by Shreyan Gorantala

Sunday, the 24th of October 2021 is a day many will talk about for years. Two clubs with so much history amongst them and one of the biggest rivals played against each other. Liverpool was in great form winning their last 4 matches but Manchester United had the home advantage. Fans cheered as the Red devils* walked onto the pitch and booed at the Liverpool players. United was not looking strong though, as in their previous matches United lost 4 – 2, and conceded a lot of goals. Although Manchester had home support, Old Trafford* didn’t expect the result of the fixture. 

Manchester United came up with a promising counter-attack when the ball was played to captain Bruno Fernandes. A golden opportunity to put the Red Devils ahead, but the ball flew over the crossbar and the score remained goalless. Liverpool built up the attack when Jordan Henderson, the captain of Liverpool played a ball through two United players to Mohammed Salah. The Egyptian winger gave a pass finding Naby Keita in the box and the opportunity was captured, as Keita slotted the ball past United keeper David de Gea in the bottom left corner to give the away side the lead. In the 13th minute, It was Mohammed Salah who dribbled the ball and gave a pass to Trent Alexander Arnold. The right wing-back* crossed the ball to Diogo Jota, and the Portuguese striker doubled the lead for Liverpool. 

Liverpool’s Winger Mohammed Salah had the ball again and went for a shot on goal. Harry Maguire, a United defender, blocked the shot and was going outside for a corner. Out of nowhere Naby Keita sprinted to reach the ball and crossed it to the box, hoping it would find somebody. And it did! Mohammed Salah this time hit the ball for the first time and there was nobody to save it and hit the back of the net. United fan’s in disbelief and crying and frustrated by the way Manchester was playing. Meanwhile, Liverpool fans rejoiced and cheered whole-heartedly with the current 3 – 0 score. In added time*, probably the last touch of the half, Liverpool came with one last attack. Firmino passed it to Diogo Jota, who was crowded with three of United’s players, and found Salah open. Salah did not miss the chance and made it 4 – 0 right before halftime. 

When the half-time whistle blew, Manchester United’s players kept their heads down and walked into the dressing room to have a team talk. The fans also had enough of it, and over thousands were seen leaving the stadium in Anger. Many questioned the United Manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, strategies, and playing style. You could see the frustration with the players also playing under Ole. The whistle blew again and the stadium was looking empty, but it was time for the game to resume. As the second half started. 

United had a corner, a chance to get out of the shame and try to come back into the game, but it backfired. The play was stopped with a block from Salah, to find Henderson. The Liverpool Captain carried* the ball and played a through ball* to Salah who ran down the pitch, received the ball , and chipped the ball over De Gea. A 5 -0 score with a hat-trick* and an assist*, in such a big game, for Mohammed Salah, giving him the motivation to do better. United had a chance to make a consultation goal where Cristiano Ronaldo, the new signing, showed his skills and shot the ball into the bottom left corner. It was then revealed offside* and the goal was disallowed. Later on, a dangerous tackle came from substitute* Paul Pogba, as the French midfielder flew for a dangerous tackle and fouled Naby Keita. He was later shown red*, and Pogba hopelessly walked out of the pitch. The United players and fans were glad that the final whistle blew and they did not have to play anymore. 

MEANINGS AND DEFINITIONS 

Red Devils – Manchester United team nickname 

Old Trafford – Manchester United stadium name 

Right wing-back – Position (a person who plays attack and defence but positioned as a defender)

Added time – Etra time with time stopping for injuries

Carried – Dribbling

Through Ball – 

Hat- trick –  Scoring three goals in one game 

Assist – Passing to the player who scored the goal 

Offside – The player is nearer to the opponent’s goal than both the ball and the second-last opponent

Substitute – A player swapping another player during the game. 

Red – Here it means a red card, which Means that you cannot play this game and the next and the team has 1 player down. 

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