Manchester United player ratings as Anthony Elanga and Juan Mata scored to fire the Red Devils to a 2-1 win over Wolves in the Premier League on Sunday.
The game was off to the perfect start for Manchester United as academy prospect Anthony Elanga scored his first senior goal, on just his second start, heading home a Daniel James’ cross in the 13th minute. Wolves, though, managed to level things up in the 39th minute after a fine move that sliced through the visitors before Nelson Semedo prodded home a clever cutback from Fabio Silva.
The parity did not last a long time though as Manchester United were awarded a penalty in the first-half stoppage time for a foul on Donny van de Beek, which Juan Mata converted to make it 2-1 heading into half-time. Chances came few and far in between in the second half for both teams, although Daniel James should have done better after being played in by Amad Diallo.
Wolves tried their luck with a few efforts from distance in search of an equaliser but one was not forthcoming as Manchester United held on for a narrow win to end their league campaign on a winning note. Here are our player ratings for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men following a hard-earned win.
Dean Henderson: 6/10
Not a lot he could have done to stop the goal after the defence was caught out. Not tested a great deal before or after that and did a fairly solid job of organising the defence in the latter stages. Booked for time wasting in the second half.
Brandon Williams: 6.5/10
Had a few jittery moments but was solid enough in an overall sense, dealing with the threat of the Wolves’ wing-back on his side, going into challenges with aggression. Made a couple of good runs forward and drew a save from Rui Patricio in the first half.
Eric Bailly: 7/10
We finish the season with a bittersweet feeling. We would have loved to enjoy the season with our fans at the stadium, but now look forward to your full return with great excitement. We have one final left and we promise to do our best to bring the trophy home. 🔴💪🏾 pic.twitter.com/jvWJW0ATCp
— Eric Bailly (@ericbailly24) May 23, 2021
Redeemed himself after a couple of sub-par displays. Assured all evening, dealt with whatever Wolves threw at him with ease. Stood tall late in the game as Wolves’ pushed in search of an equaliser. Will have done his confidence a world of good ahead of the Europa League final.
Axel Tuanzebe: 6/10
Caught out by Silva’s run for the equalising goal in the first half and he failed to stop his cutback to Semedo either. Apart from that one moment, the Manchester United academy graduate put in a steady display.
Alex Telles: 6.5/10
Had a few issues with Adama Traore early in the game and looked much more at ease after the Spaniard went off injured in the first half. Delivered a couple of good crosses into the box but could have offered a bit more in the attacking sense, especially in the second half when he largely stayed pinned back.
Donny van de Beek: 7/10
Donny van de Beek’s game by numbers vs. Wolves:
89% pass accuracy
6 ball recoveries
3 tackles attempted
3 fouls suffered
2 tackles won
A tidy showing. 🇳🇱 pic.twitter.com/zag1XIsICu
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) May 23, 2021
A positive display from the summer signing, Van de Beek showed some really nice moments on the ball, although there were a few occasions when he gave it away cheaply as well. Still, tried to drive forward when in possession and worked his socks off in defence. Won the penalty from which Mata scored the match-winning goal.
Nemanja Matic: 6.5/10
Captaining the side on Sunday evening, the experienced midfielder was beaten all ends up in the buildup to Wolves’ equaliser. Didn’t let it faze him and kept at it for the rest of the game, helping United see off the late pressure and hang on for the win.
Amad Diallo: 6.5/10
Had his task cut out against the physically imposing defenders of the home team which limited his effectiveness somewhat. But did show some quality moments on the ball, one of which came in the second half when he played James through with a perfectly weighted pass only to see the Welshman fluff his lines. Worked hard.
Juan Mata: 7/10
Juan Mata has now scored more league goals for Man Utd than he has for any other club:
🏴 34 for Manchester United
🇪🇸 33 for Valencia
🏴 17 for Chelsea
Impossible not to love this guy. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/vD93zUKGVH
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) May 23, 2021
Tried to make things happen each time he got on the ball and while it didn’t always work out, he kept trying. Absolutely calm and composed from the spot, to dispatch what turned out to be the match-winning penalty for Manchester United. Could very well have been his final league appearance for the club, with his contract running out.
Daniel James: 6/10
Back into the lineup after having recovered from his injury, the Welshman delivered a fine cross for Elanga’s opener. Offered good movement at the top, making some decent runs. Produced a woeful finish after one such run when he was played in by Amad. Should have done better from that chance and killed the game off.
Anthony Elanga: 7/10
Just his second start for Manchester United and the academy prospect turned it into a memorable outing, producing a fine header to get his team up and running. Had a couple of chances prior to that but lacked that bit of composure to make those count. Not as lively after the break with Manchester United defending in numbers but did offer a good outlet on the break. Promising future ahead for the 19-year-old.
What a goal from Anthony Elanga 💪 pic.twitter.com/HzBrQIet8A
— Stanley Ezinna, MBA. (@Stazingar) May 23, 2021
Hannibal Mejbri: N/A
On for Mata in the 82nd minute to make his first-team debut for Manchester United. Displayed some neat footwork and played some eye-catching forward passes. Could see why he is rated so highly at the club.
Shola Shoretire: N/A
On for Amad with less than ten minutes left. Not enough time to make an impact.
Will Fish: N/A
Another debutant, replaced James deep in stoppage time.