Sunday afternoon saw Manchester United visit Goodison Park to take on Ronald Koeman’s Everton side in the late Premier League game. United were looking to repeat the 3-0 victory they accomplished last year at Goodison Park and while the game turned out to be a pretty tight affair it looked for much of it as though the Red-Devils would come away with 3 points.
Jose Mourinho selected a pretty attacking line-up as he gave Henrikh Mkhitaryan another league start following his good game vs West Ham and the Armenian playmaker responded with another good performance. Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored United’s goal with a sublime chip in the 42nd minute as clearly the Swedish striker is well over his goal scoring drought. The brilliant goal from Zlatan looked to be enough to win the points for Jose until he sent on Fellaini and Rashford to replace Mkhitaryan and Martial with 5 minutes left.
Unfortunately for United Fellaini responded by clumsily fouling Everton’s Idrissa Gueye and conceded a stone wall penalty which Leighton Baines calmy dispatched to send United to their 5th draw in the league in their past 7 games.
As the BBC reported the United boss defended his substitution and had this to say about the matter:
“Everton is not a passing team any more like they were in the past. Everton is a team that plays direct: goalkeeper direct, Ashley Williams direct, Ramiro Funes Mori direct. Everything direct.
“When you have on the bench a player with two metres [in height] you play the player in front of the defensive line to help the team to win the match.”
So whether you agree with the boss or not the end result it that United have to deal with more dropped points when their performance deserved better. On the plus side they were lucky not to have centre back Rojo sent off for an ugly two-footed challenge early in the game as the player escaped with a yellow card but that likely will not make the Red-Devils feel any better today when they look at the league table.