Five things we learned from Man United’s narrow victory over Leicester

Manchester United returned to winning ways after clinching their first trophy of the 16/17 season by beating the Premier League champions Leicester City 2-1 in the Community Shield final on Sunday.

Manchester United took the lead after a fine individual goal from Jesse Lingard, who again scored at Wembley Stadium. Leicester City were gifted an equaliser after Marouane Fellaini’s slow back pass was intercepted by Jamie Vardy, and the Englishman made no mistake.

But Zlatan Ibhrahimovic had other plans as the Swede scored the winning goal for his new club through a towering header from Antonio Valencia’s cross.

So here’s what we learned through the game..

Terrific Bailly

Leicester City v Manchester United - FA Community Shield

When Bailly was signed, Mourinho explained that the Ivorian possessed a great combination of speed and strength, and Bailly proved him right.

The defender didn’t have a comfortable start at the beginning of the game after being nutmegged by Jamie Vardy, but did recover to as the game progressed and his confidence grew.

Bailly didn’t end the game well after picking up a booking for reckless challenges but did enough to claim the Man of the Match award on his debut.

A good start to his career and he must be able to build on it.

Change in Gameplay

Leicester City v Manchester United - FA Community Shield

The possession based, safety first approach installed by ex-manager Louis van Gaal was still being executed by the Manchester United players. Lingard’s brilliant individual goal emphasised a lack of creativity from the Red Devils.

Although things have changed a little, Mourinho in his post-match interview said that he will bring out the necessary changes as the season progresses.

Mkhitaryan and Pogba will be expected to spearhead the objective to create better chances.

Poor Mata

Leicester City v Manchester United - FA Community Shield

Juan Mata was brought on in place of Lingard on 63 minutes, after the Englishman picked up a knock. The Spaniard didn’t improve the squad much, but wasn’t much bad either.

Sadly, the substitute was substituted to pave way for new signing Henrikh Mkhitaryan in stoppage time. The Spaniard played an approximate 30 minutes and may be humiliated by this gesture.

Mourinho praised Mata for doing a good job in his short appearance. Mourinho later clarified that he was expecting a full blown attack from Leicester City and thus felt the need to substitute the Spaniard because he is the shortest member of the squad.

A decent explanation by the Special One and perhaps there are no problems between the player and manager.

Perhaps?

Manchester United lacked Sharpness

Leicester City v Manchester United - FA Community Shield

Manchester United were denied a good pre-season as their scheduled matches in China were affected by the weather.

In the clash against Leicester City, the Red Devils were giving away possession cheaply (especially Wayne Rooney) and attempting poor passes throughout the game.

A lack of pre-season games seemed to have affected the Red Devils as their match sharpness wasn’t quite visible from the Manchester Giants.

Leicester will put up a good title defence

Leicester City v Manchester United - FA Community Shield

The defending Premier League champions Leicester City gave Manchester United a tough fight in the clash as the Premier League winners were able to create better chances than the FA Cup winners.

The Foxes hit the woodwork once through Shinji Okazaki’s attempt after heading the ball from a corner kick.

With the addition of Champions League games, Leicester City now must be able to balance their games and prevent the players from burnout.

Although winning the league again would be a difficult task for the Foxes, a good title defence can be expected from Claudio Ranieri’s men.

 


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