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Report: Manchester United U23’s fall to a 2-0 defeat to Everton

Manchester United were beaten 2-0 by a resurgent Everton side after Regan Poole made a defensive error which saw Dominic Calvert-Lewin open the scoring in the first half. A second half header by Oumar Naisse, Everton’s 26-year-old striker purchased only this summer, saw Warren Joyce’s side fall further behind. United did not look the best side on the pitch today, but if not for the determination of Axel Tuanzebe, it could have been a humiliating match for United.

Warren Joyce selected a strong team to face Everton with Sam Johnstone returning to the starting XI. Ro-Shaun Williams, a substitute a week ago comes back in as a starter after suffering an injury at the start of the season, replacing Scott McTominay in the XI, who suffered a knock against Derby County last week and was not fit enough to start, or take part in the match this week. Ilias Moutha-Sebtaoui and 16-year-old Lee O’Connor made the bench with Joyce looking to find a good fit of experience, at this level at least, and youth in order to create a side that will press their opposition.

Manchester United started well in the match and needed to as they are up against £13.5 million signing Oumar Naisse who was purchased by Everton in the summer. United seemed to be pressing forward well, but not quite getting into forward positions to threaten the home side, who have been scoring lots of goal this season, conceding twice in seven matches up until tonight. United could do with a clinical striker against a team like Everton, which could be something they take a fall for. United had the right attitude though, showing the ‘never give up’ attitude they shoed last week against Derby County.

United found themselves chasing the game after a backpass to Regan Poole, who made a massive error by trying to pass the ball back out, not hitting it hard enough, only for Everton to take possession with Dominic Calvert-Lewin opening the scoring this evening. United now had to chase the game, against the odds, with no main attacking outlet. Determination may be key to United getting a result from this match tonight. United had some chances to get back into the game, but faced the same problem again in that their side lacks a striker to cause damage to the opposition.

The first half ended 1-0 to Everton with United not losing that determination they had the last week. Everton, despite being much stronger are not really ahead through their own doing with a United mistake getting them the goal they led the first half with. United were getting forward, just not getting the chances through on goal which could cause the problems needed to find a goal themselves. Conceding only two goals in seven matches would suggest they are a sound defensive side, which will make it so much more difficult for United the break through. Warren Joyce will have been vocal in the dressing room at half time, giving his team the instructions to get back into the match in the second half.

United started the second half well, looking to cause some damage to the home side in order to give Joyce a reaction he will have asked for during the break. United have bags of talent at this level, but seemed to be out of sorts. In the 53rd minute of the match Naisse scored the second goal for Everton with a header in which he did not even need to jump, which was down to United’s poor defending. United seemed to be out of the match now with a lot of work to put in to get level, which seems out of reach at this moment in time. Manchester United made their first change around the hour with Demetri Mitchell replacing Charlie Scott.

United on the attack through Harrop, who was then fouled at the edge of the box, the referee gave the advantage with Mitchell overhitting his cross into the box, which did not have many United players in it. United then made their second change with Matthew Olosunde, who has been ill over the past day or so, replacing Ro-Shaun Williams, who did not have the best of matches, but coming back after injury may mean he will need some time to get back up to speed. United made their third and final change of the evening with Tosin Kehinde replacing Ethan Hamilton. United have 15 minutes to try and get back into the game, with nothing other than another away defeat looking certain right now.

In the final few minutes of the match, United, still two goals down, looked to get something from that match, if only a consolation goal. Tosin Kehinde slalommed his run through to the goal, dispatching his effort which was eventually cleared off the line for Everton to get the better of this United side once more. United were unlucky perhaps not to find a goal, which was their best opportunity this evening. Four minutes of added time was played with United not taking anything from the game, losing their second league match of the season, another away from home. United now have a three-week break at this level before that face Liverpool on Tuesday 18th October 2016, the day after the first team take on their bitter rivals at Anfield. Warren Joyce will be looking for all or nothing in that fixture in order to get United winning again.

Manchester United: Johnstone; Williams (Olosunde 64′), Tuanzebe, Poole, Riley; Redmond, Scott (Mitchell 61′); El Fitouri, Harrop, Hamilton (Kehinde 73′); Willock

Substitutes Not Used: Moutha-Sebtaoui, O’Connor

Bookings: Sadiq El Fitouri, Josh Harrop

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