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Ratings: Luke Shaw rose to the occasion to help United to victory over Watford; Rashford and Martial both scored

Manchester United beat Watford 2-1 in the Premier League at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon. It was a good victory for manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who saw his team return to winning ways in his first match since being announced as the permanent manager of the club on a three-year contract.

United took the lead in the 28th minute of the match through Marcus Rashford. Luke Shaw played a through ball into Rashford as he was entering the final third of the pitch. The England striker then took a touch, placing the ball slightly over the goalkeeper and into the back of the net, rousing a celebration from the Old Trafford faithful.

United doubled their lead in the 72nd minute of the match, after a period of the game which saw Watford in good form and pressing United. Jesse Lingard got the ball in the box, played it into the middle for Anthony Martial, Ben Foster then made the dive to deny the Frenchman but the loose ball fell for Martial to double United’s lead.

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Man of the Match: Luke Shaw

The England international played well against Watford. It is good to see him having a good season, which is the first in his career at United. Shaw managed to get himself forward at every opportunity and assisted the first goal of the game, passing a great ball to Marcus Rashford, who buried his shot. He was also influential in spells of the game. Great to see.

Match Statistics:

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

The Spanish number one played well for United. Managed to stop Deeney from scoring early doors and palmed an effort from Pereyra into touch. Unfortunate not to keep a clean sheet though.

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18 Ashley Young

The veteran winger-cum-right-back seemed to be tired, despite not playing for more than a fortnight. In the second half, he did improve slightly but not enough to keep his place against Wolves. Diogo Dalot needs to replace him.

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Chris Smalling

Got stuck in against Watford. Was the difference at times with interceptions. Helped United get what they deserved. May he keep his form at the time where it matters.

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4 Phil Jones

After two months on the sidelines, Jones is back. He was steady during the game and hardly put a foot wrong. Unfortunate to conceded a late goal though, but that was not on him.

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23 Luke Shaw

Played well for United. Got the assist for the opening goal of the game, with Rashford scoring. Influential in the game today.

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21 Ander Herrera

The Spanish midfielder played 63 minutes against Watford at Old Trafford before he was replaced by Pereira. Herrera had a 58% influence in the game and his role was mainly keeping possession for United.

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31 Nemanja Matic

United need to seek a player to replace the Serbian in the summer. His regression has hit hard over the last few matches. I saw someone on Twitter state that milk could turn faster than Matic. Time for change?

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6 Paul Pogba

The Frenchman did not have the best of matches but did not hide on the pitch, which is something he has done since he came back to United. At 1-0 up, the showboat emerged when there was still a lot to do. He needs to keep it simple.

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8 Juan Mata

The veteran Spanish midfielder had a small influence in the game but played better in the number ten role. He had a 64% influence in the game, for his passing more than anything else. He was replaced just after the hour by Lingard.

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10 Marcus Rashford

Opened the scoring for United after Shaw played a great ball ahead to him.

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9 Anthony Martial

The Frenchman played well against Watford and managed to score a crucial goal in the 72nd minute of the match, with assistance from Lingard, although Foster made the dive to deny Martial, who then pounced on the loose ball to put United 2-0 up. The Frenchman was later replaced after suffering a knock with Marcos Rojo replacing him in the 77th minute.

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Substitutes

14 Jesse Lingard

Replaced Mata 63'. Good to see him back and raring to go. Set Martial up for United's second goal, although it was not an assist.

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Andreas Pereira

Replaced Herrera 63'. Booked late in the game as Watford had just found an equaliser. He provided much-needed energy to the midfield for the remaining 30 minutes of the match.

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16 Marcos Rojo

Replaced Martial 77'. Not impressive after his long spell out of the game. Culpable for Watford's late goal. United could have kept a clean sheet. Not sure he represents anything United do at this time. Might be out of the door in the summer.

