The teenager Mason Greenwood scored two sizzling goals in each half as United scored five in the league at Old Trafford for the first time in nine years.
Goals: Greenwood 29′, 54′, Rashford 35′, Martial 45’+1, Fernandes 59′ – Stanislas 16′, King 49′.
The story about Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes being doubtful after a collision in training was a hoax, both started in an unchanged United side. United also had Rashford, Martial and Greenwood on the top.
Steve Cook missed out through injury for Bournemouth, who was forced to field a makeshift back four, with Lloyd Kelly moved to center-half in just his second Premier League start. Ex-United man and January transfer target Josh King started up front with Dominic Solanke, who was still yet to score for the Cherries in the league.
United began the match determinately to pass Chelsea, who would play Watford later. Fernandes missed an excellent chance on 10th minute when Rashford, just inside his own half, curled a superb pass over the Bournemouth defense to release him. He lobbed the ball over the outrushing Ramsdale, but his touch was a bit heavy and it also cleared the crossbar.
6 minutes later, Bournemouth suddenly came ahead after a lovely bit of skill from Junior Stanislas. His first shot was blocked by Maguire, with the ball rebounding towards the byline. Stanislas drew Maguire in, nutmegged him impudently and whipped a shot past de Gea from a very tight angle. He probably shouldn’t have beaten de Gea at the near post but the nutmeg was brilliant.
United responded strongly and the Red Devils’ front three have each scored to give them a convincing lead at the break:
Mason Greenwood, cancelling out Junior Stanislas’s opener, the Bournemouth midfielder nutmegging Harry Maguire before beating the equally hapless David de Gea at the near post from a tight angle. This was the latest in a series of goal-costing errors from the keeper to score the equalizer.
Rashford was soon to have his 20th. A lax defense allowed Martial a free header, Adam Smith handled, Mike Dean played advantage, then when none came the referee awarded the penalty. Rashford stroked the ball to Ramsdale’s left and a happier Solskjær clenched fist in celebration.
A two-minute vignette that ended the half summed up United. When Rashford was not found in the clear his vocal frustration was plain to hear. Moments later Martial stepped inside from the left and curled in a peach which went in off the crossbar.
The second half began with Eric Bailly replacing the injured Victor Lindelöf and Bournemouth’s Arnaut Danjuma coming on for David Brooks.
That was a shambolic start to the second half by United. Maguire’s sloppy pass eventually led to Danjuma hitting the post, then Matic played an equally loose pass towards Bailly that he had to control with his arm. Dean pointed to the spot and after a prolonged VAR examination the decision stood. Joshua King gave De Gea no chance and this was 3-2, the keeper having earlier again looked shaky when Danjuma beat him again at the near post, the upright that time saving him.
It seemed to be a disaster for the home team when Bournemouth immediately broke three on three, with Danjuma beating de Gea with a nonchalant toe poke. But he was offside when King put him through on goal.
It was very thrilling as only 3 minutes later United scored. There was little on as Greenwood got the ball on the edge of the box, so he dribbled into it, fashioned a little space and blasted the ball into the top corner with his right foot.
The home team then have another brilliant goal. Bruno Fernandes whipped the free-kick over the wall and into the far corner. Even though it was being checked by VAR because Bournemouth thought Matic was offside when Fernandes took the free-kick, the Portuguese still had his 6th goal in 9 games. United have scored five goals at Old Trafford in the Premier League for the first time since December2011 against Wigan.
The home team then made some substitutions, Fred, James, Ighalo and Mata sequently came. They had some opportunities but no more goal. The victory made it 16 unbeaten for United and took them into fourth, at least until Chelsea’s play Watford later. While it was also a third straight league win for the first time since January 2019, Solskjær may be unhappy with the defense even though it has managed 11 clean sheets in 16 outings.
Solskjær was asked to compare Greenwood to Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo, two teenagers he played alongside when a United striker. “I don’t want to compare him to Wazza or Ronaldo. I don’t think that’s fair,” Solskjær said, though he did state that he has never seen a better finisher at 18. “I have seen Wayne Rooney at the same age and Mason is a specialist goal scorer, he knows exactly what to do with the ball when he’s on the pitch.”
Man Utd: De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof (Bailly 46′), Shaw, Matic (Fred 67′), Pogba, Fernandes, Greenwood (James 75′), Rashford (Ighalo 80′), Martial (Mata 80′).
Bournemouth: Ramsdale, Smith (Stacey 77′), Ake, Kelly, Rico, Brooks (Danjuma 46′), L. Cook (Billing 66′), Lerma, Stanislas (H. Wilson 66′), Solanke (Gosling 67′), King.