Nemanja Matic key to Manchester United’s season

There are a myriad reasons for Manchester United fans to be preparing that 21st league title tattoo as their side emphatically defeated their opponents 4-0 for the second week in a row to start the season. This week’s victims? Swansea. If Jose Mourinho’s men are to challenge for the title, new recruit, Nemanja Matic will be a vital cog in the midfield. Already a two-time winner, the Serbian is making strides to end United’s four-year title drought.

Matic has wasted little time forming partnerships with his teammates, most noteworthy with Frenchman and midfield partner Paul Pogba. A combination that will only get more coherent as the season goes on.

Matic backed up his strong debut against West Ham with a dominating performance against Swansea. He completed 90.2% of his 74 passes, made five clearances, four blocks, three tackles, and won two aerial duels.

Last week he completed 91% of his 61 passes, had seven take-ons, won three tackles, four aerial duels, one interception, one clearance, and made two blocks.

  • Manchester United scored four goals in consecutive matches for the first time since the 2013-14 season
  • It was also the first time they have won by four goals in consecutive matches since 2011
  • It is also the first time in 110 years the Red Devils have scored four goals in their first two matches
  • Romelu Lukaku became the fifth Manchester United player to score in his first two Premier League matches joining Louis Saha, Federico Macheda, Anthony Martial, and Zlatan Ibrahimovic

In 2014-15 Matic played a key role in Chelsea’s Premier League winning season, let’s take a look at his first two performances in that season.

v Burnley (3-1 win)

  • 84% passing accuracy
  • One chance created
  • One take-on
  • One tackle won
  • One aerial duel won
  • Two interceptions
  • Two clearances

v Leicester City (2-0 win)

  • 86% passing accuracy
  • One cross
  • Three take-ons
  • Three tackles won
  • Three aerial duels won
  • One interception
  • Seven clearances
  • Four blocks

He got better and better as the season went on and after two matches under Mourinho at Manchester United he looks to be on the same trajectory. And at 29 years of age he could be entering the peak of his powers and United are set to reap the benefits.

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