Manchester United 1-1 Liverpool – Player Ratings

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 17: Jesse Lingard of Manchester United look s dejected at the end of the UEFA Europa League Round of 16 Second Leg match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on March 17, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 17: Jesse Lingard of Manchester United look s dejected at the end of the UEFA Europa League Round of 16 Second Leg match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on March 17, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images) /
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Red Devils crash out of the Europa League after falling 3-1 on aggregate to Liverpool.

Manchester United drew 1-1 against Liverpool at Old Trafford, sending them out of the Europa League despite the goal from Anthony Martial.

The French international gave his side the advantage from the penalty spot after Nathaniel Clyne brought him down unfairly in the box. But Philippe Coutinho equalized just before half time, beating Guillermo Varela on the edge of the 18 and finishing with a chip over David de Gea.

After the goal for the opposition, Manchester United seemingly lacked any belief in a comeback and simply went through the motions in the second half. To make matters worse, Louis van Gaal made several defensive substitutions as the match wore on.

None of the Red Devils played very well, with much of the squad settling for a level of mediocrity. Here are the player ratings from the game.

David de Gea: 6

The world-class keeper made a vital save early on to keep the teams level, but he perhaps should have done better on Coutinho’s goal. Late in the match, the Spaniard did well to keep the damage to a minimum, but it was all for naught as the rest of the team couldn’t mount a comeback.

Guillermo Varela: 3

Varela has been Manchester United’s best defender and a significant contributor to the attack, but against Liverpool he struggled. As previously mentioned, the Uruguayan was far too easily beaten in the lead up to the Reds’ goal, while he also struggled to advance up the pitch and coordinate with Jesse Lingard. The manager was forced to remove him at half time in favor of a more attacking defender.

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Chris Smalling: 5

The center-back didn’t have much to do, but the defense looked shaky for a significant portion of the game under his control. Additionally, when he had the ball, he was hesitant to venture forward past midfield, often preferring to turn and play the ball negatively.

Daley Blind: 6

Alongside Smalling, the two defenders looked like they would break under the slightest bit of pressure. Liverpool nearly scored off of a Blind foul just outside the box, but Sturridge’s subsequent free kick cannoned off the bar. The opposition’s attackers were able to pick apart the United defense with relative ease, pinning the Red Devils in their own half and preventing too much forward movement.

Marcos Rojo: 4

Like Varela on the opposite flank, Rojo struggled. After Marouane Fellaini came up with a good play to keep the ball in bounds and send it back across goal, the Argentine defender should have finished but instead sent his shot wide of the post. He did have a few good combinations with Martial, but not enough to make a difference.

Michael Carrick: 5

The midfielder had a run of the mill type game, neither making any egregious errors nor providing any moments of brilliance. His lack of pace makes him a liability in providing cover for the United back line, particularly when he starts with Fellaini. Despite his evident decline, van Gaal prefers to use Carrick over Schneiderlin or Schweinsteiger.

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Marouane Fellaini: 8

The Belgian actually had arguably the best performance out of the bunch, as he held up play well and maintained possession. Fellaini also provided the only shot on goal of the second half for Manchester United, though it was directly at Mignolet. The former Everton man is usually made to be the scapegoat for poor performances from his teammates, but his selection for the team is no fault of his own.

Jesse Lingard: 5

The right winger failed to make much of an impact on the affair. His best chance of the game came off of a corner where he found himself completely unmarked in front of goal, but his header was too near to the keeper to find the back of the net. Lingard has a tendency to either show up on the scoresheet or have no influence on the outcome, and unfortunately for the Red Devils, the latter was the case today.

Juan Mata: 5

Mata looked uncharacteristically poor in possession, including several losses of possession under little duress and wayward passes. His delivery from set pieces was poor, usually failing to make it past the initial defender. With Martial the only significant threat in the United attack, Mata has to step up going forward if the club is to finish the season on a good note.

Anthony Martial: 7

The Frenchman created and converted the team’s only goal of the Europa League tie against Liverpool, as he drew a penalty and calmly finished from the spot. The squad continues to rely on their young player for individual brilliance, and while he does his best to deliver, it’s too much to ask.

Marcus Rashford: 5

The young striker was almost nonexistent for much of the match, his name rarely being mentioned by the announcers. After he burst onto the scene in his senior debut, Rashford has been tasked with playing as the lone striker in a largely possession minded system. While he works hard and does his best to track back defensively, he just hasn’t made a difference in the attack.

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Substitutes:

Antonio Valencia: 4

After coming on for Varela at the start of the second half, the Ecuadorian did nothing. Granted, Valencia was returning from a lengthy absence due to injury, and perhaps van Gaal made a mistake involving him, but he needed to be more involved offensively.

Matteo Darmian: 5

In his second questionable decision, the manager sent on Darmian to replace Rojo when the team desperately needed goals. The Italian has been struggling of late, and showed no signs of improvement.

Bastian Schweinsteiger: N/A

The German came on for the final 20 minutes, despite his side clearly being out of the tie.