As a former manager might have put it – who no doubt was celebrating joyously on Sunday after his team won – your TF correspondents have dusted ourselves down, rolled our sleeves up, and sifted through whatever memories we can dredge up of Sunday to bring you our player ratings from the rotting corpse of Wembley defeat. The heroic Stephen Ord (@smord84) does the honours, so the rest of us don’t have to.


Karius – 6

I don’t think there was anything he could have done about the first goal, the deflection for the second meant his reaction times had to adapt and it was too fast. The rest of the game he was a solid last line of defence and filled in at a serious time of need.

Trippier – 5

The odd set play caused an issue, the ball for Burn was good and he should probably have hit the target. However, seemed to make some strange decisions at key times (sliding in Miggy on his right foot) and both goals came from his side as he struggled to deal with Rashford. His worst game of the season in the biggest one.

Schär – 6

Didn’t look right when he went down with his head injury, down a significant period and then stayed on. Tried to drive us forward and made a couple of those runs you hope ends with a goal similar to Forest, but it didn’t.

Botman – 7

Really unlucky with the deflection and the way that carried over Karius. Originally awarded the own goal which was harsh although that has now changed. Felt like he was covering every hole in the back line which was an impossible task when there were so many runners from midfield.

Burn – 5

No lack of effort from the man from Blyth but Antony got at him a lot over the first half and every time you thought they could be in. The second half he tried to offer more attacking support but was often crowded out or worried about being caught on the counter. Missed one good chance from a header first half.

TF WEMBLEY ’23 – Manchester United 2-0 Newcastle United – The Verdict


Bruno – 6

Instead of trying to do everything to show us he was back, was picked off a lot and clearly targeted by the opposition. First time he got the ball Fred was into him and gave away a free kick. Looked to be quite badly injured making a block tackle in the second half, let’s hope that’s not too serious.

Joelinton – 5

Lots of physical presence but another silly booking for the big man, also was unable to get going in an attacking sense. First ten minutes gave the ball away cheaply a lot and needed a reset. Improved second half but it was marginal and was always walking a tight rope.

Longstaff – 6

Hooked at half time when he’d already been clattered twice by Fred. First one looked really naughty and Coote went back to book him. Provided our best chance of the game when he squared across the six yard box, damningly not one Newcastle player gambled.

Time to Turn the Corner? – Our Set-Piece Problem

Almirón – 5

I await the Miggy fan club telling me this was harsh but this to me was a performance we’ve seen a lot from him since he signed. Lots of effort, a willing runner but no end product. His lack of a right foot means teams know just to keep him outside them, and Luke Shaw did a brilliant job of it.

Saint Maximin – 5

Tried to get things going, got Dalot booked and then never ran at him for the rest of the half. Stayed wide and had a good chance which was blocked and then beaten back by de Gea. The words dead end and blind alley summed up a lot of his performance but the lack of movement in front of him first half meant he had to come backwards an awful lot. Also we weirdly stopped giving him the ball.

Wilson – 4

Hear me out on this. I don’t think he’s fit or if he is something else is wrong. Looks a shadow of his pre-World Cup self and the decision not to gamble on Longstaff’s ball was really poor. First half we offered very little as an attacking threat and neither Varane or Martinez looked particularly worried by him.



Isak – 6

Made a difference when he came on and carried the ball to good effect but we didn’t really create space for him and to be honest he might have been better replacing Miggy on the right of the three.

Murphy – 6

Started shooting which we seemed weirdly unprepared to do, nearly grabbed a late consolation from where we were sat.

Ritchie and Anderson – n/a

No time to make any real impact – but nice to see them.

Stephen Ord @smord84