Manchester United earned a deserved 2-1 victory over Liverpool at Old Trafford to kickstart the Erik ten Hag era and depart their rivals winless after three Premier League games.
Ten Hag elected to drop Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Maguire following successive losses to start the campaign, a choice that was rewarded through a much-improved display.
An incisive pass culminated in Sancho calmly slotting previous Alisson after 16 minutes as Liverpool conceded first in a club-record seventh consecutive Premier League game.
Marcus Rashford’s aim early in the 2d half gave United breathing space prior to Mohamed Salah’s header 9 minutes from time, which proved a mere consolation.
The hosts’ first-half show was in whole contrast to their 4-0 loss at Brentford, with Anthony Elanga – favored to Ronaldo – putting the publish early on with simply Alisson to beat.
United were ahead quickly after when Sancho collected Elanga’s pass, fooled James Milner and Alisson with a dummy and discovered the bottom-left nook from the first shot on target.
Liverpool struggled to get going but almost levelled before half-time in weird instances as Bruno Fernandes miscued a clearance against Lisandro Martinez on the goal-line.
With Old Trafford rocking, regardless of threats of a stroll out in protest at the club’s owners, half-time replacement Anthony Martial played in Rashford on the counter for United’s second.
Rashford was denied another by a good Alisson save, whilst David de Gea stored out Luis Diaz and Roberto Firmino before Salah nodded in after United failed to deal with a corner.
Despite some late strain from Liverpool, the home side – perhaps lucky not to see Fernandes sent off following a kerfuffle after Salah’s aim – held on for a huge victory.
Liverpool would have loved nothing more than inflicting a 1/3 successive league defeat on United at the begin of the season for simply the fourth time in their history, however come the cease of Monday’s contest it was once the Reds who were now the disaster club of choice.
The Reds underwhelmed in attack – even if Salah did set up a nervier-than-anticipated conclusion to the fit – and were plagued through a number of sloppy errors in midfield and defence.
Yet savings must also go to United for exploiting these weaknesses, leaving Liverpool with two factors from a possible 9 after failing to win any of their first three matches in a Premier League campaign for the first time given that 2012-13.
Rashford steps up in Ronaldo absence
Benching Ronaldo for the 2nd time in three fits this season was a large call from Ten Hag, whose choice was fully justified through the cease of the 95 minutes thanks to goals from Sancho and Rashford.
Rashford in precise was a big threat throughout and tried a game-high 5 shots, such as the well-taken strike for his intention to cease a run of 997 minutes besides netting in all competitions for United.
Liverpool frustrations boil over
Salah’s aim was his 10th against United in all competitions for Liverpool – six of these at Old Trafford – making him the first Reds player to attain double-figures in this fixture.
But that strike could not paper over what was a terrible display from the visitors, particularly in defence and midfield, with Milner and Virgil van Dijk changing some strong words on multiple occasions.