Menu

Ratings: Fernandes, Greenwood and McTominay shone in defeat to to RB Leipzig as United exit Champions League

Manchester United were knocked out of the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday evening after losing 3-2 to RB Leipzig at the RB Arena. Angeliño opened the scoring in the second minute with Amadou Haidara doubling the lead in the 13th minute of the match. A third goal was scored in the first half, but VAR ruled it out for offside. United did conceded the third goal of the match in the 69th minute through Justin Kluivert but a penalty scored by Bruno Fernandes then a header from Harry Maguire got United back into the match seeking a third goal to stay in the Champions League. But the Europa League it is this season now.

It was another poor start for United this season as the hosts opened up the scoring in the second minute of the match with Manchester City loanee Angeliño firing Leipzig 1-0 on the first attack of the match. It was a dire position for United to put themselves into this early in the match. Their chances of continuing in the competition became slimmer. United were not able to recover from the hosts quick passing which threatened United all over the pitch. In the 13th minute of the match, Amadou Haidara doubled the German side’s lead, putting United on the brink in the competition this season.

Leipzig scored a third goal in the first half but VAR ruled that it was offside. That was lucky for United, who were well out of the match by that point. The first half ended with United 2-0 down and needing a big second half to remain in the competition. United had fallen from top spot to third-placed in the group at this stage of the match. At the start of the second half, Solskjaer made his first substitution with Donny van de Beek replacing Alex Telles, who was not at his best during the first half of the match, or in the past two matches – losing possession 15 times. United started to attack their hosts and break forward, and not gaining much.

Solskjaer made a double substitution in the 61st minute of the match with Brandon Williams and Paul Pogba replacing Luke Shaw and Nemanja Matic. United needed to get themselves back into the match, posing a threat against their hosts, which had not been the case for the majority of the match. A draw here will see United into Monday’s draw for the round of 16 stage of the competition, otherwise they will be in the draw for the round of 32 in the Europa League. Fernandes almost scored, hitting the post, which was a shame.

Justin Kluivert scored Leipzig’s third goal of the match minutes after coming on, seemingly ending United’s hopes of reaching the round of 16 stage this season. United’s defence was worse than inept on the attack and both Maguire and David De Gea did not seem capable of stopping that goal from hitting the back of the net. This was a massive shambles for United and will cost them massively. Mason Greenwood won a penalty for United with just over ten minutes left. Fernandes took the penalty and scored a consolation for United, who needed two more goals to level the scoreline, to save face in the Champions League this season.

United scored against two minutes later with Fernandes sending the ball into the box and both Pogba and Maguire rising to collect the ball just in front of the goal. The ball was sent towards goal with the Leipzig keeper handling the ball into the back of the net. Pogba was originally given the goal, which was seemingly scored by Maguire, and later given to him. United just needed one more goal to level the score and remain in the competition this season. Despite a number of chances, United were not able to score a third goal and exit the Champions League, falling into the Europa League once again, which is not all that thrilling in all honesty.

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

Had no chance saving the first goal but should have got something on the second. As for the third, a player of his experience should have made the effort. Not impressed with his form of late. Henderson is waiting in the wings for his chance - perhaps he should start on Saturday?

12345

2 Victor Lindelof

Played well in the first half at times and did not make an error. It was a shame that United conceded twice in the half though. I'd like to see United play one game and keep a clean sheet, which could provide some confidence. Was replaced by Tuanzebe in the 78th minute.

12345

5 Harry Maguire

Played some good defensive football at times and got forward for a lot of the match. His hesitation cost United for Kluivert goal. Scored United's second of the match, which was not enough to progress.

12345

23 Luke Shaw

Played better as a left-back than the third central defender. Was booked, somewhat harshly, in my opinion. Was replaced by Williams in the 61st minute.

12345

29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

After this performance, you can see why United are rumoured to be interested in signing another right-back. AWOL for the opening goal, not good enough for the second and could have gifted the German club a third goal with a poor back heel. Replaced by Fosu-Mensah in the 77th minute.

12345

31 Nemanja Matic

Played a deep role which allowed McTominay to play further forward. Much of the match passed him by though, which is not a good point to make. United need to concentrate on their defence in January, focusing on a defensive midfielder and a central defender. But they probably won't apply that kind of logic.

12345

39 Scott McTominay

Took a while to warm to the match. Was one of the players determined ot try and get United out of the swamp they have placed themselves into. He can say he did his best, which is not something many others can say.

