By Dave Marshall
Belgian forward Romelu Lukaku maintained United’s unbeaten start to the season having scored his sixth Premier League goal of the season to give the Red Devils a hard-fought win against the Saints. It wasn’t the easiest of wins for United as we had to defend deep and hit the Saints on a counter majorly in the second half.
The Red Devils are level on point at the top of the table but sit second behind rivals Manchester City on goal difference. However, it was a dramatic end to the game as Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho was sent to the stands by referee Craig Pawson for stepping onto the pitch. It was United’s fourth straight win in all competition since drawing 2-2 away to Stoke at the Bet 365 stadium.
Romelu Lukaku might have grabbed the headlines but United’s defence continued their impressive form having conceded just two goals so far in the Premier League this season. Phil Jones was arguably United’s best defender and was faultless having kept Shane Long at bay and clearing anything that came his way.
The Red Devils were dominant in the first half but the Saints looked more dangerous in the second half with Oriol Romeu missing his side’s best chance in the 51st minute from six yards. The Spanish international also fired wide in the 77th minute after a lovely move from Dusan Tadic. United have been crying out for a stable partnership at the heart of the defence since the departure of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic, and it seems United have found their replacement in Phil Jones and Eric Bailly.
Below is what fans have been saying about Phil Jones performance against Southampton on social media platform, twitter:
Phil Jones was man of the match for #MUFC and is maybe starting to fulfil his potential at last. Lukaku too isolated up front.
— Alex Crook (@alex_crook) September 23, 2017
— MaRz (@TheRealMaRz92) September 23, 2017
Phil Jones in the form of his life #MUFC_FAMILY
— Shareeq Maredia ️ (@MarediaShareeq) September 23, 2017
happy for Phil Jones, been SOLID all through. #MUFC
— ℳ gιғт (@Giffty_) September 23, 2017
Phil Jones without doubt is the best defender we've got since Rio and Vidic left. Man has 3 lives made of glass. #mufc
— Olas (@CEOlalekanOlas) September 23, 2017
Will take 1-0 away to Southampton all day long. Great performance lads. Especially Phil Jones. Immense form this season. Come on #MUFC 🔴⚽️🔴
— Craig David (@craigbryandavid) September 23, 2017
Who would have thought Phil Jones, PHIL JONES, would be a rock at the back #MUFC
— Vincerò 🇱🇨 (@Its_Brenner1) September 23, 2017
— Kassab (@Kassab92) September 23, 2017
Phil Jones played like a warrior today , man of the match by some distance #MUFC
— jason luke Phillips (@Thejlp23) September 23, 2017
Remember when Sir Alex said Phil Jones will be a #mufc first choice cb. Today showed why
— RedArmy (@OoAh_Cantona) September 23, 2017
A gritty, determined performance by us again! Solid at the back, credit to Mourinho for that, MOTM today was Phil Jones By Far! #MUFC
— DrayFIFA (@DrayFIFAA) September 23, 2017
English international Phil Jones have been impressive for United so far this season and was solid at the back once again for United against the Saints. He won 5 aerial duels, the most by a United player alongside Marouane Fellaini, completed 90.6% of his passes and had more touches 53 on the ball than any other United defender.
The 25-year-old has been plagued by injuries mostly but will be hoping to stay injury free and help the Red Devils in their hunt for trophies this season.