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Ratings: Greenwood on the scoresheet as Leicester knock United out of the Emirates FA Cup this season; questions to be answered?

MacFinder

Manchester United were beaten 3-1 by Leicester City in the quarter-final of the Emirates FA Cup ending Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s hope of lifting the FA Cup this season. Kelechi Iheanacho scored a brace in the match, opening the scoring and scoring the third goal of the game. Mason Greenwood equalised for United in the 38th minute of the match, giving United a chance of getting something from the match. Youri Tielemans put Leicester back in the lead and it was something that United could not cope with. They now have two weeks with no club football to get over this and the fatigue of the past few weeks with United playing two matches a week the majority of the time. The agendas will be out during that time but the snooze button will be pressed.

United started the match positively after their Italian adventure on Thursday evening which saw them reach the quarter-final of the UEFA Europa League. However, Leicester soon got into the game with Jamie Vardy seeking to find an early goal, darting in behind Harry Maguire, looking for Kelechi Iheanacho in the middle but Alex Telles got inn there to clear the danger. The flag was then raised for offside. Leicester then started to gain some traction in the match with United making many sloppy mistakes. Fred was passing poorly and generally playing badly along with a few of his teammates. Leicester opened the scoring in the 24th minute with Iheanacho beating Dean Henderson after Maguire fed Fred the ball and he played it back into the box

United started to go forward to get an equaliser, playing a better brand of football with Mason Greenwood seeing Kasper Schmeichel made a save to deny him, palming the ball away. Minutes later, Maguire was booked for a challenge, which seemed a bit of a tough card, but not my decision to call. Leicester then tried to get forward again with Marc Albrighton playing the ball to the edge of the box which was eventually blocked. United got their equaliser, though Greenwood in the 38th minute of the match after Pogba beat his man, played the ball into Donny van de Beek, who stepped over the ball with Greenwood beating Schmeichel to put United level in the match. It was a good goal for the forward, his first for the club since January.

There was a few chances towards the end of the half and two minutes of added time were played. At the start of the second half, there were no changes made by either manager with the winner of this match facing Southampton in the Emirates FA Cup semi-final at Wembley, which will be played on either Saturday 17 April or Sunday 18 April 2021. United conceded a second goal to Leicester in the 52nd minute of the match with Youri Tielemans beating Henderson with the United goalkeeper unable to get a glove on the ball. Iheanacho got the assist for Leicester’s goal, which meant United would need to do a lot more to get level again, then seek the winner in this match. Solskjaer will not be all that impressed in what he has seen from his players.

United seemed determined to get back in the game, getting forward but not finding many chances. United won a corner, which was taken by Alex Telles, and came to nothing with Solskjaer readying four substitutions. They were made in the 64th minute with Luke Shaw replacing Telles, Scott McTominay replacing Pogba, Bruno Fernandes replacing Nemanja Matic and Edinson Cavani replacing Van de Beek. Albrighton became the first Leicester player to be booked in the 69th minute of the match for time wasting. Three minutes later, McTominay was booked for a challenge on Ayoze Perez, which seemed a harsh booking for the United player. United would need to dig deep and get something from this match, otherwise their FA Cup pursuit would be over.

Leicester scored a third goal which Iheanacho headed in, beating Henderson at the far post from Albrighton’s free-kick, which was misjudged by McTominay. It was such a poor goal for United to give away, they seem unable to deal with set pieces, which asks many questions of the players on the pitch and the coaches. This United side have been unlocked by Leicester too many times, which leaves the home side on top and cruising to the semi-finals of the FA Cup, giving United a free weekend in April, which might not be all that bad. Solskjaer made his final change in the 84th minute of the match with Amad Diallo replacing Fred, who did not have the best of appearances and will raise many questions about United’s midfield.

Manchester United

26 Dean Henderson

Conceded in the 24th minute, which was not his fault. Fred passed the ball back and Iheanacho pounced on it. Played a vocal role in inspiring United to get forward from conceding the goal. Conceded another in the 52nd minute with Tielemans scoring. Beaten a third time with Iheanacho heading at the far post.

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29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

He was busy in his defensive role and got forward a few times, despite no real influence coming from him. It has been a long season and it will only get tougher. United will need a backup player in this position.

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2 Victor Lindelof

The better of the two central defenders. Performed greatly on Thursday in Milan but today was not United's day.

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5 Harry Maguire

Was partly responsible for Leicester's goal in the 24th minute by playing the ball to Fred, who played it back into the box and Iheanacho pounced on it to beat Henderson. Will be annoyed with not keeping a clean sheet today. Vardy got the better of him at one stage but hit his shot off target. Not the greatest match for him or United.

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27 Alex Telles

He got froward a lot of the time he was on the pitch and tried to make an impact but he's not in the same form as Shaw. His determination is a good sign. His last kick was a free-kick, which was overhit and went out for a goal kick. He was replaced by Shaw in the 64th minute of the match.

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31 Nemanja Matic

As experienced as he is, his level of impact in this match was low. I understand why he started but it was not the right match for him. United need a defensive upgrade in the midfield. He was replaced by Fernandes in the 64th minute of the match.

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17 Fred

Did not have the best of starts against Leicester and was culpable in Iheanacho's goal in the 24th minute after Magure played the ball out to him and he played it back.

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11 Mason Greenwood

Equalised for United in the 38th minute of the match after Pogba played the ball into Van de Beek, whose dummy allowed the ball to find Greenwood to level the scoreline before the end of the first half.

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34 Donny van de Beek

His dummy to allow the ball to meet Greenwood was a great showing of his ability. His impact in the match had not been great, but he's hardly played this season, lately due to injury, so he will need to gain momentum. He was replaced by Cavani in the 64th minute of the match.

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6 Paul Pogba

Had some impact in the game and there were some worries that his ankle had been injured again, but he recovered form the challenge. He gave his all on the pitch but United needed to make some changes. He was replaced by McTominay in the 64th minute of the match.

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9 Anthony Martial

He was isolated up top and United's lack of creation left him seeking the scraps to no avail. Perhaps his form will raise after the International break, which could be said for United as a whole.

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Substitutes

23 Luke Shaw

Replaced Telles 64'. United's pressure on the attack was poor after his introduction, so he was not able to get much involvement in the match.

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39 Scott McTominay

Replaced Pogba 64'. Misjudged a head on the far post which saw Iheanacho score his second goal, putting Leicester 3-1 up.

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18 Bruno Fernandes

Replaced Matic 64'. Came close with a free-kick. Perhaps he should have started but fatigue has been showing.

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7 Edinson Cavani

Replaced Van de Beek 64'. Good to see him back with Martial's form questionable. United could not inspire a comeback from 2-1 down though.

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19 Amad Diallo

Replaced Fred 84'. Had a cameo appearances. Not really enough time on the pitch to discuss his impact.

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Goals: Kelechi Iheanacho 24′, 78′, Youri Tielemans 52′; Mason Greenwood 38′

Assists: Kelechi Iheanacho 52′, Marc Albrighton 78′

Manchester United: Henderson; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles (Shaw 64′); Matic (Fernandes 64′), Fred (Diallo 84′); Greenwood, Van de Beek (Cavani 64′), Pogba (McTominay 64′); Martial

Substitutes Not Used: De Gea; Williams, Tuanzebe; James

Bookings: Marc Albrighton 69′, Jonny Evans 76′; Harry Maguire 30′, Scott McTominay 72′

Written by John Walker

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copyright: JW

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