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Player Ratings: Manchester United 3-1 Liverpool

Sports Mole runs the rule over both sets of players from Manchester United's 3-1 win over Liverpool at Old Trafford.

Manchester United saw off Liverpool 3-1 at Old Trafford to move into second place in the Premier League table.

A lacklustre opening 45 minutes, which included zero shots on goal from either side, made way for a far livelier second half.

Goals from Daley Blind, Ander Herrera and debutant Anthony Martial secured the win for the Red Devils, though Christian Benteke can hold claim to scoring the goal of the evening thanks to his wonder strike.

Here, Sports Mole rates the performance of each player involved in the Old Trafford clash.


Man Utd players celebrate after Daley Blind gets the breakthrough against Liverpool on September 12, 2015© Getty Images

MANCHESTER UNITED

Goal

David de Gea: Did not have a single save to make in the first half and, while he did fluff his lines at one point when throwing the ball straight at a Liverpool player, he produced one top-class save in particular on his return to the first-team fold. (7/10)

Defence

Luke Shaw: Looked far better already this season compared to last, getting down the left to produce another solid display at the Theatre of Dreams. (7/10)

Daley Blind: Produced the moment of quality that the contest was crying out for, latching on to a free kick unmarked and smashing the ball into the top corner. Also cleared off the line up the other end to put the icing on the cake. (8/10)

Chris Smalling: Another who has taken a step up in quality this season, Smalling was a strong contender for United's man of the match thanks to his all-round defensive work. (8/10)

Matteo Darmian: Slotted in well at right-back and has proved to be a shrewd capture thus far. His biggest moment this evening came when using his pace to cut out a through-ball that Benteke was ready to pounce on. (7/10)

Midfield

Memphis Depay: All the talk right now might surround Martial, yet Depay was the name on everyone's lips not so long ago. This was a far too static display, which led to him being hauled off at the break. (5/10)

Bastian Schweinsteiger: Boasted a 94% pass-completion rate, having completely bossed the midfield battle. Perhaps could get into more advanced positions a little more, but a good day's work nonetheless. (7/10)

Michael Carrick: Given the captain's armband in Wayne Rooney's absence. While the first-half performance was far too pedestrian from United, each player managed to bring more urgency following the break. (7/10)

Ander Herrera: Appeared to be boosted by his goal, coming after he was brought down by Gomez inside the area. Adds an extra dimension to the Red Devils' attack (6/10)

Juan Mata: Claimed a smart assist for United's opener, making it three goals that he had directly contributed to in succession. His teammates should utilise him more often in wide positions, though. (7/10)

Attack

Marouane Fellaini: It was hard not to feel sorry for Fellaini in the first half. Thrown up top due to United's severe lack of striking options, he squandered one good chance and miscontrolled two more openings, but did improve slightly. (5/10)

Substitutes

Morgan Schneiderlin: Brought on to help keep things ticking over in the final 20 minutes in an efficient manner. (6/10)

Ashley Young: Provided his side with an injection of pace when brought on at the break, helping to win the free kick which got the Red Devils off the mark. (7/10)

Anthony Martial: The man of the moment thanks to his late goal from the bench. Showed good footwork and even better composure to get the better of experienced defender Skrtel and tuck the ball away. (8/10)


Liverpool's Christian Benteke celebrates scoring against Man Utd on September 12, 2015© Getty Images
LIVERPOOL

Goal

Simon Mignolet: Looked particularly shaky in the opening stages, throwing the ball straight at Mata when under no pressure. Never really recovered, but was beaten by three decent finishes. (4/10)

Defence

Nathaniel Clyne: Incredibly, the entire Liverpool back four failed to win a single tackle in the second half. Not his finest game, yet did get forward on a few occasions. (6/10)

Martin Skrtel: Should never have let Martial squirm past him with such ease for the third United goal. Prior to that, he had shackled Fellaini well enough and had one effort saved off the line. (5/10)

Dejan Lovren: Did produce a couple of decent challenges when the game became stretched, but you expect even more from a Liverpool centre-back. (5/10)

Joe Gomez: It had been a decent enough evening for the youngster up until the point when he needlessly brought down Herrera. Brendan Rodgers admitted after the game that the ex-Charlton Athletic defender still has some learning to do. (6/10)

Midfield

James Milner: Not the greatest of starts to his Liverpool career, best epitomised when frustratingly lunging in on Young to earn a yellow card. Lost the midfield battle up against Schweinsteiger and Carrick. (5/10)

Lucas Leiva: Revealed pre-match that he came close to leaving Anfield this summer and, if this performance is anything to go by, then he could very well be on his way come January. (5/10)

Emre Can: Another player who simply failed to turn up. Perhaps should have been hauled off by Rodgers to provide a different option in wide areas. (5/10)

Attack

Roberto Firmino: Liverpool's front three of Benteke, Ings and Firmino did not create a single chance between them across the 90 minutes. Needs to up his performance ahead of a gruelling schedule. (5/10)

Christian Benteke: The only visiting player who looked a danger, Benteke tried repeatedly to get in behind the opposition backline with no great success. Did score a strong contender for Goal of the Season, though. (7/10)

Danny Ings: Handed a first start for his new club, coming on the back of just 30 minutes in a Reds shirt prior to today. Got away one shot of note but is likely to drop back down to the bench with Philippe Coutinho returns from suspension. (5/10)

Substitutes

Jordon Ibe: Provided more of a threat than the man he replaced in Firmino, which may see him thrown in next time out in the league. (6/10)

Divock Origi: Given a 15-minute run-out at the end, but could not make any major impact in an attacking sense for his side. (5/10)


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Anthony Martial celebrates scoring on his Man Utd debut against Liverpool on September 12, 2015
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