The first 45 minutes of yesterday's game was simply breathtaking football. A lot of the goals actually came from corners, which in itself was pleasing enough, but that doesn't tell the whole picture. We had the breakaway chance that Zlatan laid off for Marcus, the chip from Pogba which Ibra blasted over the bar, Pogba himself with a long range effort. We made plenty of good chances from open play, the best one being the goal Mata scored. Wonderful football. Every part of the team complimented another part and it worked as a team. This passing and positioning map shows just how well each part linked up.
I hope this side gets the opportunity to flourish and play more games and show us what it can really do, but my fear is, it won't. There's too many options, too many players and too many big personalities sat on the sideline not playing. Shaw will return, as will Martial. But there's also Mkhitaryan, Memphis, Schneiderlin and of course, Wayne Rooney. Rooney didn't play against Feyenoord, where we still looked sluggish. But it was a second string side, all around. This was a first choice team. It was a team without the club captain. But it was still first choice. This is where the fans finally got to see how we would perform without Rooney, and we performed great. I'm not sure I see how Rooney comes back into this team as a regular starter, now. Certainly not based on performance alone.
What will be interesting now is how Rooney reacts. Does he accept he's no longer an automatic choice, work hard play less frequently and quietly get on with it, or does he replicate what we've seen at the Wastelands with Yaya Toure and his agent? I think we're about to find out.
Here's a compliation of the best bits from yesterday's fan cams, enjoy!