Manchester United romped to an emphatic 4-1 victory over CSKA Moscow in their Champions League Group A clash in Russia.
A Romelu Lukaku, Anthony Martial-inspired first half saw United go 3-0 up inside 30 minutes at the sold out Arena CSKA, with Mkhitayan topping off a woeful defensive display from the Russian giants in the second half.
Mourinho opted for a change in formation with the 3-4-3, introducing Victor Lindelof into the defence; Daley Blind and stand-in captain Ashley Young on the wings; and Martial and Henrikh Mkhitaryan either side of Lukaku. It seemed to work wonders for the Mancunians.
CSKA couldn’t have dreamt of a worse start to proceedings with Lukaku - scoring for the seventh game in succession - putting United 1-0 up after just four minutes. Martial, cutting in from the left hand-side, whipped the ball in to the back post for the predatory Lukaku, who effortlessly brushed off his marker and nodded in the opener.
Moscow nearly had the perfect response just two minutes after the opener, with CSKA right back Golovin knocking the ball down for Dzagoev who let fly from 20 yards out, but De Gea was there to deny the midfielder, superbly tipping the ball around his right post.
With a quarter of the match gone, United looked very comfortable, knocking the ball around with ease and orchestrating chances, one of which they should have buried, with Mkhitaryan hitting Daley Blind’s low ball straight at the feet of goalkeeper Akineev from eight yards.
But United would soon have their second. In a seamlessly ‘nothing’ area, Moscow’s Schennikov needlessly went to ground on the edge of the box, bringing down the lively Mkhitaryan in the process, for the extra official to award the penalty. Martial stepped up and coolly slotted the ball into the bottom right corner with his fifth goal in eight matches.
Golovin managed to work another chance for the Russian’s, and the CSKA fans were in full voice, but it couldn’t prevent United going three up just before the half hour mark. It was Martial and Lukaku again, with the Frenchman managing to work space down the left and putting in a low cross, for Beruzutski - with what should have been an easy clearance - to totally miss the ball and the ever-grateful Lukaku to prod in from close range.
As shambolic as Moscow looked defensively, they showed signs of being an attacking threat, with youngster Chalov forcing De Gea into yet another fine save before the end of the first half.
Following some early second-half pressure from Moscow, Lukaku came close to his hat-trick, sweetly striking a left-footed half-volley on the edge of the area for Akineev to smartly stop and CSKA defender’s managing to clear the rebound.
On the stroke on the 60th minute however, United would have their fourth. Iganshevich gave the ball away for Martial to be played through in behind by Matic. Akineev managed to make the save but Mkhitaryan was on hand to duly accept the tap in before being replaced by Lingard in preparation for the weekend.
The introduction of Marcus Rashford for the fantastic Anthony Martial couldn’t further extend United’s lead, despite Lukaku’s heavy efforts, but the damage had already been done.
CSKA Moscow did manage to bag themselves a late goal thanks to Kuchaev, drilling in a low angled effort from a lovely Golovin pass, but it proved only to be a mere consolation.