Finally, there are signs of life at Manchester United.
Against a backdrop of protests against the club’s ownership, United delivered a performance of intensity and spirit to beat Liverpool 2-1 on Monday and claim their first points in the Premier League this season.
Composed finishes by Jadon Sancho in the 16th minute and Marcus Rashford in the 53rd earned a victory at Old Trafford that will bring some respite for under-pressure manager Erik ten Hag, who made a huge statement in his team selection by dropping star striker Cristiano Ronaldo and club captain Harry Maguire and was validated.
“I wanted a different attitude and that is what I saw them bring on the pitch,” said Ten Hag, who has started his tenure at United amid something of a crisis at England's biggest club. “But it's only the start.”
Suddenly, the heat is on Liverpool — widely expected to be a title contender again this season — with Jurgen Klopp’s team still waiting for a win after three games and now languishing behind United in the standings on just two points.
Mohamed Salah scored an 81st-minute consolation but it was another below-par display from Liverpool after draws with Fulham and Crystal Palace, even if this was a first league loss in 2022.