12345

27 Alex Telles

Poor from the Brazilian. Lost possession 15 times in the first half. Did not seem to be capable of doing much. He was replaced by Van de Beek at half time.

12345

18 Bruno Fernandes

Booked in the fifth minute. Scored from the penalty spot once again. Had a shot saved and his the crossbar. This will be a bitter pill to swallow. United will now have to recharge their batteries and get ready for Thursday night football once again.

12345

11 Mason Greenwood

One of the bright sparks of the match. Should have scored himself. Showed a lot of ability and tried to get United into a good position. Won the penalty which got them started and close to staying in the competition.

12345

10 Marcus Rashford

Started the match quietly. he first half was not his best half. He slowly got into the second. Seemed to choose the wrong options most of the time. Did have a part to play though, despite the defeat.

12345

Substitutes

34 Donny van de Beek

Replaced Telles 46'. Helped to change the game somewhat for United. Could have done a lot better though.

12345

33 Brandon Williams

Replaced Shaw 61'. Got physical and stuck into the job in hand. Not sure why so many criticise him. He's a young player that has given his all when he's played.

12345

6 Paul Pogba

Replaced Matic 61'. It was all about him tonight, whether he played or not. Had some good involvement in the match. I'd like to see consistency from him though.

12345

Ratings: Fernandes, Greenwood and McTominay shone in defeat to to RB Leipzig as United exit Champions League

Replaced Wan-Bissaka 77'. I'm not sure he really got into the match. United were on the attack for much of the final ten minutes and added time, seeking a third goal which never came.

12345

38 Axel Tuanzebe

Replaced Lindelof 78'. Did not spend much time on the pitch, or have much involvement. United were pushing for a third goal for much of the tine he was on the pitch.

12345

Goals: Angeliño 2′, Amadou Haidara 13′, Justin Kluivert 69′; Bruno Fernandes 80′ penalty, Harry Maguire 82′

Assists: Marcel Sabitzer 2′, Angeliño 13′, Christopher Nkunku 69′; Bruno Fernandes 82′

Manchester United: De Gea; Lindelof (Tuanzebe 78′), Maguire, Shaw (Williams 61′); Wan-Bissaka (Fosu-Mensah 77′), Matic (Pogba 61′), McTominay, Telles (Van de Beek 46′); Fernandes; Greenwood, Rashford

Substitutes Not Used: Henderson, Grant; Bailly; Mata, Lingard, James; Ighalo

Bookings: Nordi Mukiele 32′, Marcel Sabitzer 35′, Justin Kluivert 62′, Tyler Adams 81′; Bruno Fernandes 5′, Luke Shaw 43′, Harry Maguire 62′, Brandon Williams 68′, Victor Lindelof 77′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Greenwood, Rashford and Fernandes lead the line in Leipzig, Shaw returns, Pogba on the bench

Manchester United will travel to Germany to face RB Leipzig at the RB Arena in the final group stage match of the UEFA Champions League this evening. United top the group, albeit on goal difference right now and require a point to reach the round of 16 of the competition this season. Defeats to Istanbul Basaksehir and Paris Saint-Germain have led to United leaving it late to reach the knockout stages of the competition this season. If they lose and PSG win, the UEFA Europa League could beckon once again. A win or a draw will see Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side into the round of 16 draw on Monday 14 December.

Leipzig will not be looking to face defeat like they did against United at Old Trafford earlier this season with United scoring five goals against the club. The German side will have seen that United are defensively imperfect at this moment in time, but United would have seen the same. The German club have not kept a clean sheet in their last five matches, conceding three goals in each of their last two matches. United though have a similar problem – keeping a clean sheet once in five matches and conceding seven goals in their last four matches. This could be a good match but United will need to prevail.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw;

Wan-Bissaka, Matic, McTominay, Telles;

Fernandes;

Greenwood, Rashford

Substitutes:

Henderson, Grant; Bailly, Fosu-Mensah, Tuanzebe, Williams; Pogba, Mata, Lingard, James, Van de Beek; Ighalo

RB Leipzig:

Gulácsi;

Mukiele, Konaté, Orban, Angelińo;

Sabitzer, Haidara, Kampl;

Nkunku, Forsberg;

Olmo

Substitutes:

Wosz, Sørloth, Tschauner, Halstenberg, Poulsen, Adams, Kluivert, Martínez, Martel

United and Leipzig have met once in the Champions League with United winning 5-0. United have played German opposition many times in European competition. The first German team played was Borussia Dortmund in 1956 followed by FK Vorwärts Berlin in 1965 with Dortmund again in 1997 followed by FC Bayern München in 1998 and 1999 in what was a good season for United. The Red Devils have also faced Bayer 04 Leverkusen, VfB Stuttgart, VfL Wolfsburg and FC Schalke 04. United have played 31 matches against German clubs, winning 15, drawing eight and losing eight. United have scored 55 goals, conceding 36 against German clubs.

