Cristiano Ronaldo scored again but it was not enough for ten-man Manchester United to grab even one point, as BSC Young Boys handed them a 2-1 loss on Tuesday.
Manchester United were the more dominant of the two sides for much of the first half, and they would have felt that the opening goal was deserved when Cristiano Ronaldo broke the deadlock in the 13th minute, converting a sumptuous pass by Bruno Fernandes. The visitors kept probing while Young Boys had a look-in a couple of times before getting a major advantage.
With just ten minutes left in the first half, Manchester United were reduced to ten men, as Aaron Wan-Bissaka was shown a straight red card for a dangerous challenge on Christopher Martins Pereira. The Red Devils, though, held on for the remainder of the first half to preserve their slender advantage.
Post the break, Young Boys predictably saw more of the ball, but Manchester United managed to keep them at bay for the most part. However, their defiance ended midway through the second half, as Niicolas Ngamaleu scored from point-blank range to make it 1-1. On the opposite end, the best piece of action came when an intruder appeared on the pitch around the 75th minute.
Then, late on, in a moment of brainfade, Jesse Lingard gifted the winner to Young Boys, as a poor back pass was intercepted by Jordan Siebatcheu, who scuffed his effort but still managed to make it 2-1 and seal all three points for the hosts. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men following a disappointing start to their European campaign.
David de Gea: 6/10
A rare busy outing for David de Gea so far this season, especially after Manchester United were reduced to ten men. The Spaniard, though, was equal to most of what the Young Boys attackers threw at him, making three saves. However, he could not have done anything to deny Nicolas Ngamaleu or Jordan Siebatcheu, who scored from point-blank range.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka: 4/10
A game to forget for Wan-Bissaka. While the full-back once again showed some promise with his deliveries from the right flank, it was a rare defensive mishap that ended up being his undoing. The red card shown to him, though, was the correct decision as Wan-Bissaka produced a needless lunging challenge on Christopher Martins Pereira.
Victor Lindelof: 6/10
Drafted into the starting lineup in place of Varane, Lindelof was in fine touch in the game and did everything that was in his power to keep Young Boys at bay. The Swede won the only duel he was a part of while making three clearances and a big block. Typically reliable on the ball as well, but it all came to naught late on.
Harry Maguire: 6/10
Maguire, on an individual level, was rather solid in the game and would feel that he did not really put wrong. However, as the leader on the pitch, the Manchester United captain did not manage to keep his team organised and frustrate the Young Boys attackers. Won six duels while making five clearances and four tackles, though.
Luke Shaw: 6/10
As is usually the case, Shaw was a reliable presence on the pitch for the most part, as he moved the ball forward with purpose while defending diligently for the most part. The Englishman won each of his four aerial duels while making a couple of interceptions as well. However, at times, he was too narrow, which allowed Young Boys the time and space to send in dangerous crosses.
Donny van de Beek: 7/10
Handed a rare start, van de Beek was installed in the midfield double pivot. And the Dutchman took his opportunity with both hands, putting in a major defensive shift, especially following the dismissal of Wan-Bissaka. Reliable with the ball at his feet, he misplaced just two passes but was taken off at half-time, as Solskjaer sought more defensive cover. Incredibly unlucky.
40 – Donny van de Beek has made 38 appearances for Man Utd but has played just 1,510 minutes for the club across those matches, averaging 40 minutes per appearance. Hooked. pic.twitter.com/wnZiFy6Fn2
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) September 14, 2021
Fred has not really made a strong start to the season and on Tuesday, he was once again a little helter-skelter in the middle of the park. While he was not really sloppy this time around, the Brazilian midfielder was overrun a few too many times, getting dribbled past thrice on the day. Has to start stepping up.
Jadon Sancho: 5/10
The Player to Watch in our preview, Sancho was involved in a couple of promising moves, but also spurned a couple of opportunities to create a chance. Sacrificed for Diogo Dalot after Wan-Bissaka got sent off.
Bruno Fernandes: 7/10
One of the better players for Manchester United, Bruno Fernandes created the opening goal out of nothing, as his outside of the boot pass was inch perfect for Cristiano Ronaldo to hand Manchester United the lead. Thereafter, he did not create a lot, although he did set Ronaldo up with a half chance again.
Paul Pogba: 5/10
Moved further up the pitch following van de Beek’s call-up, Pogba would have relished the chance to be more involved. However, with Young Boys relentlessly pressing him, the Frenchman ended up being rather wasteful on the ball, losing possession 17 times. Did work hard defensively, though, winning eight duels while also making three tackles.
Cristiano Ronaldo: 7/10
As has become customary from him for quite a few years now, Cristiano Ronaldo was in the right place at the right time to find the back of the net early in the first half. Handed another chance to score, but shot straight at David von Ballmoos. Would have felt aggrieved at not being awarded a penalty following a tussle for the ball with Mohamed Camara. Taken off for Jesse Lingard.
36 – Young Boys are the 36th different team Cristiano Ronaldo has scored against in the UEFA Champions League, with no player scoring against more (also Lionel Messi on 36). Collection. pic.twitter.com/xVk4EDZnnC
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) September 14, 2021
Diogo Dalot: 6/10
On for Sancho, Dalot put in the hard yards defensively, making six tackles and five clearances. On the ball, he could not make any sort of impact, but he did do enough to ensure the attacks did not flow from his flank, for the most part.
Raphael Varane: 6/10
On for van de Beek at half-time, Varane was introduced to solidify the defensive output for the Red Devils. The Frenchman’s presence did help in snuffing out the space inside the box, but he could not close down Ngamaleu in time for the equaliser. Barely put a foot wrong otherwise.
Jesse Lingard: 4/10
Introduced in place of Ronaldo, Lingard provided an energetic presence in the middle of the park but ended up gifting the winner to Young Boys, as a weak back-pass was pounced on by Jordan Siebatcheu, whose effort drifted past de Gea and into the Manchester United goal.
Nemanja Matic: 6/10
Matic replaced Bruno Fernandes as Solskjaer sought more defensive cover against the face of some relentless attacking by Young Boys. The veteran Serb did everything he could to keep Young Boys at bay, but it just was not to be in the end.
Anthony Martial: N/A
A late introduction in place of Fred, Martial did not really have a lot of time to make an impact in the dying embers of the game, managing just a couple of touches on the ball.