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Goals: Marcus Rashford 28′, Anthony Martial 72′; Abdoulaye Doucouré 90′

Assists: Luke Shaw 28′; Isaac Success 90′

Manchester United: De Gea; Young, Smalling, Jones, Shaw; Herrera (Pereira 63′), Matic, Pogba; Mata (Lingard 63′), Rashford, Martial (Rojo 77′)

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Dalot; Fred; Lukaku

Bookings: Andreas Pereira 90+2′; Will Hughes 17′, Adam Masina 82′

Confirmed Starting XI: Smalling and Jones in the centre of defence; Mata returns; Rashford leading the line

Manchester United will be back in action at the Theatre of Dreams on Saturday afternoon as they welcome Javi Gracia’s Watford in the Premier League. United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, just announced as the new permanent manager for the next three years, will be seeking to get back to winning ways after two back to back defeats.

There is a great feeling around the Old Trafford club, especially after Solskjaer has been confirmed as the new manager of the club. Perhaps a director of football is incoming also, which would set the club up for a good summer transfer window as things really do need to change. United, as a team, seem more confidence under Solskjaer, which is a good thing.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Young, Smalling, Jones, Shaw;

Herrera, Matic, Pogba;

Mata, Rashford, Martial

Substitutes:

Romero; Dalot, Rojo; Lingard, Pereira, Fred; Lukaku

United and Watford have played 31 competitive matches in the history of both clubs, dating back to the first match which was played on the 28 January 1950, a 1-0 United victory in the FA Cup. United has won 21 matches, drawn five matches and lost five matches. United has scored 57 goals, conceded 27, keeping 13 clean sheets.

United still need to get back to winning ways after losing to Arsenal in the Premier League and Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Emirates FA Cup. Other than those defeats, United had a good streak, winning three times, drawing once. It is important for Solskjaer that United overturn this bit of poor form and find their feet and confidence in front of goal again.

Watford has not been in the best of form recently, which adds uncertainty for United, who need to return to winning ways after losing their last two matches. Javi Gracia’s side has los twice in their last six matches, conceding five goals against Liverpool and another three against Manchester City. United should ensure they are ready to battle.

How Manchester United could look against Watford; 4-3-3 formation – Rashford leading, Lingard and Martial supporting, Pogba running the show?

Manchester United will be back in action at the Theatre of Dreams on Saturday afternoon as they welcome Javi Gracia’s Watford in the Premier League. United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, just announced as the new permanent manager for the next three years, will be seeking to get back to winning ways after two back to back defeats.

There is a great feeling around the Old Trafford club, especially after Solskjaer has been confirmed as the new manager of the club. Perhaps a director of football is incoming also, which would set the club up for a good summer transfer window as things really do need to change. United, as a team, seem more confidence under Solskjaer, which is a good thing.

United and Watford have played 31 competitive matches in the history of both clubs, dating back to the first match which was played on the 28 January 1950, a 1-0 United victory in the FA Cup. United has won 21 matches, drawn five matches and lost five matches. United has scored 57 goals, conceded 27, keeping 13 clean sheets.

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Goalkeeper: David De Gea

The Spanish number one was rested from the Emirates FA Cup match against Wolves which saw United exit the competition. After the international break, David De Gea will be raring to go and help his team return to winning ways, hopefully getting the result they need. Perhaps he can then help United get ready for Wolves on Tuesday.

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Defence: Diogo Dalot, Chris Smalling, Victor Lindelof, Luke Shaw

United has not kept a clean sheet since the 0-0 draw with Liverpool at Old Trafford five matches ago. This is worrying for the defence, especially after back to back defeats. Diogo Dalot should start at right-back, with Luke Shaw at left-back. Chris Smalling and Victor Lindelof should keep their places in the centre of defence. It could be a tough match.

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Midfield Three: Ander Herrera, Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba

The midfield trio of Ander Herrera, Nemanja Matic, and Paul Pogba is probably the best option Solskjaer has this season. He has some good rotation options also. Pogba may need to push himself to get a good performance, as he was lacking in the last two matches. Matic needs to be trusted to shield the back four with Herrera linking both teammates.

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Forward Three: Jesse Lingard, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial

With Romelu Lukaku sitting out the last match and both Belgium matches, he could well be a big risk for the visit of Watford. Marcus Rashford missed both England matches but could well be fit, meaning he would lead the line. Jesse Lingard returned from injury recently and he could be in better shape for this game. Anthony Martial could be back too.

