturday, but that was what stopped them from winning. It was a largely fair match. Potter’s side will be seeking to make the quarter-final stages of the Carabao Cup, to improve their chances of having a good season and maybe contending for a domestic cup, if everything goes to plan. Brighton seem to be fitter than United and this match could see many changes from Saturday’s match, which might make it another fair match with both setting out to win.

Team News: Three players out of action for United with Brighton having four. This will be an important match for both teams but will end up making December a much busier month.

Solskjaer will still be without Axel Tuanzebe (ankle/foot) but he seems to be on the mend and back in training with a mid-October return on the cards. Phil Jones (knee) has been out since the Premier League restart in the summer, sitting out the rest of the 2019/20 season and so far the start of the 2020/21 season, which might be a blessing with the player not really playing a big part at the club anymore. Sergio Romero is out of selection too with an expected exit from the Old Trafford club before the summer transfer window closes in a week’s time. United might seen more additions this week, but none that could mean they would be in contention for this match.

Brighton still have Yves Bissouma out of action through suspension because of his red card against Newcastle United, missing the Carabao Cup victory over Preston North End and the Premier League defeat to Manchester United, along with this match four days later in the Carabao Cup. Jose Izquierdo (knee), Florin Andone (knee), and Christian Walton (ankle/foot) have all seemingly been ruled out of this match which might cause strength in depth problems for the home side. Brighton will be confident with the way they played against United at the weekend, despite the loss which saw them come back from a losing position to equalise, before losing.

Predicted Starting XI: Solskjaer to make few changes with Henderson, Bailly, Van de Beek and Fred returning to the starting XI against Brighton in the second match in four days?

It is expected that Solskjaer will make some changes ahead of this match, especially with the visit of Tottenham Hotspur to Old Trafford on the horizon in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon. I would expect to see Dean Henderson in goal with Eric Bailly standing in for Victor Lindelof, who has been terrible most of the time this season. In midfield, Fred and Donny van de Beek should start ahead of Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic with Bruno Fernandes in the advances position and Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood and Anthony Martial playing in the three forward positions in the 4-2-3-1 formation. It may not end up like that though.

Match Prediction: United have a great record against Brighton in domestic cup competitions with nine matches played and only three drawn – two of those led to replays with United winning.

United and Brighton have met twice in the League Cup in the history of the competition; a 1-1 draw on the 23 September 1992 with Danny Wallace scoring United’s goal and a 1-0 victory in the second leg with Mark Hughes scoring the winning goal. In the FA Cup, United and Brighton have met seven times with United winning winning five and drawing twice (both led to replays with United winning). It basically shows that United have not lost to Brighton in a cup match with nine matches played, six won and three drawn. It is a good record for United to keep alive this week as United look to reach the quarter-finals of the competition this season.

United and Brighton met at the American Express Community Stadium in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon. It was a 3-2 victory for United and there was some controversy. Neal Maupay opened the scoring for the home side from the penalty spot with United equalising minutes later through a Lewis Dunk own goal. United then took the lead through Marcus Rashford only for Solly March to equalise in added time. Harry Maguire headed into the top-left corner and cleared off the line by March. However, Maupay was judged to hand handled the ball, after the final whistle with a penalty being awarded and scored by Bruno Fernandes.

Brighton and Hove Albion 1-2 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

Player Ratings: Fernandes penalty see United beat Brighton; Rashford scored a stunner after Dunk own goal

Manchester United beat Brighton and Hove Albion 3-2 in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon. Brighton opened the scoring in the 40th minute from the penalty spot through Neal Maupay. United equalised with a Lewis Dunk own goal three minutes later. Marcus Rashford put United into the lead in the 55th minute but Solly March scored a late equaliser. That was not it though, a late penalty by Bruno Fernandes saw United victorious. Back to Brighton on Wednesday for the Carabao Cup.

Brighton started as the better team with United still trying to find their feet in the Premier League this season. Mason Greenwood opened the scoring in the 33rd minute of the match but the goal was disallowed for offside. Seven minutes later, Bruno Fernandes, who had already been booked, gave away a penalty which Neal Maupay scored with a Panenka after Adam Lallana played the ball to Tariq Lamptey, who was fouled by the Portuguese midfielder. David De Gea had no chance to save the penalty.

