Manchester United cruised into the fourth round of the Capital One Cup after seeing off the challenge of Ipswich Town at Old Trafford with a 3-0 victory.
After falling at the second-round hurdle to MK Dons last season, the Reds, entering a stage later this term thanks to Champions League qualification, progressed with ease against the Championship outfit thanks to goals from Wayne Rooney, Andreas Pereira, who netted his first senior goal for the Reds, and substitute Anthony Martial.
Following last season’s shock exit in Buckinghamshire, van Gaal opted for a strong first XI, which included a first start for Pereira, who lined up on the left in front of stand-in left-back Ashley Young. Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy, meanwhile, rang the changes as he named a completely different side to the one that drew 1-1 at home to Birmingham last weekend.
The Reds and Pereira almost made the perfect start two minutes in when the ball dropped to the wide man from a Mata free-kick. He smashed an effort against a post but the flag had already gone up for offside against Ander Herrera. Soon after, Pereira took aim from 25 yards but Bartosz Bialkowski did well to hold on to the well-struck drive.
Backed by large travelling support, believed to be around 5,500, Ipswich seemed content to let United have the ball. Possession has not been a problem for the Reds this term, but turning that domination into goals has at times. Thankfully, 23 minutes in, United made it count as Rooney put the hosts ahead. A long ball forward from Daley Blind was brilliantly controlled by the skipper who saw off the challenge of a defender before finishing with aplomb with his left foot.