United have faced Bayern München the most when playing against German clubs with eleven matches being played against the club with United winning twice, drawing five times and being defeated four times. One of the wins was in the 1999 UEFA Champions League final, a 2-1 victory in Barcelona. The last German team to face United in the competition was Wolfsburg in the group stages of the competition five years ago, winning once and losing once. Leipzig have faced Tottenham Hotspur in the round of 16 in the Champions League last season, their only English opposition, winning 4-0 on aggregate; 1-0 in London and 3-0 in Leipzig.

Written by John Walker

Predicted XI: [3-4-1-2] Martial and Rashford, with Fernandes in behind? Pogba to inspire United to victory?

Manchester United will travel to Germany to face RB Leipzig at the RB Arena in the final group stage match of the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday evening. United top the group, albeit on goal difference right now and require a point to reach the round of 16 of the competition this season. Defeats to Istanbul Basaksehir and Paris Saint-Germain have led to United leaving it late to reach the knockout stages of the competition this season. If they lose and PSG win, the UEFA Europa League could beckon once again. A win or a draw will see Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side into the round of 16 draw on Monday 14 December.

Leipzig will not be looking to face defeat like they did against United at Old Trafford earlier this season with United scoring five goals against the club. The German side will have seen that United are defensively imperfect at this moment in time, but United would have seen the same. The German club have not kept a clean sheet in their last five matches, conceding three goals in each of their last two matches. United though have a similar problem – keeping a clean sheet once in five matches and conceding seven goals in their last four matches. This could be a good match but United will need to prevail.

How United have faired against RB Leipzig and other German teams in the European Champions Clubs’ Cup and the UEFA Champions League.

United and Leipzig have met once in the Champions League with United winning 5-0. United have played German opposition many times in European competition. The first German team played was Borussia Dortmund in 1956 followed by FK Vorwärts Berlin in 1965 with Dortmund again in 1997 followed by FC Bayern München in 1998 and 1999 in what was a good season for United. The Red Devils have also faced Bayer 04 Leverkusen, VfB Stuttgart, VfL Wolfsburg and FC Schalke 04. United have played 31 matches against German clubs, winning 15, drawing eight and losing eight. United have scored 55 goals, conceding 36 against German clubs.

United have faced Bayern München the most when playing against German clubs with eleven matches being played against the club with United winning twice, drawing five times and being defeated four times. One of the wins was in the 1999 UEFA Champions League final, a 2-1 victory in Barcelona. The last German team to face United in the competition was Wolfsburg in the group stages of the competition five years ago, winning once and losing once. Leipzig have faced Tottenham Hotspur in the round of 16 in the Champions League last season, their only English opposition, winning 4-0 on aggregate; 1-0 in London and 3-0 in Leipzig.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face RB Leipzig in the UEFA Champions League at the RB Arena on Tuesday evening…

Goalkeeper: David De Gea

David De Gea missed the 3-1 victory over West Ham United on Saturday evening with a knee injury. Hopefully he will be fit to face RB Leipzig on Tuesday evening. He started and played 90 minutes against Paris Saint-Germain last week in the Champions League, days after suffering a knee injury against Southampton, which saw hims substituted at half time with Dean Henderson replacing him and starting against the Hammers this weekend. If he is not fit, Henderson will be called upon once again in the elite European competition, hoping to have a better match than the one against Istanbul Basaksehir, which United lost 2-1 in Turkey.

Defenders: Axel Tuanzebe, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire

It is important that United’s defence find their feet as at the moment, it is the area that United seem to be lacking in. In their last three matches, six goals have been conceded with United winning two matches – coming from behind and losing the other, despite coming from behind the level the scoreline. A three-man defence might work against Leipzig with Axel Tuanzebe, Eric Bailly and Harry Maguire all starting. Luke Shaw has played in a three-man defence this season, but it does not look like he will be fit to face the German side this week, which is a shame. Victor Lindelof could refresh his batteries if he is rested in Tuesday.

