Player Ratings: Lingard, Rashford spark Man Utd to Boro win

Date published: Sunday 19th March 2017 2:14

Marcus Rashford & Jesse Lingard: United's brightest attacking sparks

Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford provided Manchester United with the attacking spark to overcome Middlesbrough in a 3-1 victory in the Premier League on Sunday.

Middlesbrough

Victor Valdes: Made some exceptional saves to keep United in sight. In particular, a double stop in the first half. However, a late error to gift Antonio Valencia United’s third tarnished his display. 6

Antonio Barragan: Struggled to handle Jess Lingard’s incisive running. 5

Bernardo Espinosa: Terrorised by Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford all game – needed more help from his team-mates. Backed off Lingard for United’s second goal when he should have closed down the shot. 4

Ben Gibson: Had less trouble than the other defenders, made some strong tackles and had a fairly solid match. 6

Fabio: Got forward well and played some great crosses into the box. Yellow carded. 6

Marten de Roon: Broke up play well in the middle but was ineffective when building attacks. 6

Adam Clayton: Neat and tidy in possession but his final ball didn’t cut the mustard. 6

Grant Leadbitter: Great tackling in the middle. However, his decision-making was too slow in the final third. 5

Stewart Downing: Made some good runs but the balls to him weren’t good enough.  6

Alvaro Negredo: Missed a good chance of scoring with a header in the first half. Isolated up front by himself. 6

Gaston Ramirez: A thorn in Manchester United’s side with most of Boro’s good play going through him. 7

Substitutes:

Rudy Gestede (came on for Leadbitter ’67) Gave them more presence up front and grabbed a goal. 8

Adama Traore (came on for Ramirez ’68) Added some much-needed pace into Middlesbrough’s attacks. 7

Manchester United

David de Gea: Not overly worked. Made a couple of routine saves. 6

Eric Bailly: Organised the defence well with him moving out to the right-back position regularly to cover Antonio Valencia’s marauding runs. 7

Chris Smalling: Hilariously missed a diving header back to his keeper at the start of the second half but luckily for him there was no Boro players lurking. Fairly solid until he failed to clear his lines for Gestede’s goal. 5

Phil Jones: First-half slip almost let in Alvaro Negredo but got away with it. Clumsy at times but generally handled Negredo well. 6

Ashley Young: Played a lovely deep, probing cross at the back post to Fellaini for the opening goal. 7

Michael Carrick: Not a standout performance but kept things ticking over in United’s engine room. 6

Marouane Fellaini: Produced a lovely header at the back post to open the scoring for United. A lively display from a player that has received plenty of criticism this season. 7

Antonio Valencia: Brilliant running up and down the right-hand side. Good at the back and a huge threat driving at the Middlesbrough defence. Kept working and deserved his gift of a goal. 7

Juan Mata: Always available and found the right ball time and again in the first period. Taken off after a quieter second half. 6

Jesse Lingard: Good when drifting in off the left to play some neat balls behind the Boro defence. His second goal was superb with a run from the half-way line leading to a thunderbolt shot. 9

Marcus Rashford: Skinned Bernardo several times to get United into good attacking positions. Poor final ball at times but always a threat. 8

Substitutes:

Marcos Rojo (came on for Mata ’69) His introduction put United under more pressure. 6

Anthony Martial (came on for Lingard ’80) Made a good run on the break but Valencia didn’t see him. 6

Matteo Darmian (came on for Rashford ’90+4) Not enough time to make an impact. 5

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