Here’s how the Manchester United stars fared in their 2-1 win vs Liverpool – Rashford 8.5/10, Sanchez 5/10

Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool: Rashford Double Hits Klopp’s Reds Hard

A win is a win no matter how or by how many! A brilliant brace from Marcus Rashford in the first half followed by an own goal from Eric Bailly gave Manchester United a well-deserved win over their arch nemesis Liverpool at the Old Trafford.

Coming on the back of an inspiring victory against Crystal Palace over the mid-week, Manchester United seemed in total control soon after the first whistle. And a win means the Devils have strengthened their hold on the second spot on the Premier League log, as they are now five points clear of the third-placed Merseysiders. United scored their opener in as early as the 14th minute when Marcus Rashford, who started his first league game since 26 December, scored with a brilliant finish.

United added their second just 10 minutes later but seemed like a completely different side in the second period. With two goals already at their disposal, Mourinho decided to go full defensive in the second half and this is when his idea backfired. Six minutes after the hour’s mark, Liverpool pulled one back when Sadio Mane’s cross was deflected into United’s net by defender Eric Bailly. But this was it as Liverpool failed to score the equaliser.

Having said that, here is how we rate Manchester United’s performance against Liverpool:

David De Gea: 6/10

De Gea wasn’t tested much by either Firmino, Salah or Mane. The Spaniard, however, was beaten by his own defender, Eric Bailly, after the 23-year-old deflected Sadio Mane’s cross into his own net.

Antonio Valencia: 6/10

Kept the likes of Andrew Robertson and co. out of the goal and did his job decently. The skipper, however, was booked for a high foot on Sadio Mane. Handled the ball in the area once but referee claimed no harm done. Ran through Liverpool’s last line of defence in the dying minutes but his final ball was easily intercepted by Loris Karius.

Eric Bailly: 7/10

Starting his first game for Manchester United since November 5, 2017, Bailly affirmed his physical presence in absolute style. Conceded some silly fouls in the process but as long as it is helping the team, who bats an eye. Showed some trickery at times before eventually handing Liverpool a big, big lifeline by scoring an impeccable own goal. Injured himself in the process but managed to stay on the field. Made a goal-saving tackle in the dying minutes followed by another one a minute later.

How much have United missed Bailly!

Chris Smalling: 6.5/10

Made some brilliant blocks to deny Liverpool in creating anything productive. His addition has been a questionable one in recent times, but he showed why Mourinho is trusting him, with a strong defensive performance.

Ashley Young: 6/10

Was deployed to minimise the threat of Mohamed Salah and did his job quite decently. Wasn’t called into action in the first period but whenever he was, he played his part to perfection. But as Salah picked up his pace, Young seemed troubled and in the process, made a dangerous challenge on the Egyptian which could have well been a penalty.

 

Nemanja Matic: 7/10

Defensive midfielders are often termed as the ‘unsung heroes’ and Matic is the perfect specimen of it. Coming on the back of scoring a winner against Crystal Palace, confidence was seen cruising in his veins against Liverpool. The Serbian lost his marker, Van Dijk, once during the corner but no harm was eventually done. Played his role of keeping Liverpool’s midfield out of goal, with sheer brilliance.

Scott McTominay: 7/10

Safe to say McTominay has earned Jose Mourinho’s trust in every sense. With Pogba absent and Herrera out due to injury, McTomiay was given the nod yet again and the 21-year-old made some brilliant interceptions throughout. Read the game perfectly well and denied Liverpool’s attacking prowess perfectly. The 21-year-old was called into action more in the second period and put no foot wrong.

A star in the making?

Marcus Rashford: 8.5/10 (Man of the Match)

Rashford was without a Premier League goal for almost three months and scored 2 in ten minutes against Liverpool. Skipping past his marker, Alexander-Arnold, in as early as the 14th minute, Rashford made a brilliant run on goal and finished off his move with perfection, scoring United’s first. Got a bit lucky in scoring his second as his shot got a little deflection from Alexander-Arnold.

Was eventually replaced in the second half for Marouane Fellaini.

Alexis Sanchez: 5/10

Wasn’t involved much and lost possession easily but played some incisive passes into the area. Sad that United failed to convert. Was a clueless spectator in the second half and was subbed off in the added time.

Juan Mata: 5.5/10

Despite not being involved heavily, Mata remains United’s most creative outlet. The Spaniard was put through on goal by Romelu Lukaku but was sandwiched between the Liverpool defence. The error turned out to be the clincher as Rashford managed to score from the rebound. Had one glorious opportunity to make it three but spurned his chance poorly. Wasn’t involved much in the second period and was taken off in the final minutes.

Romelu Lukaku: 7/10

Still not a big game player? Playing a huge role in 2-1 win over Chelsea, Lukaku was on hand in helping Manchester United score the opener, as it was his header which released Marcus Rashford through on goal. Played his bit part in United’s second as well and won almost every physical battle against Dejan Lovren. The Belgian, however, wasn’t involved much in the second period.

Substitutions:

Marouane Fellaini: 5/10

Made his first appearance since January 31 and came on to replace Marcus Rashford. Was the centre piece of all of United’s long-balls and did his defensive duties decently as well.

Jesse Lingard: N/A

Replaced Mata in the dying minutes.

Matteo Darmian: N/A

Came on to replace Alexis Sanchez in the final minute of the added time.