Louis Van Gaal’s second game in charge against AS Roma ended in a 3-2 victory, in a rather unconvincing manner in the end. Wayne Rooney (2) and Juan Mata scored the United goals, with Totti and Pjanic clawing two back for AS Roma. United once again started out with the 3-5-2 formation, as Louis van Gaal continues to implement his tactics.
The surprise in the starting 11 was Tom Cleverley captaining the side, which was probably down to the fact he was expected to complete 90 minutes. Luke Shaw also made his second appearance of the tour and Javier Hernandez grabbed his first minutes under the new manager. The team did well on the whole, and their fitness will certainly benefit from a tough game in blistering heat.
It’s fair to say that the game did not go as well as Thursday morning, up until around the 35 minute mark. AS Roma started the game on top, and within two minutes, they almost opened the scoring with Mattia Destro nearly lobbing Sam Johnstone from outside the area, only to see the ball bounce over the cross bar. Roma were on top for much of the game, controlling the midfield and we didn’t really have a sniff of a chance to score what so ever.
Until the 36th minute, against the run of play, Wayne Rooney opened the scoring for United, with a delicious curling effort from 30 yards out flying straight into the top corner. We instantly improved after that goal, and on 39 minutes, Juan Mata made it two with a delightful chip over the keeper after being put through by the aforementioned Wayne Rooney. Then in added time at the end of the first half, Danny Welbeck was put through by Ander Herrera, only to be brought down and to win United a penalty. Wayne Rooney completed his brace by smashing home from twelve yards.
The second half began with mass changes, and started in exactly the same fashion as the first.No real action happened from either side, and United didn’t look likely to get into the game, and further their lead.
The 76th minute brought Roma’s first goal and the first goal we’ve conceded on the tour. Pjanic scored a freak goal for Roma as he scored from inside his own half, but it has to go down as a poor error on Ben Amos’ part as the keeper shouldn’t be beaten from that far out.
In the 89th minute, a debatable handball from Michael Keane gave Roma the chance to make it 3-2 from the spot. A chance they happily took as the evergreen Totti smashed it home. However United held on and won their first game in the International Champions Cup.
It’s fair to say United were never in the second half at all, and we never looked like scoring – perhaps due to the mass changes made. There were few positives to take from the game – but another win for Louis Van Gaal’s Manchester United. That’s 10 goals scored and 2 goals conceded in 2 games on the tour. A good start to the Van Gaal era.
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