Manchester United’s revival was halted when they lost 1-0 to Bournemouth, while supposed rivals Liverpool and Manchester City recovered from losing positions to respectively overcome Aston Villa and Southampton. Sheffield United again impressed when they defeated Burnley, while Brighton secured three vital points against Norwich. Here, The Coaches’ Voice team of professional coaches reflect on the tactical stories that underpinned each game.
Bournemouth 1-0 Manchester United
A run of three successive victories for Manchester United came to an end at Bournemouth, as their one-time trainee Joshua King’s first-half goal and the hosts’ ability to negate United’s attacking potential in central areas proved decisive. Bournemouth have become considerably more resilient this season; against United, centre-backs Nathan Aké and Simon Cook were particularly influential.
Andreas Pereira attempted to withdraw towards possession from a high starting position, but he would be followed by one of them; this prevented him from freely receiving and linking with runners beyond him, contributing to United’s attempts to play more directly (below). The two central defenders also jockeyed and delayed individuals throughout, making interceptions and dominating aerially along the way.