Manchester United vs Fulham – Football Match Report – 19 March 2023

Manchester United scored twice in two minutes to come from behind to beat nine-man Fulham 3-1 at Old Trafford on Sunday to book their place in the FA Cup semi-finals.

Aleksandar Mitrovic opened the scoring to give Fulham the lead, but in the 70th minute the goalscorer was sent off alongside Willian, while Bruno Fernandes converted Marcel Sabitzer’s penalty for United two minutes later. Fernandes sealed the win with a second goal deep into the game.

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United face Brighton & Hove Albion at Wembley Stadium in the semi-finals, while rivals Manchester City take on Championship side Sheffield United.

“It’s a huge win,” Sabitzer said. “We wanted to go back to Wembley and we did.

Asked whether United won or Fulham gave it away, Sabitzer said: “We won it. Why not? We made three, they made one. We focused and focused; we came back and that’s the most important thing.”

The first half saw little difference between the two sides in an eventful opening period that lacked quality.

But Fulham exploded in the second half as Antonee Robinson and Willian forced smart saves from David de Gea before Mitrovic opened the scoring on 50 minutes.

Fulham’s pressure told as Issa Diop flew over for a corner and Mitrovic was in the right place to tap home despite Marcus Rashford’s foul claims which were disallowed in a subsequent VAR review.

The Serbian striker came close to doubling Fulham’s lead 15 minutes later when his looping header was brilliantly saved by De Gea.

A game that appeared to be going in Fulham’s favor descended into chaos and was turned on its head on 20 minutes after a VAR review awarded the hosts a penalty for Willian’s handball.

Antony played in Jadon Sancho, who rounded Bernd Leno before firing at the recovering Willian. The former Chelsea winger was adjudged to have handled the ball on the goal line and was sent off for the offence.

An angry Mitrovic was then also given his marching orders to confront referee Chris Kavanagh as Fulham, still holding a 1-0 lead, lost all possession of the match.

Marco Silva was also shown red by referee Kavanagh as Fulham crashed out of the cup with their third successive defeat.

Silva said his red was to leave the coach’s area, adding: “Until the red card we were clearly the best team on the pitch.”

Fernandes kept his cool to send home a penalty five minutes after Willian handled Sancho’s shot.

And Erik ten Hag’s side made their numerical advantage count in the 76th minute when they took the lead against their nine-man opposition through Sabitzer.

Sancho released Luke Shaw on the left and the Austria midfielder cleverly turned his low ball in with the back of his heel to seal the turnaround and send United on their second trip to Wembley.

Fernandes added to United’s cushion with his second goal six minutes from time.

“Until the red card, we were clearly the best team on the field,” Ten Hag said.

“We have a chance to win awards but we have to fight for it,” he added. “We need the whole team. We’ve already been playing since Christmas, every three or four days, and it will continue until the end of the season and that’s what we love. It gives us energy.”

This report uses data from Reuters.

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