Despite controlling 75 percent possession and holding the opposition without a shot on target, Manchester United was held to a 0-0 draw in the fourth round of the FA Cup against League Two side Cambridge United.
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Playing in front of a packed house at the Abbey Stadium (it only holds around 8,000), the lowest ranking team still alive in the FA Cup was able to force a replay against one of the biggest clubs in the world.
Wayne Rooney was given the day off, but Louis van Gaal still put out a formidable lineup featuring the likes of Angel di Maria, Radamel Falcao and Daley Blind. The only big change to van Gaal’s side was the inclusion of Adnan Januzaj in the starting lineup, as the young Belgian has struggled to find time on the pitch under his new manager.
Despite dominating possession, United had trouble beating Cambridge keeper Chris Dunn, who was forced to make some big saves for the League Two side. Van Gaal brought in Robin van Persie for the final 25 minutes in an effort to finish off Cambridge, but the Dutchman was unable to find the back of the net.
Abbey Stadium erupted at the final whistle as supporters celebrated the one of the biggest results in club history. Speaking to BBC Radio 5, Cambridge manager Richard Money was ecstatic with the draw.
That was hard work wasn’t it? Obviously I am very proud. We will try to go to Old Trafford and soak it in, enjoy the night. Because the praise and credit people will get tonight, they deserve.
The goalkeeper and back four were outstanding. You can see what it means to everybody. We are all going back to a hotel in the city, families as well. The club have organized a bit of a buffet, there’ll one or two drinks I guess. Yes, it’ll be nice.”
Although they are still alive, the result is extremely disappointing for Manchester United. Being held scoreless by a League Two side is not a good look for a club that is hoping to qualify for Champions League football in the spring. Now, United will be forced to play a must-win midweek match, taking away valuable resting time from their Premier League campaign.