Erik ten Hag enjoyed a winning start as Manchester United manager as three first-half goals set up his side for an impressive 4-0 success over rivals Liverpool in Bangkok.
Jadon Sancho opened the scoring before Fred and Anthony Martial increased United’s lead against a Liverpool side that made 21 changes across the 90 minutes, including half-hour cameos for new signings Darwin Nunez and Fabio Carvalho.
Young Uruguayan Facundo Pellistri added a fourth near the end as, in front of over 50,000 enthusiastic supporters in the Thai capital, Liverpool was made to pay for a combination of their profligacy at one end defensive errors at the other.
It is, of course, only the start of pre-season, with some Liverpool players literally returning from a holiday in the hours before Saturday’s tour departure.
Of the starting line-ups, United’s also contained far more players expected to be involved on the opening Premier League weekend.
But still, after the torture their fans have experienced over the past 12 months, this was a blessed relief and Ten Hag was applauded by the United contingent when his face was shown on the big screen in the dying minutes.
Fred’s goal was outrageous. The Brazilian polarises opinion like no other United player. Still, his brilliant chip over fellow countryman Alisson, executed with precision from 20 yards, was jaw-dropping and will doubtless provide some fun when the pair next meet up on international duty.
Sancho’s finish was calm, Martial’s clinical. If Marcus Rashford had taken another opportunity, offensively, United would have been almost perfect.
Ten Hag, though, will also know his side was fortunate at times.
There was one ridiculous passage of play, during which impressive Liverpool new boy Carvalho and Luis Diaz, who also fluffed an easy rebound, both struck the post.
In addition, David de Gea needed to make four good saves, including one to deny Nunez, who was among Jurgen Klopp’s final tranche of substitutes. They also included Mo Salah, who curled a shot against the post in the latter stages.
source – BBC