Manchester United and Chelsea played out a drab goalless draw at Old Trafford in their Premier League encounter.
Despite the midweek win over Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reverted to the same starting lineup that won 4-1 at Newcastle last weekend.
In contrast, Frank Lampard elected to change formation, as the Blues revered to three centre-halves, with a flexible front three of Timo Werner, Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic.
Both sides however lacked conviction during a lacklustre first half, which was a tale of little quality, passive football and VAR’s decision not to award a penalty against Harry Maguire for hauling down Cesar Azpilicueta.
In a bid to get United going just before the hour mark, Solskjaer turned to Paul Pogba and Edinson Cavani, and the latter almost made an immediate impact with a smart flicked effort, only to be denied by Edouard Mendy.
Each manager made changes in a bid to win all three points, but it was a night where both teams lacked inspiration and, ultimately, both had to settle for a share of the spoils.
Man Utd ratings
David de Gea – 6
What the Spaniard was asked to do, he did soundly. Handling was good in the wet conditions but had little to trouble him.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 6
Had to deal with Chilwell and either Werner or Pulisic coming down his flank, but did well enough for the most part. Fortunate on the occasion he forgot to track Werner at the far post however.
Victor Lindelof – 7
After a good performance in midweek, the Swede again did well here up against the speed of Werner. United’s best player on the night.
Harry Maguire – 5
Lucky not to give away a penalty after grabbing Azpilicueta around the neck at a set-piece, the England defender looked nervy throughout.
Luke Shaw – 6
Booked early doors but was solid enough and backed up attacks smartly.
Scott McTominay – 6
Protected the defence well and used the ball diligently, but passing does sometimes lack inspiration; this was one of those occasions.
Fred – 5
Booked early in the second half for a trip on Havertz and after a very good individual showing in Paris, he was busy but not much else here. Unfortunately the manner of his display
Juan Mata – 5
Some tidy moments during the first half, including forcing a decent save from Mendy after 40 minutes, but game largely passed him by. Subbed before the hour.
Bruno Fernandes – 5
The Portuguese was busy throughout but this was a day when he proved unable to bend proceedings to his will.
Dan James – 4
Starting down the left up against his namesake, the Welshman struggled to make any impact. Opportunity one-vs-one against Azpilicueta at the start of the second half, but disappointingly ran straight into the Spaniard. No surprise when hooked.
Marcus Rashford – 6
Had a good chance when racing clear in the first period but elected to shoot early when he could have kept running into the penalty area. Worked hard and looked the man most likely to do something.
Subs: Pogba (James 58′), Cavani (Mata 58′), Greenwood (McTominay 82′)
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Chelsea player ratings
Edouard Mendy – 7
One really iffy moment with his feet in the first period as he played it out for a corner and almost into his own net, but handled well in tricky wet conditions and made a couple of good stops – notably denying Rashford on the half hour mark and towards the end.
Cesar Azpilicueta – 6
The steady Spaniard was back in the role where he was integral during Antonio Conte’s reign on the right of the back three and looks far more at home there than at full-back these days.
Thiago Silva – 8 MOTM
The veteran Brazilian’s passing was on point from the heart of the back three where he was able to organise those around him and protect his lack of pace. On occasions when isolated with Rashford, did well and denied Cavani late on with an excellent block.
Kurt Zouma – 6
Solid enough outing from the France international who continues to justify Lampard’s faith in him at the back.
Reece James – 7
Pocketed his namesake James during the first half and also attacked well down the Chelsea right; one delivery on the hour mark was an absolute peach.
Jorginho – 6
Typically tidy in possession, the Italy international always shows for teammates and never shirks responsibility.
N’Golo Kante – 6
A steady display from the Frenchman who, as always, was everywhere in midfield.
Ben Chilwell – 7
Starting to make an impression now back fit and did well down the left side. Used the ball effectively and helped create overloads throughout, and was good defensively.
Kai Havertz – 4
Not much to shout about from the elegant playmaker. A couple of touches showed his undoubted quality, but failed to make any mark on proceedings before being hooked. Showed in Germany he’s capable of much, much better.
Timo Werner – 5
His movement was good but was too often guilty of lacking awareness and picking the wrong option – notably when he didn’t see Christian Pulisic racing clear in the second period.
Christian Pulisic – 5
The American popped up in plenty of good areas and was his usual busy self, but unfortunately wasn’t anywhere near his best.
Subs: Abraham (Werner 71′), Mount (Havertz 71′), Ziyech (Pulisic 80′)
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