As I slowly approached the stadium, I suddenly felt inferior as the bright red lights illuminated the surrounding landscape. Standing tall above Greater Manchester, passionate supporters in Red began to march to their place of worship: Old Trafford. Strong smells of a variety of foods wafted towards my nose as I strolled towards the stadium excited for my first Manchester United matchday.
Near the ground the supporters’ predominant emotion was happiness, as people from around the world came together to support the Red Devils, a fantastic portrayal of how sport can unite nations. As I strolled inside the Theatre of Dreams I began to feel overwhelmed by the 76,000 seater stadium; the colosseum of English football. Sitting in the lower tier of the Sir Alex Ferguson Stand, I patiently watched the digital clock counting down, waiting for the main event.
“United! United! United!” The home supporters vigorously chanted their club’s name as their warriors marched onto the field. Could José Mourinho return to Old Trafford victorious with his new Tottenham Hotspur side or would Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men return to winning ways after drawing to Aston Villa on Sunday?
Manchester United dominated the early stages of the fixture and opened the scoring in the sixth minute after their artful attacker Marcus Rashford powerfully struck the ball into the bottom left-hand corner of the net, prompting scenes of delirium and euphoria within the Theatre of Dreams. United’s attack continued to cause Spurs’ backline problems with Rashford, Greenwood and Lingard forcing Gazzaniga into action on several occasions as the Argentine goalkeeper continued to keep Mourinho’s side in the game. Despite the home side’s dominance in the first half, Tottenham Hotspur sporadically threatened on the counter attack and in the 38th minute equalised through Dele Alli. Serge Aurier’s close range shot was brilliantly saved by David De Gea before Alli artfully controlled and finished the ball into the bottom left-hand corner.
As the referee blew for half time the United faithful applauded the Red Devils off the pitch after a fantastic first half performance from the home side. Ole’s attackers caused Tottenham’s backline problems throughout the first half with their skill and pace as well McTominay and Fred’s tenacity in the midfield proving to be vital for United to retain and maintain possession. After a positive 45 minutes, could Manchester United win their first game in the Premier League since beating Brighton at home less than a month ago?
Manchester United started on the front foot immediately in the second half and took the lead through Rashford in the 49th minute as the Englishman converted his penalty into the bottom right-hand corner accurately after being fouled by Moussa Sissoko. The home sides centre half paring of Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelöf remained resolute throughout the match as they continually beat Tottenham’s attackers for strength. Full back Aaron Wan-Bissaka positively contributing to the Red Devils’ attacks with his pace as well being tenacious when defending. The away side created chances in the second half however Solskjaer’s side remained compact with shots from Harry Kane, Heung-Min Son and Serge Aurier either being blocked or saved by David De Gea.
After an eventful 90 minutes, the home supporters cheered at the final whistle with relief after gaining another valuable three points, as well as moving up to 6th place in the Premier League table.
“Ole’s at the wheel!” The United faithful fervently celebrated their team’s victory against Tottenham Hotspur as skipper Harry Maguire alongside his team mates passionately celebrated securing three points at home with the crowd. The Red Devils left Old Trafford grinning like Cheshire cats with fans from around the world taking pictures of the historic stadium after a fantastic result for Manchester United.