— Premier League (@premierleague) August 14, 2016
Jose Mourinho’s side got off to a winning start in the Premier League, as the Red Devils beat Bournemouth by 3 goals to 1.
The Special One will go home happy today, after what can only be described as the perfect start to Manchester United’s Premier League Season.
Goals from Juan Mata, Wayne Rooney, and Zlatan Ibrahimović ensured Manchester United their first three points of the season.
Zlatan Ibrahimović maintained his impressive debut record, with an incredible strike from long-range. The Giant Swede has now scored on his La Liga, Serie A, Ligue 1, Champions League, and Premier League debuts – astonishing stuff from the 34-year-old.
The former PSG man managed to find the net with a low and powerful shot from 30 yards that stunned the Bournemouth fans and received praise from the United bench.
Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata were also on target for Manchester United, but the United defence made a few mistakes in the closing minutes, allowing Adam Smith to clinch a consolation goal for Bournemouth.
Here are the five things we learned:
- Zlatan Ibrahimović is on a mission
Zlatan joined Manchester this summer and the 34-year-old has already begun making an impact on the team. He scored the winner against Leicester City to win United the FA Community Shield, and he has now opened his Premier League scoring account.
Many reporters around the globe cast doubts on whether the Swedish attacker would do well in the Premier League, but Zlatan is beginning to silence them all.
The Swede always looked like a threat going forward, and he made it clear that he is not just there to score goals. Zlatan is also keen on assisting his teammates, and was looking for all the right passes to assist, and executed them with precision.
The forward scored from a sensational long-range effort 64 minutes into his Premier League debut, causing the United bench to stand up and applaud in amazement.
Only time will tell if Zlatan has what it takes to thrive for a long time in the Premier League, but he has got the best start that anyone could ask for.
- Juan Mata is fighting for a spot
The Spanish maestro’s future has been under speculation ever since the arrival of Jose Mourinho, as the pair doesn’t share the best of relationships.
Mourinho sold Mata while he was the manager of Chelsea because he thought that the Spaniard didn’t possess the necessary defensive attributes that he was looking for in a midfielder.
Speculation hit an all-time high last weekend, when Jose Mourinho subbed Mata on and then off again, during their match against Leicester City. Mourinho later defended his decision by stating that he preferred a player with more of a physical presence than Juan Mata for the closing minutes of the match.
But, Juan Mata is trying to prove that he is worthy of a place in the United starting eleven. He scored the opener this afternoon, with what was his 27th goal for Manchester United – four more that he managed during his time at Chelsea.
There is still a high chance that Juan Mata will leave the club this summer, but he could change Mourinho’s mind if he continues to perform like he did today.
- Bailly and Blind looking comfortable
The defensive pair played solidly this afternoon, and looked like the way forward for Jose Mourinho.
Chris Smalling is usually the first choice defender when it comes to United’s back four. However, he was unavailable due to suspension, and Mourinho had to opt for Blind.
Blind and Bailly did a fine job in defense today, but they did have a few hiccups, especially during the final minutes of the match.
Mourinho was believed to be on the lookout for an older and more experienced defender, with Jose Fonte and Leonardo Bounucci on his mind. However, if Bailly continues these kinds of performances, then the Special One will be more than satisfied for the summer.
- Jose Mourinho looks at home
Jose has never, throughout his entire career, lost the opening match of a league season – a record the Portuguese man maintained after today’s win against Bournemouth.
Many fans and pundits were doubtful on whether Mourinho was the right fit for Manchester United. They claimed his baggage would be too much for United to handle.
The former Chelsea man was sacked last year after he endured a disastrous start to the season, which resulted in the Blues finishing 10th in the Premier League.
But so far, Mourinho seems calm and collected over his chances in the Premier League this season. He has done it before, and there is no doubt that he can do it again.
Jose hasn’t been shy in the press and has already stated that he will fight for the title. His combination of confidence and arrogance is something that Manchester United have missed ever since the Sir Alex Ferguson era.
Unlike his counterpart from across the road, Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho has already experienced the surprises of the Premier League.
Mourinho has just set the bar for the rest of the season, and will be hoping to emulate such performances in future matches.
- Bournemouth need some improvement
Bournemouth won’t be too disappointed with this performance, however, they could have hoped to pose more of a threat in attack.
Adam Smith provided a late consolation for the Bournemouth fans, and they will now be looking to improve from this performance.
They need to toughen up their defense and probably need to tweak a few things upfront.
Bournemouth made a total of six major signings this season, but only two of the new boys managed to get a starting position against Manchester United – Jordan Ibe and Lewis Cook.
Cook, 19, looked exciting in the midfield. He showed good pace and agility, but may still need time to completely adapt to the top flight.
Bournemouth have been improving their league position since the 2013/14 season. They were promoted last season after winning the Championship, and subsequently managed a 16th position finish in the Premier League. Eddie Howe will now be hoping that his club can finish close to the top ten this season.