The 182nd Manchester Derby was a resounding success for the Red half of Manchester as Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay scored in a 2-0 win over the Citizens. Manchester United continued their unbeaten run, and put in an excellent 90 minutes of defending and counter attacking.
Zinchenko nearly sent Martial in on goal 3 minutes in with a wayward back pass, but Joao Cancelo did enough to deal with it. Soon after City had the first attempt on target. Sergio Aguero stripped Brandon Williams of possession down the wing, and found Raheem Sterling in the box, whose curling effort was pushed away by David De Gea.
United responded with a counter, but Daniel James’ weak effort went right at Ederson. It was well worked by Bruno however, and a reminder for City of how quickly United can create on the break. The Blues did well early swarming United’s midfielders when they won back possession in their own half, but United were beginning to build out more frequently. A Bruno free kick in a dangerous position and an Anthony Martial shot were both dealt with easily, but saw momentum go United’s way.
The good possession paid off, and at the half hour mark Bruno Fernandes cleverly chipped in a free kick for Anthony Martial to slot past Ederson at the near post for the 1-0 lead. United continued to enjoy a spell in control for the next 10 minutes, and dealt well with City’s ventures forward.
In the 40th minute Fred was brought down in City’s area, and was booked for simulation. Replay indicated that contact with Fred’s foot was made, but no VAR check was made for a penalty or to overturn the yellow card.
The game was hectic after the restart, with Sergio Aguero breaking through and scoring, though it was ruled out for offside, and Ederson nearly gifting Martial a second goal. City began to take control of the match however, and the first part of the second half resembled the first part of the first, with City dominating possession and creating the bulk of the chances.
Most 50/50 balls fell City’s way, but United were able to break out on a counter in the 70th after nearly 10 minutes under siege. Daniel James forced a save from Ederson and won a corner, which Harry Maguire round contact with, but sent it wide.
City picked up their dominance of the game soon after, and Raheem Sterling almost certainly should have equalized off of a Mahrez cross, but he missed the ball at point blank range. Solskjaer responded by replacing Brandon Williams and Martial with Eric Bailly and Scott McTominay respectively, fully buying into a defensive shape.
The final 10 minutes appeared much the same, but United’s defense carried on a stout performance at the back, and City struggled to find a way through. Sterling had another effort on target saved by De Gea, and James nearly broke through on a brilliant pass by Fred, but Ederson charged out in time to send it clear.
City never really threatened again, despite have several corners and 5 minutes of stoppage time, and a sloppy pass out from Ederson saw Scott McTominay hit a long shot into an open net to seal 3 points, and a first derby win at Old Trafford in the Premier League since the 4-2 victory 2014/15 season.
The win means that Manchester United stretch their unbeaten run to 10 games, and are still within 3 points of a top 4 spot. This Thursday they’ll continue their Europa League campaign in the Round of 16 first leg at Austrian side LASK.