Manchester United equalled the Premier League record for the biggest winning margin as they thrashed nine-man Southampton 9-0 at Old Trafford.
The result is the third 9-0 in Premier League history, with Southampton also on the receiving end of the same scoreline against Leicester City last season and Manchester United setting the original record against Ipswich Town back in 1995.
Southampton’s 19-year-old midfielder Alexandre Jankewitz endured a nightmare first Premier League start, launching into a crazily high studs-up challenge on Scott McTominay in just the second minute of the match, leaving referee Mike Dean with no choice but to brandish an early red card. And United exploited their numerical advantage ruthlessly for the remaining 88 minutes.
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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side switched play relentlessly to stretch the outnumbered Saints throughout a one-sided first half, and the quality of the crosses was impressively high as Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Marcus Rashford put United two to the good.
An unfortunate own goal from Jan Bednarek, turning Rashford’s cross into his own net from close range, made it three on 34 minutes, before the outstanding Edinson Cavani dispatched a fine header from Luke Shaw’s cross to make it 4-0 at the break. United could have also had a penalty shortly before half-time, only for VAR to adjudge that a foul on Cavani occurred fractionally outside the box and overrule the initial decision.
The half-time substitutions of Cavani and Shaw saw United take time to regain their fluency, and Southampton thought they’d pulled one back when Che Adams took advantage of some slack defending to slot past David de Gea. But a VAR review saw the effort ruled out for offside and that was as good as it got for Southampton, as United went to run riot in the remainder of the match.
Bruno Fernandes (L) and Anthony Martial both scored for Manchester United
Image credit: Getty Images
Anthony Martial made it five on 69 minutes, taking down a clever chipped ball over the top from Bruno Fernandes before rifling a shot into the roof of the net. And McTominay bagged the sixth just two minutes later, drilling a low effort through a crowd of bodies from outside the box.
Southampton’s torrid evening continued when Jan Bednarek was shown a red card for a foul on Martial inside the box, with Fernandes converting from the spot to make it seven. And Martial bagged his second with a close-range finish late on to make it eight.
And substitute Daniel James completing the scoring in injury time with a record-equalling ninth, becoming United's seventh goalscorer of the evening.
How will Southampton pick themselves up after this? The early red card for Jankewitz was a moment of madness from the youngster, but the impact of then playing essentially a full match with their backs to the wall could well have drained Southampton of any remaining confidence.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side went into the game on the back of three straight defeats in the league, and the leg-sapping effort that his side put in will be hard to recover from physically, let alone mentally.
The Saints have a host of injury problems too, to the extent that they were forced to name two goalkeepers on their bench to make up the numbers at Old Trafford. And now they will also be without Bednarek, who made quite a few important interventions throughout the game even though the basic match stats will show that he scored an own goal before being sent off late on.
Hasenhuttl is a fine manager, but picking his side back up after this morale-sapping match will be a tough task even for a coach of his calibre.
Man of the Match – Edinson Cavani (Manchester United)
Cavani was superb in the first half, constantly moving to stretch Southampton’s packed defence, linking up expertly with Fernandes and Rashford, and finishing his goal brilliantly. Shaw was also superb before he joined the Uruguayan in the stands for the second half.
Such was the deluge of quality from United in forward areas that a host of players could have been named man of the match, with Rashford, Martial and Fernandes also all excellent. But Cavani’s impact was particularly noteworthy given he has not been a certain pick in Solskjaer’s first-choice side since arriving at Old Trafford. There should be no doubt that he deserves that spot now.
Manchester United: De Gea 6, Shaw 8, Lindelof 7, Maguire 7, Wan-Bissaka 7, Fred 7, McTominay 7, Fernandes 8, Rashford 8, Greenwood 7, Cavani 8. Subs: Van de Beek 7, Martial 8, James 7.
Southampton: McCarthy 8, Ramsay 7, Bednarek 6, Stephens 7, Bertrand 7, Jankewitz 2, Ward-Prowse 6, Armstrong 6, Djenepo 6, Adams 5, Ings 6. Subs: Redmond 6, Tchaptchet 6.
18’ GOAL! – United have found the breakthrough and it’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka who’s got it. Rashford lays it back for Shaw on the left, who sees that the full-back has lost his marker Ings on the far side and curls in a deep cross for Wan-Bissaka to tuck home from close range. 1-0.
25’ GOAL! – Rashford bags a second, and given the circumstances that is probably the win in the bag for United. Shaw feeds Greenwood on the left edge of the box, and his pull-back is turned home by Rashford with a tidy finish. 2-0.
34’ OWN GOAL! – It’s 3-0 to United and it’s Bednarek who has turned a fizzing Rashford cross into his own net. It’s extremely unlucky for the defender, who was at full stretch and had to get something on it as Fred and Greenwood were completely unmarked behind him and waiting for a tap-in. The pace and quality of Rashford’s delivery forced the mistake, and this could be a rout now. 3-0.
39’ GOAL! – It’s four, and this time it’s Cavani’s turn to get on the scoresheet. The striker drifts off the back of Stephens to leave himself in space just seven yards from goal, and his header from Shaw’s excellent cross expertly picks out the corner. 4-0.
43’ – Penalty!? Cavani is felled right on the edge of the box and Mike Dean points to the spot. It goes up to VAR to judge whether it’s in or out of the box, and replays show that Cavani was fractionally outside the box when the foul was made (just about, debate will be had no doubt), meaning that the spot-kick is ruled out and it’s a free-kick instead.
55’ – United completely switch off from the free-kick and Fred stumbles as he looks to get back to stop Southampton striker Che Adams. The space opens up for a shot from an angle, but De Gea should still have done better to prevent it finding the far corner. The goal is initially given, but an extremely tight offside decision from VAR sees it chalked off.
69’ GOAL! – It’s five for United as Anthony Martial brings down a chipped ball over the top from Fernandes and hammers a shot into the roof of the net from an angle. That’s a great finish. 5-0!
71’ GOAL! – It’s another! Scott McTominay is all on his own as a clearance rolls to him outside the box, and he keeps it low to drill a fine first-time shot past McCarthy. 6-0!
86’ – Penalty! Or is it? VAR has been called into action as Martial goes down in the box and Mike Dean points to the spot. The penalty is given and it’s a red card for Bednarek too. That’s a tad harsh, but if it’s the law then it’s the law.
87’ GOAL! – Fernandes slots home from the penalty spot and it’s Manchester United SEVEN, Southampton 0.
90’ GOAL! – It’s 8-0. Wan-Bissaka’s cross reaches Martial, who controls with his chest and turns home an easy finish.
93’ GOAL! – It’s nine for Manchester United as they equal a Premier League record with Daniel James tapping home neatly from close range. 9-0.
Stats and Facts
- Manchester United are the first team in Premier League history to win 9-0 twice.
- Southampton are the first team in Premier League history to lose 9-0 twice.
- United have hit 6+ goals in two matches this season (against Leeds and Southampton). It is the first time they have achieved such a feat since 2000-01 (vs Bradford and Arsenal).
- Alexandre Jankewitz is only the fourth player to be sent off inside the opening two minutes of a match in Premier League history.
- United had seven different goalscorers on the night, matching a Premier League record set by Chelsea against Aston Villa in 2012.
- Luke Shaw registered as many assists (2) in the first-half of this match as he did in his previous 45 Premier League appearances.
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