Midfield Four: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Scott McTominay, Paul Pogba, Alex Telles

The midfield is key to this United side winning their matches. With a three at the back formation, the fullbacks will operate in midfield, playing further forward than normal, which for Alex Telles will be find as he regularly played in this position with Porto. Aaron Wan-Bissaka will keep his place on the right with both Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay playing in the centre of midfield. United should be able to sort things with this formation as it gives three forward players just ahead of the midfield on the attack with the fullbacks providing the width and them pushing back in defence when needed, giving five at the back.

Attacking Midfield: Bruno Fernandes

Bruno Fernandes is the best player in this United squad this season and he has not been at the club for a year yet. He has scored ten goals and seven assists in all competitions this season. When he does not play, United seem to miss him, which shows how much he offers the club. It is important that United keep him fit and that rumours of clubs in Europe being interested in him are not true. United should be giving him a new contract based on the impact he has had at the club, ensuring that any attempt to sign him end with frustration for the club that wants him. This will be a busy week for United with Leipzig and Manchester City on the horizon.

Forwards: Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood

Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood are two of the brightest talents to come out of United’s academy in a long time. With the fact that Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial could be unavailable for the visit to Germany on Tuesday evening, the home grown duo could lead the line for United with Fernandes playing just behind them in his favoured position. Both Rashford and Greenwood scored against West Ham on Saturday so will be seeking to continue to guide United onto the right road, which should be the road to consistency. This is an important match. It is quite possible that Cavani and Martial could be involved in some capacity.

Substitutes: Dean Henderson, Lee Grant; Victor Lindelof, Tim Fosu-Mensah, Brandon Williams; Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard, Daniel James, Facundo Pellistri, Nemanja Matic, Donny van de Beek; Odion Ighalo

In the Champions League, Solskjaer will have five substitutions, which will help this month with seven more matches to be played before the 29 December. This will be the final Champions League group stage Marchand will decide whether United will be in the round of 16 stage draw on Monday. Dean Henderson and Lee Grant could be the goalkeepers on the bench with Victor Lindelof, Tim Fosu-Mensah and Brandon Williams available in defence. In midfield, Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard, Daniel James, Facundo Pellistri and Nemanja Matic could be called upon with Odion Ighalo the only forward on the bench.

Written by John Walker

Preview: RB Leipzig -v- Manchester United – UEFA Champions League – Round of 16 or bust for United

RB Leipzig -v- Manchester United

UEFA Champions League

RB Arena, Leipzig

Tuesday 8 December 2020, KO 20:00 GMT

Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz Assistants: Pau Cebrián Devís, Roberto del Palomar

Fourth Official: Fabio Verissimo

VAR: Alejandro Hernández Assistant VAR: Ricardo de Burgos

Manchester United will travel to Germany to face RB Leipzig at the RB Arena in the final group stage match of the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday evening. United top the group, albeit on goal difference right now and require a point to reach the round of 16 of the competition this season. Defeats to Istanbul Basaksehir and Paris Saint-Germain have led to United leaving it late to reach the knockout stages of the competition this season. If they lose and PSG win, the UEFA Europa League could beckon once again. A win or a draw will see Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side into the round of 16 draw on Monday 14 December.

Leipzig will not be looking to face defeat like they did against United at Old Trafford earlier this season with United scoring five goals against the club. The German side will have seen that United are defensively imperfect at this moment in time, but United would have seen the same. The German club have not kept a clean sheet in their last five matches, conceding three goals in each of their last two matches. United though have a similar problem – keeping a clean sheet once in five matches and conceding seven goals in their last four matches. This could be a good match but United will need to prevail.

Manchester United: WLWWWW

West Ham United 3-1 W, Paris Saint-Germain 3-1 L, Southampton 3-2 W, Istanbul Basaksehir 4-1 W, West Bromwich Albion 1-0 W, Everton 3-1 W

RB Leipzig: DWWLDW

Bayern Munich 3-3 D, Istanbul Basaksehir 4-3 W, Arminia Bielefeld 2-1 W, Paris Saint-Germain 1-0 L, Eintracht Frankfurt 1-1 D, SC Freiburg 3-0 W

Top Scorers: 10 goals for both Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford this season whereas Angeliño with six and Yussuf Poulsen with five are the top scorers for the German club.

