For the first time in their history, Swansea City have managed to complete a league double over Manchester United. After Herrera put United in front, Ki equalised within couple of miutes to put the match on level terms. Gary Monk’s side took advantage of United committing extra bodies up front by scoring a late winner through former Liverpool man Jonjo Shelvey. Let us look at the talking points from the night:
A lot has changed since the opening day defeat
Manchester United losing to Swansea City at the opening day of the season now looks like a distant memory. Since that defeat United have went on to break their transfer record along with breaking the British transfer record to sign Angel Di Maria. Even in the starting line-up, Ander Herrera was the only summer signing who started on Saturday night, managed to feature on the opening day at Old Trafford. Manchester United have have made seven changes to the line-up from that day. Except for the misfiring Falcao, all the new signings have made the starting line-up this time around. But, the result alone did not change!
Defending is still a major worry for Van Gaal
If not for Herrera’s goal-line clearance and some poor finishing, Swansea City could have secured a two goal lead in the opening ten minutes of the match. They had two corners and from both Bafetembi Gomis was left unmarked. But, thankfully for United he forget to wear his finishing boots on the night. Every time ball came into the box, United looked shaky at the back. So, no wonder the Swans equaliser in the first half came from a cross from Shelvey, which was turned in by Ki.
Manchester United are yet to replace Garry Neville
Since, Gary Neville retired, United have failed to find a proper replacement in right-back. Rafael was the only option United had and the little Brazilian was a touch too rash in giving away silly free-kicks and corners in dangerous position. Hence, Van Gaal hardly trusted the Brazilian with a regular starting spot. Against Swansea City, young Paddy Mcnair was started in the position. Even though the youngster looked settled in defence, he couldn’t offer much in attack despite being given so much free space on the right side. As a result Valencia replaced him at the half-time break. Its time to find the number one for that position.
Rooney looks a lot threatening when playing up-front
Moving Wayne Rooney into midfield has resulted in a lot of criticism being directed at Louis Van Gaal. The striker has scored more than 200 goals, but for some reason the English forward was asked to fill the midfield positions. However, after seeing his current forward line of Falcao and Van Persie struggle, the Dutchman moved the striker back to his favourite position against the Swans. He looked a lot lively up-front and was at the heart of everything which United did good in the attacking third. His one touch link-up play with his teammates was a treat to the eyes. Its time for Rooney to have an extended run up-front.
Ander Herrera makes another big statement
Since signing from Athletic Bilbao, Herrera has captured the hearts of the fans with his silky touch and an eye for a goal. However, Van Gaal did not seem to share the same view as he hardly gave Herrera a run of games. But, lately though the Spanish midfielder has seemed to have won back a regular starting place in the team with his impressive performances. He carried on the same form to score against the Swans. However, it wasn’t just the goal, but his play in general was really good. He made the crucial goal-line clearance in the opening minutes and initiated many attacks with neat distribution.
Image Courtesy: Daily Mail, Dailystar, BBC and Manchester Evening News