Manchester United were able to partake in a splendid bout of football as they won 3-1 at Carrow Road. Norwich City and their supporters injected much spirit into the game but the Red Devils reigned supreme in the end as Scott McTominay opened the scoring and then Marcus Rashford doubled their lead.
The penalty fiascos cut short the goals the traveling side ought to have netted but Anthony Martial was able to make it three nonetheless in the second half. In the end, it was a consolation goal from Onel Hernandez that kept the Canaries soaring in terms of hope.
1. Penalty Drama
There’s going to be heavy reviewing done of the VAR system after this game. The first penalty that was awarded to Manchester United was widely hailed to be incorrect as Daniel James had quite obviously commenced the move that had led to the centre-back being knocked off balance and leading to the foul.
However, Marcus Rashford failed to convert the resulting penalty in some poetic justice for the home side. Later in the half, VAR ruled against Norwich yet again, this time by awarding a penalty due to a slim hand-ball, akin to the one that had redeemed United against PSG back in March.
This time it was Anthony Martial who faltered. In both instances, the efforts of Tim Krul to save the shots were highly commendable.
2. 50 Goals for Marcus Rashford
Rashford’s half-century comes at an apt time as the Englishman is no longer plagued by having to function solely as a striker. The goal from open play was a massive indication of just how liberated his style of play is in this spot.
Simply put, now he can both create threats from wide as well as make the best of Daniel James’s inputs, as he did in his goal and at the same time link up incredibly well with Martial, evident in the spectacular nature of the winner.
More of the same, please.
3. Canaries’ Wings Clipped
Injuries are singlehandedly handicapping Norwich City. They entered the fixture with a long list of injuries, forcing manager Daniel Farke to field a central-defensive midfielder as a centre-back.
This choice coupled with the general inexperience of their defense almost directly led to the conceding of all three goals as spaces were left open and the box abandoned and unmanned on several occasions.
To add to their plight, the full-time whistle brought with it fresh concerns to Ibrahim Amadou and Tim Krul. It’s going to be a long season ahead for Norwich, who already appear bound for relegation.
4. United’s First Away League Win This Season
Manchester United were finally able to secure a win on the road and two consecutive ones keeping in mind their victory against Partizan at Serbia earlier in the week.
This has been their first win and automatic best spell away since the comeback against PSG and now they are charged with keeping up the momentum.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer knows what needs to be done. The front three appear dynamic and solid through James’ pace and passes as well as the link-up play between Martial and Rashford. With Scott McTominay’s bossing the midfield and Maguire and company dictating the play from the back, this team now only lacks the creativity of Paul Pogba to make a serious challenge yet again.
5. The Martial Effect
Back from injury and the Frenchman has already made a massive impact. The penalty in the Europa League and the goal against Norwich on Sunday all add to Solskjaer’s trust in him.
United badly require a steady striker who can go well past double-figures and Martial can easily be their man. Further still, it is the manner in which his presence liberates Rashford that provides more hope.
However, he will have to tighten up his composure in the final third and resume his cut-ins when central talents are already in the box.