Man Utd 3-0 West Ham: Player ratings as youngsters shine in promising Red Devils win

  • Man Utd held off a strong West Ham start to win 3-0 at Old Trafford
  • Rasmus Hojlund continued his excellent goalscoring form
  • Alejandro Garnacho added two of his own in the second half

The youngster did a good job for Man Utd
The youngster did a good job for Man Utd / Clive Brunskill/GettyImages
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Manchester United eventually cruised to a 3-0 win over a West Ham United side who gave it a really good go in the Premier League at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Rasmus Hojlund opened the scoring after 23 minutes, extending his recent run to four consecutive league appearances with goal and marking his 21st birthday to boot. The even younger Alejandro Garnacho’s brace later sealed things, with the 19-year-old scoring at either end of the second half.


How the game unfolded

West Ham started the contest with their tails up, playing with plenty of the ball in the hosts’ defensive third, and Andre Onana needed to be alert to keep his side going an early goal down. His reflexes were spot on to leap and divert Emerson’s shot to safety.

In the other goal, Alphonse Areola wouldn’t be outdone by his opposite number. Cutting in from the left, Bruno Fernandes looked to have sent a dipping rocket towards the top far corner until the Frenchman’s strong hands pushed the ball to safety.

But there was little stopping Hojlund’s excellent opener. The in-form Dane showed excellent composure to feint his way into position at the edge of the box and unleashed a low finish.

Erik ten Hag’s team hadn’t been poor by any stretch of the imagination, but West Ham might still have wondered how they were behind. Onana then parried away Ben Johnson’s sweetly struck drive from distance to keep it that way.

The Hammers probably should have been level straight after half-time, with Emerson allowed to go through on goal after Harry Maguire’s error. Yet with all the composure of an elephant in a library, the wing-back was bewildered by the opportunity and shanked the eventual shot high and wide.

It proved enormously costly because less than a minute had passed before Garnacho doubled United’s lead. The young winger cut in from the right and was rewarded for his endeavour when his shot took a deflection of Nayef Aguerd to wrong foot replacement goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski.

Old Trafford held its collective breath when Lisandro Martinez, not long back from a foot injury, appeared to jar his knee in an innocuous tangle with Vladimir Coufal. He was treated and returned to the pitch but lasted only a few moments more before accepting he couldn’t continue.

In the midst of that, West Ham had a glorious chance to pull one back when Edson Alvarez delivered the ball over Maguire’s head to send Jarrod Bowen racing clear. But as he wound up to pull the trigger, flying back was Diogo Dalot with the spectacular sliding block.

As the minutes ticked away and two goals behind, West Ham’s purpose inevitably waned. Moyes won’t have been pleased with the way the third went in, another nightmare for substitute Kalvin Phillips after he gifted Bournemouth a goal on his debut in midweek. The midfielder had his pocket picked in midfield by a combination of Hojlund and Scott McTominay, with the ball then quickly worked into the box where Garnacho was waiting for a simple finish.


Man Utd player ratings (4-2-3-1)

Rasmus Hojlund got the ball rolling
Rasmus Hojlund got the ball rolling / Clive Brunskill/GettyImages

GK: Andre Onana - 7/10 - Made some important and confidence-boosting saves in the first half when West Ham arguably deserved a goal.

RB: Diogo Dalot - 7/10 - An incredible block tackle stopped West Ham pulling one back at a crucial time of the game.

CB: Harry Maguire - 4/10 - Got away with a mistake on the ball that gave West Ham the chance to equalise. Allowed Bowen to ghost in behind him for a chance that Dalot mopped up.

CB: Lisandro Martinez - 7/10 - Played with an assuredness and control as he works his way back towards sharpness. Seeing him go off with a knee problem was a worry.

LB: Luke Shaw - 7/10 - Defended well against Johnson, particularly in the first half.

CM: Casemiro - 7/10 - Won the ball on the front foot to make the first-half goal possible. Picked out some exceptional passes too.

CM: Kobbie Mainoo - 7/10 - Continues to look completely at home at this level. Withdrawn just after the hour mark to protect him a little bit.

RM: Alejandro Garnacho - 8/10 - Grew into the game after the interval and was playing with increasing confidence after his first goal.

AM: Bruno Fernandes (c) - 8/10 - Influential and at the heart of creating chances.

LM: Marcus Rashford - 5/10 - Things didn't quite fall for him.

ST: Rasmus Hojlund - 7/10 - Waited until Boxing Day for his first Premier League goal and is now the youngest player since Dele Alli in 2017 to score in four successive appearances in the competition.


Substitutes

SUB: Scott McTominay (64' for Mainoo) - 6/10

SUB: Raphael Varane (71' for Martinez) - 6/10

SUB: Antony (88' for Hojlund) - N/A

SUB: Victor Lindelof (88' for Shaw) - N/A

Subs not used: Altay Bayindir (GK), Sofyan Amrabat, Christian Eriksen, Omari Forson, Amad Diallo


Manager

Erik ten Hag - 7/10 - He was right that United would get better when key players returned from injury, but there were strokes of luck in this result too and there is a way to go yet.


West Ham player ratings (4-2-3-1)

Emerson should have made it 1-1 after half-time
Emerson should have made it 1-1 after half-time / West Ham United FC/GettyImages

GK: Alphonse Areola - 6/10 - Went off at half-time. It can only have been an injury.

RB: Vladimir Coufal - 6/10 - Made plenty of effort to get forward but a little suspect defensively.

CB: Nayef Aguerd - 5/10 - Unwittingly deflected the ball past his goalkeeper for United's second - could he have done more in that moment?

CB: Kurt Zouma (c) - 6/10 - Not his most composed performance.

LB: Emerson - 4/10 - His bad miss right before Garnacho put the hosts 2-0 ahead was ultimately the moment this game hinged on. He let the winger drift past him too easily for that goal too.

CM: Edson Alvarez - 7/10 - Safe with the ball and his quality was evident in certain moments.

CM: Tomas Soucek - 6/10 - Couldn't impose himself on the game enough after a decent start.

RM: Ben Johnson - 7/10 - Characterised West Ham's sharp first half with his energy and movement.

AM: James Ward-Prowse - 7/10 - His own shooting radar was askew but created a number of chances with intelligent passing.

LM: Mohammed Kudus - 7/10 - An obvious threat and outlet on the left.

ST: Jarrod Bowen - 6/10 - Didn't have that much direct service, with the Hammers doing a lot of their best stuff slightly deeper. Had a one-on-one chance that was expertly denied by Dalot.


Substitutes

SUB: Lukasz Fabianski (46' for Areola) - 5/10

SUB: Maxwel Cornet (72' for Coufal) - 6/10

SUB: Kalvin Phillips (72' for Soucek) - 4/10

Subs not used: Konstantinos Mavropanos, Angelo Ogbonna, Aaron Cresswell, Oliver Scarles, Divin Mubama, Danny Ings


Manager

David Moyes - 7/10 - Things started so well but it wa perhaps a lack of quality when it mattered most, rather than tactics or effort that let his side down.


Player of the match - Alejandro Garnacho (Man Utd)


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