BPL G2 : SWA 0 UNITED 4

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Manchester United made it two 
comfortable wins from two Premier League games at the start of the season with an impressive victory over Swansea City.

Eric Bailly prodded home his first United goal from close range on the stroke of half-time before Romelu Lukaku, Paul Pogba and substitute Anthony Martial scored in a deadly three-minute spell late on to give the scoreline a more convincing look.

After brushing aside West Ham at Old Trafford last Sunday, United issued another early statement of intent and have begun the campaign with back-to-back 4-0 wins, signalling the club’s best start to a season for 110 years.

The Reds made the trip to a sunny South Wales in buoyant mood and Jose Mourinho named an unchanged team from the side that recorded his biggest Premier League win as United boss last weekend.

In an open start to the game, both sides had early opportunities as Swansea’s Jordan Ayew burst down the left flank and his cross with the outside of his left foot clipped the top of the crossbar, before Lukaku flashed a shot wide of the post as United broke quickly at the other end.

It was United’s turn to hit the woodwork in the 10th minute as Phil Jones met a pinpoint Juan Mata free-kick from the left-hand side and saw his close-range header rebound back off the crossbar.

The early tempo dissipated somewhat, with both teams offering an occasional threat but niggly fouls often broke up the rhythm. Up against a rigid Swansea back five, the Reds struggled to create clear-cut chances but got the all-important breakthrough on the stroke of half-time as Bailly reacted well to poke home on the goalline after Pogba’s header from Daley Blind’s corner came back off the underside of the bar.

With confidence high after opening the scoring, United began the second half brightly as Henrikh Mkhitaryan drilled an effort wide and Pogba curled a free-kick off target from 20 yards.

As he did against West Ham last week, Mourinho sent on Marouane Fellaini and Martial in place of Mata and Marcus Rashford and the latter helped to inspire another late goal glut as the Reds seized control and ran riot in the closing stages with three goals in the space of just four minutes.

Fresh from scoring twice on his Old Trafford debut last weekend, Lukaku got on the scoresheet again as he collected Mkhitaryan’s pass and rifled past Swansea keeper Lukasz Fabianski.

Just as they did against the Hammers last time out, Pogba and Martial both got in on the act as substitutes, with Pogba clipping in a delightful finish from another incisive Mkhitaryan ball before turning provider for his French compatriot Martial, who ran to the edge of the box and rolled the ball into the far corner from eight yards to round off another resounding win for United in the first away game of 2017/18.

THE LINE-UPS

Swansea City: Fabianski; Naughton, Fernandez (c), Bartley (Routledge 67), Mawson, Olsson; Roque Mesa (Narsingh 67), Fer, Carroll; Ayew, Abraham (McBurnie 82).

Subs not used: Nordfeldt, van der Hoorn, Angel Rangel, Fulton.

Booked: Fer.

United: De Gea; Valencia (c), Bailly, Jones, Blind; Matic, Pogba; Mata (Fellaini 75), Mkhitaryan (Herrera 85), Rashford (Martial 75); Lukaku.

Subs not used: Romero, Lindelof, Smalling, Lingard.

Booked: Pogba.

TALKING POINTS:

Lukaku offers more than just goals

Romelu Lukaku exemplified why he can offer United something different and more than just a goal threat, while bringing an extra dimension to the game. The Belgian frontman chased and harried every ball, occupying Swansea’s three centre-backs well and often dropping deeper into pockets of space in order to start attacks. As all good strikers do, he rounded off his performance by finding the back of the net late on and once again showed plenty of promise, which bodes well for the season ahead. The 24-year-old also became only the fifth player to net in his first two league outings for United after Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Louis Saha, Marcus Rashford and Federico Macheda.

Jones and Bailly working well 

Once again, Phil Jones and Eric Bailly lined up at the heart of the United defence and the pair put in another solid performance. The two centre-backs were rarely tested against West Ham last week but had more defending to do, up against Swansea’s athletic forwards Tammy Abraham and Jordan Ayew. The pair read the game and communicated well throughout to ensure the hosts were kept at bay. Bailly capped his excellent display with his first goal since joining United last summer, while Jones was among the candidates for the club’s Man of the Match award.

Mkhitaryan the creative force 

United fans became accustomed to seeing Henrikh Mkhitaryan pulling the strings as last season wore on and the Armenian illustrated his ability to be United’s chief playmaker against the Swans, constantly on the move, keeping the ball moving and using his intelligence to know where Rashford and Lukaku were at all times. He instigated many of United’s best attacking moments and was inspirational as United carved open the Swans late on, providing two pinpoint passes for Lukaku and Pogba to score. As was often the case last term, Mkhitaryan can be pleased with his personal contribution to a brilliant team display. After just one league assist in 2016/17, he has already recorded four so far this term!

WHAT’S NEXT FOR UNITED?

The Reds complete the first month of the new season by welcoming 2015/16 Premier League champions Leicester City to Old Trafford for an evening kick-off next Saturday, 26 August. United beat the Foxes three times last season, including in the Community Shield, and will be confident of building on an encouraging start to the league campaign by making it three wins out of three.

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MOVIE TILL 17 AUGUST 2017

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MOVIE TILL 14 AUGUST 2017

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BPL G1 : MANCHESTER UNITED 4 WEST HAM UNITED 0

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Manchester United kicked off the 2017/18 Premier League season in style after two Old Trafford debut goals from Romelu Lukaku helped earn the Reds an impressive 4-0 win over West Ham United.

