English Premier League | Old Trafford | Attendance: 75,326 | Scorers: Ibrahimovic 36, 52 (penalty)
Manchester United is back! United easily beat Southampton at Old Trafford on the first Friday night football of the English Premier League. The first home match of the new season at Old Trafford was a spectacle of joy for me. As always it was also a special occasion for the Red fans. I must admit, this was a much-anticipated Old Trafford outing.
In the light of Paul Pogba’s first appearance since becoming a Red Devil again, following a four-season spell at Juventus, Old Trafford was ecstatic in a welcoming way for the football maestro. The world-record signing’s every touch was cheered, particularly throughout the opening exchanges and Old Trafford would have erupted had his shot from Ibrahimovic’s pass beaten Fraser Forster on 13 minutes.
STATS AT HALF-TIME
Possession: United 47% Southampton 53%
Shots at goal: United 4 Southampton 6
Shots on target: United 3 Southampton 1
Corners: United 3 Southampton 0
STATS AT FULL-TIME
Possession: United 45% Southampton 55%
Shots at goal: United 11 Southampton 11
Shots on target: United 5 Southampton 1
Corners: United 4 Southampton 0
United: De Gea, Valencia, Bailly, Blind, Shaw, Fellaini, Pogba, Mata (Mkhitaryan 75), Rooney (Smalling 89), Martial (Herrera 22), Ibrahimovic.
Subs not used: Romero, Schneiderlin, Young, Rashford.
Southampton: Forster, Cedric, Van Dijk, Fonte, Targett, Davis (Austin 67), Romeu (Clasie 11), Hojberg, Tadic, Redmond, Long (Rodriguez 84).
Subs not used: McCarthy, Yoshida, Ward-Prowse, Pied.
Photo L-R: Paul Pogba & Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrate Zlatan’s goal.
Despite Paul Pogba’s much awaited first appearance after a record signing by United and being the “Man of the Match” with his controlling pace in midfield, it was Zlatan Ibrahimovic who stole the show at Old Trafford after his brace (the first goal made possible by captain Wayne Rooney) secured a 2-0 win over Southampton that keeps Manchester United top of the Premier League table – for now – with 6 points and a 4 goal difference with second placed Liverpool.
English Premier League Table | Friday 19th August, 2016
Up Man U!