Statistics supplied by OptaJoe show that since the start of last season, no player has made more errors leading to goals in the Premier League than David de Gea . Today we saw another of those errors, described by commentators as a ‘howler’ which came when the game was still in the balance. A penalty just a couple of minutes later put paid to United getting closer to a Champions’ League position. Always so close yet so far.
United did have their movements. They had 64% possession, 17 shots to Watford’s 11, with 8 shots on target to Watford’s just 3. But former United keeper Ben Foster was equal to everything his old club threw at him. The difference also being that Watford – rooted at the bottom of the table – were helped by de Gea’s error, and a well taken penalty.
My United Man of the Match has to go to Paul Pogba, who although just came on as a sub in the second half, and this was his first game after an ankle injury and illness, was easily United’s best player. Since coming on he was constantly involved in all United’s attacks and was always inviting United to move forward. He also came close to scoring with a curled effort in the box.
United appear to do well against the top sides, but then let themselves down against the lesser sides. United are still in 8th place, though now seven points below 4th place Chelsea, and with just 50% of the points of the runaway leaders Liverpool. United next play Newcastle at Old Trafford on Boxing Day.
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