Lukaku, making his Premier League debut for the Reds alongside the impressive Nemanja Matic, latched onto a first-half Marcus Rashford pass to fire a bullet, via the post, past Joe Hart before beating Hart again early in the second half, this time with his head, following a Henrikh Mkhitaryan free-kick. Substitute Anthony Martial made it three late on before Paul Pogba added the icing on the cake with a fizzing effort which found the far corner.

Inside a raucous Old Trafford, the Reds started on the front foot as sustained pressure on the Hammers goal led to Hart saving from Juan Mata at his near post, before the Spaniard’s pull back after an inch-perfect Pogba pass, was cleared as Lukaku waited to tap home.

The goal the Reds craved and deserved came on 33 minutes as Matic won the ball high up the field. He fed Rashford who slipped a delightful ball through to Lukaku and the Belgian did the rest, firing in off the near post.

West Ham had a glorious chance to go into the break level after the ball fell to Edmilson Fernandes in the Reds’ box, but his effort was palmed away by David De Gea, meaning United led at the break.
The Reds had a chance to double their lead five minutes into the second half, as Pogba fed Rashford, but he sliced his effort wide of Hart’s far post from a tight angle.

United did double their lead moments later as a Mkhitaryan free-kick from the left found that man again, Lukaku, who headed neatly into the far corner. Mkhitaryan had a goal disallowed for offside, before Marko Arnautovic’s looping header at the other end rebounded off the crossbar.

It was becoming an attacking onslaught as Rashford clattered the post with a rasping effort before Daley Blind’s volley found the roof of the net. Substitute Martial added a deserved third late on, slotting past Hart having been played clean through by Mkhitaryan, before Pogba wrapped up a fine United display with a low drilled effort which is performance deserved.

THE LINE-UPS

United: De Gea; Valencia (c), Bailly, Jones, Blind; Matic, Pogba; Mata (Fellaini 75), Mkhitaryan (Lingard 88), Rashford (Martial 79); Lukaku.
Subs not used: S. Romero, Darmian, Smalling, Herrera.

Booked: Bailly, Valencia.

West Ham: Hart, Zabaleta, Reid, Ogbonna, Masuaku (Cresswell 81), Noble (c) (Rice 60), Obiang, Fernandes (Sakho 60), Arnautovic, Ayew, Chicharito.

Subs not used: Adrian, Byram, Fonte, Collins.

Booked: Zabaleta, Ogbonna.

TALKING POINTS

ROM AT THE DOUBLE 

Lukaku will grab the headlines after two superbly taken Old Trafford debut goals. The big Belgian latched onto Rashford’s pass to fire a bullet past Hart and send the Old Trafford faithful into jubilation before heading neatly past Hart early in the second half. That was his 10th and 11th goals in just 10 games against the Hammers. The Reds fans will hope goalscoring records like that will continue in a United shirt.

JONES NULLIFIES RETURNING RED CHICHARITO 

Right from the off, Jones was obviously tasked with man-marking the former Red, Chicharito, who scored 37 goals in 103 Premier League games for the Reds. But the former fans’ favourite was not given a sniff of the ball largely thanks to Jones who displayed his all-action style throughout, making some crucial sliding tackles, whilst complementing that with an assured, professional display in the heart of the Reds’ defence.

MATIC IMPRESSIVE ON DEBUT

The Serbian was excellent on his Old Trafford debut, constantly winning the ball in midfield and setting the Reds away on attacking flourishes. In fact, the rangy midfielder played a pivotal role in the Reds’ opener as he won the ball off Angelo Ogbonna before setting Rashford away, who went on to lay the ball off for Lukaku to score. Matic also showed the fans another side of his game as he cutely skipped past three West Ham players down the right side, before a cheeky ‘scoop pass’ brought a huge cheer from the Old Trafford faithful.

WHAT’S NEXT FOR UNITED?

Next up is a trip to the Liberty Stadium to face Swansea on Saturday (12:30 BST kick off). Historically, United have a good record against the Welsh outfit, winning seven, drawing two and losing three of the previous 12 meetings in the six seasons the sides have faced each other following Swansea’s promotion. Reds boss Jose Mourinho will be reunited with his former understudy, Paul Clement, as United look to build on such an encouraging start to the new Premier League season.

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MOVIE TILL 10 AUGUST 2017

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MOVIE TILL 2 AUGUST 2017

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UNITED SIGN NEMANJA MATIC

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Manchester United is delighted to announce the signing of Nemanja Matic from Chelsea on a three-year contract, with an option to extend for a further year.

The 28-year-old Serbian international midfielder has won a number of club and individual honours including league titles in both England and Portugal.
 
Jose Mourinho said: “Nemanja is a Manchester United player and a Jose Mourinho player. He represents everything we want in a footballer; loyalty, consistency, ambition, team player.

“I would like to thank him for his desire to join us because without that, it would be impossible to have him here. I am sure our players and supporters will love him. A big welcome to our new number 31.”

Nemanja Matic said: “I am delighted to have joined Manchester United. To work with Jose Mourinho once again was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down.

“I have enjoyed my time at Chelsea and would like to thank the club and the fans for their support. I cannot wait to meet my new team-mates and to start training with them.

“This is a very exciting time for the club and I am looking forward to playing my part in creating more history for this great club.”

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