Nerve jangling once again. That’s two matches in a row where Manchester United have been on the wrong end of a barrage of attacks in the final stages with just a one goal lead.
Again, just like West Ham last week, United were able to hang on for the three points, so at the very least there is some consistency.
The resilience has returned. United of old used to be difficult to beat under Sir Alex. If you were going to get three points, you’d have to earn them. That mentality disappeared under David Moyes but has returned under Louis van Gaal, which is definite progress.
Take a bow David de Gea. The Spaniard has had a quietly tough season as cannon fodder behind a leaky defence but reaffirmed his status as one of the best goalkeepers in the world yesterday.
One penalty save and two out of this world saves gave United the three points. Without him in between the sticks, United would have had to settle for a draw at most.
After the tough start De Gea has had to the year, his performance against Everton was the perfect remedy and will fill him with confidence.
Radamel Falcao is up and running. Goalscorers need goals for confidence, let alone a striker who hasn’t scored one at his new club after joining in the summer.
Now, Falcao has got that burden off his back. Now the floodgates have opened, Falcao could open both taps and start showing the sort of goalscoring form which made him one of Europe’s most lethal finishers in the past few years.
United need to improve. Van Gaal admitted he was confused as to why United have played so differently in the second half of matches recently and yesterday was no different.
If the first half was Jekyll, the second was Hyde. United have not been able to comfortably see out any of our recent games which has become a worrying trend.
Luckily De Gea was on another level today because United certainly wouldn’t have come out with three points if he wasn’t. United need to find the ability to see games out in control rather than with their backs against the wall.
Positives everywhere. It’s not just De Gea or Falcao who walk away from today with plaudits, there are too many things to mention. Paddy McNair’s performance, Rafael’s performance, Di Maria’s performance, the whole team’s performance overall et al – it really was a collective victory.
That sense of togetherness is really starting to come across in how United play. All for one, one for all. Cliché and cheesy it may be but that camaraderie was missing from United in recent times, now it looks to be coming back.