United came from two behind to win 3-2, but were hanging on after a frail defensive show
David Moyes and Manchester United made a terrible start to their game at the KC Stadium, conceding two poor goals before storming back into the game through a Chris Smalling header from a Rooney free kick, and a fabulous long-range Rooney strike.
The winning goal came off the unfortunate head of James Chester, but after Valencia's red card, United suffered a barrage of attempts in the last few minutes as Hull could have nicked a point.
Below are the United player ratings for the game:
David De Gea 7/10 - Had little chance for either goal, but was unable to settle his nervy defence in the first half. Made a routine save late on from a Danny Graham header, and then looked very shaky coming for a cross. Won the points for United with a fantastic last minute sprawling save.
Rafael 5/10 - Barely lasted a quarter of an hour before he seemed to suffer a thigh strain, but was given the runaround by Hull during that time, alongside the rest of the United defence.
Chris Smalling 6/10 - Rose fantastically for the first United goal. But marking was really poor for both Hull strikes, and looked uncomfortable late on as United were put under pressure.
Jonny Evans 6/10 - Was unlucky for his own goal, but failed to marshal his defence in the first 15 minutes. Entire backline looked shaky, especially from set-pieces.
Patrice Evra 6/10 - Was a much better attacking fullback than defender at the KC. Looked to handle in the box when Bruce hit the crossbar.
Darren Fletcher 6/10 - Looked a little off the pace to begin with, understandably after making his first start in over 12 months. Struggled against Hull's three man central midfield, but came into the game as United asserted their authroity over the game. Came off after 62 minutes.
Tom Cleverley 6/10 - Hit a great strike that looked to be heading in until Allan McGregror clawed it wide. Alongside Fletcher, often found themselves outnumbered in central midfield.
Ashley Young 6/10 - Most significant incident in first period was challenging McGregor in a clash that left the Hull keeper injured and unable to come out for the second half. After an anonymous first half he improved after the break, and it was his cross that forced Chester to head into his own net.
Antonio Valencia 5/10 - Much of United's attacking threat came from the right but Valencia was only moderately effective. Found it tough at fullback and was sent off for two yellows, the second for stupidly kicking the ball away in the last few minutes.
Danny Welbeck 7/10 - Linked up well with Rooney and looked dangerous as United flew at Hull after Evans' OG. Played well from whichever attacking position he was operating from.
Wayne Rooney 8/10 -MOTM- Crossed for Smalling's headed goal. His equaliser was absolutely world class, a half-volley after great interplay with Welbeck from 25 yards out, and harked back to some of his amazing volleys earlier in his United career. Moved deeper once Hernandez came on but had a strong influence throughout. Booked for dissent in the second half.
Adnan Januzaj 18' 6/10 - Came on early after Rafael's injury, and immediately drew a yellow card from Maynor Figueroa. United scored from the ensuing free kick. Got his own booking for a poor challenge soon after, but looked relatively bright. There was more diving controversy though.
Javier Hernandez 62' 7/10 - Replaced Fletcher in an attacking move by Moyes, with Rooney dropping deeper. Looked lively as ever and a threat whenever United countered.
Michael Carrick 78' 6/10 - Made his comeback from injury as United went a little more defensive, coming on for Ashley Young. Made little difference as it was backs against the wall stuff for the last few minutes.
image: © paolo camera