Moyes loses to Mourinho on Old Trafford return

‘If Roma had made offer, I’d have stayed’ – De Rossi

David Moyes' return to Old Trafford ended in disappointment after Sunderland were beaten 3-1 by Manchester United on Boxing Day.

  • Manchester United 3 Sunderland 1
  • Blind opens scoring before half-time
  • Ibrahimovic extends lead late on
  • Mkhitaryan scores an audacious third
  • Borini volley reduces deficit

Match Summary

The former Red Devils boss was making his first appearance at the Theatre of Dreams since being sacked in 2014, and his side were 1-0 down at the break when Daley Blind opened the scoring on 39 minutes.

Moyes' day got worse when Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Henrikh Mkhitaryan struck in the closing stages to make the game safe for Jose Mourinho's men, although Fabio Borini pulled one back at the death with a brilliant volley from range.

Full Report

United started on the front foot as Paul Pogba forced a low save out of Jordan Pickford from an acute angle on the right in only the fifth minute.

Marcos Rojo then fired over from 25 yards out moments later after jinking his way towards the box and creating space for a shot.

The Wearsiders weathered the early storm, though, and Jermain Defoe had their first opportunity on 18 minutes when he brought down Pickford's long ball upfield and ran at the defence before shooting wide of the left post from outside the area.

Patrick van Aanholt tested David De Gea with a free-kick two minutes later that the keeper parried away from danger as the visitors enjoyed a good spell.

Pogba went close to breaking the deadlock on 27 minutes with a curling effort that just missed the target to the right after he played a one-two with Jesse Lingard, while the home defence had to be alert two minutes later as Victor Anichebe and Fabio Borini saw their shots blocked in quick succession following a poor headed clearance from Blind.

Seb Larsson cleared the crossbar with a free-kick from the left soon afterwards before Borini tested De Gea with a firm shot that took a slight deflection on its way through to the keeper.

But the Red Devils finished the half strongly as Pogba fired a shot straight at Pickford, who was grateful to see the Frenchman volley over from just inside the area moments later after Blind's cross from the left was only half-cleared.

And they took the lead on 39 minutes with a fine finish from Blind, who picked out the bottom-right corner with a low shot after receiving the ball from Ibrahimovic.

United threatened to extend their advantage before the break, with Lingard shooting over from 16 yards out and Pogba's acrobatic effort from inside the box was saved by Pickford, who then pushed Juan Mata's stoppage-time free-kick away.

The hosts almost struck shortly after the restart when Ibrahimovic broke away down the right flank, but his pass to Pogba was poor, although United still created a chance as Ander Herrera fired wide of the right post from range following Lingard's lay-off.

Pogba then steered a header over from 10 yards out after he got on the end of Herrera's cross, while Ibrahimovic flashed a shot over on 52 minutes after being played in by Mata.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan almost made an immediate impact from the bench as he curled a shot just wide of the right post from outside the box after collecting a cross-field pass from Mata and cutting back inside from the left on 63 minutes.

The Armenian playmaker then sent Ibrahimovic through on goal a minute later but Pickford turned away the Swede's low strike with his boot.

It looked like United might win by just the one goal but a late flourish saw them score twice in the closing stages. Ibrahimovic doubled their lead in the 82nd minute with a cool finish from 10 yards out after being played in on goal by Pogba following a mistake in defence.

But the goal of the match arrived four minutes later as Ibrahimovic collected the ball on the right after the Red Devils won back possession and he swung a cross into the middle that was behind Mkhitaryan, but the substitute – who was offside – somehow found the left corner of the net with an audacious heeled effort.

Borini found a late reply for the Black Cats in stoppage time as he picked out the top left corner of the goal with a stunning volley from 20 yards out, but United were good value for the three points.