Man United 4 Norwich 0: Player ratings as Juan Mata stars

Man United 4 Norwich 0: Player ratings as Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata fire the Red Devils to victory

Man United
4
Norwich
0

Manchester United

David de Gea A largely untroubled afternoon against a well-organised but ultimately toothless Norwich. Out well to punch clear just before the break when United could have been put under some pressure, and made a couple of good saves in the second period. 7/10

Phil Jones Showed an eagerness throughout the game to push his team forward, and it was his crosses which set up both the penalty and Mata’s goal. 7

Nemanja Vidic Paired with Ferdinand for maybe the last time, he was put under minimal pressure but did what he had to do well. Possibly should have scored when coming on to a corner at the back post after 55 minutes, but powered his header over. 7

Rio Ferdinand Showed the value of his experience, although for much of the game, his most taxing tasks amounted to shepherding the ball out of play a few times. 7

Patrice Evra Not as prominent as his full back partner for most of the game and was booked, but stood up a delightful cross to set up Mata’s second and United’s fourth. 6

Antonio Valencia Started the game well before becoming bogged down as the first half drew on. Came into it again in the second, and it was his touch back across goal which Mata nodded in to put the gloss on the scoreline. 7

Michael Carrick Possibly United’s best player in the first half, knitting what good moves they had together, before taking a back seat in the second as the front players took centre stage. 7

Tom Cleverley Suffered from a lack of clarity in his role, with Carrick beside him pulling the strings and Kagawa ahead of him injecting the urgency. Substituted with twenty minutes to go, and may find it difficult to keep his place in this team. 6

Shinji Kagawa Never threatened to repeat his hat-trick in the same fixture last season, but looked busy and inventive, and should be pleased with his efforts. 7

Danny Welbeck Nominally picked as a centre forward, he was pulling out to both flanks from early on but without really stretching the opposition. Brought down for a scruffy penalty just before the break and had a powerful shot saved after it, before being substituted for Mata on the hour. 7

Wayne Rooney Aside from one mishit volley which was blocked after 24 minutes, virtually anonymous until he stepped up to take the penalty Welbeck had won. Wandered forward and shot rather speculatively just after the break, only to see it sneak into the corner, and spent most of the rest of the game trying to repeat the trick. 8

Substitutes

Juan Mata (Man of the Match) Was in the right place to tuck in Jones’s good low cross a few minutes after coming on for Welbeck, and then alert to nod in Valencia’s knock back ten minutes later. 8

Ashley Young Replaced Kagawa with 25 minutes to go, and looked to exploit the freedom of what was by then a comfortable lead without truly wresting back a spot in the starting line up. 6

Javier Hernández On with twenty minutes to go. Should have scored when clean through in the final minute of injury time. 6

Norwich

John Ruddy Not much he could have done about the goals, and made some good saves to keep the scoreline down. 7

Steven Whittaker It was his clumsy challenge which conceded the penalty from which his team never recovered, and he was overrun in the second half. 5

Russell Martin Not out quickly enough to block Rooney’s shot for United’s second goal, and will want to forget today’s performance. 5

Michael Turner A sterling effort from the former Hull and Sunderland man, with interceptions and blocks aplenty until the tide began to overwhelm him. 7

Martin Olsson Caught out by Valencia in behind a few times early on, and was troubled by the Ecuadorian all afternoon. Hit the bar with a deflected drive in the final stages. 5

Bradley Johnson Policed the area in front of defence well in the first half, but struggled as United looked to up the tempo in the second. Should have netted a consolation as the ball fell to him in the box in the final minutes, but blazed wastefully over. 6

Leroy Fer Showed glimpses of his talent, and has the potential to dominate games like this, but suffered from a lack of urgency when he had opportunities to push forward. 6

Jonny Howson A peripheral figure for much of the game. Booked, perhaps slightly harshly, for an early enthusiastic challenge, and unable to really influence proceedings thereafter. 6

Robert Snodgrass Looked Norwich’s best player, beating his man on a couple of occasions and having a stinging free kick saved, without ever being truly penetrative. 7

Nathan Redmond Showed good feet in a couple of tight spots, but when he had the chance to cross, it either hit the defender or sailed over everyone and out of play. Replaced by Hooper with twenty minutes to go. 6

Ricky van Wolfswinkel Showed a chronic lack of confidence, epitomised on the half hour when he won the ball high up the pitch but dallied and then misplaced his pass. Substituted for Elmander, and could have no real complaints. 5

Substitutes

Johan Elmander Came on for the last half hour, and one moment combining awareness, strength and quick feet should have led to a consolation for Norwich, but he placed his shot wide. 6

Gary Hooper Replaced Redmond, and made little impression. 5

Alexander Tettey n/a

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