Manchester United claimed bragging rights over Leeds United on Sunday evening, smashing them 6-2 at Old Trafford.
This was a game many had been waiting for, as there hadn’t been a Manchester United v Leeds United league game since February 2004.
United blew the Whites away though, taking a 4-0 lead through a Scott McTominay brace as well as goals from Bruno Fernandes and Victor Lindelof.
Liam Cooper pulled a goal back, but Daniel James and a Fernandes penalty made it 6-1, with a stunning strike from Stuart Dallas merely a consolation.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer got it spot on against Leeds, deploying winger James in a rare start in order to exploit the space Leeds left in transition.
The Welsh international was superb and got the goal his performance deserved, which no doubt hurt Leeds – and not just because of the defeat on the day.
James was famously a Leeds target in January 2019, and even had pictures taken with his new Leeds shirt before Swansea failed to sign off on the move; he ended up joining Manchester United mere months later.
After Sunday’s game, Solskjaer told the Manchester Evening News that the narrative surrounding James and Leeds wasn’t a factor ‘at all’ in his selection, believing that he was just ‘impossible to stop’ with his pace.
Solskjaer added that James should have won a penalty in the second half for a challenge by Liam Cooper, but was booked for diving, with the Norwegian admitting that it does his head in.
“Not at all, Dan’s a Man United player,” said Solskjaer. “He’s proven time and time again how he can improve our performances at times with his exceptional pace. It’s not that I’m too worried about it but it does do my head in when he gets a yellow card when he should have had a penalty, it’s a foul, and he’s almost been labelled as a diver before.”
“But his pace is impossible to stop. And if he turns ahead and runs with it, Dan’s past him. Dan’s got a big role to play for us and it has nothing to do with whatever club he nearly signed for,” he added.