Manchester United Goals: 10 – Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, 3 – Edinson Cavani, Mason Greenwood, 2 – Anthony Martial, Juan Mata, Paul Pogba, 1 – Own Goal, Daniel James, Harry Maguire, Scott McTominay, Donny van de Beek, Aaron Wan-Bissaka

United are inconsistent form this season in terms of building something that will develop into the magnificence that we have seen over the years. However, they do seem to be consistent in coming from behind to win matches and winning matches away from home, making it nine in a row after the victory over West Ham United on Saturday. Solskjaer’s side will need to do a lot better if they are to achieve something this season. The leaky defence will need to find a way to stop conceding poor goals with the attackers prevailing in scoring goals which will see United rise from the ashes of inconsistency.

RB Leipzig Goals: 6 – Angeliño, 5 – Yussuf Poulsen, 4 – Emil Forsberg, 3 – Christopher Nkunku, 2 – Amadou Haidara, Marcel Sabitzer, 1 – Marcel Halstenberg, Hwang Hee-chan, Justin Kluivert, Ibrahima Konaté, Nordi Mukiele, Dani Olmo, Willi Orban, Alexander Sørloth, Dayot Upamecano

Leipzig have been a positive side this season and suffered their first defeat against United in the second group stage match this season. In their last two matches though, six goals have been conceded which shows a defensive problem ahead of what will be an important match for the club on Tuesday evening which could see them continue in the Champions League or fall into the Europa League, which is the same fate that could happen for United. A 3-3 draw with Bayern Munich on Saturday will inspire the club against United, but United will be boosted by their victory over the Hammers, coming from behind once again.

Team News: Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial doubts for the match against RB Leipzig; David De Gea could return. Dayot Upamecano suspended, up to five other players could be missing too.

Phil Jones (knee) has been ruled out until after Christmas but he was not named in the squad for the Premier League or the Champions League, so he would not have been eligible to play, if fit, anyway. Luke Shaw (thigh) has returned to training but only has a 25% chance of featuring for United in this match, which seems unlikely. Perhaps he will be stepping up his recovery for the Manchester derby next weekend? Edinson Cavani (muscular) was injured against West Ham, as was Anthony Martial (groin/hip). David De Gea (knee) has a 50% chance for this match. Fred will be suspended after seeing red in the last match.

Dayot Upamecano is suspended for the clash with United at the RB Arena on Tuesday evening. The German club also have Fabrice Hartmann (ruptured knee ligament), Konrad Laimer (ankle fracture), Lukas Klostermann (knee), Benjamin Henrichs (Patella problems), Hee-chan Hwang (coronavirus) who are mostly unavailable for the clash with United. This is a big game for both teams with participation in the Champions League at stake. A win or draw for United will see the Red’s go through but Leipzig will need nothing less than a victory to remain in the competition this season.

Predicted Starting XI: Rashford and Greenwood to lead the line with Fernandes in behind? Pogba to show his ability and drive United into the round of 16 in the Champions League?

United will have to find some answers to overcome their problems on the pitch this season. Whilst they have been pulling results out of the bag, especially away from home, they seem to concede many goals, which is the main thing that will need to be corrected. Playing a three at the back formation has been good for United at times this season, so playing it again could work. Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford should lead the line with Bruno Fernandes in behind them. A midfield four of Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Scott McTominay, Paul Pogba and Alex Telles with a back three of Axel Tuanzebe, Eric Bailly and Harry Maguire, ahead of David De Gea.

Match Prediction: One match played between these two sides with United victorious in a five-goal thriller at the Theatre of Dreams. This match may not be similar to that with both teams leaking goals recently.

United and Leipzig have met once in the Champions League with United winning 5-0. United have played German opposition many times in European competition. The first German team played was Borussia Dortmund in 1956 followed by FK Vorwärts Berlin in 1965 with Dortmund again in 1997 followed by FC Bayern München in 1998 and 1999 in what was a good season for United. The Red Devils have also faced Bayer 04 Leverkusen, VfB Stuttgart, VfL Wolfsburg and FC Schalke 04. United have played 31 matches against German clubs, winning 15, drawing eight and losing eight. United have scored 55 goals, conceding 36 against German clubs.

United have faced Bayern München the most when playing against German clubs with eleven matches being played against the club with United winning twice, drawing five times and being defeated four times. One of the wins was in the 1999 UEFA Champions League final, a 2-1 victory in Barcelona. The last German team to face United in the competition was Wolfsburg in the group stages of the competition five years ago, winning once and losing once. Leipzig have faced Tottenham Hotspur in the round of 16 in the Champions League last season, their only English opposition, winning 4-0 on aggregate; 1-0 in London and 3-0 in Leipzig.

RB Leipzig 2-3 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

copyright: JW