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Dec 26, 2018 at 3pm UK
Man UtdManchester United
HuddersfieldHuddersfield Town
Matic (28'), Pogba (64', 78')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Jorgensen (88')



Live Commentary: Manchester United 3-1 Huddersfield Town - as it happened

:Headline: Live Commentary: Manchester United 3-1 Huddersfield Town - as it happened:
Relive Sports Mole's live text coverage of Man United's 3-1 victory over Huddersfield, as Paul Pogba scored twice to earn the hosts back-to-back wins.
By , Senior Reporter | 11mo

Manchester United beat Huddersfield Town 3-1 at Old Trafford on Boxing Day to make it two wins from two under interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The Red Devils edged in front through a Nemanja Matic tap-in just before the half-hour mark and added two more goals through Paul Pogba in the second half.

Huddersfield pulled one back late on through Mathias Jorgensen, but it was not enough to stop United from closing the gap on the Premier League's top four.

Relive how the 90 minutes of action unfolded with Sports Mole's live text coverage below.

Hello and welcome to Sports Mole's live text coverage of the Premier League meeting between Manchester United and Huddersfield Town at Old Trafford. The Red Devils kicked off a new era under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with a thumping 5-1 victory over Cardiff City at the weekend and are now aiming to make it two wins from two, whereas Huddersfield make the trip across the Pennines on the back of five successive losses and find themselves four points adrift of safety ahead of a busy run of fixtures.
This has been billed as a brave new era for United, who looked a completely different side in Solskjaer's first match in charge. The Red Devils are still eight points off the top four, however, and cannot afford any sort of further slip-ups across the remainder of the festive and New Year fixtures - including this visit of lowly Huddersfield. For Town, a point will surely be considered a bonus.

STARTING XI: De Gea; Lindelof, Jones, Dalot, Shaw; Matic, Fred; Mata, Pogba, Lingard; Rashford

SUBS: Romero, Bailly, Pereira, Young, Herrera, Fellaini, Gomes

Starting with a look at the home team, interim boss Solskjaer has made three changes on the back of the comfortable win against Cardiff. Diogo Dalot, Juan Mata and forgotten man Fred come into the starting lineup in place of Ashley Young, Ander Herrera and Anthony Martial, with the latter not included in the matchday squad today. The Frenchman's place is taken by young midfielder Angel Gomes.
United have this down as a 4-2-3-1, which would presumably mean Fred sitting alongside Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba pushing into a more advanced midfield position. Mata and Jesse Lingard, who has four goals in his last four games, including a double against Cardiff a few days ago, will operate either side of Pogba. In the absence of Romelu Lukaku, who is on compassionate leave, Marcus Rashford will again lead the line.
There is still no Alexis Sanchez for United, despite the Chilean returning to light training last week, while Scott McTominay, Marcos Rojo and Chris Smalling are all still absent. Word has just come through that the most high profile of United's absentees, French attacker Anthony Martial, is missing through illness. Marouane Fellaini and Andreas Pereira are among the Red Devils' back-up options.

STARTING XI: Lossl; Zanka, Schindler, Kongolo; Hadergjonaj, Kachunga, Billing, Mbenza, Durm; Pritchard; Depoitre

