Stoke City 2-0 Manchester United: Memphis Error Piles Pressure On Van Gaal

Stoke City 2-0 Manchester United
xxxx during the Barclays Premier League match between Stoke City and Manchester United at Britannia Stadium on December 26, 2015 in Stoke on Trent, England.

By Andy Hyslop

  • Herrera returned to starting line-up, while Rooney was dropped to the bench
  • Error from Memphis gifted first goal to Stoke

Manchester United suffered their four successive defeat in all competitions and third straight defeat in the Premier League as they went down 2-0 at the Britannia Stadium.

Stoke added the scalp of Manchester United this season. Having already defeated Chelsea and Manchester City at the Britannia Stadium this season.

When the fixtures were announced in the summer, I always felt this would be a tough for United, whatever position we were in the league. Stoke have shown this season that are a dangerous team with the likes of Bojan, Shaqiri and Arnautovic.

Louis Van Gaal made one change to the team that started last weekends defeat to Norwich, with Herrera replacing Rooney.

Stoke dominated possession in the opening 15 minutes of the game as both sides struggled in windy conditions, despite their early domination Stoke failed to really threated David De Gea’s goal.

The opening came in a 19th minute as a woeful header back towards in the his goalkeeper from Memphis resulted in an a easy finish for Bojan.

Memphis was taken off at half-time and in all honesty I don’t think anyone could have blamed Van Gaal if he had taken him off after the goal.

The Dutch attacker has failed to live up to his billing as one of Europe’s brightest young talents, failing to have a major impact on any Premier League game.

Stoke made it 2-0 only seven minutes after the opening goal. Following a free-kick on the edge of the area taken by Bojan, his effort cannoned back off the United wall into the path of Arnautovic, who fired the ball into the back of United’s net.

As United tried to get back into the game in the second-half, Stoke sat back and looked to hit United on the counter. Therefore United dominated possession but failed to really create any openings.

United’s best came when Rooney drilled a ball across the Stoke area and found Fellaini, whose effort was well saved by Stoke keeper Butland.

This defeat could signal the end of Van Gaal’s time at Old Trafford, whether he walks or he’s pushed. There will be huge question marks as to whether the Dutchman will be in the dugout against Chelsea in just over 48 hours time.

Manchester United: De Gea, Young, Jones, Smalling, Blind, Carrick, Herrera (Pereira 82), Mata, Fellaini, Memphis (Rooney 46), Martial Substitutes Not Used: Romero, Borthwick-Jackson, Varela, McNair, Schneiderlin

About Andrew Hyslop 398 Articles
Creator of Sir Alex Ferguson Way and writer of football books

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