SHAW THE UN­LIKELY HERO FOR MOUR­INHO

PAUL POGBA AND LUKE SHAW IN­SPIRE MAN UTD TO VIC­TORY OVER LE­ICES­TER

Sunderland Echo - - Sport -

Paul Pogba and Luke Shaw in­spired Manch­ester United to an open­ing-day vic­tory as they ig­nored back­ground noise and their dead­line­day frus­tra­tion to over­come Le­ices­ter.

A sum­mer of dis­con­tent at Old Traf­ford ap­peared to come to a head on Thurs­day as the trans­fer win­dow ended with­out the re­in­force­ments their man­ager had so pub­licly de­clared a pri­or­ity.

Jose Mour­inho’s re­la­tion­ship with his play­ers has also come un­der scru­tiny, but any such ten­sion was for­got­ten as Pogba and Shaw - a duo that have en­dured ups and downs with the United boss - se­cured a 2-1 win against Le­ices­ter.

On this oc­ca­sion, Mour­inho had praise for Shaw.

“I’m very pleased not just with (the goal) but he played 90 min­utes with one mis­take in 90 min­utes, and it’s the kind of mis­take where prob­a­bly the li­nes­man could help him with a free-kick. He was very good de­fen­sively and phys­i­cally coped well,” Mour­inho said on Sky Sports.

The Por­tuguese said he was happy with the re­sult given his con­cerns over the fit­ness of sev­eral play­ers so soon af­ter the World Cup.

“I think Mr Scu­d­amore must be happy,” he said, re­fer­ring to Premier League chair­man Richard Scu­d­amore. “It’s a good way to start the Premier League, a good match, two good teams. But it was a match where I needed six changes not three, that was not enough for me. I wanted to play (An­thony) Mar­tial for Alexis or (Juan) Mata but I know Paul can­not play for 90 min­utes and it’s the same for Fred. I needed more changes but I couldn’t so it wasn’t easy on the touch­line.”

Mour­inho lent heav­ily on those that served him well dur­ing a dis­rupted pre­sea­son at Old Traf­ford, but such op­tions are no slouches and it showed af­ter 77 sec­onds when Shaw fed Alexis Sanchez to get away a shot han­dled by Daniel Amartey.

Ref­eree An­dre Mar­riner pointed to the spot with none of the hes­i­ta­tion shown in Pogba’s run up the spot-kick. The shuf­fling lead up may well be­come a meme, but a su­perb fin­ish past Kasper Sch­me­ichel jus­ti­fied it.

With seven min­utes re­main­ing, Shaw flicked the ball around Le­ices­ter debu­tant Pereira be­fore send­ing a low left-footed strike home in front of a rock­ing Stret­ford End. Vardy pulled one back in stop­page time.

Luke Shaw cel­e­brates scor­ing the sec­ond goal.

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