Manchester United fans rub their eyes as they look at the table. It looks like some Deja Vu: The Red Devils are first in the Premier League! The wheel of fortune is turning ... For years, United was the alpha and omega in England, and Liverpool was behind.
When Sir Alex left and Jurgen came, everything turned upside down. But now step by step, belittled, underestimated Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sat at the top of the table after 18 rounds played. Statisticians have revealed that this is the first time in five years that the team from Old Trafford has reached first place when the season moves away and moves into the new calendar year.
Manchester is in great shape, which was seen tonight. The result is minimal, but it didn't look like that on the field. United showed character and wisdom. They played patiently, without nervousness, missed chances, until Paul Pogba found his way to the net of the persistent Burnley with a bomb from a distance - 1: 0.
Another curiosity: the Frenchman who is rumored to want to leave the club at any cost at the end of the season sent the Red Devils to the first place.
The beginning of the match did not look like that. In the first half-hour, Burnley was the one who attacked, Manchester could hardly even reach the opponent's penalty area.
The host did not create a great opportunity in those half hours, but they"hung" around the penalty area, shot, pressed ... After that Manchester moved to the opponent's half. Especially in the second half, Solskjaer's team "camped" in front of the rival's goal.
Shots from all possible and impossible positions followed, and Cavani missed the best chance in the 52nd minute when he missed the whole football. It couldn't be seen that patience was running out for the Red Devils after those misses.
They played the same, at the same pace, they continued to attack from all sides. And as football theory says, such defenses of the opponent are broken either by center shots from the side or shots from a distance. This match was solved by the great volley of Paul Pogba, whose ball managed to find its way to the net of Nick Pope, who did not even see it until it was too late.
But the finish of the match could have ruined everything for United. Burnley started all or nothing and Matej Vydra had two great opportunities to prevent the guests from celebrating, so in the 90th minute there was a great chance ... And then, in the 94th minute, Martial missed a goal to finish the match.