As it happened: Ibrahimovic's double gives United the perfect start to the season

As it happened: Ibrahimovic's double gives United the perfect start to the season
Photo: Jonathan Walsh/VAVEL UK
Manchester United
2 0
Manchester United : De Gea, Valencia, Bailly, Blind, Shaw; Fellaini, Pogba, Mata (Mkhitaryan, min. 76), Rooney (Smalling, min. 89), Martial (Herrera, min. 82), Ibrahimovic.
Southampton: Forster, Cedric, Van Dijk, Fonte (c), Targett, Romeu (Clasie, min. 12), Hojbjerg, Davis (Austin, min. 67), Tadic, Long (Rodriguez, min. 84), Redmond.
SCORE: 1-0, min. 36, Ibrahimovic. 2-0, min. 52, Ibrahimovic (Pen).
REFEREE: Anthony Taylor (ENG).
INCIDENTS: Premier League fixture between Manchester United and Southampton, held at Old Trafford

Mourinho will be very pleased also that his team was able to keep a clean sheet. That now brings to an end tonight's Friday night Premier League fixture between Manchester United and Southampton from Old Trafford. I have been Brandon Sayer and until next time have a good night.

For Southampton it was a nearly night as they just couldn't take the chances they had during the game. It now means they have 1 point from two games. United though now have six points from six which is a brilliant start to the season.

That was excellent from United in the second half as the team drove forward with purpose and should have won by much more than two goals. Ibrahimovic will get the plaudits and rightly so from the match as he got the two goals but Pogba was a monster in the middle of the park and showed why he is the world's most expensive player.

90+3' - The referee blows his whistle end the second half. Manchester United 2-0 Southampton.

90' - The referee has decided to add on three minutes at the end of the second half.

89' - Manchester United substitution: Rooney is replaced by Chris Smalling as Mourinho wants his side to see out the rest of the game to get a clean sheet.

87' - Tadic lets fly from the edge of the box after a nice cut back from Taggert but the ball goes just wide of De Gea's goal.

84' - Southampton substitution: Long is replaced by Jay Rodriguez.

82' - Manchester United substitution: Martial is replaced by Ander Herrera. United now going with the 4-3-3 formation.

76' - Manchester United substitution: Mata is replaced by Mkhitaryan who makes his home debut for United tonight.

75' - Almost a goal back for Southampton as Shane Long headed the ball just wide of the goal after a good cross from Cedric Soares.

67' - Southampton substitution: Davis is replaced by Charlie Austin who scored the winner here last season.

65' - A brilliant pass from rooney played Martial through on goal and just as the striker was about to put the ball in the net Van Djik made a brilliant block.

64' - A brilliant corner from Mata finds Pogba in the box and the big midfielder got up well but he put his header over the bar.

62' - The visitors have responded very well to going two goals behind and if it weren't for some last ditch defending from United then they could have got a goal back.

52' - Goal for United! It's Ibrahimovic once again to double United's lead. This time the forward scores from the penalty spot after Shaw was brought down in the box by Clasie. The big forward was never going to miss that as he sent the keeper the wrong way. The Old Trafford crowd are buzzing.

50' - Good play from Pogba finds Martial in space and the forward hit a shot very well and Forster had to get down well to make a good save.

47' - An early chance in the second half falls the way of Mata after a brilliant run forward from Luke Shaw but the midfielder put his shot miles over the bar.

46' - The referee blows his whistle to get the second half underway. Game on!

It had been a very tactical half from both teams until Ibrahimovic smahed his header home. The big striker preys on any decent cross into the box and that's exactly what he did. Southamtpon have looked dangerous on the counter attack during the first half but so far United have been clsoing the spaces well. We will see if any manager makes any substitutions at half-time. Stay tuned as we bring you the second half live in a few minutes time.

45+2' - The referee blows his whistle for half-time. Manchester United 1-0 Southampton.

45' - The referee has decided to add on two minutes at the end of the first half.

44' - A good move from Southampton finds Steven Davis in space at the edge of the box but the midfielder put his miles over the bar.

36' - Goal for United! Guess who scored? Well it's that Ibrahimovic man once again who gives United the lead. A brilliant cross from Rooney found Ibrahimovic in the box and the big striker powered the header home. Zlatan's on fire for United. 

34' - Rooney hits a hard low strike from outside the box but it goes straight at Forster who has had a quiet game so far.

29' - Ibrahimovic almost pulls off the spectacular as his overhead kick goes wide of the goal. A brilliant move started by Pogba and then Mata with a lovely flicked header gave the big man the chance.

26' - Another chance comes the way of Southampton as Long puts a snapshot just wide of the goal. The home crowd are starting to get a wee bit restless as United have slowed down from the bright start that they made to the game.