SUBS: Hamer, Hogg, Bacuna, Lowe, Quaner, Mounie, Stankovic

Switching focus to the visiting side, David Wagner has also made three changes for this second festive fixture. Laurent Depoitre, Elias Kachunga and Erik Durm are all brought into the side that went down 3-1 to Southampton at the weekend, taking over from Steve Mounie, Juninho Bacuna and Chris Lowe. Depoitre, like Mounie, has yet to register a top-flight goal this term - now would be a good time to end that scoreless run.
Durm takes over from Lowe down the left-hand flank in what is expected to be a 5-4-1 formation of sorts. Florent Hadergjonaj and Durm are officially down as wing-backs, though we can surely expect them to focus more on defending than attacking today. Alex Pritchard will be the most advanced of Huddersfield's midfielders, playing a pivotal role in the side as he must bridge the gap between Depoitre and the rest of his teammates.
Jonathan Hogg missed the Southampton match with a knee injury, but he is deemed fit enough for a place among the subs today. Rajiv van La Parra has been out for a little longer, missing the best part of three months out injured, and his wait for an appearance goes on as he is not included in the 18-man squad today. Elsewhere, Aaron Mooy is a major loss in central midfield, as are Danny Williams and Tommy Smith.
Anthony Martial misses out on selection for Manchester United today due to illness. The French attacker is one of three players to make way from the 5-1 win over Cardiff City, with Ashley Young and Ander Herrera dropping to the bench and replaced by Juan Mata, Diogo Dalot and Fred. Huddersfield Town also show three changes from last time out - Laurent Depoitre, Elias Kachunga and Erik Durm all being restored to the starting XI.
PREVIOUS MEETINGS! Manchester United have lost just one of their last 14 meetings with Huddersfield Town in all competitions, winning 10 and drawing three of those. The Terriers have not won away to United in all competitions since a 6-0 triumph in September 1930 and they have only scored four goals in the last 10 meetings overall.
United have made their worst start to a season in 28 years, leading to Jose Mourinho losing his job and Solskjaer - somewhat surprisingly - taking over. Club legend Ole made an instant impact with the win in South Wales a few days ago, as the Red Devils put on a display that we have not been used to over the past few years. The opposition may have been weak, though you can be sure that United would not have won the same fixture 5-1 with Mourinho at the helm.
The club felt that they had no choice but to sack Mourinho, less than a year on from offering him a new contract, and now it is down to Solskjaer to steady the ship somewhat over the next six months. The rumours over who is being lined up to take over from the summer will no doubt continue until an appointment is officially made, with out-of-work boss Zinedine Zidane and Tottenham Hotspur chief Mauricio Pochettino the current frontrunners.
Solskjaer will now be keen to prove that Saturday's opening-match win in the Welsh capital was not a one-off; to achieve that three points are an absolute must today, while supporters will no doubt want to see goals aplenty - always a nice bonus! Many will argue that it was no coincidence Solskjaer was appointed when he was, as United have a nice run of fixtures. Following their trip to Cardiff, the Red Devils now face Huddersfield and Bournemouth here, as well as Newcastle United away.
There is also a winnable home FA Cup third-round tie against Reading to factor in, so there is no reason why United cannot string together six successive wins ahead of their trip to Tottenham Hotspur in a few weeks' time. Winning the title has been out of the question for a while now, while many will argue that a top-four finish is also out of the question. Solskjaer needs to simply get points on the board and hope that both Chelsea and Arsenal in fourth and fifth slip up along the way.
United's last home match finished in a 4-1 win over Fulham, but that scoreline was very much an exception to the norm as the Red Devils have been pretty mediocre at home for a while now. As well as dropping points to Crystal Palace, Arsenal and Wolverhampton Wanderers here in the first half of 2018-19, United also drew 0-0 with Valencia and lost 2-1 to Juventus in the Champions League, on top of being dumped out of the EFL Cup by Derby County.
Solskjaer knows all about the history of Old Trafford and will be keen to turn one of the world's most famous venues into a fortress once again, just like it was for most of his playing career here. Speaking after the win against Cardiff, full-back Luke Shaw claimed that finishing fourth is not out of the question for United. Should they win their remaining home matches, he may will be proved right, though that is easier said than done.
DID YOU KNOW? Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is aiming to become the fifth Manchester United manager to win his first two matches in charge of Manchester United, emulating TJ Wallworth, Matt Busby, Dave Sexton and Jose Mourinho. Solskjaer's last match at Old Trafford as a player came in a 1-0 home defeat to West Ham United on the final day of the 2006-07 title-winning season.
Since bringing an end to his playing career, Solskjaer has gone on to manage Molde in his Norwegian homeland and Cardiff City in the Premier League and Championship to mixed success. The baby-faced assassin, as he is well remembered around these parts, may have flopped in his only previous spell in English football - and that is being kind - but he certainly does not lack experience. Many boxes have been ticked with his arrival in the dugout, and now he has a chance to further his credentials.
Man United have not lost a home match on Boxing Day since the 1978-79 season, going on to win 14 and drawing three since then. The Red Devils destroyed Cardiff City a few days ago and now have a run of winnable fixtures ahead, giving Ole Gunnar Solskjaer a chance to build some momentum.