Before the end of the half, United drew level after winning a free-kick which Fernandes fired towards the back post with Nemanja Matic, who was booked minutes before, keeping the ball in and playing it towards Harry Maguire, who aimed to find the back of the net. The goal was given to Maguire initially but it was Lewis Dunk who scored an own goal, putting United level in the game. It was fortunate for United that they could get something before the end of the half as they had been terrible.

In the 47th minute of the match, Brighton were given another penalty by the referee as Aaron Connolly broke into the area with Paul Pogba making chase. The Brighton forward ran across Pogba, looked to be pulling his shirt then went down in the area. It was not a penalty for me and was quickly reversed by VAR with the referee looking at the challenge, which seemed to be initiated by Connolly. It is good to see VAR being used correctly this season, after the shambles that it was last season.

United took the lead in the 52nd minute of the match through Marcus Rashford with a clinical near-post finish but it was ruled out by VAR, being United’s second goal to be removed from the match and a Brighton penalty, making the start of the second half interesting. Three minutes later, Rashford produced some magic on the left, drove into the Brighton box, holding his nerve and superbly placing the ball into the top-right corner in a solo finish, putting United in the lead.

United seemed to be riding their luck towards the end of the match with Brighton seeking an equaliser or more. Solly March had hit the post already but equalised in the fifth minute of added time, which broke United’s spirit. However, United broke forward, won a corner with Fernandes taking it, Maguire jumping to meet the ball to head towards the far corner. March cleared off the line to defend the set-piece but Maupay seemed to handball in the box. The penalty was given by VAR with Fernandes winning the game for United. What a second half.

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

Unfortunate to concede a penalty, which was brilliantly taken by Maupay in the 40th minute of the match. Produced some fins saves in the second half, including one in added time. Conceded an equaliser five minutes into added time.

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29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Played well against Brighton. Unfortunate to see United conceded twice, once from the spot and a late equaliser. Good to see him back in the team and raring to go this season.

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2 Victor Lindelof

Does not have much support in the clubs fanbase because of poor defending. He did alright against Brighton but should be doing much better.

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5 Harry Maguire

Helped get United back into the game, despite Dunk scoring an own goal in the 43rd minute. Tried to get a winner for United after March's late equaliser, heading towards the top-left corner but March headed off the line. Maupay's handball gave United a penalty.

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23 Luke Shaw

Did well at left-back despite Brighton getting forward for much of the first half. Defended well and helped get the club forward as much as he could. He needs some competition in the position though, which will be a different dimension for United.

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31 Nemanja Matic

Slow but assured. Kept the ball in play from a Fernandes free-kick in the 43rd minute of the match, playing the ball to Maguire with Dunk scoring an own goal. United need his maturity, experience and defensive assurances in this team Other players around him can make up for the fact he is slow.

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6 Paul Pogba

I don't think the player is up to the levels of fitness that he should be after his positive coronavirus test. Saying that, he should be pushing himself to reach that fitness level. For two matches now, Pogba has been terrible for United. He much do better of Van de Beek will take his place leaving him on the bench. He was replaced by Fred in the 65th minute of the match.

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11 Mason Greenwood

Put United ahead in the 33rd minute of the match with a great finish but it was chalked off by VAR, which was unfortunate. He played well in the match with Brighton as the better side for the first half and some of the second. He was replaced by Bailly in the 83rd minute of the match.

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18 Bruno Fernandes

Booked early in the game then gave away a penalty in the 40th minute of the match. It was starting to look like a disasterclass for the Portuguese midfielder. He got himself an assist for Rashford's goal in the 55th minute, which put United into the lead in this game. Scored the winner for United from the penalty spot ten minutes into added time.

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10 Marcus Rashford

Scored twice, one being ruled out by VAR. Three minutes later, he produced some magic, running up the left, getting into the box and firing into the top-right corner of the net with a solo goal. He has something to give this season, just needs to find his feet after poor form coming back from his back injury. Rashford is a talent and he will be back to his best soon.

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9 Anthony Martial

It was a quiet game for the Frenchman, who has seen Rashford score twice in his last two appearances. He played a part in United's attacking play, which was good to see. He will be seeking to break his duck this season as soon as he can.

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Substitutes

17 Fred

Replaced Pogba 65'. Brought on to add some stability in the midfield, defensively. Kept hold of the ball most of the time and added more than Pogba did.

