5 things we learned as Man United draw 2-2 with Aston Villa in pre-season

Man United kept up their 100% unbeaten record on pre-season tour, edging past an Aston Villa side who themselves blew hot and cold. What did we learn in the encounter?

This one always felt like United’s toughest test on paper, with Villa also going into this one with three wins from three. In the end, this was a game of two halves with a draw absolutely the correct result.

The game should not have been played

The pitch at the Perth Optus Stadium was a shambles. A torrential downpour, coupled with a friendly fixture being played on the same turf 24 hours earlier was always going to be a recipe for disaster.

It affected the quality of football on display, while United did well to come through the fixture without any serious injuries.

It’s difficult to judge performances as a result

Heavy rain and high winds do not mix well for football. The pitch was waterlogged in many places, making it tough to gauge the overall performance of players.


It goes without saying, these conditions aren’t typical in the Premier League and it really didn’t help the flow of the game at all.

Jadon Sancho is thriving on the right-hand side

With regular starts in a set position, it hasn’t taken the Englishman long to showcase his talents. Once again, Sancho looked slick with the ball at feet and always found himself picking up threatening positions.

He scored his third goal of the tour with a lovely volley and he could’ve easily had another. Also played a hand in the second, playing the ball across goal which Marcus Rashford slotted him albeit via a deflection.

Fred continues to improve

Kept it simple when absolutely necessary in tough conditions. Though the Brazilian showed he is capable of that defence-splitting pass, carving open Villa for United’s second.

The former Shakhtar Donetsk man continued to work tirelessly off the ball and won back possession multiple times. If the start of this tour is anything to go by, the midfielder will be integral for Ten Hag over the course of the season.

Donny van de Beek remains far too passive

I really want the Dutchman to work out here in Manchester, because he was super impressive at Ajax. You assumed linking up with Erik ten Hag would massively benefit the midfielder, though we haven’t seen it so far.

For me, Van de Beek just hides away a little bit. You want to see him screaming for the ball and trying to make things happen, though the #34 just plays a little too safe for my liking. Perhaps it’s a confidence thing? Maybe it’ll come with time? I have to admit, I’m worried.

About Jordan Street 19189 Articles
Mancunian. Red through and through. Season Ticket holder block E332.

1 Comment

  1. Man.Utd got to practice taking corners as they are not very good at that in most of their games.
    We understand the coach is doing a good job but more effort from the players as they played this many times before, this coach came to them.

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