LONDON: Manchester United took a big step towards a Top 4 result when they battled their way back against Brighton & Hove Albion on Sunday after several other teams stumbled in the race.
United took a 2-1 win in the second half thanks to goals from Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood after former striker Danny Welbeck gave Brighton an early lead.
It left second-placed United on 60 points, 14 behind runaway leaders Manchester City, but decisively 11 ahead of fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool and West Ham United.
“It’s always difficult to play Brighton. We got good results and we earned them the hard way. We found a way in the second half, ”said coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
United have proven the old adage that if you play poorly, there are huge rewards for winning – a lesson Spurs would do well to consider after a 2-2 draw at Newcastle United.
Chelsea’s shocking 5-2 loss to West Bromwich Albion on Saturday had opened the door for Tottenham to advance to fourth place over London rivals for the season after Newcastle took the lead.
But Joe Willock, on loan from Arsenal, equalized for the hosts in the 85th minute, securing a point for his team that looked valuable in the relegation battle at the end of the day.
Spurs have now lost 11 points to conceding goals in the last 10 minutes of this season’s games, the most of any Premier League club.
“We weren’t far from winning it, but at the same time, with so many individual defensive mistakes we made, we created a certain instability in the game,” said coach Jose Mourinho.
When asked why Tottenham had difficulty maintaining the lead when their teams have been so solidly defensive in the past, Mourinho replied: “The same coach, different players. The Premier League is tough and it’s football at a high level, and if you don’t show in some actions that you belong to this high level of football, it’s difficult. ”
While Tottenham often ends games badly, United have a habit of starting them badly this season.
Welbeck opened the Seagulls against his old club deserved the goal before Lewis Dunk hit the bar for the guests.
However, Brighton also repeated their season’s history as they couldn’t make the most of their dominance before the break.
Rashford equalized in the 62nd minute after the pass from Bruno Fernandes to reward United’s significant improvement.
Fernandes was again involved for the winner when his cross was shot back into goal and into Greenwood’s path by Paul Pogba to score his second league goal of the season with his head.
United have taken 25 points from a losing position this season, at least nine more than any other team.
After 77 minutes in their Aston Villa game, Fulham led 1-0 thanks to an Aleksandar Mitrovic goal and left the relegation zone at Newcastle’s expense.
Within four minutes, Scott Parker’s team was behind, staring at least another week in the ground.
Trezeguet, a substitute in the second half, scored in the 78th and 81st minutes before Ollie Watkins added a third goal in a 3-1 win for Villa, who was again without captain and star player Jack Grealish.
Fulham remain in 18th place, three points behind Newcastle, who also played one more game.
“We have a chance to fight,” said Parker. “We have to improve and understand where we made mistakes and be brutally honest that it wasn’t good enough. We have to understand and smell what was inside where we are. We didn’t earn anything from the game for the last 15 minutes. ”
On Sunday, Southampton took a huge step towards survival by beating Burnley 3-2 after falling 2-2.
Chris Wood’s penalty and Matej Vydra’s goal gave the guests a dream start within 28 minutes.
But Ralph Hasenhüttl’s team struck back impressively when Stuart Armstrong and Danny Ings met before the break.
Nathan Redmond took the winning goal in the 66th minute when he volleyed home from a cross from Theo Walcott.
“These points were important,” said Hasenhüttl. “When you see five goals, it’s always good for TV, but not so good for the hearts of managers.”
After only his second league win in 13 games, FA Cup semi-finalists Southampton are three points ahead of Burnley, who are seven points ahead of Fulham.
Posted in Dawn, April 6, 2021