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Substitutes: Sergio Romero; Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo, Ashley Young; Andreas Pereira, Fred; Romelu Lukaku

The substitutes could be the key to United winning this match. I think Lukaku could make the bench, other than him, there is no experienced attacking players that could replace him. Andreas Pereira and Fred could be the midfield options with Ashley Young, Phil Jones, and Marcos Rojo as the defensive players. Sergio Romero will most likely return to the bench.

Preview: Solskjaer seeking a Theatre of Dreams victory over Watford to return to winning ways

Manchester United -v- Watford

Premier League

Old Trafford, Manchester

Saturday 30 March 2019; KO 15:00 GMT

Referee: Stuart Attwell

Manchester United will be back in action at the Theatre of Dreams on Saturday afternoon as they welcome Javi Gracia’s Watford in the Premier League. United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, just announced as the new permanent manager for the next three years, will be seeking to get back to winning ways after two back to back defeats.

There is a great feeling around the Old Trafford club, especially after Solskjaer has been confirmed as the new manager of the club. Perhaps a director of football is incoming also, which would set the club up for a good summer transfer window as things really do need to change. United, as a team, seem more confidence under Solskjaer, which is a good thing.

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Form: Watford has had better results recently but they have conceded more goals than United

Manchester United: LLWWWD

Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-1 L, Arsenal 2-0 L, Paris Saint-Germain 3-1 W, Southampton 3-2 W, Crystal Palace 3-1 W, Liverpool 0-0 D

United still need to get back to winning ways after losing to Arsenal in the Premier League and Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Emirates FA Cup. Other than those defeats, United had a good streak, winning three times, drawing once. It is important for Solskjaer that United overturn this bit of poor form and find their feet and confidence in front of goal again.

Watford: WLWLWW

Crystal Palace 2-1 W, Manchester City 3-1 L, Leicester City 2-1 W, Liverpool 5-0 L, Cardiff City 5-1 W, Queens Park Rangers 1-0 W

Watford has not been in the best of form recently, which adds uncertainty for United, who need to return to winning ways after losing their last two matches. Javi Gracia’s side has los twice in their last six matches, conceding five goals against Liverpool and another three against Manchester City. United should ensure they are ready to battle.

Top Scorers: United have scored more goals this season but they need to start scoring again, starting against Watford

Manchester United: 15 – Romelu Lukaku, 14 – Paul Pogba, 12 – Marcus Rashford, 11 – Anthony Martial, 5 – Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, 3 – Ander Herrera, 2 – Marouane Fellaini, Alexis Sanchez, Ashley Young, 1 – Fred, Victor Lindelof, Nemanja Matic, Andreas Pereira, Luke Shaw, Chris Smalling

Watford: 9 – Troy Deeney, 7 – Gerard Deulofeu, Andre Gray, 6 – Roberto Pereyra, 4 – Etienne Capoue, Isaac Success, 3 – Craig Cathcart, Abdoulaye Doucouré, José Holebas, 2 – Will Hughes, Domingos Quina, 1 – Tom Cleverley, Ken Sema

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Team News: Injuries still present for United but the squad is still ready to continue the season

United has ten players on the sidelines through injury. Alexis Sanchez (MCL) is definitely out of this fixture. The following nine players are doubts; Antonio Valencia (calf), Romelu Lukaku (foot), Mason Greenwood (illness), Marcus Rashford (ankle), Nemanja Matic, Luke Shaw, Matteo Darmian (knock), Anthony Martial (knee) and Eric Bailly (head).

Watford manager Javi Gracia has a near fully-fit squad to choose from ahead of the clash with United at the Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon. José Holebas is the only doubt as he is sidelined with an ankle injury. Other than that, his side is in good spirits and form and they will be seeking to return to the Theatre of Dreams looking for a victory.

Predicted Starting XI: Rashford to lead the line, Martial and Lingard to support, Pogba to continue France form to inspire United?

With the number of injuries still within the squad, Solskjaer could have to make do with a number of changes again. There is a chance that the likes of Nemanja Matic, Marcus Rashford and Luke Shaw could be fit enough to face Watford, being that all three played no part of the international break. However, Solskjaer does have a big squad which he needs to trust.

