Sixth in the Premier League last year, Manchester United opened their season at home with Erik ten Hag’s first official appearance in charge of the Red Devils. Against Brighton, the Mancunian club, author of a troubled preseason with three wins in six games (2 draws, 1 loss), thus aspired to a first victory after those of Tottenham and Arsenal. Without Cristiano Ronaldo, announced at the exit in recent weeks and present on the bench at kick-off, United were presented in a 4-2-3-1 with their new signing Eriksen as manager. For his part, Graham Potter, private Cucurella, left for Chelsea, opted for a 3-4-2-1 where Welbeck was given the keys to the Seagulls’ attack. Unbeaten in their last nine Premier League appearances (5 wins, 4 draws), Manchester United entered this match with very good intentions.
Displaced by Sancho, McTominay found Fernandes with a good back pass, but the Portuguese midfielder completely missed his recovery with the sole of his right foot flying well over the frame (7th). Dominating the game with over 75% possession in the first quarter of an hour, Erik ten Hag’s men however experienced some difficulties against the well-established Brighton squad. A trend that would also be confirmed quickly. Ideally launched by Trossard, Welbeck found Gross, alone at the far post, which he concluded with a flat forehand (0-1, 30th). Stunned, the Mancunian club gradually lost the thread. Beaten in the duel, untimely in their interventions, the Mancunians bowed a second time. alerted to the right of the area, March stared at Shaw and unsheathed a strong shot from the left. Along the way, De Gea deflected but the ball returned to… Gross who offered himself a brace (0-2, 39th).
Cristiano Ronaldo hasn’t changed at all!
Led at halftime and guilty of numerous defensive errors, the Red Devils came back with better intentions when they returned from the locker room. Further up the pitch, Manchester worried the Seagulls’ defense for the first time with a powerful cross from Eriksen (49th). Insufficient anyway to fool Sanchez’s surveillance. Determined to return to this match, Ten Hag then decided to send Cristiano Ronaldo to the lawn of the Theater of Dreams. As soon as he entered the match, CR7 suffered a strong charge from Veltman, a symbol of Brighton’s physical influence in this match. Perfectly thrown deep a few seconds later, the quintuple Ballon d’Or crossed in the direction of Rashford but the latter ran into the last wall of Brighton, inspired by his intervention (60th). After the hour of play, United kept pressing to reduce the mark. Once again found in a Fernandes cross, Rasford missed the target (65th).
Increasingly dangerous in the Seagulls’ goal as this new goal by Eriksen was repelled by Sánchez (67th), United logically ended up finding the foul. Dissatisfied after a mess in the heart of his area, Mac Allister cheated his own goalkeeper (1-2, 68th). Carried away by this goal, the Mancunian formation pushed again and Dalot, with a tense shot from the right, made Sánchez shine (73rd). Much more consistent in the second half, Manchester United still lacked realism in finding an equaliser. With this narrow victory (2-1), Brighton joined Tottenham, Chelsea or Arsenal at the top of the Premier League. First false step, however, for Erik ten Hag who will try to pick himself up next Saturday when the Red Devils move to the pitch at Brentford.
The official line-ups at kick-off
Manchester United XI
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) August 7, 2022
EQUIPMENT. 💙 Here is our first starting eleven for the 22/23 season! 📝
— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) August 7, 2022
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