Manchester United player ratings: Martial matters

Date published: Sunday 20th September 2015 6:36

Which Manchester United stars impressed and which didn't against Southampton?

Anthony Martial starred for Manchester United in their 3-2 victory over Southampton, but Wayne Rooney was completely anonymous on his return.

Louis van Gaal admits Anthony Martial may already be ahead of schedule at Manchester United, but who else impressed at St Mary’s?

David De Gea: Still no clean sheet since March 15th for the Spaniard, but an incredible save with his weak hand from a Jose Fonte header and an equally impressive one from Victor Wanyama maintained his side’s lead. 8/10.

Matteo Darmian: Strangely hauled off at half-time for Antonio Valencia, but another reliable performance from the Italian. 6/10.

Chris Smalling: A match-high seven clearances and eight times possession gained for Smalling, who ended the game as the sole mainstay in a mismatched defence. 6.5/10.

Daley Blind: Started at centre-half before moving out to the left in the second half. Had a difficult time dealing with Mane’s pace and Pelle’s presence. 5/10.

Marcos Rojo: Does not inspire nearly as much confidence on the left-hand side as Luke Shaw. 5/10.

Michael Carrick: Performed the same tasks as midfield partner Morgan Schneiderlin, but Carrick’s was a diluted version. Looked off the pace at times. 5.5/10.

Morgan Schneiderlin: 62 passes at an accuracy of 95%, including a perfect record in the first half on his return to Saints. 7/10.

Juan Mata: Whatever Louis van Gaal decides to do with the rest of his attacking options, Mata should be a part of it. He may have struggled at times, but he played a crucial role in the second goal and fired home the third himself. 7/10.

Wayne Rooney: Completely anonymous. No shots, no key passes and was dispossessed 10 times. United won very much in spite of their captain rather than thanks to him. 4/10.

Memphis Depay: Another Premier League game goes by with little input from the Dutchman, although his post-hitting shot in the second half led to Mata’s goal. 5.5/10.

Anthony Martial: Excellent quick-thinking for the first and remarkable composure for the second. He has taken to the Premier League incredibly well. 9/10.



Antonio Valencia (on for Darmian 45′): Continued in the same vein as Darmian had in the first half. Useful both going forward and in defence.

Bastian Schweinsteiger (on for Carrick 60′): As certain as the sky is blue, the German was introduced as Louis van Gaal’s typical substitution at the hour mark. Of course, he brought calm and class to the midfield. 7.5/10.

Paddy McNair (on for Rojo 69′): Must take some blame for Pelle’s second, but difficult to judge a bit-part player coming on as a substitute for only his 17th Premier League appearance. N/A.


Opta stats

  • 14 of Graziano Pellè’s 16 Premier League goals for Southampton have come at St. Mary’s Stadium (88%).
  • Only against Newcastle has Pellè scored as many Premier League goals as he has versus Man Utd (both 3)
  • Manchester United have not kept a clean sheet in any of their last eight Premier League games against Southampton.
  • Anthony Martial is only the third player to score in both of his first two Premier League apps for Manchester United alongside Louis Saha & Federico Macheda.
  • Manchester United have come from behind to defeat Southampton on eight occasions in the Premier League – more often than any other team against any single opponent.
  • There were 45 passes in the build-up to Juan Mata’s goal (Man Utd’s third) – this is the most before a Premier League goal since 48 for Nacer Chadli’s goal for Spurs v QPR in August 2014.
  • Southampton have won just two of their last 12 Premier League matches (W2 D4 L6).
  • All five of the league meetings between Ronald Koeman and Louis van Gaal have ended as away wins (Eredivisie and Premier League combined).
  • Manchester United scored with all three of their shots on target in this game – this after scoring with all three in their last PL game against Liverpool; so they have scored with each of their last six shots on target in the competition.

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