1. These are a big 10 days for United’s season, make no mistake. Norwich at home is followed by Wolves in FA Cup also at Old Trafford, Liverpool away and City away in the return leg of the Carabao Cup. Certainly, they started well against the Canaries. United played well and it could have been more. Rashford scored from the penalty spot again in the second half but United could have had another two penalties in the first half because of clear fouls on Martial. Incredibly enough, VAR did not feel that it was “a clear and obvious error” from the referee which warranted a change in decision. Now, I thought it was an error on both occasions but the problem is another. Where handballs and offside situations are concerned, VAR always has the upper hand on the on-field ref. On the other hand, when it comes to penalty incidents, rarely the VAR overrules the ref, which is a flaw in the use of the VAR. In both incidents, if instead of Martial it was Sterling or Mane or Salah with their usual technique of falling in the box, they would have been penalties for sure. But because Martial tried to continue with the game and did not complain to the ref, then no one gives notice. It happened to Everton’s Walcott also today where he was denied an obvious penalty because he tried to play the ball after the foul. This is not only wrong but it is inducing players to put up an act and to complain to referees constantly. Ridiculous.
2. I think today was a breakthrough game for young Brandon Williams. I have said in previous articles, maybe a month ago, that the lad was promising but was not ready yet. I still think he is not ready and needs to improve particularly defensively but today he was preferred from Shaw. With both players available, Ole went for Williams ahead of Shaw. It might be that the Manager was preserving the more experienced full back for the more difficult matches ahead but not sure about that. One thing is certain though. Williams is ever improving and going forward, he already provides more quality than any full back at United.
3. I have to say that when it comes to the selection of players by the Manager, more often than not, I’m in agreement with his choices. Apart from the fact that I am happier that Angel Gomes is being given a few minutes in matches because I believe there is excellent potential there, I also agreed with the selection of Mata today. Against lesser teams particularly at Old Trafford, Mata makes a wise selection because he is one of the few players in the squad that can open defenses with a pass. Credit where due to Ole.
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