- Rooney dropped to bench
- Pogba scores first United goal
- United 4-0 up at HT
- Leicester’s Gray scores stunner
Manchester United and Jose Mourinho responded to their critics in emphatic fashion on Saturday at Old Trafford as the Red Devils blew past Leicester City 4-1 after a sensational first half display.
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Goals from Chris Smalling, Juan Mata, Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba (his first-ever goal for United) rocked the Foxes and despite Demarai Gray‘s stunner giving them hope in the second half, United always looked fairly comfortable.
United’s captain and talisman Wayne Rooney was left out of the starting lineup and after at least the first half display he may find it tough to get back into Mourinho’s plans.
With the win United now have 12 points with four wins from their first six games. Leicester remain on seven points and have now lost three PL games in 2016-17, the same number of defeats they had throughout their title-winning campaign last season.
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United started well with Daley Blind and Zlatan Ibrahimovic lashing shots wide but Leicester grew into the game as the first half wore on. After 22 minutes Smalling headed United in front from Blind’s outswinging corner from the left. 1-0 to the Red Devils.
Rashford then had a glorious chance to make it 2-0 after a sumptuous ball from Ibrahimovic played him in, but he lashed his effort way wide. United continued to pour forward with Pogba dinking a sublime ball over the top and after chesting it on the turn Zlatan sent his volley over. United’s fans were fired up and applauded their teams attacking intent.
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Pogba then sent in a dipping, swerving effort which went towards the top corner but Zieler palmed it away and soon United were 2-0 up. Pogba dinked a lovely ball to Jesse Lingard and his lay off found Mata who expertly drilled home. 2-0.
Before half time it was 3-0 as Blind played a short corner to Mata in the box and his cross was slotted home by Rashford. Then it got worse for Leicester as they switched off from another corner as Pogba rose highest and powered a header home for his first-ever goal for United. 4-0. United cruising at the interval after a rampant attacking display.
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At half time Ranieri made two changes as Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez were hooked off with Gray and Andy King coming on.
Leicester pulled one back through Gray as the youngster cut in from the left and smashed an unstoppable shot into the top corner. Stunning goal. 4-1.
Buoyed by that goal Leicester pushed for another but United looked dangerous on the break with Lingard setting up Ibrahimovic but his low shot was saved well by Ron-Robert Zieler.
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Gray almost bent in another stunner but David De Gea clawed the ball away and although Rooney came off the bench late on, the points were wrapped up for United as Mourinho’s boy got back on track.