Home » Expectations on Rasmus Hojlund need to be tempered, he is still a work-in-progress

Expectations on Rasmus Hojlund need to be tempered, he is still a work-in-progress

by Ayantan Chowdhury

Manchester United secured a narrow 1-0 victory over Burnley at Turf Moor on Saturday to finally break their three-match losing streak in all competitions.

The match did not make for great viewing as the visitors seemed to be slow during the buildup while the tweaks in formation meant their most dangerous player, Bruno Fernandes had to play out wide to accommodate Hannibal Mejbri as the No 10.

The plan worked in the end but only just as Burnley dominated possession, created the better chances, and even hit the post in the first half.

Rasmus put in a great shift but he is still learning

United tried to relieve the pressure through long balls from Andre Onana to Rasmus Hojlund but the Dane did not produce his best game with his back to goal and generally looked a bit sloppy in possession.

He had 31 touches of the ball while he only won three duels out of 11, which allowed Burnley to recycle possession and go on the offensive time and time again.

His effort cannot be faulted as he tried to press from the front and he is making a habit of making that darting run across the ball to get on the end of low balls into the danger areas.

But where he struggled the most was with his loose passing. One moment in particular in the second half stood out.

The 20-year-old got possession in the middle of the pitch and had Bruno Fernandes on the right and Marcus Rashford on the left.

It was a great chance to put the game to bed and all he had to do was pass the ball with the right pace and at the right time. Instead, he made a complete hash of it and allowed an easy interception for the hosts.

 Rasmus still needs time to adapt

Hojlund completed only 65 percent of his passes and failed to complete a single dribble during the game.

He had one shot blocked while another was off target and he missed a big chance when he failed to connect from Diogo Dalot’s low ball into the box.

Erik ten Hag will no doubt be pleased with his all-action display but he will need to improve his passing and decision-making when on the counter as the season progresses.

He is only 20 and is still raw and learning the game and in his debut season there is already too much pressure riding on his shoulders.

Ideally, Ten Hag would have had another striker to rotate with him but unfortunately, Hojlund has to learn on the job.

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