Sports

Four-midable Manchester United sweep West Ham aside in Premier League opener

Four-midable Manchester United sweep West Ham aside in Premier League opener

Lukaku scored a consolation goal as United lost 2-1 to Real Madrid in the UEFA Super Cup in the Macedonian capital Skopje on Tuesday and his team-mates have been impressed by what they have seen in pre-season. Blind can do a job on the left, but his speed is a major concern and hasn't looked sharp in the build-up, so the Italy global looks like the best bet at this moment in time.

After the break the Belgian doubled United's lead as he rose highest to head home a free-kick from Mkhitaryan. From clever flicks to gorgeous passes with a couple of superb tackles in-between, Pogba was everywhere today.

Mark Noble captains the side, with Pedro Obiang also handed a start, while Andre Ayew and Marko Arnautovic will look to support Javier Hernandez on his return to Old Trafford. Hart comes charging out and makes the save but Mata gets the ball again on the by-line. Mourinho expectedly gives the Old Trafford debut to Romelu Lukaku, spearheading an attacking lineup that includes fringe starters Marcus Rashford and Juan Mata.

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And with just seven minutes on the clock, giving an indication of things to come, the Belgian bulldozer burst down the left before forcing the first corner of the game and then Lukaku nodded down on to the penalty-spot but no home shirts were in the vicinity to convert. Subs: Sakho 5, Rice 5, Cresswell 5. He slips in a handsome ball to Lukaku and the Belgian slips it past Hart at his near post. So, so easy. Mkhitaryan plays a lovely first-time pass through to Martial and the Frenchman easily slots the ball under Hart. Red Devils fans will be optimistic for an assault on the Premier League title and it could turn into reality, providing they manage to transfer some of their home draws into wins. Then, after being central to much of United's pretty play, Pogba chose to go it alone, carrying the ball forward unchallenged before angling a shot past Hart.

Anthony Martial has now been directly involved in more Premier League goals (27) since 2015/16 than any other Man Utd player.

While silverware was added to the trophy cabinet with success in the EFL Cup and Europa League, boss Jose Mourinho knows that far more will be required in the top flight in his second term at the helm.


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