Manchester United continued their progress in the FA Cup as they beat Warren Joyce's Wigan Athletic 4-0 in a match that exemplified the squad depth that Jose Mourinho commands at the club.
The victory came for United with goals coming from Marouane Fellaini late on in the first half, the game was settled in the second half when Chris Smalling calmed any nerves for the home side, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Bastian Schweinsteiger got on the score sheet with terrific goals of their own.
The first half was an evenly contested affair with the visitors dominating the much-rotated eleven fielded by Mourinho, the likes of Schweinsteiger, Luke Shaw and Timothy Fosu-Mensah took some time to get going and find their feet in the early stages of the game. The opening goal late on in the first half from Fellaini settled any nerves United fans had about the result.
The second half was a much more comfortable one for Mourinho's side as they swept aside their opposition and showed the gulf in quality and class as Smalling and then Mkhitaryan scored well-taken goals and Schweinsteiger added the cherry at the top of the cake for him with a delightful overhead kick.
Let's take a look at the player ratings for this one and see how the players fared against the Latics.
Romero and Fosu-Mensah star in defence for Red Devils
Sergio Romero (8/10) - The Argentinian had to be on alert in the first half as Connolly tested him early in the game. He did well to back up his erratic save from a cross with a good save to deny David Perkins a clear shot at goal, the rest of the game was a comfortable one for him. He was substituted in the last few minutes of the game by Mourinho to give Joel Pereira his debut after the Portuguese returned from his loan spell at Belenenses.
Timothy Fosu-Mensah (8/10) - The highly rated young Dutchman was finally given his chance by Mourinho in the first team and he did not disappoint, a thoroughly energetic performance as he did all the work down the right hand side to give Juan Mata the freedom to play a more central role. Fosu-Mensah was all over the pitch, making tackles, crossing the ball well and showing that he is more than ready to be a regular in the first team.
Chris Smalling (8/10) - Smalling, along with Marcos Rojo, remained in the starting eleven that began at Hull in midweek and put in a satisfactory performance and did not have much to defend against, as United were dominant for large parts of the game.
Marcos Rojo (8/10) - Rojo continued to get more games under his belt and showed why he is better in the middle of the defence rather than at left-back as he put in a commanding display alongside Smalling to help Romero and Pereira to a clean sheet for the day.
Luke Shaw (8/10) - It was Shaw's first start since returning from an extended injury break and his lack of match fitness was telling in the first half but the second half was a much improved one from the young fullback as he combined well with United's midfielders in the final third and was a vital part in build-up play, his partnership down the left-hand side was a welcome sight for the home crowd as they hope to see more of the two combining in the future.
Schweinsteiger puts in a Man of the Match display on return to first team action
Marouane Fellaini (8/10) - The Belgian started the match alongside the experienced Schweinsteiger and kept his game simple and effective in the middle of the park, using his physique to dominate the game in the air. He did well to score with near the end of the first half, meeting Schweinsteiger's cross with a trademark header.
Bastian Schweinsteiger (10/10) - The German midfield maestro had a dream return to first team action after it had seemed that he was on his way out of the club. He made up for his lack of sharpness early on in the first half with a brilliant cross to set up Fellaini for his goal, and in the second half, he showed that he is more than capable of playing the role that Michael Carrick plays in the first team and was always on positive whenever in possession. He capped off a fine evening's work with a well-executed overhead kick to make his case for a return to regular first-team action under Mourinho.
Juan Mata (8/10) - The Spaniard was typically all over the pitch and his link up play with his fellow attackers, Wayne Rooney, Mkhitaryan and Martial was a delight to watch, he was all over the pitch finding spaces and attacking the Wigan defence, no goal or assist this time for him, nevertheless, he shrugged off a dull start in the first half to complete an excellent performance.
Wayne Rooney (8/10) - The United captain received the golden shoe and a golden ball from Sir Bobby Charlton just before the game started to commemorate his achievement of becoming the top scorer for the club with 250 goals. His role in the match was a silent yet effective one, he linked up well with his fellow attackers and also helped the Red Devils with well-taken corners and important passes to set up the goals which were scored.
Mkhitaryan and Martial pivotal in attack for Red Devils
Henrikh Mkhitaryan (9/10) - Another brilliant all-round performance from the Armenian as he now looks closer to the player the world saw at Borussia Dortmund just over a year ago. Mkhitaryan was always looking to work the Wigan defence and create opportunities for the home side, his relentless work rate and excellent ball control helped him score the third which came as a result of a counter-attack started by him and finished by him in emphatic fashion.
Anthony Martial (10/10) - The Frenchman returned to the side after two games of absence as Mourinho decided to give the young forward his chance to impress and that is exactly what he did. Martial used his pace and trickery brilliantly to pose a challenge to the Wigan defenders who were unable to mark him and keep him out of the game. The former Monaco man was unable to score but set up two goals on the day to cap off a wonderful attacking display.
Ander Herrera (8/10) - Herrera came off with 20 minutes remaining in the game and played his typical box to box role in midfield for the Red Devils. It was his header that diverted Rooney's corner into the path of Schweinsteiger who then finished the chance with great aplomb.
Axel Tuanzebe(8/10) - The United U-23's captain was yet another player rumoured to be given his debut in this match and had an impressive cameo when he came off the bench for Fosu-Mensah late on in the game, did not have much to do on either ends of the field but gave a good account of himself with his time on the pitch.
Joel Pereira (N/A) - Mourinho decided to make use of the comfortable scoreline and brought off the young Portuguese off the bench in place of Romero, a surprise decision but one that was welcome by the United faithful as Pereira made his debut for the team alongside Tuanzebe as both players provided hope for their futures at the Theatre Of Dreams.