Manchester United’s mini resurgence got back on track as they entertained in an eventually comfortable 3-1 over Brighton.
United were 2-0 up at the break, with both opening goals fortuitous in origin. Andreas Pereira started and finished – sort of – the move that led to the opener, playing a one-two with Anthony Martial before his tame shot deflected in.
Minutes later it was two when a whipped free-kick caused confusion in the Brighton box, Scott McTominay most alert to get a toe to the loose ball, although Davy Propper got the final touch.
United failed to kick on the Seagulls sniffed a way back into it, Lewis Dunk nodding in after poor United marking at a corner. But Marcus Rashford quickly restored United’s two-goal cushion when he rocketed in via the crossbar and United spurned several other chances to make the scoreline more comfortable.
Here are our United ratings:
David De Gea 6: Quiet day for the Spaniard and he could do with more of those. Saved well with legs when Maupay was left free.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka 7: Spider tangled up a few Brighton bugs in his web, leading United with six tackles. More of a presence in attack too, embarking on two dribbles.
Victor Lindelof 6: Has had a shaky start to the season but quietly assured here. Mopped up well as Maguire played on front foot, leading side with five clearances and joint high four aerials won.
Harry Maguire 8: Got given the captain’s armband and led by example. Was calm, composed and committed, contributing across the board. Could be faulted for Brighton’s goal but arguably his best game in a red shirt.
Brandon Williams 8: Luke Shaw, your future is in doubt. Relentless energy and effort littered performance. The 19-year-old never seems overawed and relishes the physical battle. Denied a goal by Ryan save and continuously got into threatening positions.
Fred 6: Regressed from recent games in midweek, but grew into this one. Showed neat feet and snapped at Brighton players, free-kick worried Ryan, who tipped onto the bar.
Scott McTominay 7: His rise in the last 18 months has been phenomenal. Not just a body anymore, he runs that United midfield, driving his team up the field (four dribbles led United) and mopping up behind. Worrying late injury.
Daniel James 8: Park Ji-sung was called ‘Three Lungs’… James might have four. Energy and pace too much for Brighton – Burn and Dunk yellows evidence of this. Bar his speed and stamina though, is a well-rounded player, rarely makes wrong decision.
Andreas Pereira 7: So much more useful in the No10 role. Goal was fortunate in the extreme but runs were purposeful and stitched play nicely, stung Ryan’s palms before the break with a rasping drive. Three key passes.
Marcus Rashford 7: Looks so much more comfortable – as well as threatening – on the left flank. Showed plenty of ingenuity and threat but profligacy remains a worry, though he thundered in a deserved goal.
Anthony Martial 8: Not on the scoresheet but such a threat in the attacking third, pulling defence all over the place and bringing team-mates into play. Four key passes, including two assists.
Jesse Lingard 6: Couple of smart touches as United threatened to run riot late on. Three tackles in his 21 minutes and 100 per cent pass accuracy.
Marcos Rojo N/A: Game was over when he entered.
Mason Greenwood N/A: Brought on to see the game out, clattered by Dunk.
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