Three Things We Learnt in 3-0 Win at Brighton

Fernandes steals the show as dominant United hit Brighton for three

1. I sincerely cannot remember United being so dominant in the Premier League during the last seven years – particularly away from home – as they have been in those first 45 minutes against Brighton. We played some incredible possession football, very different from the Mourinho-style possession though.  This was crisp passing in the opposition half with quick one-twos and most of the time, involving all the midfielders and strikers.  United also scored two excellent goals, although the best of the lot was scored with a devastating counterattack at the beginning of the second half.  During the first half, Brighton had just one shot at goal which did not even hit the target, such was United’s dominance all over the pitch.  Considering that in other seasons, this type of fixture would have been a very tricky one for United, with opposition teams staying back and confident that they would easily keep us at bay, the way we opened the Brighton team time and again in that first half is testament of the improvement being made by this team.  Could it be that Ole has found his first eleven till the end of the season?

2. Fernandes was brilliant against Brighton but I am going to single out Mason Greenwood today and discuss his performance and potential. Mason struck first for United with a brilliantly taken goal, cutting in from the right on his left foot and hitting a low drive on the first post that was too accurate for Ryan to parry. So much maturity and confidence by an 18 year old, who is improving each game he plays.  One can see that he has filled up during the three months of the pandemic and is stronger on the ball these days.  Gary Neville said during the match that Mason reminds him so much Robin Van Persie and he could be right.  I can however see this kid to reach even greater heights than Robin, for the simple reason that while he is also a footballer like Robin was, Mason has the advantage of being comfortable with both feet, not just the left.  Time will tell but I am ecstatic about the potential of Mason Greenwood.  He will develop in a complete Number 9 sooner rather than later, which is the main reason why I would prefer that United don’t go to spend tens of millions on another striker that could suffocate the growth of this kid.

3. There has been talk in the last weeks on whether Bruno and Pogba can play together in a three-man midfield at United, given their propensity to go forward. It has clearly worked till now and United look so dangerous every time they go forward with the duo combining extremely well in the engine room.  The acid test will however come against top six opposition.  Could the Bruno-Pogba axis perform wonders also against the Liverpool and City of this world, or would Ole need to play a four-man diamond-shaped midfield then?  Pleasures yet to come!!

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