Manchester United have managed to return to Premier League action in the best possible manner, winning three points. However, beating Brighton 2-1 did not really look so ideal throughout the game, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side had to dig deep in order to make a turnaround after an early conceded goal to Danny Welbeck.
Nevertheless they managed to do so. Now, we will be taking a look at some of the important numbers surrounding this match, to further analyse what we have seen and what of those numbers mean for Manchester United
Brighton Create Better Type Of Chances
Manchester United managed to just get by and win three points, but what are the expected goals telling us here? In terms of the total chances created and situations they were coming from, this United’s win is just about deserved. They created 1.7 expected goals, according to FBREF, and Brighton stood at 1.1 xG. That is not a great difference, but it is bigger than half a goal it is not a huge surprise United won.
However, the types of chances Brighton created were usually of bigger quality. They did create just five shots, three times less than their opponents, but those five chances produced an average of 0.22 xG per shot, much better than United’s 0.11 xG per shot. All of their shots came from the central areas of the box, while United had plenty of them come from long-range shots, which is also worth mentioning.
Man United Get Their 1st League Goalscorer In Double-Digits
We had to wait until April and that says a lot about Man United’s attacking issues over a longer term. Marcus Rashford’s goal was his 10th in the Premier League this season and he is now the first and only player on this team with that many goals. It was an important moment for him and the team when he scored, but United’s 58 goals in total is still less than two goals per game this season. In fact, if we take out the game against Southampton, that 9-0 win, United have just 49 goals in 29 games, which equates to somewhere around the level West Ham and Leeds have achieved this season (48 and 47 goals in 30 matches).
Devils Press Better Than Usual
It was interesting to see Man United’s pressing numbers after the game. And they really showed United did better in this department than usual. They made 135 pressures in this match, whcih was particularly obvious due to the way Fred and Bruno Fernandes played. There was not a lot of high pressure, but it is interesting a total of 35 pressures were successful, giving United a good ratio of 25.9 per cent of success. Brighton, on the other hand, had a total of 154 pressures, which was to be expected, considering they had less of the ball in their possession, but their success was just 21.4 per cent.
Maguire Reaches 100 Games Already
It is incredible, but Harry Maguire has played already his 100th match for Manchester United, despite this still being only his second season at the club. This number really highlights some of the problems in the modern game, as our captain has gone with 50 matches per season already by April and there will be plenty more of action for him. The calendar is too tight in modern football and no wonder many United players (and those of other clubs) are crumbling to muscle injuries. Maguire, however, is going strong and hopefully he will manage to stay healthy in the future as well.