Manchester United 2-1 Tottenham Hotspur
- Goals: Marcus Rashford (£8.7m) x2 | Dele Alli (£8.5m)
- Assists: None | Serge Aurier (£4.9m)
- Bonus: Rashford x3, Alli x2, Aurier x1
A 13-point haul against Spurs on Wednesday night propelled Marcus Rashford (£8.7m) into third on the list of top-scoring FPL forwards this season.
It is now four scores of nine points or more in the past seven Gameweeks for the Manchester United striker and, over the Red Devils’ last three league games, Rashford has registered three goals and two assists en route to two double-figure returns.
On the striker, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer told Amazon Prime:
He’s played all the games more or less this season. The boy is getting fitter and fitter, more experienced and what a performance. Two goals, creates them himself, could and should’ve had two more. Free-kick is going in all the way and just at the end it curls outside. So a fantastic performance by the boy.
After this weekend’s Manchester derby, United have a run of six relatively favourable fixtures before a trip to face Liverpool in Gameweek 23. Rashford is likely to be a serious contender for Fantasy squads over the festive period then, while the same can be said for Dele Alli (£8.5m).
Despite an underwhelming performance from Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur side in Gameweek 15, the confident-looking midfielder still looks ripe for investment.
Alli made it four attacking returns in three league starts under the Portuguese boss as Spurs fell to a 2-1 defeat at Old Trafford.
Mourinho said of the resurgent midfielder:
I just try to play Dele in a position where the principles of play suit him. He’s playing well and he’s scoring goals. I can’t ask for more other than to keep him going.
After a first half where Rashford scored once and had several more chances, Alli stole the spotlight with some sublime skill before the interval.
Following a scramble in the Man United area, Serge Aurier (£4.8m) saw his shot from near the byline saved by David de Gea (£5.5m).
The ball spun up into the air before Alli appeared to conjure it back down, his first touch looping over a static United defence before he volleyed past the Red Devils’ Spanish stopper.
Rashford had opened the scoring after six minutes as his drive beat Paulo Gazzaniga (£4.5m) too easily at the keeper’s near post.
But the Argentinean then made a string of saves from Man Utd’s prime FPL asset, who saw a 35-yard shot tipped onto the bar before Gazzaniga denied the England striker again moments later. Rashford had already sent a wicked free-kick just wide in the 18th minute.
Hugo Lloris’ stand-in Gazzaniga was bested by Rashford again straight after the interval as the forward converted from the penalty spot after being fouled by Moussa Sisssoko (£4.9m).
Both managers agreed on the point that the Red Devils dominated before Alli’s goal, with Mourinho recognising that the game could have been beyond his team before the first half ended:
I think for 30 minutes they were not just better than us, they were much better than us. They were better than us in aggression and intensity, winning 50-50 duels. We were lucky.
Then at the end of the first half we were us, and United were worried. In the second half we made some adjustments and we thought we were going to win it. The second goal is hard to process We have to blame ourselves and I think United must be happy with the points.
While Mourinho was less than pleased with Spurs’ first-half showing, Solskjaer was effusive in praising his troops.
I thought that (the first half) was probably the best we’ve played for a long time. I thought we dominated the game, could’ve finished the game there and then. Some great saves from their goalkeeper but when they get the goal just before half time, you think about getting in here, settling all the heads and just go again.
We’re best when we’re on the front foot, attacking quickly and when we’re aggressive. The boys followed the plan and executed their skills all night.
Despite the absence of Anthony Martial (£7.7m) – who Solskjaer has ruled out “for a little while” – Rashford stayed in his usual wide-left position as Mason Greenwood (£4.3m) earned a rare start up front.
Rashford gave Aurier a torrid time all evening long and could have completed his hat-trick but got his feet slightly mixed up in the Spurs box just before the full-time whistle.
At the other end, his England counterpart Harry Kane (£10.9m) failed to have a shot inside the box as he put in another uninspiring Fantasy performance. Son Heung-min (£9.8m) also cut a peripheral figure but did get on the end of a good opportunity early in the second half.
As for the Lilywhites’ backline, they have now conceded two goals in each of Mourinho’s four games in charge of the club. The Humble One has had a definite impact in north London but the Spurs defence remains as vulnerable as before.
Manchester United XI (4-2-3-1): De Gea; Young, Maguire, Lindelof, Wan-Bissaka; Fred, McTominay; Rashford, Lingard, James; Greenwood.
Tottenham Hotspur XI (4-2-3-1): Gazzaniga; Vertonghen, Sanchez, Alderweireld, Aurier; Winks, Sissoko; Son, Dele Alli, Lucas Moura; Kane.
Gameweek 15 – FPL Match Reports
- Crystal Palace 1-0 Bournemouth
- Burnley 1-4 Man City
- Chelsea 2-1 Aston Villa
- Leicester 2-0 Watford
- Man Utd 2-1 Spurs
- Southampton 2-1 Norwich
- Wolves 2-0 West Ham
- Liverpool 5-2 Everton
- Sheffield United 0-2 Newcastle
- Arsenal 1-2 Brighton
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