Jesse Lingard

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FA Cup: Van Dijk’s debut winner; Lingard the hero again

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Thanks to a pair of late winners, Liverpool and Manchester United are through to the fourth round of the FA Cup.

[ MORE: PL sides enter 3rd round of FA Cup this weekend ]

Liverpool 2-1 Everton

Virgil Van Dijk put forth a debut performance to remember, as he scored the late, winning goal in Liverpool’s third-round victory over Merseyside rivals Everton at Anfield. After completing his $100-million move from Southampton to Liverpool last week, the 26-year-old quickly endeared himself to the Anfield faithful by separating the two sides in a hotly contested, chippy encounter that on occasion threatened to turn ugly.

Liverpool went ahead 10 minutes before halftime, when Mason Holgate wrapped his arms around Adam Lallana. James Milner stepped up and converted from the spot to make it 1-0. Bobby Madley’s decision to award the penalty was questionable, to put it lightly.

Van Dijk so nearly got his debut goal in the 63rd minute, but Jordan Pickford made a difficult save to keep the Toffees’ deficit at just one. Not long later — four minutes, to be exact — the blue side of Merseyside punished the red side with an effortless, fluid counter-attacking move that brought them back together again, at 1-1. Gylfi Sigurdsson arrived late to the top of the penalty area and slotted home after Phil Jagielka made a 70-yard, lung-busting print to get forward and lay the ball back for a wide open Sigurdsson.

Six minutes from full-time, Van Dijk would get another chance to play the part of hero. Pickford rushed out to punch, but the big Dutchman stood his ground and headed into the empty net.

Manchester United 2-0 Derby County

Jesse Lingard, the late bloomer at Man United, continues to come up huge for Jose Mourinho’s struggling Red Devils, time after time after time. It took nearly the full 90 minutes — 84, to be exact — for United to break through against Championship side Derby at Old Trafford, but the quality of Lingard’s stunning goal made it (almost) worth the wait.

The most notable event from the game’s first 45 minutes actually came during halftime, when Henrikh Mkhitaryan was subbed off after a disappointing first-half performance, leaving his Man United future in more and more serious doubt. Just as notably, it was Romelu Lukaku, making his return from the head injury he suffered seven days ago, who replaced Mkhitaryan. Lukaku then grabbed the insurance goal in the 90th minute, his first since Dec. 17, snapping a streak of four scoreless appearances.

Mourinho dishes on transfers, Lingard, fixture frustration

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Manchester United’s defeat of Everton on Monday without a pair of world-class strikers had manager Jose Mourinho beaming as the Red Devils moved back into the Premier League’s second place for the moment.

“Our pride, our effort, everything was top class and on top of it we played very well,” Mourinho said. “It wasn’t a performance of tired boys, with the worst possible calendar that you gave us.”

[ RECAP: Everton 0-2 Man Utd ]

Well, we don’t think that interviewer did, Mou.

It’s January in Manchester — and everywhere — which especially means questions about whether United boss Mourinho and his neighbor at City will spend dough on new players. From the BBC:

“I don’t know about transfers. In this moment we are in trouble, in two to three weeks time maybe we recover and we breathe in a different way. Can we improve now or do we wait util the summer? I cannot say.”

United’s surprising dismissal from the League Cup at the hands of Bristol City means United has more room to get healthy than it seemed a few weeks back, but injuries to Romelu Lukaku and Zlatan Ibrahimovic put pressure on Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, and Jesse Lingard to pick up their play.

Lingard, most certainly, has done that in recent weeks, something his wonderful New Year’s Day goal exclaimed to the world.

“One thing is to be a young talent, another thing is to be a very good player,” Mourinho said, “Some players are not capable of that jump. They go from great potential to normal players. Lingard is giving that jump. He is more consistent, he is adaptable, he understands better the game, he is going in a good direction.”

VIDEO: Lingard scores a beautiful goal for Man United

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Jesse Lingard is in the form of his life.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

The Manchester United and England winger curled home a beauty at Everton on New Year’s Day, scoring his seventh PL goal in his last nine appearances.

Watch the video above to see Lingard’s stunner.

What a goal.

Mourinho after Man Utd comes back: “I can only praise them”

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Jose Mourinho has been critical of his Manchester United players in recent weeks, in particular its performance in a League Cup ouster at Bristol City, but had only plaudits for his men following a 2-2 comeback win against Burnley on Tuesday.

“Nothing at all negative to say about my players,” Mourinho said. “I praise again their spirit, their reaction, the way they accept all the risks we took in the second, so I can only praise them but say it’s not the result we want.”

[ RECAP: Man Utd 2-2 Burnley ]

That’s a far cry from his alleging that many United players “didn’t want to play” against Bristol City.

United outshot Burnley 23-3 on the day but were behind 2-0 on a Dan Gosling loose ball and Steven Defour free kick.

And thankfully for Mourinho, Jesse Lingard scored a cute back heel goal before ripping a shot through traffic to earn a point in stoppage time.

“It’s disappointing,” Lingard said. “Obviously we created a lot of chances, we should have won the game. We dominated the game, so we’re disappointed. I’m on form at the moment, it’s great being in the team and helping the team get goals.”

United could be 15 points back of Man City if the leaders win at Newcastle on Wednesday, and is now just a point ahead of third-place Chelsea. Next up? A Saturday visit from Southampton.

Manchester United 2-2 Burnley: Lingard leads comeback

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  • Teams drew 0-0 last year at OT
  • Burnley goes up after two minutes
  • Defour doubles lead through free kick
  • Lingard scores twice in second half

Jesse Lingard‘s second half double led Manchester United back for a 2-2 draw with Burnley at Old Trafford on Tuesday.

Ashley Barnes and Steven Defour had scored to give the Clarets a halftime lead.

United is now 13 points back of Man City before the leaders play Tuesday at Newcastle United, while the point keeps Burnley seventh.

The Red Devils held a 23-3 edge in shots and 72 percent possession, but only scored the equalizer in stoppage time.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Marcos Rojo gave away a free kick to Jeff Hendrick inside of 70 seconds, and Burnley made the most of the opportunity.

Poor defending in the six allowed Barnes to rifle the ball behind De Gea.

Nick Pope punched a Juan Mata free kick toward the back corner flag, and Phil Bardsley chopped down Zlatan Ibrahimovic to give United another set piece.

Corners followed, and Burnley could not escape its third. When it did, though, it found an answer. Defour swept a free kick over the wall and beyond the flying hand of De Gea to make it 2-0 in the 36th minute.

Pogba carried away from Defour to curl a shot just away from the upper 90 as United sought a way back into the match.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

United’s crowd and all on television though the Red Devils had pulled one back through Jesse Lingard, and it’d take replays to see what went wrong. Pope got his face on Lingard’s in tight shot.

Lingard did get his goal within moments, though, back heeling Ashley Young‘s pass just inside the far post for 2-1 in the 54th.

Bardsley saw yellow for a sliding tackle in the 69th minute, one which easily could’ve been his second, and Pogba lorded over a free kick. The French wizard hammered his shot just over the bar.

Lingard connected with an equalizer in the first minute of stoppage time which was entirely deserved against a resolute Burnley back line.