Tottenham Hotspurs’ chances of finishing in the top four were dashed when Manchester United defeated them 3-2 at Old Trafford.
Cristiano Ronaldo stepped up to the plate and scored his first hat trick for the club since rejoining United in August 2021, handing Conte’s side the victory.
Rangnick’s side picked up a critical three points on the road to keep the race for fourth place in the league alive, despite Arsenal appearing to be the favourites to win it.
After a disappointing performance against Man City last weekend, there were some encouraging signs in yesterday’s game.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo has started to become and all round striker
After proving his critics wrong, the game’s grandmaster has demonstrated why he is still regarded as an outstanding centre-forward.
Prior to the Spurs match, the Potuguese had only scored once in his previous ten games for United, which was one of his worst goal droughts in recent memory.
But it was all because he pulled the center-half down instead of staying in the 18-yard area as he dropped down to receive the ball.
Manchester United’s no.7 put in a proper no.9 performance at times, making Conte’s defence seem mediocre.
Cristiano Ronaldo has scored a hat trick in each of the last 13 calendar years at the club level ✨ pic.twitter.com/0LuV3tbC1u
— B/R Football (@brfootball) March 12, 2022
Scoring a hatrick after coming back from an injury is a point to be noted that why he is beyond everybody and why he is called as the greatest player to play this game.
2. Jadon Sancho has been the most consistent player under Ralf Rangnick
Since the beginning of the season, the Englishman has been in excellent form, contributing a goal in each game.
Under Solskjaer’s tutelage, he went from having no goals or assists to being one of the greatest performers in the league.
And it seems that the gifted winger has not only proven his importance to the squad, but has also demonstrated what traits he can bring to the final third in addition to goals and assists.
Apart from Bruno Fernandes, the England international is Manchester United’s third best creator of opportunities this season.
Most league assists in Europe’s top five divisions since the start of the 2018/19 season:
▪️ 64 – Thomas Müller
▪️ 53 – Lionel Messi
▪️ 44 – Jadon Sancho
JS25 is elite. pic.twitter.com/fjDP9mNkmT
— William Hill (@WilliamHill) March 12, 2022
The work rate of the Dortmund star is also worth emphasising; whether it’s shutting down opponents or making interceptions, he’s a true team player, who brings more than to the squad just than attacking.
He is the only wide forward who has been making things happen in the oppoistion box and his clever decision making is going to be very crucial in the upcoming games.
3. United’s backline is letting the team down
Rangnick’s defensive unit has been stable for the bulk of the game since Raphael Varane returned to the team.
Individual errors, on the other hand, have cost the team in practically every game played, especially this season.
Maguire made another error, this time contributing to an own goal, which put extra pressure on his team later in the second half, as we witnessed against Tottenham.
Harry Maguire has now scored as many Premier League goals against Man Utd at Old Trafford (1) as he has for them.
It's the first own goal of his PL career. 🙃 pic.twitter.com/6a51xCym6i
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) March 12, 2022
What’s more crucial is that the backline lacks awareness and positioning sense, allowing them to give up space and be caught off guard.
When the opposition obtains the ball, it appears like there is no togetherness in the back four, which needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.
Manchester United have dropped points as a result of poor game reading in their own half.
The only way to characterise the Red Devils this season is that they are offensively extremely good but defensively a shambles, and it is well known that they will need to find a great center-back to make them solid in the back.