What a night that was. Manchester United won their third Manchester Derby of the season, getting to a league double against Manchester City in head-to-head encounters this season for the first time in 10 years, since 2009-10 campaign. It was a win that came through goals from Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay, but the entire team performance was amazing from start to end.
Man United are now even closer to the Champions League football, despite both Chelsea and Leicester winning their respective matches. Still, the great form Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team is in is a great sign that such a feat will, in the end, be possible.
Here are some of the things we have learned about this match after adding the stats into equation.
Manchester United Dominate Expected Goals
For the first time in who knows how long, Manchester United have actually dominated Manchester City in expected goals. There were wins against them in recent seasons, but usually through the good old deep defending, allowing a lot of shots and trying to stay in the game before getting chances on the counter.
Not that there is anything wrong with that when playing those City sides that got 98 and 100 points in the league, but this time, it was a different story.
Man United ended up with 1.74 xG, whilst City stood at just 0.59. In fact, United did not even materialize their best chance of the match, that close range save from Ederson, after Martial’s left footed shot early into the second half. This was a truly deserved win.
Wan-Bissaka’s Perfect Defensive Display
Aaron Wan-Bissaka has always been praised for his defensive displays, even before arriving to Manchester United, but then a month or two ago, he started putting some good performances in attacking areas of the pitch, as well. And right after everyone started noticing he can do that job as well, Wan-Bissaka was yet again defensively perfect, stopping Raheem Sterling in his tracks.
Man United’s right-back/right wingback was so good that all of his eight attempted tackles were successful. There was simply no passing by Wan-Bissaka.
Ederson Mistakes Show
It was one of those nights for Man City’s Ederson. The Brazilian goalkeeper was often hailed for his amazing skills on the ball, unusual for a goalkeeper, and for his deliveries from the back. He even managed to make an assist this season, but this time around, he was completely terrible. So terrible that Whoscored have given him a 4.4 rating on a scale of up to 10.
Ederson was the one that did not manage to stop Martial’s decent, but not unstoppable shot, whilst that second goal was his mess. He was the one making another glaring mistake that Scott McTominay managed to get the most out of.
James Does Better On The Left
This was not a great match for Daniel James. Sure, he had that one shot coming into the box from the right hand side, but he did not manage to do much harm. And that got us thinking that it is a simple fact of the Welsh winger doing better on the left flank, which is shown by the numbers below.
Why does Solskjaer keep playing Daniel James on the right, besides the fact that Anthony Martial is great on the left?
James has come close to his output for Swansea playing on the left. But on the right he's been poor this season, with fewer opportunities to get into the box. pic.twitter.com/57K96z7S6F
— smarterscout (@smarterscout) March 9, 2020