Four talking points after Elanga keeps Manchester United’s hope alive in the Champions League 

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Manchester United’s struggle continues against the Spanish side as the Red Devils only managed to come away with a 1-1 draw against Atletico Madrid in the first leg of the Champions League round of 16. 

Joao Felix scored the opener for Diego Simeone’s side early in the game before the second-half substitute Anthony Elanga’s strike kept the tie perfectly poised ahead of the second leg next month. 

4. Question mark about Maguire’s selection:

The Red Devils captain continues to be picked for some unknown reason despite showing poor displays this season. The Englishman was at the fault for the goal as he left Felix unmarked. 

Victor Lindelof showcased a brilliant performance against Leeds last weekend and therefore, he was undroppable in this crucial encounter. However, he was moved out to the fullback position to accommodate Maguire in the squad. 

3. The value of McTominay:

Although the Scotsman is not the most popular player among the Old Trafford faithful, the importance of his presence was shown in this encounter. Atletico Madrid outplayed and out-worked the Red Devils in the middle of the park and the 25-years-old’s dynamism could have been handy for Rangnick’s side in the midfield. 

The midfielder was absent due to illness and a fully fit McTominay will be extremely important in the English giants’ quest for the top four finish. 

2. Falling of Rashford and emergence of Elanga:

Rashford’s performance on the night was woeful and his body language is one of the concerning parts. He displayed a lacklustre performance and the biggest problem was his continuous attempts to find magical moments of his own. 

Meanwhile, following the introduction of Anthony Elanga, the Red Devils looked more energetic and played more cohesively. So, the Swedish forward should start ahead of Rashford in the upcoming game against Watford. 

1. The inconsistent Pogba:

Paul Pogba has been an inconsistent performer since arriving at the club back in 2016 and he showcased yet another example of that on Wednesday night. The Frenchman was one of the best performers against Leeds before being substituted in the second half. 

However, the 28-year-old’s display against the Rojiblancos was very poor. He failed to cope with the intensity of the game and lost possession in the middle of the park on several occasions. 

Therefore, it will be a shrewd decision to let the midfielder leave at the end of this season rather than giving him a long-term contract with a salary hike. 

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Read More: ‘He is a monster’ – Simeone lauds Ronaldo ahead of the Champions League clash

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