Manchester United took on rivals City at Old Trafford this afternoon as José Moutrinho came face to face with old adversary Pep Guardiola once again.
The away side dominated the proceedings in the first half, and looked in control when goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Kelechi Iheanacho gave them a 2-0 lead.
However, a brilliant Zlatan Ibrahimovic finish, helped in no small part by a big error from debutant goalkeeper Claudio Bravo, pulled one back and gave Man United confidence going into the second half.
An end-to-end second half could have easily have provided more goals for either side, but Guardiola’s team held on to draw first blood in the Manchester rivalry.
But how did the individual players fare?
Manchester United Player Ratings:
David De Gea – 6.5: Didn’t do much wrong, but his rating should not rise by default due to general inactivity. Not one of his busier days.
Antonio Valencia – 6.5: Lost the first half battle with Nolito, made it more of an even contest in the second.
Eric Bailly – 6.5: Had a first half that did not live up to his initial few performances, but improved in the second and kept going. Made a goal-saving tackle from Fernandinho late on.
Daley Blind – 5: The first goal came about due to some awful defending from Blind. Has started the season very well, but this afternoon’s display was nowhere near that standard.
Luke Shaw – 7: Shaw is arguably the best left-back in the league right now, and was one of the few Man United players today who looked assured in a wretched first half.
Paul Pogba – 5.5: The away midfield dictated the tempo today, which should worry Mourinho. Pogba’s positioning, during the first half in particular, was atrocious at times.
Marouane Fellaini – 6: Slightly better than Pogba, and definitely had his uses, but this wasn’t the game for Fellaini to properly display the good form he has been showing lately.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – 4: A fitness worry going into this game, and perhaps could have made more impact coming on from the bench because this game completely passed him by.
Jesse Lingard – 3: A surprise starter ahead of Anthony Martial, but did nothing to suggest he should keep his place ahead of the French international or Marcus Rashford. Did nothing at all full stop, in actual fact.
Wayne Rooney – 5: Rooney’s biggest contribution to this game was that he was on the receiving end of a Claudio Bravo reducer. Another poor performance, this time without the goal or assist to save him.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic: – 7: Very well-taken finish towards the end of the first half, provided a good outlet for the team in the second and was a menace to the Man City defence throughout.
Marcus Rashford (Mkhitaryan 46) – 7: Much, much, much better than Lingard. Looked like he could make something happen, but wasn’t quite as sharp as his performance against Hull.
Ander Herrera (Lingard 46) – 6: Perhaps made a case as to why he should have started this game, but by the time he came on the damage in midfield was done.
Anthony Martial (Shaw 81) – N/A: Had less than ten minutes to make an impact with Man United chasing the game.
Manchester City Player Ratings:
Claudio Bravo – 5: Nervous. Very nervous. Wasn’t quite as bad as Sky made him out to be, but the second half could have been a lot more comfortable without the error that allowed Zlatan to score. That said, his distribution was generally good.
Bacary Sagna – 6: Coming back from an injury, Sagna looked composed in the first half but the introduction of Rashford in the second really seemed to throw him off.
John Stones – 7: Stuck to his short game, even when it appeared to let him down at times. Looked a bit shaky in the second half, but his performance in the first made up for it.
Nicolas Otamendi – 8: Otamendi looks hugely different to the player that seemed unsettled in the Man City defence under Manuel Pellegrini last season. Otamendi and Stones will be a fantastic partnership going forward.
Aleksandar Kolarov – 7: Lost a tooth at some stage during the game, but still gave an assured display. Seems to be becoming a Guardiola favurite, be it on the left or in the centre of defence.
Fernandinho – 8.5: An unsung hero of this team (as unsung as one can be with a £34m price tag), Fernandinho was the engine to the two cadilacs in front of him. Pushed De Bruyne as the best player on the pitch at times.
David Silva – 7.5: Silva has been brilliant in a slightly adjusted role under Guardiola, and today was no different. Looked lively throughout.
Kevin De Bruyne – 9: Absolutely ran the show. The Belgian international took his goal brilliantly, and was unlucky to see an effort bounce off the post for Iheanacho’s effort. Struck the post for a second time in the second half.
Raheem Sterling – 6: Not one of Sterling’s better games. Has improved hugely under Guardiola but City’s decision to target Valenica on Man United’s right impacted on the England international’s own performance.
Nolito – 7: Looks like being a bargain at £13.8m. Nolito worried and stretched Valencia in a big way throughout the first half, but the contest was slightly more even in the second.
Kelechi Iheanacho – 8: Set up the first goal, scored the second – Man City couldn’t really ask for more than that. Came off early in the second half as Guardiola changed shape, but the 19-year-old had done his job by then.
Fernando (Iheanacho 53) – 6.5: Came on early in the second half, and offered solid reassurance in the midfield as Man United threatened to build on their newfound confidence.
Leroy Sané (Sterling 60) – 5: Showed flashes of what was to come from the £37m winger but his thirty minute cameo was more designed to get him used to Premier League football than anything else.
Pablo Zabaleta (Kevin De Bruyne 90) – N/A: Came on too late to make an impact
Read More About: alexandar kolarov, Antonio Valencia, bacary sagna, Claudio Bravo, daley blind, david de gea, david silva, eric bailly, fernandinho, henrikh mkhitaryan, Jesse Lingard, john stones, jose mourinho, kelechi iheanacho, kevin de bruyne, luke shaw, Man City, Man United, marouane fellaini, nicolas otamendi, Nolito, Paul Pogba, pep guardiola, Premier League, raheem sterling, Top Story, Wayne Rooney, zlatan ibrahimovic