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3 Eric Bailly

Replaced Greenwood 83'. Good influence coming off the bench late into the game. United should have been better defensively, but still conceded a late equaliser.

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34 Donny van de Beek

Replaced Martial 90+1. Came on late into the game. Perhaps played a good part un pushing United forward after conceding the equaliser. He will be happy that United won.

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Goals: Neal Maupay 40′ penalty, Solly March 90+5′; Lewis Dunk o/g 43′, Marcus Rashford 55′, Bruno Fernandes 90+10′

Assists: Alireza Jahanbakhsh 90+5′; Bruno Fernandes 55′

Manchester United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw; Matic, Pogba; Greenwood (Bailly 83′), Fernandes, Rashford; Martial (Van de Beek 90+1′)

Substitutes Not Used: Henderson; Fosu-Mensah; Lingard, McTominay

Bookings: Leandro Trossard 42′, Ben White 74′, Lewis Dunk 83′; Bruno Fernandes 22′, Nemanja Matic 41′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Brighton and Hove Albion v Manchester United – Premier League – 26 September 2020

Manchester United face Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League this afternoon at the American Express Community Stadium, of which they will visit again next week in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are seeking their first Premier League victory of the season, after losing 3-1 to Crystal Palace last weekend and missing their first match against Burnley, which was postponed from a fortnight ago due to participating in the UEFA Europa League last month.

Graham Potter’s Brighton will be seeking to find their second Premier League victory of the season after falling to a 3-1 defeat to Chelsea on the opening weekend but beating Newcastle United 3-0 last weekend. Winning in both Carabao Cup matches against Portsmouth and Preston North End see the club set up a fourth round tie against United next week, which will be played in Brighton. United will be seeking to win both matches, to keep their season on track after their opening day dilemma.

Solskjaer is still seeking to bring in some fresh legs this summer, and get rid of some fringe players who have long since passes their time at the club but the frustrating ownership of the club added to the lack of any footballing knowledge by Ed Woodward and the sheer incompetence from Matt Judge, United look set to see this become their worst summer transfer window post-Sir Alex Ferguson. Solskjaer has a plan but needs to hierarchy of the club to back him in order to bring in players who have the quality the club needs to actually move forward for the first time in seven years.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw;

Matic, Pogba;

Greenwood, Fernandes, Rashford;

Martial

Substitutes:

Henderson; Bailly, Fosu-Mensah; Lingard, Fred, Van de Beek, McTominay

Brighton and Hove Albion:

Ryan;

White, Dunk, Webster;

Lamptey, Lallana, Alzate, March;

Trossard, Connolly, Maupay

Substitutes:

Steele, Gross, Jahanbakhsh, Bernardo, Burn, Veltman, Molumby

United and Brighton have met six times in the Premier League. United have won four times, losing twice. In terms of goals scored, United have scored 11 with Brighton scoring six with United winning and scoring two penalties and Brighton winning and scoring one. United have been shown just five yellow cards with Brighton shown 10. Neither a United nor a Brighton player have been sent off when both teams have faced each other in the Premier League. United and Brighton will face each other again next week.

In this fixture last season, which was played on the 30 June, United beat Brighton 3-0 with Mason Greenwood scoring the opening goal and Bruno Fernandes scoring a brace with goals in the 29th and 50th minute of the match. In the fixture at Old Trafford, United won 3-1 with Andreas Pereira opening the scoring in the 17th minute, Scott McTominay doubling the lead two minutes later and Marcus Rashford scoring two minutes after Lewis Dunk scored a consolation goal in the 64th minute.

Written by John Walker

Predicted XI: [4-2-3-1] Pogba, Matic, Greenwood, Fernandes, Rashford and Martial to start against Brighton?

Manchester United travel to Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon at the American Express Community Stadium, of which they will visit again next week in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are seeking their first Premier League victory of the season, after losing 3-1 to Crystal Palace last weekend and missing their first match against Burnley, which was postponed from a fortnight ago due to participating in the UEFA Europa League last month.

Graham Potter’s Brighton will be seeking to find their second Premier League victory of the season after falling to a 3-1 defeat to Chelsea on the opening weekend but beating Newcastle United 3-0 last weekend. Winning in both Carabao Cup matches against Portsmouth and Preston North End see the club set up a fourth round tie against United next week, which will be played in Brighton. United will be seeking to win both matches, to keep their season on track after their opening day dilemma.

