It was a critical victory because it lifted Man United to seventh place in the Premier League standings (21 points), just two points behind Arsenal (5th place, 23 points) and three points out of the all-important fourth-place spot that is rewarded with a berth in the Champions League at season’s end.
There wasn’t much to love about that performance from either side, but especially the winners and other than the fact that Manchester United battled in a way they haven’t often done in recent years. Sure, it came against similarly floundering opposition closer to mid-table than title contention, but this was a game that very recent iterations of Manchester United would have lost in agonizing fashion. There are, in fact, some positive signs coming out of Old Trafford. There is something for Ralf Rangnick to work with when he assumes first-team control later this week.