How Sofyan Amrabat fared on his first Man Utd start at Old Trafford

  • Sofyan Amrabat made his first start for Man Utd in the Carabao Cup
  • Featured both at left-back and in midfield during his bow at Old Trafford
  • Registered impressive tackling and passing stats from win over Crystal Palace

Amrabat made his first start for Man Utd
Amrabat made his first start for Man Utd / Sebastian Frej/MB Media/GettyImages

After a torrid few weeks for Manchester United both on and off the pitch, the atmosphere feels a little better at Old Trafford after back-to-back victories.

With so many injuries and absences from the squad, manager Erik ten Hag has not been able to get the best out of his remaining players in United's opening handful of 2023/24 games. Some first-team stars are beginning to come back from their respective knocks, however.

Reaching the required level of fitness allowed fans to get a proper look at summer signing Sofyan Amrabat on Tuesday night against Crystal Palace and it's fair to say they liked what they saw.

Here are the figures that show how well Amrabat performed under the lights at Old Trafford in the 3-0 win over Palace in the Carabao Cup.

What position did Sofyan Amrabat play against Crystal Palace?

Sofyan Amrabat
Amrabat played a very fluid role / Matt McNulty/GettyImages

While there was excitement among United fans at Amrabat being given a start against Palace, there was also some disappointment as he was deployed at left-back due to injuries to Luke Shaw, Tyrell Malacia and Sergio Reguilon.

However, Man Utd's dominance on the night helped them push bodies forward and Amrabat soon found himself floating between left-back, central midfield and centre-back. Harry Maguire would often push to the left with Casemiro and Amrabat plugging gaps where necessary.

In the second half, Victor Lindelof was introduced for Mason Mount and the Swede went to left-back, allowing Amrabat to form a midfield two with Casemiro. That gave fans a clearer look at his midfield play until he was withdrawn, with Ten Hag still trying to get him to peak fitness after he began the season with an injury.

Sofyan Amrabat's stats against Crystal Palace

Sofyan Amrabat, Jesurun Rak-Sakyi
Amrabat had the beating of Palace's attackers / Sebastian Frej/MB Media/GettyImages

It was a positive night all around for Man Utd with a handful of individuals staking a claim to be player of the match, but many fans would have chosen Amrabat if asked.

The Moroccan was busy and proved incredibly hard for Palace's attackers to get past. Amrabat won 100% of the tackles he made on Tuesday and five out of six of his duels.

It wasn't just his tackling that caught the eye. Amrabat was extremely tidy in possession, registering a 96% pass accuracy from 81 passes, with five of his six long-range passes reaching their intended target.

Amrabat was interviewed by Sky Sports after the match and spoke about his versatility and willingness to play where he is asked.

"I told the manager, 'I play where you need me, where the team needs me.' Even if it's like a goalkeeper, I play where I can help the team. Today it was left-back but I had a bit of a free role, I think I also played a lot in the midfield so yeah it was nice, it was good," Amrabat said.

"I think you see I like to touch the ball and to have the ball always. Of course, I'm not a left-back who plays from the line and waits there, so yeah I try to give the team an extra option and I think today it was OK."

Ten Hag was happy too, saying post-match: "Sofyan is a player - and that is one of the reasons we signed him - where the team needs him, he will play and he can play in more positions. Every player has his best position but he gives a certain dynamic in the game. We have seen today but also for him and many players, we just started.

"That process was a little bit interrupted by the many injuries we have because when you can play a long time with the same team then you get routines, the players learn each other and it's more automatic. You see Mason [Mount], Amrabat, you see also others, they can contribute to our game and they will do."