Marcus Rashford’s extremely late goal withstood Video Assistant Referee review and brought a Fergie Time moment to Ralf Rangnick’s Old Trafford tenure with a 1-0 Manchester United win over West Ham on Saturday.
West Ham keeper Alphonse Areola was only required to make two saves in the game but United made It count late when Cristiano Ronaldo, Anthony Martial, and Edinson Cavani worked the left side to set Rashford up on the right.
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Man United moves above West Ham and into fourth place on 38 points, one more than the Irons who’ve played one more match.
Manchester United vs West Ham final score, stats
Manchester United 1, West Ham 0
Goals scored: Rashford 90’+3
Shots: Manchester United 18, West Ham 6
Shots on target: Manchester United 3, West Ham 1
Possession: Manchester United 57, West Ham 43
Three things we learned from Manchester United vs West Ham
1. Rangnick subs the difference: Well, he needed a goal and wasn’t going to pull Cristiano Ronaldo for the second-straight match, was he? But let’s give Ralf Rangnick plenty of credit for swapping out Fred and youngsters Mason Greenwood and Anthony Elanga for three attackers with plenty of experience and heroics on their resumes. Marcus Rashford (62nd minute), Edinson Cavani, and Anthony Martial (both 82nd mintue) were all responsible for the winner after Ronaldo passed to Martial racing down the left. The timing was spot on and put a little shine on CR7’s name after he was best spotted for his latest arms-in-the-air “I’m Ronaldo and I dove, give me a penalty” act.
2. Hammers heartbreak: It’s almost impossible to get this close to taking a point from a team at home through steely resolves and if we’re honest Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea is a big part of the reason that West Ham wasn’t ahead going into those final moments at Old Trafford. David Moyes’ men worked hard and stayed compact for 92-and-a-half minutes. They just needed 93, and now get the double whammy of seeing a would-be top-four rival climb above it on the table.
3. Needed it: Man United was likely to pass West Ham in the top four race at some point but a draw against them at home — while respectable — is nowhere near enough to keep up with Tottenham, while holding up Arsenal and making up ground on Chelsea. Actualy, all three of those “Big Six” rivals are on better points-per-match paces than Manchester United, and Arsenal has played two fewer matches than the Red Devils and Tottenham three fewer.
Man (Men) of the Match: Harry Maguire and Raphael Varane — David De Gea can’t be MOTM in every match, so let’s score one for returning Maguire and his strong and steady World Cup-winning center back mate Varane. Both players blocked shots and Maguire was credited with four of the duo’s five clearances.
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How close can you get to the final whistle and lose?
Not much closer than West Ham in both time and distance, as Edinson Cavani was just onside — and it we’d need the lines — when he cued up Rashford in the third of three minutes stoppage time.
— NBC Sports Soccer (@NBCSportsSoccer) January 22, 2022