Manchester, Aug 22 (IANS) Some heroic defence by Newcastle United ended Manchester United’s 100 percent start to the 2015-16 English Premier League football tournament in a 0-0 draw here on Saturday.
Striker Wayne Rooney, who had not scored in eight league matches, began the match like a man on a mission as United subjected Newcastle to wave after wave of attack early on, but Louis van Gaal’s side failed to make the breakthrough and then laboured as the visitors’ confidence grew.
United ran out of ideas and it was forward Aleksandar Mitrovic, on his first start for Newcastle, who went closest to scoring, the Serb crashing a towering header onto the crossbar midway through the first half.
Striker Javier Hernandez was introduced late on as a support act for Rooney and the Mexican could have snatched a winner with 11 minutes remaining but Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul denied him from close range.
In an end-to-end finish to the match both sides went agonisingly close to a winner, with United defender Chris Smalling hitting a post with a header from a corner, only for Newcastle to break and their debutant Florian Thauvin almost diverted a centre inside the net.
United now have two wins and a draw from three matches.