Manchester United kicked off their Champions League group in the best way possible; a 3-0 victory at home to FC Basel. There was another huge positive to be taken away from the game, too. Ashley Young returned, and played an absolute blinder.
It was the Englishman’s first game of the season and he started as the right-back – presumably to give some rest for Antonio Valencia. To be honest, I was expecting nothing more than a decent outing by Young, but he was simply sensational in all aspects of his game.
First of all, I’d just like to remind you that the 31-year-old hasn’t played one minute of action in months, and to complete 90 minutes in such a high-pressure game is a testament to his character.
Young was tough in the tackle and didn’t give the man he was marking an inch of space throughout. Of course, tougher defensive assignments are to come, but I was thoroughly impressed with his work-rate, considering he isn’t a natural defender.
Then, we witnessed a great attacking display from Youngy. Whenever anyone needed a wide outlet, he was there bombing on and offering himself as an option in the final third of the field. That was highlighted as the first half was winding down to a close and he played in a peach of a cross to Marouane Fellaini – who duly headed home.
The best thing about the former Aston Villa man is his versatility. Honestly, I don’t think there is an outfield position on the pitch that he couldn’t do a job at – that’s how versatile he is.
Jose Mourinho trusts him wholeheartedly, and Young showed his commitment to the cause with a fantastic performance last night. It gives the gaffer another option in multiple positions, and he really is our unsung hero.