Scott McTominay: Manchester United man comes of age in impressive display against Barcelona in the Champions League
Among them were Golden Boot winners, European Cup winners, World Cup champions and one of the game’s greats in Lionel Messi, but it was a 22-year-from Lancaster, who stood tallest, literally, on Wednesday night at Old Trafford.
Scott McTominay’s growth spurt is well documented. At the start of 2015 he was 5’7, he is now 6’4 and was man of the match against Barcelona.
While his inclusion in the starting XI may have initially raised eyebrows, McTominay went about justifying Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s faith in him.
Despite Manchester United narrowly losing 1-0 in the first-leg of their Champions League quarter-final, the Scotland international turned in a commanding performance, marshalling the midfield which earned him plenty of praise.
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“He’s added to his name. He was very, very good. He was positive, he was reliable, he was aggressive. He’s proven to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer he can be trusted, which is vital for a young player,” said former United defender Rio Ferdinand on BT Sport.
Some may consider this an overstatement from Ferdinand, but in only his second European outing of the season, the stats suggest McTominay is worthy of the credit.
Scott McTominay v Barcelona
100% defensive aerials won
100% tackles won
80% pass accuracy
5 ball recoveries
3 fouls in middle third
According to The Sportsman, the powerful midfielder won 100% of his tackles, both on the ground and aerially, while he had a pass accuracy of 80%.
McTominay was repeatedly singled out for his displays by former manager Jose Mourinho last season – winning the manager’s player of the year award last season – and appears to have earned the trust of his new boss.
“The boy’s developing every time he plays,” Solskjaer said. “He comes into training with a fantastic attitude and that’s the way to improve. Every game he plays he grows and grows.
“Today he was the one to take the ball down to settle us because we had to slow the game down, we were too quick to give the ball away and after 15 minutes I thought we settled and Scott, Fred and Paul (Pogba), the three midfielders, did really well.”
If McTominay can replicate his performance at the Nou Camp next week, United have every chance of making another miracle comeback which will require a similar effort to their heroics in the last round against Paris Saint-Germain.
Source: SportsLatest TS