Manchester United needed a win in the quarterfinal of the League Cup and that is exactly what they managed to do, against Colchester United at Old Trafford, beating the League Two side 3-0.
All of the goals came in the second half, as Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial, with the visitor’s Jackson adding an own goal in between the two to give the final score. Man United are now in the semifinals and this is what we learned from the match.
The Goals Are Pleasing
Manchester United scored three goals in the second half, which slightly resembled the 4-0 win over AZ Alkmaar in Europa League last Thursday. It was in that match as well that all of the goals came in the second half, as the team managed to score several goals in quick succession.
What was interesting about this match is that the way goals were scored was also pleasing. Sure, this was a League Two side that is clearly not at the level of Man United, but all of the goals came after neat, passing moves that resulted in creating space before the opposition could react. Even the own goal counts here, as the goal would have been scored even if Jackson did not touch it.
Nemanja Matic’s long-ball for Rashford was brilliant, with his dribbling through the defence and Martial finished off a nice, swift team move.
Slow First Half
However, the first half was a very slow one from Man United and therefore, this match confirmed once again something we have known since August. If a team denies space to the Devils, they will have a much easier time stopping them, but as soon as they try to do something different that they are not so used to doing, then United will punish them.
Colchester’s block easily stopped a slow Man United side, with Juan Mata not helping the cause, whilst Martial and Mason Greenwood were often easily stopped.
Tuanzebe Injury Could Be A Worry
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer made a double substitution after 62 minutes, when it was the time for Jesse Lingard and Brandon Williams to enter the match, but after just two minutes Axel Tuanzebe had to come off due to injury. James Garner came on instead of him and hopefully Tuanzebe’s injury is not too big of a worry. The centre-back needs playing time and he got it tonight, but Solskjaer could really do with healthy players, especially in defence.
Semifinals Rival Known
Manchester United know which side they will play in the semifinals in January, as the League Cup draw has put them against their city rivals. After a recent Manchester Derby, United will play Man City two more times in quick succession, as Pep Guardiola’s side easily got past Oxford United away from home.
These matches will be a huge test for this young United side and a real chance to show intent of winning the silverware in a season when the wider public is not expecting it.
The other semifinals will be played between Leicester City and Aston Villa.