Match Prediction: United has been dominant over Watford in the past but need to increase their game to get the win this weekend

United and Watford have played 31 competitive matches in the history of both clubs, dating back to the first match which was played on the 28 January 1950, a 1-0 United victory in the FA Cup. United has won 21 matches, drawn five matches and lost five matches. United has scored 57 goals, conceded 27, keeping 13 clean sheets.

Manchester United 2-1 Watford

Manchester United fancied to end Watford’s 100% record

Manchester United kick-off a busy few weeks with a tricky looking trip to Watford in the Premier League on Saturday.

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Jose Mourinho’s side started the campaign with a victory over Leicester City, but their defensive frailties were exposed in subsequent defeats by Brighton and Hove Albion and Tottenham Hotspur.

However, they bounced back with a comfortable 2-0 success at Burnley before the international break and they look decent bet to follow-up at Vicarage Road.

Watford have won all four games this season to sit alongside Liverpool and Chelsea at the top of the table, but their recent record against United is woeful.

The Red Devils did the double over Watford last season, winning 4-2 on the road and 1-0 back at Old Trafford.

United have now won nine of their last 10 meetings with Watford in the Premier League, with their last defeat coming during the 2016/17 campaign.

Etienne Capoue, Juan Zuniga and Troy Deeney got the goals that day, with Marcus Rashford grabbing United’s reply.

Phil Jones and Sergio Romero remain on the sidelines for United this weekend, while Rashford misses the game after receiving a three-match ban following his sending-off at Turf Moor.

Luke Shaw could also out after suffering a concussion during England’s defeat against Spain. Marcos Rojo could replace the full-back, but he played just over 50 minutes for United’s U23s in the 1-1 draw with Reading in the Premier League 2 on Friday evening.

Gerard Deulofeu is close to returning for the home side, but Younes Kaboul and Tom Cleverley are still out.

United will undoubtedly be eager to record a victory this weekend ahead of what is a busy period for the club.

Mourinho’s side face Swiss outfit Young Boys in the Champions League on September 19, before returning to league action against Wolverhampton Wanderers next weekend.

Derby County travel to Old Trafford in the EFL Cup the following Tuesday, ahead of a trip to West Ham United in the league on September 29.

United return to European action against Valencia the following Tuesday, before completing a hectic period at home to Newcastle United in the Premier League on October 6.

Watford have certainly started the season well, but United look a solid wager at odds of 9/4 to win 2-0 this weekend.

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Ratings: Eric Bailly put in a decent defensive display; Michael Carrick said his goodbyes in Watford victory

Manchester United beat Watford 1-0 at Old Trafford in the final Premier League match of the season. It was a match which would be heavy on the heart as Michael Carrick was saying goodbye to the Old Trafford faithful, starting the match as the captain and being replaced by Paul Pogba in the 85th minute of the match.

Marcus Rashford scored the only goal of the game, which was started by Carrick’s immense pass to Juan Mata, before the Spaniard passed to the 20-year-old, scoring his seventh goal of the season. United went out on a high at the Theatre of Dreams, earning a total of 81 points this season, 19 behind champions, Manchester City.

There is all to play for in just under a weeks time with United going head to head with Chelsea to contend for the Emirates FA Cup. Chelsea may not be in high spirits after losing 3-0 to Newcastle United this afternoon. It has been a good season for United, frustrating at times, but an improvement has been made in terms of results, especially in the Premier League.

Manchester United

22 Sergio Romero

Kept a clean sheet for United. He was the busier goalkeeper in this match and produced quite a few fine saves. United have kept 19 clean sheets this season, half of the Premier League matches played.

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Matteo Darmian

The Italian had a good game, which could well be his last for the club with Juventus on the prowl. Janmaat caused him a few problems, but nothing his team could not help him with.

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3 Eric Bailly

Man of the Match for me, although Carrick is also high on the list, it being his last game. The Ivorian put in a solid defensive performance and could have earned himself a place in the FA Cup final starting XI.