19' - Southampton are inches away from taking the lead after Redmond finds himself in behind the United defence but he overhit his cross when Tadic was there at the back post to tap the ball home into an empty net,

14' - Pogba has an effort from just inside the box but it is easily saved by Forster. The attempt was set up by Ibrahimovic who done well to hold of his defender.

12' - Southampton substitution: Jordy Clasie has replaced Romeu who has gone off with an injury.

6' - The United players are giving the ball Pogba early to try settle any nerves he may have early on even though he has looked confident so far.

2' - Tadic steps up to take it but he hit the ball straight into the wall. It's been a bright start by the visitors.

1' - Southampton have been awarded a free kick in a very dangerous positon very early on.

1' - The referee blows his whistle to get the game underway. Game on!

We are just over 10 minutes away from kick-off at Old Trafford. It is set to be a big night for the crowd as they get to see Pogba in action from the start. The excitement is building. Stay tuned as we bring you the match in a few minutes time.

Southampton substitutes: McCarthy, Yoshida, Clasie, Ward-Prowse, Pied, Rodriquez, Austin.

Southampton starting XI: Forster, Cedric, Van Dijk, Fonte (c), Targett, Romeu, Hojbjerg, Davis, Tadic, Long, Redmond.

Manchester United substitutes: Smalling, Young, Rashford, Herrera, Mkhitaryan, Schneiderlin, Romero.

Manchester United starting XI: De Gea, Valencia, Bailly, Blind, Shaw; Fellaini, Pogba, Mata, Rooney, Martial, Ibrahimović.

The team news from Old Trafford is in. Stay tuned!

For Southampton, only Ryan Bertrand and Florin Gardos are unavailable through injury. Predicted Southampton XI: Forster; Soares, Fonte, van Dijk, Targett; Davis, Romeu, Ward-Prowse; Tadic; Long, Redmond.

Another player who could come into the starting line-up is Chris Smalling, now fit after an injury and suspension kept him out of United's first two games. However, it's likely Mourinho will continue with the back four who began against Bournemouth. Predicted Manchester United XI: De Gea; Valencia, Bailly, Blind, Shaw; Carrick, Pogba; Lingard, Rooney, Martial; Ibrahimovic.

Pogba signs his contract at Manchester United | Photo: Getty Images
Pogba signs his contract at Manchester United | Photo: Getty Images

The scoreline is the most important thing for both sets of fans today, yet for United fans, it's their first game at Old Trafford under Mourinho. More importantly than that, it's the return of Paul Pogba after his world-record transfer from Juventus. In yesterday's press conference, Mourinho confirmed that he'll be in action at the Theatre of Dreams, making his second debut for the club. "He's been training longer than some did for the Community Shield," said Mourinho. "Will he play 90 minutes or have a superb performance? I don't believe. But he can play. Pogba has adapted really easily because he knows the club, knows everybody. He has no need to have time to adapt."

While that was a 1-0 victory, United won in the reverse fixture at St. Mary's a few months before. That, too, saw the visitors come out on top. In Anthony Martial's second league game in the red of Manchester United, he scored a brace. So, too, did Graziano Pelle but Juan Mata's 68th-minute goal was the eventual winner. In fact, last season, the same happened as Robin van Persie scored twice at St. Mary's for a 2-1 win while Dusan Tadic scored the only goal at Old Trafford later in the season.

That's exactly what the Saints did last time they came to Old Trafford, beat United on their own patch. Charlie Austin, who was then a new signing, scored a late winner in one of the worst moments of Louis van Gaal's time in charge. The English striker is hoping for another magical moment in Manchester, read here.

While United, although meaningless at this stage of this season, are top of the league, Southampton drew on the opening day to ten-man Watford. Étienne Capoue opened the scoring early on for the Hornets but Southampton responded with a goal from Nathan Redmond, who looks to be a superb signing for the Saints. Centre-back Maya Yoshida says Southampton must improve ahead of tonight's fixture if they're going to beat United on their own patch.

Rooney comes into this game on a small high after United's opening day victory against AFC Bournemouth. In Jose Mourinho's first league game in charge, Rooney was deployed at number ten, playing behind Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Both strikers scored in an impressive second half from the Red Devils. Juan Mata  scored just before half-time as United went top of the league on the opening day with a 3-1 victory. Yet even as Rooney scored, his first half performance was full of poor first touches and missed chances, an improvement is needed tonight.

Football on a Friday night in England's top division is a new addition to the football calendar for the 2016/17 season. Yet only last year, Man United were forced to play on Friday evening away to relegated Aston Villa. That was a 1-0 victory for the Reds as Adnan Januzaj scored, just before leaving to Borussia Dortmund  on loan. That evening saw Wayne Rooney have one of his worst performances in a United shirt, the England captain will be hoping for a better performance.

Good evening and welcome to VAVEL UK's first Friday Night Football commentary of the new Premier League season as Manchester United host Southampton at Old Trafford, kick-off at 8PM.