Manchester United fans have spotted one awkward encounter between Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw during their 0-0 with Chelsea. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men could not muster much of a display against the Blues, who were guilty of the same problem. The result was a drab draw with both sides happy to take the clean sheet and a point.
United could only muster a point against Chelsea during a very wet afternoon at Old Trafford on Saturday.
Despite the visitors having the larger share of possession, Solskaer’s side probably had the better chances – particularly Marcus Rashford who was one-on-one with Edouard Mendy in the first-half.
The Blues keeper stuck out a vital foot to deny the Englishman, while he was also on hand to save a late effort brilliantly that saw the spoils shared.
But overall, it appeared a match where neither manager wanted to lose and preferred a clean sheet over a goal.
Though neither coach is under immense pressure, a loss would have ramped up a spotlight that is starting to sway their way.
That feeling could be felt from the pitch, with players keen on taking the easy options over daring to attempt something a bit more radical.
Nine times out of ten, the ball would return to the defence rather than a ball over the top or a through ball down the middle.
One incident encapsulated that perfectly – and fans did not miss it – with Fernandes attempting to create something.
The Portugal international cannot be accused of tetchy play, with moving the ball forward his only concern.
In a wide position, Fernandes was waiting for the wing-back to overlap – on this instance, Shaw.
The Englishman was nearly 10 yards away from him, in-field, refusing to put the midfielder’s instructions into action.
Fernandes, clearly frustrated, avoided Shaw with his pass – opting to utilise the more-central Fred instead.
The home side were not the only ones playing the game safe – with Frank Lampard’s frightening forwards looking more blunt-men than frontmen.
Kai Havertz and Timo Werner were brought in for around £125m in the summer and were put up top with the exciting Christian Pulisic.
But all three were largely kept out of the game as a result of Chelsea’s reluctance to take the ball into United’s final third.
With so many games coming up for both teams, it almost felt like both managers had agreed to go easy on one another.
Chelsea travel to Russia to face Krasnodar on Wednesday before racing back to take on Burnley on Saturday afternoon.
The Red Devils, on the other hand, host Champions League semi-finalists RB Leipzig before a weekend clash against Arsenal.