Huddersfield 2-1 Man Utd talking points: Matic surrounded, Lindelof struggles and Mooy dominates
By Gerard Brand
Last Updated: 21/10/17 8:30pm
We run through the important talking points following Manchester United's 2-1 defeat by Huddersfield in the Premier League.
Goals from Laurent Depoitre and Aaron Mooy gave Huddersfield a 2-0 lead at half-time, before Marcus Rashford halved the deficit late on.
From fencing in Nemanja Matic to another Aaron Mooy classic, Gerard Brand goes through the main topics from the John Smith's Stadium.
By his usual high standards, this was Nemanja Matic's worst game in a United shirt by some distance.
There were plenty worse than him at the John Smith's Stadium, but David Wagner's decision to play an extra central midfielder stifled the Serb's creativity.
Those low, direct balls into feet from the boot of Matic were still regular enough, but with at least two blue and white shirts breathing down him at all times, they were rarely effective.
He made 118 passes, but the vast majority came pegged back in his own half as Huddersfield pressed United all over the pitch. Judging by this game, if you stop Matic, you stop a large chunk of United's attacking threat.
With United fretting over the extent of Phil Jones' injury, they won't be comforted by the performance of his replacement Victor Lindelof.
Mourinho refused to pinpoint individual errors after the game, saying the way United played exposed them to mistakes, but this came from a simple, long goal kick.
The Swedish defender had only been on the pitch 10 minutes following Jones' groin injury, and he was forced into a sticky situation from Jonas Lossl's hopeful punt.
He got caught under the ball and unconvincingly ducked his head as it arrived, allowing Laurent Depoitre to sweep in behind him and round David de Gea and roll into the net for 2-0.
It was Sunday league all over, and won't strengthen his bid for a first Premier League start in the coming weeks, even if Jones is absent.
Out of character?
"I don't even remember a friendly match where our attitude was so poor," said Mourinho after the match.
If there is one slight positive to take, it's that this exhibition-like performance seemed very much out of character for Mourinho's United.
United had kept seven clean sheets in their previous eight league fixtures with several stubborn defensive displays, something Mourinho has referenced and praised time and again this campaign.
Out of character or not, this result was calamitous. Tottenham come to Old Trafford next, then there's a trip to Chelsea, and with City already five points ahead, this is an intensely vital period in Mourinho's season.
If Huddersfield are to stay up, they'll likely have Aaron Mooy to thank most. Mooy ran more than any other player on the pitch on Saturday (13.04km) and made more passes than any of his team-mates as he commanded a midfield set up to disrupt the likes of Matic and Ander Herrera in possession.
The first goal epitomised the Australian - hounding down Juan Mata, he won the ball on halfway, burst forward and unselfishly fed Tom Ince to shoot - and was in the right place to follow up with the rebound.
A special mention must go to Rajiv van la Parra, who arrived as a sub in the first half and put in a tireless display down the right flank, constantly gaining ground as Huddersfield looked to push out from each United attack.
Huddersfield were criticised last month for going at Tottenham, who simply passed around the newly-promoted side and ran out comfortable 4-0 winners. Saturday's set-up wasn't too dissimilar, but this time it worked. If it's a case of 'win some, lose some' for Huddersfield this season, that 40-point mark is achievable.
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