Manchester United booked their place in next month’s FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley Stadium following a dramatic win over nine-man Fulham this evening.
Although there were a lack of clear-cut chances for both sides in the first half, Fulham were much the better team.
They got into some promising situations and played with a much higher intensity than United, but were unable to really test David de Gea.
Marco Silva’s side found it all too easy to play through United’s half-hearted press throughout the first 45 minutes.
Fulham continued where they left off after the break, with Antonee Robinson and Willian forcing two good saves from de Gea in the opening four minutes.
Aleksandar Mitrovic then netted to give Fulham a much-deserved lead. Issa Diop got a flick on Andreas Pereira’s corner before the Serbian striker was on hand to steer home from close range.
De Gea made a terrific clawing save at full-stretch to deny a Mitrovic header on 66 minutes after the striker was picked out by an excellent Pereira delivery from the right-hand side.
A few minutes later, Jadon Sancho rounded the goalkeeper and saw his shot blocked on the line by Willian’s hand following a swift counter-attack.
After a VAR check, the referee pointed to the spot and the Brazilian was dismissed. Mitrovic pushed the referee in anger and received a red card to put Fulham down to nine men.
In the midst of the madness, Marco Silva was also dismissed after his protests towards the officials.
Bruno Fernandes calmly slotted home the resulting penalty, sending Bernd Leno the wrong way to level the game at 1-1.
The home side quickly made their two-man advantage count when Marcel Sabitzer turned home Luke Shaw’s low cross with a clever flick to give United a 2-1 lead.
Fernandes sealed United’s place in the last four with a clinical strike deep into added time to make it 3-1 after Fred slotted him in to have a free shot on goal.
United will now be dreaming of adding to their triumph in last month’s Carabao Cup final by securing the 13th FA Cup success in their illustrious history.
Manchester United player ratings
David de Gea (8/10) – Made several fantastic saves when Fulham were on top.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka (6/10) – Did not contribute too much going forward but won the majority of his duels.
Harry Maguire (6/10) – Was a key reason for United’s poor first half due to taking too long in possession of the ball and therefore slowing down their tempo. Better after the break.
Lisandro Martinez (7/10) – Distributed out from the back well and was generally solid in defensive situations.
Luke Shaw (7/10) – Solid defensively and assisted Sabitzer’s goal to give United the lead.
Scott McTominay (5/10) – Poor in the 58 minutes he was on the pitch for. Got dominated by Fulham’s midfield.
Marcel Sabitzer (7/10) – Got forward well and produced a nice finish to put his side in front.
Jadon Sancho (7/10) – Poor in the first 45 minutes but improved a lot in the second half. Was a lot more creative and direct.
Bruno Fernandes (8/10) *MOTM* – Scored a brace, worked hard and created several chances.
Marcus Rashford (6/10) – Could not really get into the game much. A quiet evening for Rashford.
Wout Weghorst (6/10) – Put himself about but was not effective enough in the final third.
Antony (8/10) – Was a real threat down United’s right-hand side after being introduced just before the hour mark. Caused Fulham all sorts of problems with his dribbling ability and creativity.
Fred (7/10) – Contributed an assist in the short period he was on the pitch.
Fulham player ratings
Bernd Leno (6/10) – Made some decent saves. Not much he could have done for any of United’s three goals.
Kenny Tete (7/10) – Won most of his duels and got forward well.
Issa Diop (7/10) – Solid defensively and got himself an assist.
Tim Ream (7/10) – Made a lot of recoveries and generally defended well.
Antonee Robinson (7/10) – Looked good both defensively and going forward.
Joao Palhinha (7/10) – A solid midfield display from the Portuguese international on his return from suspension.
Harrison Reed (7/10) – Fulham’s best performer. Controlled the midfield up until the red cards changed the game.
Bobby Reid (5/10) – Fulham’s quietest attacker. Did not really get into the game much.
Andreas Pereira (7/10) – A constant creative threat against his former side.
Willian (7/10) – Worked hard and looked a danger in the final third. Unfortunate with the penalty and red card.
Aleksandar Mitrovic (6/10) – Got himself on the scoresheet and put in a terrific performance until he let his team down with a moment of madness.
Tom Cairney (N/A)
Daniel James (N/A)
Manor Solomon (N/A)
Cedric Soares (N/A)
- FIFA increases compensation fee for players participation in the World Cup
- Five Conte replacements Tottenham should consider in their managerial search
- Bayern Munich keeping tabs on Gavi amid contractual dispute
- Tottenham Hotspur defender Emerson Royal set to undergo knee injury, could miss rest of season
- PSG target summer move for Napoli centre-back Kim Min-jae