Here are the player ratings from Manchester United’s calamitous loss to BSC Young Boys.
David De Gea: 5/10
Had his name called upon quite over but nothing too extraordinary. Not sure he could have done any better on either goal, but he certainly looked awkward on that first goal.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka: 1/10
He was doing a decent job getting forward and put in a really good cross for Ronaldo at the back post. Then he made it difficult for everyone with a dumb lunge that he was rightfully sent off for.
Victor Lindelof: 7/10
Was asked to do a lot of defending today and wasn’t at fault for either goal. Early on he was often looking to get the ball forward to United’s playmakers.
Harry Maguire: 7/10
Could he have done better on that first goal? Perhaps. Had one of those games where early on he realized he would have to be the driving force in midfield. Not ideal.
Luke Shaw: 6/10
Put in his usual shift today. Got a deflection on the cross, which may have made things worse. Hindsight is 20/20.
Provided energy and did a great job breaking up attacks. In possession he was focused on getting out of the way to create better space and angles for his partner, yet he still ended up being the one on the ball much more often.
Donny van de Beek: 3/10
He wasn’t bad, but he wasn’t good. Much improved in terms of staying in his position but still somehow manages to hide from the ball. At the time of the sending off he had significantly fewer touches than Fred, Bruno, Maguire, and Lindelof, the latter two often gave up on passing to him and just went for long balls.
He wasn’t screwing up on the ball or defensively so he didn’t ‘look’ bad. But he wasn’t good enough to play this position for Manchester United.
Bruno Fernandes: 6/10
The only member of United’s front four to acquit himself well in this one. The pass to set up Ronaldo’s goal was absolutely sublime. Unfortunately he was the only midfielder who looked like he actually wanted to be on the ball as he often dropped into midfield to try and progress it. United a worse team when Bruno starts dropping deeper and deeper to move the ball forward.
Jadon Sancho: 5/10
Moved around to try and get on the ball. His game is starting to come around but that final thing just isn’t quite clicking yet.
Paul Pogba: 3/10
Shocking that he played the full 90 minutes. Struggled to make an impact on the LW with Ronaldo dropping into the half spaces that he likes to occupy and a midfield that couldn’t pick out a pass. He didn’t seem like the right fit for whatever United were trying to do in the second half.
Cristiano Ronaldo: 4/10
This is who Ronaldo is now. Great movement and ruthless finish to grab an early goal. Didn’t do anything else. And if he’s not going to do anything else he’s going to struggle to get more than 2-3 chances a game with United’s midfield issues. Had a chance in the second half where he passed up a shot in favor of a truly horrible dive.
Diogo Dalot: 4/10
Wasn’t a negative. Didn’t offer anything positive either. He was a body.
Raphael Varane: 8/10
Seemed like every aerial cross into the box was met by his head. Can’t be blamed for either of the goals.
Nemanja Matic: 5/10
A bit baffling that he wasn’t brought on earlier. By the time he came on United were in ‘just kill the game’ mode, which they almost did if not for a calamitous error.
Jesse Lingard: 2/10
Came on to provide energy, workrate, and mostly just some defending. For all but one moment he did. It was just a completely inexcusable and costly moment.
Anthony Martial: N/A
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: 0/10
Every decision Solskjaer made was wrong. It starts with his wardrobe. Not wearing a tie? You serious? I could let it slide during COVID when there were no fans in the stands but now that the fans are back you gotta get serious too. Solskjaer has worn a tie for three matches this year, Leeds, Wolves, and Newcastle. Three wins. The two matches he hasn’t? Zero wins.
Now, just in case there is more to it than wearing a tie Ole got all the footballing decisions wrong too. Somehow after watching Pogba dominate in midfield Saturday and watching Donny van de Beek *every time he’s played in central midfield* he had the bright idea of starting Donny deep in midfield. It looked just like the other matches Van de Beek has started in midfield.
United had 65.9 percent of the possession prior to the sending off but turned it into just two shots (one on a counter attack). It’s becoming a theme in games where Van de Beek starts in midfield for United to have a lot of possession but not turn any of that possession it into chances or shots. That comes from the midfield failing to push the ball forward, and having the more ‘attacking’ midfielder in the pivot be someone who isn’t ball dominant prevents the entire system from working.
It’s not very useful having Pogba, Bruno, Sancho, and Ronaldo up top if you can’t get them the ball.
After the sending off, not a single one of Ole’s decisions made sense. Bringing on Dalot made it look like United were going to go like for like, which is fine. Probably should have taken off Pogba though who wasn’t doing much (or Van de Beek). Playing an hour with 10 men United were going to need some composure and patience in midfield to keep possession. Rather than bring on Matic Ole opted for another centerback - which negated the Dalot sub - and left United with a midfield three of Fred, Pogba, and Bruno. That midfield was never going to keep possession and with Ronaldo isolated up top, you weren’t going to get much defensive help either.
If Ole wasn’t trying to close up shop, the personnel brought on didn’t allow them to stay in the match and forced them to defend the entire time. Even when the logic behind the subs made sense, the players coming on and going off didn’t.
Just an awful game all around.