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Three things we learnt from Manchester United’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea

by Harry Henshaw

The honours were even at Stamford Bridge as Manchester United drew 1-1 with Chelsea on a cold winter’s evening.

Jadon Sancho opened his Premier League account by scoring the opener, racing through and finishing coolly past Edouard Mendy.

Chelsea were back on level terms before the 70 minute mark, when Aaron Wan-Bissaka fouled Thiago Silva in the box and Jorginho dispatched the resulting spot kick.

With the current state of the two sides, United fans won’t be too dismayed with a point and will be hoping Ralf Rangnick can build on the solid work Michael Carrick has done.

Here are three things we learnt from the game:

Carrick spell a success

It remains to be seen whether Michael Carrick has taken charge of his last game as United manager, but all things considered the former Champions League winner has performed admirably.

A win away against Villarreal and a point away at Chelsea have seen the freefall that saw Ole Gunnar Solskjaer lose his job come to an end.

Carrick hasn’t been afraid to drop big names and has seen a major improvement in the form of both Fred and Jadon Sancho.

New Brexit laws could mean incoming gaffer, Ralf Rangnick, may not even be in charge for Thursday’s game with Arsenal due to the need for a work permit.

But Carrick has at least shown he has something to offer beyond his caretaker spell in the German’s absence.

Three-man midfield

In what seemed a defensive move, United started with Fred, Nemanja Matic and Scott McTominay for their clash with Chelsea.

Having suffered humiliating defeats to both Liverpool and Manchester City, there was clearly an onus on being solid defensively, and the three men in the middle all put in impressive displays.

As expected, Chelsea dominated the ball and had a number of opportunities with United under pressure for large portions of the game.

But the legs of Fred and McTominay and the intelligence of Matic seemed to work well from a defensive standpoint. Rangnick will have to work out how to keep this defensive solidity while not losing the attacking flair United fans have become used to.


Having seen a deterioration in United’s playing style this season, it was nice to see United return to a counter attacking system against Chelsea.

The first half saw United sitting very deep, struggling to get out and only managing ten passes in the opposition final third.

The second half saw a marked improvement and United’s goal came from Sancho pressing Jorginho and racing through on goal.

United have the attacking players to cause teams a multitude of problems on the break, with a bit more direction and tactical nous this can become a dangerous weapon for United going forward.

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