Huddersfield head into this match on the back of a five-game losing run, culminating in a 3-1 loss to Southampton on Saturday. That follows a run of seven points from nine in November when temporarily reviving their campaign; their failure to push on from that has been a massive frustration for Wagner. Town went down 2-1 to Brighton & Hove Albion and Bournemouth, suffered narrow losses to Arsenal and Newcastle and then came the blow of their 3-1 reverse versus Southampton.
Wagner's men now face a huge run of matches as they take on Fulham, Burnley and Cardiff City - all at immediate threat of relegation - in their next three matches after this one. A point from their trip to Old Trafford would be a massive boost, and with three six-pointers ahead momentum could be key. This really is a season-defining period for the Terriers, especially with the transfer window opening next week.
Huddersfield have lost 10 of their last 14 matches and have found the back of the net three times during their ongoing five-match losing run. None of their strikers have yet to find the net, which Wagner admits is a concern, and unless he is backed in the January window it could be a long six months ahead. To make matters worse, they have won just one of their eight away games this term and have just one clean sheet. United are not much better off - it is two clean sheets for them.
Huddersfield's only away triumph this term came at Huddersfield last month during a run that saw them climb up the table. They have since hit a terrible run of form and are in desperate need of a lift. Town's tally of 11 goals scored is also the worst in the division - not surprising when you consider none of their strikers have found the net - and only five of those goals have come from open play.
Wagner is remaining buoyant, in public at least, insisting that his side are not that far off the level they should be. The German has a point - not many people gave the Terriers a chance last term yet the still managed to stay up; the same could easily be done this time around as they are only four points adrift of safety. With three six-pointers ahead, Town will be hoping that by February they are clear of the dropzone.
PREDICTION! Huddersfield are arriving at Old Trafford at just the wrong time. Under Mourinho, you could never quite be sure what would happen - no matter how weak the opposition. The likes of Wolves, Crystal Palace, Valencia and Derby have all left this ground with smiles on their faces in the first half of 2018-19 but, with a new man at the helm, the Red Devils will be confident of putting three points on the board. 3-0 home win.
With kickoff at the Theatre of Dreams now a little over five minutes away, let us check out some pre-match thoughts from both camps.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: "We have caught teams up before at this club. I don't want to look too far ahead but Manchester United teams always play well in the second half of the season."

David Wagner: "We have to make ourselves independent from what is around us, from the table, results, whatever. We are exactly where everybody predicted so this makes no sense to think about it and get affected by it. We are only able to collect points and to be competitive if we perform at our highest level."

Solskjaer is not ruling out a top-four finish, pointing out that United have history for overhauling sides in the second half of the season. The Norwegian essentially has a free hit over the next six months - finish sixth and he will not receive any blame; climb into a place in the top four and he will be treated as a hero of sorts. It might not be a Premier League title or Champions League, but qualifying for UEFA's showpiece competition next term is not top priority for the Red Devils.
Both sets of players have now made their way onto the field of play and we are moments away from kickoff. United are looking to make it back-to-back wins under Solskjaer, while Huddersfield are in desperate need of a point to climb closer to safety. There is a big day ahead in the Premier League, with all six members of the top six in action over the next five hours.

KICKOFF:  We are up and running at Old Trafford! Solskjaer received a warm welcome from the home supporters in attendance - they will be hoping for more of the same on the back of the 5-1 thrashing of Cardiff City at the weekend.
United essentially have four players up top, with Rashford being joined by Pogba, Mata and Lingard. Huddersfield actually appear to be going with a back four today and not a back five, as was expected. Two identical systems.
Billing steals the ball from Fred and it is worked to Mbenza, who shoots well over the crossbar from outside the box. Not a bad start from Huddersfield, who are badly out of form. Good atmosphere from the home stands, too, incidentally.
United are starting to see a lot more of the ball now, with Solskjaer encouraging his players to get forward. The only shot of the match so far came via the boot of Mbenza, but it did not trouble De Gea in the United goal.
Mata flicks the ball on and Lingard attempt to chase it down, but the pass had a little too much pace on it and Lossl was able to collect. Nine minutes played at Old Trafford and not a great deal of action so far.
CHANCE!  A big, big chance for Huddersfield to open the scoring goes begging. Billing's long throw was helped on at the front post by Schindler, but Kongolo lifted the ball over the crossbar from seven yards. A real let-off for United, that!
United put together their first real attacking move of the afternoon, starting with De Gea and culminating in Mata sending a cross into the middle. Rashford through himself towards it but could not make any telling contact in front of Lossl.
Fred is urged to shoot when in possession on the edge of the box, but he refuses to do so. United are on top at the moment but they are not really troubling the Huddersfield backline too much. A little more urgency is needed from the hosts.
SHOT!  United win the ball high up the field and have a few men over. Lingard decides to take on the shot from 22 yards but can only pick out Lossl down the middle. The Red Devils looking a little brighter over the past four or five minutes.
The majority of Huddersfield's 11 goals this term have come from dead-ball situations. They win a free kick in a good crossing position, but the ball is headed clear when it is sent into the box. Town more than holding their own so far.
United are remaining very patient, slowly probing away in and around the Huddersfield box. Never easy to break down deep-sitting opponents, though the hosts do need to up the tempo a little if they are to find a breakthrough.
UPDATE! Liverpool, Manchester City and Everton are all leading in the 3pm kickoffs. Vital that the Red Devils find a way through over the remaining three quarters of this match to avoid being cut even further adrift of the top four.
YELLOW CARD!  Rashford injects some pace into United's play. The English striker led a counter from deep but Kachunga stopped him by any means necessary, tripping his opponent inside Huddersfield's half to earn himself a yellow card.
Approaching the half-hour mark at Old Trafford and United have still yet to create a chance of note. Lingard got in a shot from range that was hit pretty much right at Lossl, while up the other end Kongolo missed a good opening from close range.
SHOT!  Tottenham have also opened the scoring against Bournemouth so it is looking like being another good day for the top six - United are the side letting down the division's elite at the moment. Pogba shoots from a tight angle but fails to get the better of Lossl.
The simplest of finishes from Matic gives United a 1-0 lead at Old Trafford. Pogba's free kick struck the wall and went behind for a corner, from which Lindelof flicked the ball on and Matic was waiting to tap home from no more than a couple of yards out.