Solskjaer is still seeking to bring in some fresh legs this summer, and get rid of some fringe players who have long since passes their time at the club but the frustrating ownership of the club added to the lack of any footballing knowledge by Ed Woodward and the sheer incompetence from Matt Judge, United look set to see this become their worst summer transfer window post-Sir Alex Ferguson. Solskjaer has a plan but needs to hierarchy of the club to back him in order to bring in players who have the quality the club needs to actually move forward for the first time in seven years.

How United have faired against Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League.

United and Brighton have met six times in the Premier League. United have won four times, losing twice. In terms of goals scored, United have scored 11 with Brighton scoring six with United winning and scoring two penalties and Brighton winning and scoring one. United have been shown just five yellow cards with Brighton shown 10. Neither a United nor a Brighton player have been sent off when both teams have faced each other in the Premier League. United and Brighton will face each other again next week.

In this fixture last season, which was played on the 30 June, United beat Brighton 3-0 with Mason Greenwood scoring the opening goal and Bruno Fernandes scoring a brace with goals in the 29th and 50th minute of the match. In the fixture at Old Trafford, United won 3-1 with Andreas Pereira opening the scoring in the 17th minute, Scott McTominay doubling the lead two minutes later and Marcus Rashford scoring two minutes after Lewis Dunk scored a consolation goal in the 64th minute.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League at the American Express Community Stadium on Saturday afternoon…

Goalkeeper: David De Gea

David De Gea conceded three goals against Palace, which is something that United need to be averting in order to find their feet in the Premier League. The Spanish number one did save a penalty, but it was ordered to be retaken as he left his line and Wilfried Zaha scored it, then scoring again later in the match to carve a 3-1 victory. United were just not ready for that match as they had not long been preparing and only played one pre-season match which nine first team players missed. Dean Henderson played against Luton during the week, making his debut and playing well.

De Gea should be starting this match and Henderson could maybe play in the Carabao Cup, which will see United head back down to Brighton next week to face them in the fourth round of the League Cup. Henderson might earn his stripes playing in the cup competitions this season, maybe not the UEFA Champions League, which could see him make his Premier League debut for United in place of De Gea, in order to keep both goalkeepers fresh for the entire season. It is expected that Henderson will challenge De Gea for the number one shirt at the club but it night not happen easily for him.

Defenders: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw

United’s defence could do with some strengthening this summer but that will only happen if football men were running the club as right now, money is seen as the best thing and not spending it is better for the Glazers, who have started to ruin this football club because of their greed – but the less said about that now, the better. Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw should start in the fullback positions as they are the best the club has to offer right now. If Shaw can go the season injury free, it will be much better. United could do with another left-back though, hence the interest in Alex Telles.

Centrally, United do not have much depth at this moment in time. Phil Jones and Axel Tuanzebe are both injured and have been since the Premier League restart, Marcos Rojo seems to be out of favour at this moment in time and Chris Smalling is still being linked to AS Roma despite the transfer window coming to a close a week on Monday. That leaves Victor Lindelof, who was defensively poor against Palace, Eric Bailly and Harry Maguire as the experienced players in the squad with Teden Mengi coming through from the academy. In this match, Bailly and Maguire should start.

Midfield Two: Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba

Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic should be starting against Brighton on Saturday but a few days rest might be too much for Matic, who was not ready for the start to the season because of a lack of match fitness. Matic is the best defensive minded midfielder at the club right now and knows what he needs to be doing in the team. Last season, his form was great and he earned himself a new contract at the Old Trafford club, which was well deserved. If Matic is not ready for this match, Donny van de Beek could start or even Scott McTominay who can do a job.

Pogba was poor against Crystal Palace last weekend and will need to find his form this season otherwise he could find himself on the bench as Van de Beek is great competition for him based on the fact he always wants to play and always wants to win. On paper, United’s midfield is probably the best it has ever been since Sir Alex Ferguson retired at the end of the 2012/13 season, which is something that United, as a club, are still trying to recover from. Pogba could be the player that makes this midfield competitive and ready to launch a challenge to win trophies this season.

Midfield Three: Mason Greenwood, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford

The 4-2-3-1 formation seems to be to go to formation for Solskjaer and one that he does not yet feel confident in changing. It is probably the best formation to utilise with this squad, until the hierarchy bring in some more quality, which does not seem to be happening yet. United have a good, young attacking squad with the likes of Mason Greenwood, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Bruno Fernandes most often as the attacking four players on the pitch. Against Brighton, the trio of Greenwood, Fernandes and Rashford should be starting.