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16 Marcos Rojo

Got booked in the first eight minutes of the match. Watford were not at the top of their game, if they were, Rojo would have been the weakest link in defence. Seemed rusty after not playing for a while.

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18 Ashley Young

It was a comfortable game for Young. Defensively he did what he needed to do. Did not offer all that much offensively. Might not be the first choice left-back next season, if the rumours are true.

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17 Daley Blind

The Dutchman put in a good performance in what could have been his last game for United. His passing was good, as it always has been and he got involved in the game, at times.

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16 Michael Carrick

Te veteran midfielder, who will be sat in the dugout next season was comfortable in possession, as he has been throughout his career. Played an excellent ball into Juan Mata for Marcus Rashford's goal. Could have scored himself too. End of an era for Manchester United.

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39 Scott McTominay

It was not the best of games for young McTominay. His breakthrough season has been a good one and he is not the finished article yet. Nearly did not finish the game because of an injury. Offered very little and was booked late on.

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8 Juan Mata

A good performance from the Spanish magician. He became the playmaker today and really helped United win the game. Played Carrick's pass square to Rashford to open the scoring. A good win for United.

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Alexis Sanchez

The Chilean really put in the effort, as he has done since he signed for United. He was poor in possession and after being played in for a pass, his control of the ball was not the best. Off day or tired after a long season. His rest will come this summer as he will not play in the World Cup.

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10 Marcus Rashford

Scored the only goal of the game with the only shot on target. Rashford linked up well in attack and tried the get the better of the Watford defence at times. He needs to be more of a threat in attack to be called upon a bit more. Early in his career as he broke through just over two years ago. Will have a good World Cup and could come back to United with more experience.

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Substitutes

23 Luke Shaw

Replaced Young 61'. Had around half an hour to play, possibly to get himself in Mourinho's plans for next season. Got booked for a cynical foul. Did little else.

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21 Ander Herrera

Replaced Blind 77'. The Spanish midfielder came on to help United keep their clean sheet and win their last match of the season. He was not really involved in the match though.

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6 Paul Pogba

Replaced Carrick 85'. Came on to see the captain end his career on a high, getting a standing ovation at the Theatre of Dreams. Rarely got involved with so little time left to play.

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Goals: Marcus Rashford 34′

Assists: Juan Mata 34′

Manchester United: Romero; Darmian, Bailly, Rojo, Blind (Herrera 77′); Carrick (Pogba 85′), McTominay; Mata, Sanchez, Young (Shaw 60′); Rashford

Substitutes Not Used: Pereira; Jones, Valencia; Lingard

Bookings: Marcos Rojo 8′, Ashley Young 57′, Scott McTominay 69′

Confirmed Starting XI: Carrick starts to mark the end of his playing career against Watford

Manchester United face Watford at Old Trafford in the final match of the Premier League season. United have already secured second place this season and therefore have qualified for the UEFA Champions League next season. The results for United have not been so great at the end of the season, suffering a 1-0 defeat away to Brighton and Hove Albion just over a week ago, then struggled to a 0-0 draw against West Ham United at the Freeloader Stadium.

Today we will say goodbye to Michael Carrick, who will start his final game at the Theatre of Dreams before he embarks on a coaching career at the club as part of Jose Mourinho’s coaching staff. Rui Faria will also say goodbye to his home of two years as he will also leave the club at the end of the season.

Manchester United:

Romero;

Darmian, Bailly, Rojo, Blind;

Carrick, McTominay;

Mata, Sanchez, Young;

Rashford

Substitutes:

Pereira; Jones, Shaw, Valencia; Pogba, Lingard, Herrera

Manchester United and Watford have played 29 times in the history of both clubs, United winning 19 times, drawing five times and Watford winning five times. After a string of 11 straight victories, United lost 3-1 to the Hornets on the 18th September 2016 away from home, winning the reverse fixture at Old Trafford 2-0 last season. Earlier this season, United survived a late onslaught to win 4-2 away from home, now seeking a victory on the closing day of the season at the Theatre of Dreams, with just under a week to go before the Emirates FA Cup final against Chelsea.

copyright: JW