The 2016-17 Premier League has begun with the annual FA Community Shield, in a battle pitting the winner of England’s top division against the winner of England’s most prestigious domestic cup competition. Following in the same vain as many of Europe’s top leagues (e.g. France’s Trophée des Champions, Italy’s Supercoppa Italia), here’s my review of today’s game between Manchester United and Leicester City.
FORMATION AND PLAYERS:
Leicester City (2015-16 Premier League winner): 4-4-2 (Schmeichel, Fuchs, Huth, Morgan, Simpson, Albrighton, King, Drinkwater, Mahrez, Vardy, Okazaki)
Manchester United (2015-16 FA Cup winner): 4-5-1 (De Gea, Valencia, Bailly, Blind, Shaw, Lingard, Carrick, Rooney, Fellaini, Martial, Ibrahimovic)
Goal(s): Jesse Lingard does his best Saul Niguez impression with a blinder of a goal. Wes Morgan should’ve done a lot better and the replays showing Kasper Schmeichel’s frustration leaves a lot to be desired for a team who last year was seen as one of the best defensively.
Controversial calls/Cards: An offside call in the 22nd minute saw Jesse Lingard (I’ll probably refer to him as the guy who scored the FA Cup winner last year against Palace) offside, but I personally didn’t agree with the official on that call. A yellow card was also shown in the 39th minute on Danny Simpson for a foul on Shrek (I mean, Wayne Rooney).
Overall thoughts: Though there were times where it was a game of please dispose the ball, there were some really good moments on the defensive end from the likes of Fuchs and Bailly. Luke Shaw looks in tip top shape post Hector Moreno horror tackle, and uh, fair play to the cheeky nutmeg from Vardy on Bailly.
Goal(s): Jamie Vardy scores yet another one of his dazzling goals after a terrible giveaway from tempura-head Fellaini. On the other end, we saw an incredible cross from Antonio Valencia for Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s header, making it 2-1 at the half and the final score for this match.
Controversial calls/Cards: We saw a yellow card on Andy King after a strong tackle on Jesse Lingard, which was a tackle that I felt he didn’t need to do. Vardy got a yellow for a similar challenge on Mata, but if there’s one talking point, it’d be towards the end of the match where Ahmed Musa and the rest of the Foxes had strong reason to believe that there should’ve been a penalty. The ref only gave a corner, and effectively sealed the match for United.
Overall thoughts: Great pace and energy brought on from Leicester, a sentiment echoed by BTSport pundit Steve McManaman of Liverpool fame. Nemaplys Mendy (the answer to N’Golo Kanté) was solid and he looks to be a shrewd signing from Steve Walsh, who departed for Everton. Another newcomer in Ahmed Musa had a great chance to get a goal from a header, but skied it; overall, he was great on the pitch and definitely injected some pace in the squad. Finally, how about that challenge from Bailly on Gray (#BeastMode).
Until next time folks,