Bruno Fernandez of Manchester United

Mik Bowers. Dazn Bet’s very own football fanatic, and unashamed Man-U fan, brings us regular highlights of his favourite games. If you’ve missed the game, or just want a reminder, then Mik’s got you covered. Focusing mainly on FA Cup, The Premier League and occasional games from the major European tournaments, Mik gives us his thoughts on the matches.

The Mancurian – Football Reviews and Highlights

Manchester Utd v Fulham FA Cup Quarter-Final

Man United Win Controversial Quarter-Final

Manchester United came from a goal down to beat Fulham in a home tie against 9-man Fulham

In-form Manchester United were the odds-on favourite to beat Fulham in this home tie to set up an FA Cup semi-final date with Brighton and Hove Albion.

On paper Manchester United looked the stronger team, despite several key players missing because of injury or suspension.

The mercurial Brazilian Carlos Henrique Casemiro, known just as Casemiro, was out due to suspension and others, including Christian Eriksen and Alejandro Garnacho were missing due to injury. Still, this should have been an easy enough game for Manchester with the experienced team sent out against Fulham

 

Impressive Fulham

Marco Silva, the Fulham Manager, had a full-strength team out against Manchester United and they were up for the tie. From the first minutes Fulham pressed and were unlucky not to score within a few minutes. Although Fulham have only drawn once and lost 4 in the last 5 games, they were definitely there to win this one!

De Gea, United’s reborn goalkeeper, pulled off numerous fine saves to stop Fulham from taking the lead. United seemed at odds with each other and Fulham could have and should have taken full advantage. Without De Gea’s great saves, United would have been behind in the tie.

United ex-player, Andreas Pereira, pulled the strings in midfield while Aleksandar Mitrovic worried United’s defence from the get-go. Mitrovic could have scored from a towering header without another wonderful save from De Gea.

United had one or two half chances and Wout Weghorst, who keeps getting his chance from Eric Ten Hag the Manchester United manager despite only finding the net once his 18 appearances for United at Old Trafford, had United’s best chance. Anthony, who was on the bench, may have hit the ball cleaner but Weghorst back passed the ball into the Fulham keeper, João Palhinha’s, hands.

United somehow held on, and at the break, the score was flattering, for United, nil nil

Aleksandar Mitrovic of Fulham

Second-Half Madness

Ten Hag had work to do with his team at half time, although there wasn’t much choice on the bench. It was only a matter of time before Fulham would break down United if things didn’t change, and 5 minutes into the second half Fulham took advantage with Mitrovic stabbing the ball home from close distance.

United claimed a foul on the in form Marcus Rashford just before the goal, but Chris Kavanagh, the referee, waived away the claims and Fulham took a fully deserved lead.

The tie looked to be going Fulham’s way until Ten Hag brought on Casemiro’s Brazilian Teammate, Antony Matheus dos Santos, known only as Antony. Antony plays with menace and a scowl but always looks dangerous. Things started to improve for United and for the first time during the game, looked like they were in the tie

Jadon Sancho, who had been quiet during the first half, ran into the box, rounded the keeper and looked to be scoring into an empty net. From nowhere Willian, Fulham’s ex-Chelsea midfielder came across the goal and stopped what looked like a certain United equalizer.

The United players surrounded the ref and demanded he checked VAR for what they claimed to be handball despite Willian claiming it struck him on the chest.

What unfolded next can only be described as madness. Sunday morning league madness!

While checking VAR Chris Kavanagh showed a red card, although unclear at the time, to Fulham’s manager Marco Silva. After seeing the handball from Willian, Kavanagh was rightly awarded the penalty. Chaos ensued. Fulhams goalscorer Mitrovic appeared to manhandle the ref, for which he was shown a straight red! All players surrounded the ref in 5 more minutes of mayhem

Willian was also eventually shown the red card for his obvious handball on the goal line and Fulham were down to 9 players with the manager sent from the sideline

Marcel Sabitzer of Manchester United

Manchester United Comeback

Bruno Fernandes, who has been in great form over the last few months, confidently took the ball to take the penalty and despite Fulham players trying to sabotage the penalty spot, stepped up to slot home in the bottom right-hand corner. One-one, 15 minutes to go with Fulham down to 9 men and it wasn’t looking good for the London visitors

United took full advantage and within 3 minutes Marcel Sabitzer, United’s first-ever Austrian, scored United’s second. Sabitzer, who arrived on loan from Bayern Munich back-healed the ball passed Fulham’s keeper

From then on the tie never looked in doubt. Fulham, if it hadn’t been for the red cards, would have breezed passed United but the tie had been spun on its head.

United started to pass the ball around the remaining Fulham players with ease, and in the 90+6 minute, Bruno Fernandes sealed the tie with a powerful shot.

 

FA Cup Next Round

United face Brighton in the next round, another tie they should win on paper. But, United never do things the easy way so should be an exciting tie.

If United can get passed Brighton and Manchester City can see off Sheffield United at home, then we will see the very first Manchester United versus Manchester City Wembley FA Cup Final!

 

Verdict

If it wasn’t for the complete and utter red mist meltdown madness shown by the Fulham manager and players, then Manchester United would have been out of the FA Cup!

Luckily, for them, they are still on to win another trophy to go with their EFL Cup trophy win from last month.