A rollercoaster of emotions as an eventful night at Old Trafford ends in a frustrating stalemate.
As we entered the final two minutes of extra time, I was certain the win was ours. All we had to do was keep possession of the ball and keep it in the corner – but a last minute foul from Tuanzebe and a shocking attempt of a save from De Gea saw the 3 points quickly snatched from our hands. Whilst the game ended in a draw, the result felt like nothing less than an immense loss.
It should be Bruno Fernandes’ unbelievable goal from outside the box that is stealing headlines; instead, Manchester United throwing a win down the drain and our unreliable defence that are the hot topics amongst fans and pundits. To say I’m disappointed is an understatement. The game should’ve been ours for the win. Our forwards put in a fantastic performance – one of the best we’ve seen from them all season. Shaw and Wan-Bissaka were standouts yet again, with Shaw getting a further two assists to add to his expanding collection. Cavani scored yet ANOTHER goal against Everton, McTominay scored a long-awaited header from a set piece and Bruno? Well, his goal speaks for itself.
What let us down tonight was poor defensive and goalkeeping errors. Lindelöf and Maguire as a centre-back pairing have been at the forefront of a lot of criticism for the last season and a half. There’s no denying that they were at fault today, but for me, it was the actions (or lack of) from De Gea that ultimately cost us the win. The first goal we conceded due to his weak attempt of punching the ball away, and the third, an infuriating result of a lack of desire to win the ball – a performance that reflects a disappointing statistic showing he has only saved 60.9% of shots he’s faced this season in the Premier League. Had he thrown his body in front of Calvert-Lewin to block the attempt, we would be level with Manchester City in the table ahead of their toughest fixture so far.
As I said before, it’s easy to get carried away because this feels like a loss rather than a draw, but the overall performance from the team as a whole felt promising. We entered this season with no expectations of winning the league. It was only when we had a taste of what it felt like to be top of the league that we got carried away and were left wanting more. The opportunity to win a trophy is still possible with this team and I believe we have a good chance of getting our hands on some silverware this season.
Man of the match: A lot of players put in a good performance tonight: Greenwood, Shaw, McTominay, Cavani. But for me, Bruno is my MOTM for the sheer and utter brilliance of his goal, his work rate and his frustration and disappointment at losing the 3 points.
3 goals should’ve been enough for a win. How many goals do we need to score to secure a win? 5? 6? 9 again? Something needs to be done about our defence, who have costed us valuable points this season. But now we must wipe the slate clean, work on our weaknesses and look ahead to Tuesday where we face West Ham in the FA Cup. We’ve got this.