Man Utd finished their last home game of the season on a high, beating Brentford 3-0 at the Theatre of Dreams.
On the night when United fans staged yet another protest about the club’s ownership, the players delivered the biggest win under Ralf Rangnick before doing a lap of honour in front of a partially filled stadium. Some supporters walked out on 73 minutes in protest.
Here are the three talking points.
1. Mata and Matic
Rangnick started and subbed off Nemanja Matic and Juan Mata early so that they could be applauded separately by the supporters for their time in the red side of Manchester.
The duo didn’t disappoint in their last appearances, and showed what United are capable of achieving if they manage to sign their younger versions.
Matic dictated the tempo by not misplacing a single pass in the first half, and Mata effortlessly moved the ball around to disrupt Brentford’s backline. Rangnick noted after the game that this was one of the best performances “in possession of the ball” in the last six months.
2. Goodbye Cavani
Edinson Cavani also played his last game at Old Trafford, partnering Cristiano Ronaldo late in the game.
While the Portuguese, who scored tonight’s second goal from the spot, has been an ever-present source of goals for United this season, Cavani made his first league appearance in nearly two months and hasn’t found the back of the net this year.
This summer, finding a young top class forward to properly challenge Ronaldo for the starting spot needs to be high on the club’s agenda.
3. Rangnick’s Legacy
The German managed his last game from the Old Trafford dugout, and although he still has a big role to play in United’s rebuild, it’s fair to underline that his on the pitch work was underwhelming, with his side failing to secure Champions League football for the next season.
However, with regards to coaching, he deserves credit for bringing in Anthony Elanga into the first-team. The academy graduate has been one of the few players who has not disappointed with his work rate in the last few months.
Against Brentford, Elanga was once again a positive presence on the pitch, and set up Fernandes’ opener with a lovely cross.