The trio came on in the 79th minute against Luton on Tuesday and within ten minutes, Rashford and Greenwood had scored with Fernandes and Greenwood getting the assists for the goals. United won 3-0 with a first half penalty by Juan Mata which was won by Brandon Williams who was fouled on the edge of the box. Fernandes was a great signing in January and it is hoped that he will continue to drive United forward and inspire the team to be creative and aim to win matches, which is what United needs this season seeing as the manager has not been backed by the club, again.

Forward: Anthony Martial

The Frenchman scored 23 goals and 12 assist last season but this season, in one appearance, Martial has not yet scored and did not have the best of appearances against Palace last weekend. The 24-year-old did not feature against Luton during the week and will be seeking to get up to speed after seeing both Rashford and Greenwood scored in the final few minutes of the match in the Carabao Cup. Martial is a good forward and showed his ability last season but consistently, he has a lot more to do to become one fo the great strikers to have played for the club.

Substitutes: Dean Henderson; Victor Lindelof, Teden Mengi; Juan Mata, Daniel James, Donny van de Beek; Odion Ighalo

Solskjaer will need to have the right quality of players on the bench to face Brighton on Saturday as it could well be a tough match for United as they seek their first Premier League win of the season. De Gea will start ahead of Dean Henderson in this game although the 23-year-old did well against Luton Town making his debut for the club and performing a few good saves, despite Luton not getting the better of United many times. Defensively, Victor Lindelof and Teden Mengi could be available on the bench should they be needed to reinforce the back line.

In midfield, which is an area that could be tired later in the match, Solskjaer could choose from Juan Mata, who scored the penalty against Luton, Daniel James, who started against Crystal Palace last weekend and was rested during the week and Donny van de Beek, who started against Luton in the Carabao Cup. United are not yet ready to field Pogba, Fernandes and Van de Beek in midfield as defensively, it could pose problems for an attacking team. In attack, United have just one option; Odion Ighalo. The Nigerian started well at United but of late, he has seemed laboured and lethargic.

Written by John Walker

Preview: United’s big guns to push for victory over Brighton earning their first three points of the season?

Brighton and Hove Albion -v- Manchester United

Premier League

American Express Community Stadium, Brighton

Saturday 26 September 2020, KO 12:30 BST

Referee: Chris Kavanagh Assistants: Sian Massey-Ellis, Constantine Hatzidakis 

Fourth Official: Graham Scott

VAR: Simon Hooper Assistant VAR: Neil Davies

Manchester United travel to Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon at the American Express Community Stadium, of which they will visit again next week in the fourth round of the Carabao Cup. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are seeking their first Premier League victory of the season, after losing 3-1 to Crystal Palace last weekend and missing their first match against Burnley, which was postponed from a fortnight ago due to participating in the UEFA Europa League last month.

Graham Potter’s Brighton will be seeking to find their second Premier League victory of the season after falling to a 3-1 defeat to Chelsea on the opening weekend but beating Newcastle United 3-0 last weekend. Winning in both Carabao Cup matches against Portsmouth and Preston North End see the club set up a fourth round tie against United next week, which will be played in Brighton. United will be seeking to win both matches, to keep their season on track after their opening day dilemma.

Solskjaer is still seeking to bring in some fresh legs this summer, and get rid of some fringe players who have long since passes their time at the club but the frustrating ownership of the club added to the lack of any footballing knowledge by Ed Woodward and the sheer incompetence from Matt Judge, United look set to see this become their worst summer transfer window post-Sir Alex Ferguson. Solskjaer has a plan but needs to hierarchy of the club to back him in order to bring in players who have the quality the club needs to actually move forward for the first time in seven years.

Manchester United: WLLLWW

Luton Town 3-0 W, Crystal Palace 3-1 L, Aston Villa 1-0 L (F), Sevilla 2-1 L, FC Copenhagen 1-0 W, Linzer ASK 2-1 W

Brighton and Hove Albion: WWWLDD

Preston North End 2-0 W, Newcastle United 3-0 W, Portsmouth 4-0 W, Chelsea 3-1 L, West Bromwich Albion 0-0 D (F), Chelsea 1-1 D (F)

Top Scorers: Rashford and Greenwood off the mark with Anthony Martial playing catch up after defeat to Palace last weekend; Jahanbakhsh, Maupay and Mac Allister on two goals each for Brighton.

