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West Brom vs. Manchester United player ratings: Anthony Martial struggles in underwhelming draw

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Manchester United and West Bromwich Albion held each other to a 1-1 draw that suited neither side’s needs at the Hawthorns as Harry Maguire hit the post with a last-minute header. After dropping points in two of their last three league games, United could ill afford further dropped points as they looked to close the gap on league leaders Manchester City but their task became all the harder in the second minute when Mbaye Diagne overpowered Victor Lindelof to head home his first goal since joining Sam Allardyce’s side as they battle to avoid relegation.

However Albion are still 12 points from safety after they were unable to hold onto their lead until the interval, Bruno Fernandes’ brilliant volley from just inside the area bringing an end to a period of sustained pressure from the visitors. That did not continue in quite the same fashion in the second half, where the best chances fell to West Brom. 

Ainsley Maitland-Niles spurned a superb crossing opportunity whilst when Darnell Furlong got his delivery right Diagne could not direct the ball on target.

Maguire was at the heart of United’s attacking work and thought he had won a penalty in the 62nd minute only for Craig Pawson to overturn his initial decision after consulting replays. The visiting captain rose highest to meet Luke Shaw’s cross and flick a header into the top left corner only for goalkeeper Sam Johnstone to tip the ball onto the post.

Read on to see how we rated the individual performances in the draw.

West Brom ratings

Sam Johnstone

After what had been a surprisingly quiet first 69 minutes the West Brom goalkeeper reacted smartly to block Mason Greenwood’s low drive with his right boot. His late save to deny Harry Maguire’s looping header was even better. 7

Lee Peltier

An early ankle injury lessened Peltier’s effectiveness for most of the first half but he still defended rather impressively until the dying minutes of the period, when his lack of speed was ruthlessly punished by Luke Shaw. 5

Semi Ajayi

An excellent performance by the Nigerian international, Ajayi stuck to Cavani like glue and more often than not focused on blocking the Uruguayan’s path to the ball rather than competing for crosses. 7

Kyle Bartley

Every time a cross came in Bartley seemed to be the man on the end of it, throwing himself toward the ball with admirable courage.  7

Conor Townsend

Townsend held his flank down impressively, as much as Marcus Rashford and Aaron Wan-Bissaka were rather slow in getting the ball into play you sensed that West Brom’s left-back was also making life just that fraction more difficult for United’s attackers. 7

Robert Snodgrass

Snodgrass was as effective defensively as he was on the ball, throwing himself into more tackles than anyone else and winning four of his first four. He rarely got many opportunities to attack but unleashed Ainsley Maitland-Niles with a smart through ball in the second half. 8

Conor Gallagher

A tempting cross for the opener was Gallagher’s stand-out moment but no less impressive was his energetic pressing from the front. 7

Okay Yokuslu

No player in the West Brom side made as many ball recoveries as Yokuslu’s seven in the hour or so before he was forced off in some discomfort following what had been an impressive first start for his new club. 7

Ainsley Maitland-Niles

At his best, Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes in particular couldn’t touch the ball before Maitland-Niles was in their face, blocking any route up the pitch. The problem Allardyce will face is that there were occasions when he simply switched off, offering no resistance for the equalizer and moments later playing a loose pass that would have led to a dangerous Manchester United counter-attack. He also wasted a superb chance to tee up Diagne in the 72nd minute, dramatically overhitting his cross. 4

Matheus Pereira

Considering West Brom’s best route to goals always seemed to be set pieces and crosses it was infuriating for the Baggies that Pereira’s deliveries so often asked so much of his teammates. 4

Mbaye Diagne

The prototypical Sam Allardyce striker, he was an immediate nuisance for United and showed impressive strength to get power on his opener. Naturally he was starved of service for most of the game but his energy and commitment to the cause showed no sign of dwindling, something which perhaps explains his tired finishes in the closing stages of the game.  7

Darnell Furlong (sub, Peltier, 45′)

Having held firm on his flank for most of the half, Furlong delivered a superb cross from the right in the 87th minute, one from which Diagne should have at least got the ball on target. 6

Jake Livermore (sub, Yokuslu, 67′)

Livermore brought exactly what one would expect of him, solidity at the base of midfield. He scarcely gave the ball away when it mattered. 5

Sam Allardyce

A point against Manchester United is not to be sniffed at and this was a game that showed that Allardyce’s defensive drills are working. Sooner or later Albion will need to cut loose if they are to cut back a 12-point chasm that lies between them and safety. 6

Manchester United ratings

Sam Johnstone

After what had been a surprisingly quiet first 69 minutes the West Brom goalkeeper reacted smartly to block Mason Greenwood’s low drive with his right boot. His late save to deny Harry Maguire’s looping header was even better. 7

Lee Peltier

An early ankle injury lessened Peltier’s effectiveness for most of the first half but he still defended rather impressively until the dying minutes of the period, when his lack of speed was ruthlessly punished by Luke Shaw. 5

Semi Ajayi

An excellent performance by the Nigerian international, Ajayi stuck to Cavani like glue and more often than not focused on blocking the Uruguayan’s path to the ball rather than competing for crosses. 7

Kyle Bartley

Every time a cross came in Bartley seemed to be the man on the end of it, throwing himself toward the ball with admirable courage.  7

Conor Townsend

Townsend held his flank down impressively, as much as Marcus Rashford and Aaron Wan-Bissaka were rather slow in getting the ball into play you sensed that West Brom’s left-back was also making life just that fraction more difficult for United’s attackers. 7

Robert Snodgrass

Snodgrass was as effective defensively as he was on the ball, throwing himself into more tackles than anyone else and winning four of his first four. He rarely got many opportunities to attack but unleashed Ainsley Maitland-Niles with a smart through ball in the second half. 8

Conor Gallagher

A tempting cross for the opener was Gallagher’s stand-out moment but no less impressive was his energetic pressing from the front. 7

Okay Yokuslu

No player in the West Brom side made as many ball recoveries as Yokuslu’s seven in the hour or so before he was forced off in some discomfort following what had been an impressive first start for his new club. 7

Ainsley Maitland-Niles

At his best, Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes in particular couldn’t touch the ball before Maitland-Niles was in their face, blocking any route up the pitch. The problem Allardyce will face is that there were occasions when he simply switched off, offering no resistance for the equalizer and moments later playing a loose pass that would have led to a dangerous Manchester United counter-attack. He also wasted a superb chance to tee up Diagne in the 72nd minute, dramatically overhitting his cross. 4

Matheus Pereira

Considering West Brom’s best route to goals always seemed to be set pieces and crosses it was infuriating for the Baggies that Pereira’s deliveries so often asked so much of his teammates. 4

Mbaye Diagne

The prototypical Sam Allardyce striker, he was an immediate nuisance for United and showed impressive strength to get power on his opener. Naturally he was starved of service for most of the game but his energy and commitment to the cause showed no sign of dwindling, something which perhaps explains his tired finishes in the closing stages of the game.  7

Darnell Furlong (sub, Peltier, 45′)

Having held firm on his flank for most of the half, Furlong delivered a superb cross from the right in the 87th minute, one from which Diagne should have at least got the ball on target. 6

Jake Livermore (sub, Yokuslu, 67′)

Livermore brought exactly what one would expect of him, solidity at the base of midfield. He scarcely gave the ball away when it mattered. 5

Sam Allardyce

A point against Manchester United is not to be sniffed at and this was a game that showed that Allardyce’s defensive drills are working. Sooner or later Albion will need to cut loose if they are to cut back a 12-point chasm that lies between them and safety. 6




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