Ole Gunnar Solskjaer picked up the biggest win of his Manchester United tenure following a 0-1 victory against title-chasing Spurs at Wembley on Sunday.
The Norwegian had won his previous five games in charge at Old Trafford but the general consensus was that the trip to Wembley would be Solskjaer’s biggest test so far.
Marcus Rashford’s fantastic finish in the first half from a sumptuous Paul Pogba pass gave United the lead, but Spurs came out strongly in the second half as the away side came under a constant wave of pressure from Pochettino’s side.
David De Gea, however, was in inspired form making countless saves from Harry Kane and Dele Alli as Spurs failed to find a way past the Spanish stopper.
The win puts United level on points with Arsenal in fifth.
Let’s take a look at 13 quickfire conclusions as Manchester United see off Spurs at Wembley.
1) Manchester United’s attack is so much more fluid under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The front four of Lingard, Rashford, Pogba and Martial all looked so dangerous when given the opportunity, running in behind the Spurs defence confidently and looking like a completely different prospect since Mourinho left.
2) Also worth noting that Marcus Rashford’s best position is unquestionably as a number nine. The 21-year old was wasted on the wing. His opener proved that.
3) Mourinho was often criticised for not knowing his best starting XI in his two and a half years at the club. It appears as though it’s only taken Solskjaer a few weeks to find his.
4) Spurs are reportedly set to let Mousa Dembele leave for China in an £11 million deal but in the first half especially looked as though they required a player like the Belgian to get a hold of the ball in the middle of the park and gain some control of the game.
5) The injury to Sissoko also highlighted a depth problem that Spurs have masked quite well up until now. They failed to add to their squad in the summer and now that injuries are piling up their bench looked noticeable bare in comparison to a strong United one. 18-year-old Oliver Skipp and Erik Lamela their only midfield options in reserve.
6) It’s hard to argue against Paul Pogba being the best midfielder in the Premier League when he is in form and playing with confidence. The ball he provided for Marcus Rashford was world class.
7) Spurs started the second half sharply but David De Gea, as he has done so often, proved his worth making a number of tremendous saves to deny Spurs. The Spaniard continues to be one of their most important players despite the lack of clean sheets this campaign.
8) Gary Neville made an excellent point when discussing the changes Solskjaer has made to this Manchester United side. He has left out the likes of Romelu Lukaku and Juan Mata, two players who although valuable, often slow down the play. Something that certainly wouldn’t suit this new attacking style United possess.
9) Victor Lindelof is quietly having a strong season at the heart of the United defence and seems to be growing in confidence game by game.
10) Despite this, and as good as they are going forward United still have issues at the back, De Gea saved Solskjaer’s side on a number of occasions when the away side’s defence let them down.
11) Spurs created a number of really well-worked chances in the second half and De Gea will gain all the plaudits for his excellent saves but Pochettino’s side should have been more clinical when the opportunities presented themselves.
12) It has been a difficult week for Spurs and with such a small squad they played well considering the circumstances but they will certainly look at this game as one they arguably should have won given the chances they created.
13) Many put an asterix beside Solskjaer’s name considering the lesser teams that United have beaten since he took over at Old Trafford. No one can question his ability today however, as both Solskjaer and United proved that they are here to stay.