Erik ten Hag raised a few eyebrows when he opted to start Luke Shaw at centre-back in the Manchester derby. The left-back has done well in his makeshift role in recent weeks, but this was against stronger opposition – and the top goalscorer in the league this season.
Much to Shaw’s credit, Erling Haaland was kept quiet throughout the match. The Norwegian hardy had a sniff at goal and Man City only managed one shot on target, which Jack Grealish scored from…
Shaw has played down praise of himself and Raphael Varane for stopping Haaland in the derby, instead explaining that it was a team effort. The England international was delighted with the result.
“We’re very happy, I think we deserved to win,” Shaw told MUTV, as quoted by the Manchester Evening News.
“In the first half, we had a lot of chances and on another day, we take them. Extremely proud of the team and everyone out on the field today, they gave everything.
“Especially the ones that came on and influenced the game, it’s a massive help when they’re ready and can make an impact.”
Ten Hag has done a great job with the squad thus far. He deserves a degree of credit for how those who come on as substitutes do so with hunger in their bellies. They are always determined to make a difference as seen with Fred in recent weeks, which also explains why he started the game today.
When asked specifically about stopping Haaland, Shaw added: “It’s not just about me and Raphael [Varane], it’s about the whole team. We defended so, so well.
“It was a great game to be involved in. The most important thing was the three points, no matter who the players we are up against are, we always aim for three points and keep climbing the table. We did that today and I’m very happy.
“As I said, we created a lot of chances and we knew we would get more. It’s all about belief and after Fernandes’ goal, we felt the fans even more. They pushed us on, we got the second goal and it was an amazing atmosphere.”