A Complete Tactical Analysis Of How Manchester United Mauled Sunderland

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Manchester United carry on their run of victories after delivering a bashing to the former United manager David Moyes. United also continued their reputation of being the most successful team on boxing day and now look forward to extending their run and climbing into the top 4.

A game filled with sensational goals, all of them involving Ibrahimovic. Sunderland carried on their poor run of form, which was inevitable as they had to face United.



United saw Lingard play on the left and Mkhitaryan wouldn’t come on till later, so the right wing was occupied by Mata. United’s defence saw the same setup again, to great success as usual. The midfield trio of Carrick, Pogba and Herrera (probably the best as of now) and Ibrahimovic upfront saw things on a familiar line for United.

Moyes’ Sunderland went with a defensive setup and the likes of Anichebe (physical prowess) for utilisation of long balls, Defoe for his striker instincts and Borini for his cheekiness but it was all for nothing as Sunderland barely had any movement up front.

Where United struck well

The first goal

The first goal

Zlatan has been sensational in his holdup of the ball and it proved effective yet again. Rojo running into the box ensured that the Sunderland defenders wouldn’t notice a Daley Blind rushing in to strike the ball into the net. Zlatan did a brilliant job of drifting wide and creating a gap big enough for a player to sneak in and take a pop.

United got the goal they wanted late into the first half but it helped tip the flow of the game in their favour. From there it was downhill for Sunderland.  Zlatan was involved in all goals via assists through his own brilliance. He drifted wide quite a number of times and created chances for the other players to score from.

Manchester United’s midfield seems sorted


The presence of Michael Carrick gives the Man United defence confidence. The composure and vision of the Englishman ensured that the defence could focus more on their primary duty while Pogba was allowed to go on his attacking spree.

Pickford did well to deny Pogba a goal and Herrera kept linking up well with Juan Mata. Lingard and Mata stuck to central areas quite often and played as wide attacking midfielders rather than wingers. The linkup usually involved both the midfielders and forwards in unison, thereby troubling Sunderland and dominating every aspect of the game.

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Rainar Angelo

An ardent follower of Manchester United who in his spare time likes to unravel mysteries of football and music.

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