A miserable season ended in even more embarrassment for Manchester United, who were beaten 2-0 by Cardiff City at Old Trafford on Sunday.
Manchester United began stronger of the two sides, with Mason Greenwood, who was making his full debut for the club, coming close to scoring his first goal for the club on a couple of occasions. But, a similar pattern ensued after early pressure was applied, as Cardiff settled into their shape.
Then, came the first blow on the day for United in the 23rd minute, with Diogo Dalot adjudged to have brought Nathaniel Mendez-Laing down, although replays suggested that it was a poor call by referee Jon Moss. Mendez-Laing stepped up to take the spot-kick and made no error in breaking the deadlock.
With momentum on their side, Cardiff heaped on the pressure and more misery on Manchester United, who conceded a second to Mendez-Laing nine minutes into the second half. The hosts did see a few chances coming their way, but Neil Etheridge had one of those days when nothing would go past him.
A shambolic season thus, ended with one final humbling result for Manchester United, who finish sixth, having won just two of their last 12 games. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men, following another horrible showing.
David de Gea: 6/10
Did his bit to ensure Manchester United remained in the game for as long as possible, with a save from Josh Murphy standing out. Could not have done much to stop either goal, with one being a penalty while the other was a shot into an open goal.
Diogo Dalot: 5/10
Given a rare start, Dalot began the game well, even providing a dangerous cross for Greenwood. But, his output in the final third became poorer as the minutes passed, while also having his hands full with the threat of Mendez-Laing. The decision to penalise him for a legitimate foul was harsh, though.
Chris Smalling: 5/10
Smalling did not have many poor moments defensively, with Cardiff not getting inside the ball regularly. But, it was his poor distribution and ball hogging that deprived Manchester United of any momentum during build-ups. But, he did get pulled out of position for the second goal.
Phil Jones: 6/10
Jones, like Smalling, provided nothing whenever he got on the ball, which is where United missed the qualities of Victor Lindelof. Solid defensively though, as he kept a check on Kenneth Zohore. Taken off at half-time for reasons unclear.
Ashley Young: 5/10
With Luke Shaw not playing, Ashley Young continued to start, this time on the left side of the defence. But, the problems continued for the veteran Englishman, who was given a tough time by Murphy. Did absolutely nothing of note with his deliveries in the final third, either from set-pieces or during open play.
Andreas Pereira: 6/10
Some positive signs on show from Pereira, who looked determined to open up the Cardiff defence whenever he got on the ball. But, his impact gradually waned before he was eventually replaced by Angel Gomes.
Scott McTominay: 5/10
A tough day at work for McTominay, who was solid in the first half, keeping Bobby Reid quiet for the most part. But, his struggles began when he had to slot into the defence at half-time, where he was completely out of his depths. Turned quite easily in the build-up for the second goal.
Paul Pogba: 5/10
Like in recent games, Pogba posed the biggest threat creatively for Manchester United. But, with very little movement in front of him, the Frenchman could not produce the goods. Did have his moments when he got around the box, but could not inspire the hosts to a comeback win.
Jesse Lingard: 4/10
Starting as part of a front six that entirely comprised of academy graduates, Lingard needed to be the senior to guide the young players around him. But, the English international was anonymous for large parts of the game and apart from one shot that was saved by Etheridge, he never got close to doing anything by himself either. Starting to become a liability.
Marcus Rashford: 5/10
Rashford will heave a sigh of relief after the end of the season as his downward spiral continued on Sunday. Did look dangerous early on, even sending Greenwood through on goal. But, like others, he too became gradually worse and was rendered largely ineffective in the second half.
Mason Greenwood: 7/10
From a player who has been disappointing lately to one that provided a sign of things to come in the future. Greenwood was the only positive to have emerged from an embarrassing evening for Manchester United.
Full of verve and determination from the word go, Greenwood took as many as seven shots, and only two top saves by Etheridge denied him his maiden senior goal. Has shown enough promise to hope to have a bigger role in the first-team next season.
Mason Greenwood’s Premier League debut by numbers:
85% pass accuracy
7 shots (4 on target)
3 successful take-ons
3 chances created
3 tackles won
Lead Man Utd in shots, shots on target, and tackles. 👏👏👏 pic.twitter.com/OaKoYVSAD0
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) May 12, 2019
Anthony Martial: 5/10
On for Jones at half-time, Martial showed a lot of desperation and energy in the first 10-15 minutes of the second half. But, beyond the bright start, there was nothing positive to talk about him. Has a lot of improvements to do in the summer.
Antonio Valencia: N/A
With the match dead and buried, Valencia was given the opportunity for a cameo on the day of his farewell. And, he was given a rousing reception from the Old Trafford faithfuls.
Angel Gomes: N/A
On for Pereira, Gomes looked bright during the 15 minutes he got on the pitch.