Manchester United 3-3 Everton
Manchester United’s fading hopes of winning the Premier League title took another significant hit as Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored a dramatic equaliser late in stoppage time to earn Everton a 3-3 draw at Old Trafford.
Fresh off their 9-0 dismantling of Southampton in midweek, United made a fantastic start and went 2-0 up in the first half. But the Toffees fought back to tie it up with two quick second-half goals.
The home side regained the lead through Scott McTominay and were seconds away from victory, but Calvert-Lewin struck with virtually the last kick of the game to deny the Red Devils the win they needed to stay in the title race.
Highlights of the game
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer made just one change from the side that smashed nine goals past Southampton, with Paul Pogba coming in for Fred in midfield.
Pogba had United’s most notable chance in what was an uneventful opening 20 minutes with a header off a corner that was cleared by Abdoulaye Doucoure.
But the United attack came to life soon thereafter. Two minutes later, Mason Greenwood made a great run from the right wing only to pull his right-footed shot well wide.
Two minutes later, though, United would take the lead through Edinson Cavani. Marcus Rashford drifted over to the right and delivered a pinpoint cross to the Uruguayan, who was not going to miss an unmarked header from point-blank range.
Everton’s best chance to equalise in the first half came after great pressing from Lucas Digne caused Victor Lindelof to turn the ball over while David de Gea was well off his line. But Richarlison was unable to capitalise on the opportunity as his shot was just off the mark.
Pogba had to be subbed off just six minutes before half-time due to a groin injury, with Fred coming on. But despite the injury blow, United still went into the break with a two-goal lead.
Bruno Fernandes produced a sublime piece of individual magic as he perfectly curled his shot from the edge of the box over the outstretched arm of Robin Olsen.
Everton had a great chance to immediately pull a goal back in first-half stoppage time after Calvert-Lewin got in behind the United defence, but the Everton star failed to convert as his shot went agonisingly wide.
However, Calvert-Lewin would make up for that miss just four minutes into the second half. He again got behind the United backline and forced a save from de Gea. But the Spaniard could only push the ball onto the path of Doucoure, who was on hand to pounce on the rebound.
And Everton would tie it all up just three minutes later. Doucoure found James Rodriguez with acres of space inside the United penalty area, and the Colombian lasered in a left-footed shot right into the bottom corner.
United came close to reclaiming the lead on 63 minutes. Rashford had a one-on-one opportunity against Olsen, but the Swede stood up well to deny the United striker.
United would eventually nudge ahead once more on 70 minutes. Shaw’s free kick found the head of Scott McTominay, who placed his header perfectly into the corner.
United had their chances to extend their lead, but Fernandes and Rashford were both unable to hit the target. On the other end, Richarlison also missed a decent chance to equalise in the 88th minute.
Time had seemingly run out for Everton, but they still got the equaliser with virtually the last kick of the game. Former United player Michael Keane flicked a long Digne free kick onto the path of Calvert-Lewin, who slotted the ball past the onrushing de Gea to hand the Toffees a dramatic draw.
United controlled a good deal of possession (62-38) and had a decent edge on shots (14-6), but Everton were simply more clinical in front of goal as they scored with all three of their shots on target.
Rodriguez and Calvert-Lewin are back creating Premier League 2021 highlights after their lengthy scoring droughts, which must please Carlo Ancelotti. James has two goals in his last three games, while Calvert-Lewin has scored in back-to-back games after going scoreless in seven in the league.
Calvert-Lewin is in second place in the goal charts with 13 league goals this season, just two behind leader Mohamed Salah.
Bruno Fernandes also reached 13 goals on the season with back-to-back strikes after going five PL games without a goal or an assist.
Manchester United will be watching the upcoming Liverpool-Manchester City clash with some interest. A City win would give them a five-point lead over United with a game in hand, further denting the Red Devils’ SBOTOP Premier League 2021 odds of winning the title.
After that, United must focus on their fifth-round FA Cup tie against West Ham United in midweek. Then they face struggling West Brom at the Hawthorns on the weekend.
As for Everton, they will also be busy with midweek FA Cup action as they host Tottenham. And they will stay at Goodison Park to face another London club in Fulham this weekend.
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