YELLOW CARD!  Fred is cautioned for a bad challenge in midfield. United pushed on after opening the scoring against Cardiff a few days ago and you would expect the same today. One chance for the Red Devils and one goal.
Huddersfield win themselves a corner, which they fail to really make the most of. The visitors have not played too badly and will feel that they still have a chance of nicking a point for as long as it remains 1-0.
United are dictating the play and are looking good value for their one-goal lead. Pogba has a weak attempt from 25 yards which barely reached Lossl in the Huddersfield goal. That came after Fred - again - lost the ball; the Brazilian has struggled.
Matic wins the ball back for his side high up the field and feeds it through for Lingard, but the Englishman failed to pick out a player in red in the area. That would have been a controversial one - Matic appeared to foul Kachunga when winning possession.
Huddersfield are not afraid to get bodies in the box. A cross from the right is gobbled up by De Gea with a helping hand from Jones. United may be a goal to the good, but this match is far from over with more than half of the game to play.
CHANCE!  That breakthrough goal was Matic's first in 23 United appearances since March. Dalot should have joined Matic on the scoresheet a few seconds ago, only to volley the ball wide from a glorious position once picked out by Rashford.
That was brilliant play from Rashford down the right. Dalot showed good movement to get in front of Mbenza, too, but his finish let him down - not an easy chance, but one that the Portuguese should have been burying. Mata gets in behind but the pass to him has a little too much on it.
SHOT!  United are winning the ball high up the pitch time and time again. Rashford nearly takes full advantage of this latest turnover in possession, flashing a shot narrowly wide of the target from 20 yards. Half time is now just seconds away.
Billing gets in behind down the left at the very end of the first half and has a couple of options, ultimately choosing the wrong one in stabbing the ball into the side-netting. Manchester United therefore take a one-goal lead into half time, but Huddersfield Town are by no means out of this one with 45 minutes to come.
Huddersfield's losing run stretched to a fifth match at the weekend when going down 3-1 to Southampton, but they started brightly at Old Trafford and created the game's first opening. Philip Billing's long throw was flicked into the path of Terence Kongolo by Christoph Schindler, but the Netherlands international lifted the ball over the bar from a glorious position.
A United side showing three changes from their first match under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, including the enforced absence of illness victim Anthony Martial, took complete control of the first half from that point on. Jesse Lingard and Paul Pogba both took on shots from range but could not find a way past Jonas Lossl, but the breakthrough goal arrived before the half-hour mark through Nemanja Matic.
A corner was flicked on at the near post by Victor Lindelof and Matic was waiting to convert from a few yards out - the Serbian midfielder's first United goal in 23 appearances since March. Diogo Dalot should have joined his teammate on the scoresheet, only to volley wide following some impressive wing play from Marcus Rashford, though Town wasted a presentable opportunity of their own when Billing poked the ball into the side-netting instead of squaring it.

