Greenwood's back

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer might consider himself to have the midas touch when it comes to Mason Greenwood. After the win in the San Siro last month he was asked about the 19-year-old's lack of goals this season, but instead praised his all-round game and explained how his contribution to the team had risen this season, despite a barren spell.

As part of that answer Solskjaer declared himself unconcerned about Greenwood's barren spell in front of goal and his vote of confidence has been perfectly timed.

Greenwood now has five goals in his last six games for Manchester United and as he stepped onto the ball early in the second half against Burnley the outcome was never in doubt.

The teenager is as pure a finisher as there is at Old Trafford and with confidence high he swept a first-time finish beyond Bailey Peacock-Farrell. It was a difficult finish made to look remarkably simple.

While his winning goal might have taken a wicked deflection off Jack Cork, his confidence in taking a first touch that enabled him to engineer a shooting angle was vital. His form on the right-wing and Solskjaer's desire to keep him out there, for now, is making any summer pursuit of Jadon Sancho a bonus rather than a necessity at the moment.

Solskjaer also deserves credit for his man-management of Greenwood. With goals hard to come by he could have been taken out of the team and given a few weeks to take stock. Instead, the United boss backed his instincts and he's been rewarded.

Premier League sideshow

United's involvement in secret talks over a European Super League managed to have the effect of making one of their Premier League games feel close to an irrelevance on Sunday.

The absence of supporters to create an atmosphere didn't help but as United played Burnley the chatter inside Old Trafford was all about the Super League and what it means for the future of games like this. While the players were clearly giving their all, the match unfolding on the pitch didn't feel like the biggest story of the day, or even close to it.

During the first half alone UEFA and the Premier League released strong statements condemning the plans, while the absence of Ed Woodward from the directors' box inevitably set tongues wagging. Directors from both sides would have been following developments, while the press box was occupied by the developing story from boardroom rather than pitch.

On commentary Gary Neville fired both barrels at the clubs involved in the proposal, while Roy Keane joined in at half-time to lament the greed. The actual football was a secondary thought.

Perhaps if fans were in the ground they would have made this game feel like a bigger story, but they might also have made their feelings about a Super League clear. This might make clubs more money, but those who pay to attend Old Trafford regularly cherish the meetings with Burnley just as much as Bayern Munich. You can't eat caviar for lunch every day.

That these plans have been cooked up in a pandemic, when games are behind closed doors and the collective voice of supporters is weaker than ever, is a disgrace.

An Old Trafford nemesis

United's 2-0 defeat to Burnley in January 2020 was the last game of what is now known as Solskjaer's pre-Bruno era. His side were so devoid of creativity and imagination that night that a deal for Fernandes simply had to be done in the final week of the January transfer window.

Considering how bad United were that night it's remarkable to think they'd lost only four of their next 45 Premier League fixtures heading into this game.

Burnley were actually four games unbeaten at Old Trafford and in their performance you can see why they caused United problems on home turf. They sent crosses to Chris Wood, who was targeting Victor Lindelof, on a regular basis and were physical in their treatment of Fernandes.

In the space of a minute in the first half he was barged towards an advertising hoarding by James Tarkowski, fouled late by Jack Cork and then had Josh Brownhill boot the ball into his back as he lay prone. It was uncompromising stuff.

Henderson sets the tone

If Dean Henderson hadn't made such a rash decision to race 15 yards off his line to try and punch clear Matt Lowton's long diagonal in the first 20 seconds of this game then maybe he'd have made a bolder decision to try and clear the corner from which the Clarets equalised.

Henderson got away with his early mistake. He was nowhere near the punch and Chris Wood flicked the ball into the vacant role, but the striker was marginally offside, with his toes ahead of Luke Shaw.

Only Henderson knows whether he was affected by that, but Ashley Westwood's in-swinging corner was landing well inside his six-yard box and he was rooted to the line as James Tarkowski headed home. To sum up his frazzled decision making, Henderson then raced outside of his area to try and clear another Lowton diagonal when Victor Lindelof had the situation under control, with the goalkeeper only succeeding in clattering into his own centre back.

Henderson was always going to face scrutiny under the high ball as he try to ease his way into the status of United No. 1 and his positivity is to be applauded, but against Burnley it was his decision making that went awry.

A free week

When the United player report to Carrington early this week they might well wonder what to do with themselves. For the first time since their season began in mid-September, they are about to get a full week between fixtures, aside from international breaks.

United have played every midweek this season, an astonishing statistic, which means training sessions have been about recovery and match preparation, rather than working on any grander plans.

So this week will be the first chance in months to do some detailed tactical work. Given how easily Leeds were beaten at Old Trafford in December, United could run riot at Elland Road with a full week to work on a gameplan.