Manchester United Goals: 1 – Donny van de Beek, Juan Mata, Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood

United started the Premier League season with a 3-1 defeat to Crystal Palace at Old Trafford last week, which was a poor match for United and a team that looked well out of it in terms of match fitness. Against Luton Town, it did not look much better with Solskjaer making a number of changes from the team which were beaten by Palace. A penalty late in the first half gave United an advantage that they could not build upon until substitutions were made. When Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood and Bruno Fernandes were brought on, United were minutes away from scoring their second and third goals with all three players instrumental in scoring them.

Brighton and Hove Albion Goals: 2 – Alireza Jahanbakhsh, Neal Maupay, Alexis Mac Allister, 1 – Bernardo, Viktor Gyökeres, Leandro Trossard, Aaron Connolly

Brighton have started the season well with Carabao Cup victories over Portsmouth (4-0) and Preston North End (2-0), also beating Newcastle United 3-0 in the Premier League. The opening fixture saw the South Coast club beaten 3-1 by Frank Lampard’s Chelsea, which was an unfortunate result. United’s poor Premier League start will see Brighton have more confidence against them but United could be nearing some kind of fitness based on the fact they had a month off after the UEFA Europa League before the new season started, only playing one pre-season friendly when Brighton played two fixtures before the season started.

Team News: Tuanzebe, Jones and Romero out of action for United with Brighton having between four and six players out of action for this Premier League fixture.

United will still have Axel Tuanzebe (ankle/foot), Phil Jones (knee) and Sergio Romero (not available for selection) – possible due to an impending transfer for the Argentinian who is linked to Valencia this summer. David De Gea, Victor Lindelof, Luke Shaw, Paul Pogba, Scott McTominay, Daniel James and Anthony Martial were all rested for the 3-0 victory over Luton Town in the Carabao Cup with Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood and Bruno Fernandes all coming off the bench for the remaining ten minutes of the match. Solskjaer side will be stronger with added match fitness.

Brighton have four players definitely out of action with Jose Izquierdo (knee), Florin Andone (knee), and Christian Walton (ankle/foot) all injured with Yves Bissouma suspended due to a red card, meaning that he will miss this match against United and the one next week in the Carabao Cup, returning against Everton. Tariq Lamptey (groin/hip) has a 75% chance of featuring against United with Aaron Connolly (muscular tightness) seemingly recovering from his injury ahead of Saturday’s match, but he might still be a doubt for Potter’s side.

Predicted Starting XI: De Gea, Pogba, Fernandes, Rashford, Greenwood and Martial to return against Brighton on Saturday afternoon?

I expect David De Gea to return to the starting XI for the Premier League clash with Brighton but Dean Henderson to return against the South Coast club in the Carabao Cup fixture next week. Eric Bailly should start alongside Harry Maguire in the centre of defence but Victor Lindelof will probably return and Luke Shaw and Aaron Wan-Bissaka should both play in the fullback positions. Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic should be paired in midfield with Bruno Fernandes playing in the advanced position with Marcus Rashford to the left, Mason Greenwood to the right and Anthony Martial playing ahead of him.

Match Prediction: In six Premier League matches, United have won four, losing twice. This season, Brighton have started off much better than United, who are two competitive matches into the season.

United and Brighton have met six times in the Premier League. United have won four times, losing twice. In terms of goals scored, United have scored 11 with Brighton scoring six with United winning and scoring two penalties and Brighton winning and scoring one. United have been shown just five yellow cards with Brighton shown 10. Neither a United nor a Brighton player have been sent off when both teams have faced each other in the Premier League. United and Brighton will face each other again next week.

In this fixture last season, which was played on the 30 June, United beat Brighton 3-0 with Mason Greenwood scoring the opening goal and Bruno Fernandes scoring a brace with goals in the 29th and 50th minute of the match. In the fixture at Old Trafford, United won 3-1 with Andreas Pereira opening the scoring in the 17th minute, Scott McTominay doubling the lead two minutes later and Marcus Rashford scoring two minutes after Lewis Dunk scored a consolation goal in the 64th minute.

Brighton and Hove Albion 1-3 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

copyright: JW