MANCHESTER UNITED SUBS: Romero, Bailly, Pereira, Young, Herrera, Fellaini, Gomes

HUDDERSFIELD TOWN SUBS: Hamer, Hogg, Bacuna, Lowe, Quaner, Mounie, Stankovic

KICKOFF:  Huddersfield, still in this game despite Matic's first-half goal, get us back underway at Old Trafford. No changes made by either managed at the interval, it is as you were for the start of this second period.
SHOT!  He may be without a goal this season, but that does not put Depoitre off from attempting an overhead kick. The Belgian showed good strength to hold off his opponents and get an attempt in, but the ball ended wide of the target.
Town are giving United one or two things to think about early in this second half. United are also looking lively when they get men forward and there is plenty to suggest that we could have another couple of goals in this second period.
SHOT!  This is a good opportunity for the visitors. Depoitre wanted to take the shot on inside the box but Mbenza took it from him. The shot was powerful but it hit Matic in the midriff and was cleared away. A better first touch from Depoitre and it may well have been 1-1.
SHOT!  Mbenza makes light work of Dalot down the Huddersfield left and the ball is eventually worked to Kachunga, who smashes it wide of the target from 22 yards. United supporters are trying to urge their players on - they are second best at the moment.
MANCHESTER UNITED SUBS! Decisive from Solskjaer, to say the least. Ten minutes into the second half and a double change is made - Fred and Dalot make way, with Herrera and Young on in their place for the remaining 35 minutes.
HUDDERSFIELD TOWN SUB! Wagner follows Solskjaer in making a change, bringing on Lowe for Kachunga. There is not a great deal between the sides as we approach the hour mark. Matic's goal is proving the difference so far.
Huddersfield are effectively lining up in a 4-1-4-1 formation now, with Wagner keen to give Depoitre some support up top. Young whips in a good delivery, which is inches above Pogba and three other United players - all of whom were stood in an offside position, without the linesman spotting it.
SAVE!  Superb stop from De Gea! Depoitre breaks free from his marker and clips the corner towards the far corner, but De Gea sprawled across and hooked the ball off the line. United are having to hold on now, with their lead looking very slim.
SAVE!  Superb stop from De Gea! Depoitre breaks free from his marker and clips the corner towards the far corner, but De Gea sprawled across and hooked the ball off the line. United are having to hold on now, with their lead looking very slim.
Against the run of play, Pogba fires United into a two-goal lead. Some great build-up play from Rashford and Mata culminated in the latter failing to pick out a teammate, but Herrera was able to help it on to Pogba, who picked out the bottom corner with a fine finish.

United are looking a lot more comfortable now thanks to that second goal of the afternoon. De Gea's save from Depoitre's delicate clip looks even more important in hindsight. Still a quarter of the match for the hosts to see through.
SAVE!  Shaw gets in a good, powerful strike, but it is aimed too close to Lossl who makes the save. Solskjaer will no doubt want a third goal, but it will be job done if his side can see through the next 20 minutes without conceding.
Wagner brought on Quaner for Mbenza a minute before Pogba put United two goals in front, so both managers have just one more change available to make. Some good defending from Jones prevents substitute Quaner from getting in behind.
United are in cruise control at the moment, sitting comfortably on a two-goal lead. There were just three minutes between De Gea's fine save on Depoitre's shot and Pogba slotting his side two goals in front - fine margins!
Pogba has had a very impressive afternoon, nearly slotting through Rashford with a well-weighted through-ball. The Englishman was in an offside position, however, and United's latest attacking move comes to a disappointing end.
The tempo has, understandably, dropped since United scored their second goal. No real need for the Red Devils to go all-out attack now, while Huddersfield have not done a great deal since fashioning a good opportunity for Depoitre 15 minutes ago.
Brilliant finish from Pogba! Lingard lays the ball off for the Frenchman to blast into the bottom corner from a little over 20 yards out. No Huddersfield player could get to him quick enough and the £89m midfielder made them pay with the best goal of the game.
MANCHESTER UNITED SUB! A dream home managerial debut for Solskjaer, then, with the Norwegian even able to bring on one of his youngsters. Gomes comes on for Mata for the final 10 minutes or so with the points already in the bag.
Huddersfield are battling away in search for what would be a consolation goal. Smiles all around Old Trafford as we edge towards full time, with three more points on the board. The Red Devils have put some pressure on Chelsea and Arsenal above them.
Into the final five minutes here and United do not look like adding to their tally at the moment. Solskjaer would probably prefer a clean sheet at this point - the Red Devils have just two all season.
United may have put three more points on the board, but their inability to keep a clean sheet is rather worrying. It is still just two for the season, as Mathias Jorgensen pounces on Steve Mounie's flick-on to pull one back for the hosts.
Another Huddersfield goal would certainly make things interesting. United guilty of switching off to allow Town what is looking like being a consolation goal. De Gea was fuming with his defenders after Jorgensen found the net.
Manchester United close the gap on Arsenal and Chelsea to five points, although both sides have a game in hand to play later today. Nemanja Matic edged the Red Devils in front just before the half-hour mark and Paul Pogba added two more in the second half, rendering Mathias Jorgensen's effort nothing more than a consolation for strugglers Huddersfield Town.
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