Manchester United vs Swansea: Five things we learned as Gylfi Sigurdsson dents Red Devils' top four hopes

Ben Burrows
Manchester United vs Swansea: Five things we learned as Gylfi Sigurdsson dents Red Devils' top four hopes

Gylfi Sigurdsson dealt Manchester United's top four hopes a damaging blow as Swansea came from behind to snatch a point at Old Trafford.

Wayne Rooney gave United the lead from the spot after a dubious call from referee Neil Swarbrick before Sigurdsson curled in a sumptuous free kick to earn a share of the spoils and a crucial point in the Swans' battle to beat the drop.

AS IT HAPPENED: Manchester United v Swansea

READ MORE: Sigurdsson strikes to dampen Manchester United's top four hopes

Here's what we learned at Old Trafford:

United's defensive woes continue

Another week, another Manchester United central defender falls by the wayside. Already shorn of Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Marcos Rojo through injury, Eric Bailly limped out of this one with what appeared to be an ankle knock. That leaves Daley Blind as the only recognised central defender at the club with Celta Vigo awaiting in the Europa League in a matter of days. United dropped points here, which is ultimately the most important thing, but the long-term ramifications could be even worse. Mourinho has decisions to make this week.

Rashford under fire

Rashford's meteoric rise has barely been checked over the last 12 months or so but his role in United's first goal here was less than favourable. Despite what BT Sport might think it was a dive and not a good look for a player of such immense potential. Yes, it's sadly part of modern football and yes it ultimately earned United a goal but just because he is English doesn't absolve him of blame and the sooner he cuts it out of his game, the better.

United miss Pogba

Whisper it quietly, but United missed Pogba this afternoon. The Frenchman's first season at Old Trafford will go down as a work in progress at best, despite his world record transfer fee, but his influence in the middle of the park was sorely missing today. The Swans dominated the opening period, much of which came from their control of the middle third, with United failing to get a grip at any point. He doesn't bring enough goals and assists just yet but that is what Pogba offers and it was noticeable today.

Sigurdsson a class above

Regardless of what division Swansea find themselves in next term, Gylfi Sigurdsson will be a Premier League player. The Icelandic international was sensational here consistently causing United's threadbare backline a raft of problems throughout. And that was before he curled in a quite wonderful free-kick to level matters. He is a tremendous player – and a very underrated one – and Swansea's most important by a distance.

Is Shaw the unluckiest player of all time?

Once again handed the chance to prove himself to Mourinho Shaw's afternoon was cruelly cut short before it had barely started by yet another injury. His United career may well be over regardless such is his manager's apparent reticence to put any faith whatsoever in him, but if this latest knock is even remotely serious that could be the last we see of Shaw in United red.

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