The game swung in United’s favour after just one minute. A horror tackle by Alexandre Jankewitz on Scott McTominay resulted in the Southampton man receiving a straight red. It was a terrible challenge and he’d made his sides task even harder now.
It didn’t take long for United to take advantage of the extra man. On eighteen minutes Wan-Bissaka got on the end of a Luke Shaw cross to make it 1-0. It was going to be a long night for the Saints!
Shaw and Rashford were causing havoc down the left hand side and debutant Kayne Ramsay was having a torrid time. Seven minutes after taking the lead United doubled their advantage. After some neat play down the left Rashford had the freedom of Old Trafford to make it 2-0. Simple finish for his 15th of the season.
United could smell blood and they looked like scoring every time they came forward. They were playing so high up the pitch that Shaw was almost level with Rashford! Southampton certainly didn’t need to give United any help! But with ten minutes left of the first half that’s exactly what happened. Wan-Bissaka’s dangerous cross was turned in by Saints defender Jan Bednarek to give United a three goal lead. The away side looked shell shocked.
Cavani was having an excellent game and the only thing missing was a goal. His link up play and movement on and off the ball had been superb. With six minutes to go before the break he got his goal. Luke Shaw produced another wonderful cross and Cavani rose highest to head the ball past Alex McCarthy to make it 4-0. Half time arrived but Southampton must of been wishing it was the full time!
The start of the second half saw Solskjaer make two changes. Shaw and Cavani made way for Donny van de Beek and Anthony Martial. Early in the second half Southampton thought they’d got themselves on the scoresheet, but VAR ruled it out for offside. Che Adams was less than impressed with the decision.
The away side had moved up the pitch and were enjoying some rare possession. When United did come forward, Southampton looked more organized and harder to break down. But with twenty minutes left their new found resistance was broken. Fernandes picked out Martial with a wonderful ball and the Frenchman took it on his chest before rifling it in to the back of the net. Excellent finish.
This would signal the floodgates opening back up. Two minutes later McTominay got himself on the scoresheet and it was no more than his performance deserved. The ball broke on the edge of the box and the Scotland international drove a low shot into the back of the net past the helpless McCarthy. How many more were United going to get?!
Unbelievably Fernandes hadn’t got himself on the scoresheet but he was about to get a golden opportunity. Martial pounced on a loose ball in the box and was upended by Jan Bednarek. Mike Dean pointed to the spot!
Once the penalty was awarded Mike Dean was advised to check the pitch side monitor to see if any further punishment was needed. After careful consideration he came back and showed Bednarek a red card for being the last man. Southampton were now down to nine men! Fernandes stepped up and sent McCarthy the wrong way to make it 7-0!
As the clock ticked into the 90th minute United added an eighth! Martial had time to control a Wan-Bissaka cross before firing the ball into the bottom corner. Excellent finish and his two goals will do his confidence the world of good.
In the final minute of added on time United inflicted more damage on the away side. Daniel James got on the end of a Fernandes knockdown and coolly flicked it into the back of the net to make it 9-0. Southampton had conceded 9 goals in a game for the second time in two years!
Solskjaer’s men had been ruthless, Southampton had been ripped to shreds. United stay second level on points with City at the top of the league but Guardiola’s men have a game in hand.