Manchester United finally got their first points this season, and although it came in a rather uninspiring fashion, a win is a win, and we must be grateful for that.
But after seeing the Red Devils play for the third time this season, there are a few things Olé Gunnar Solskjaer must address if he wants to finish in the top four this season.
Again, United’s poor defending was brought to the fore in a match where you’d have expected nothing short of excellences.
Of course, Brighton are no pushovers, but considering how much United needed the match, we expected more.
Defensively, a lot of things must be worked on, especially at the full-back and centre back positions.
Arron Wan-Bissaka was uncharacteristically bad at doing his job, while Luke Shaw looked completely out-of-sorts.
Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire were not just bad on Saturday, but they didn’t have that confidence you crave in a centre back, and it showed for most of the match.
Maybe Solskjaer needs to talk to them or sign new defenders, but something definitely has to be done.
NO AGGRESSION IN MIDFIELD
The primary job of the midfield is to offer adequate cover to the back and provide inspiration for the forward players.
In the two premier league games we have so far seen United play this season, this vital quality has been missing in the midfield.
Thanks to Nemanja Matic for showing up to provide some cover for the defence when needed, but he couldn’t have done it all alone, which is why Brighton seemed to boss proceedings.
The hosts were sharper, they had more purpose and they were more relentless without possession.
Pogba had a horrific game, and although the coach has spoken up on his defence, he’ll know he urgently needs to improve.
The midfield needs to press more with and without possession. We need to see more creativity on the ball, and perhaps, then, we can start winning games convincingly again.
RASHFORD DISCOVERING FORM
Marcus Rashford scored his first Premier League goal of the season, to give United the lead, before Brighton found a way back into the game. And it wasn’t just the goal, it was also how it came— a product of a fine solo run.
For a man who has often been the butt of jokes from rival fans this season, the goal will do his confidence a world of good, and we can only hope the form continues.
The Englishman wasn’t particularly sharp toward the end of last season, after returning from a terrible injury, but he’s gradually recovering, and his hard work seems to be paying off.
If he can keep going like this, perhaps, we’ll have more than 22 goals from him by the end of the campaign.