Nowadays, even the final whistle is not always the final whistle. When referee Chris Kavanagh blew early, Solly led England at the end of March to give Brighton and Hove Albion a point against Manchester United, in a very short time they deserved an impressive all-round performance. Yet this extraordinary game will come with a postscript.
On VAR’s advice, the play was resumed after Kavanagh took the advice of a pitchside monitor and found out that Neil Moupai had worked in his own penalty area on the very final play. The Bruton striker could hardly be seen as Bruno Fernandez was converting a spot-kick, the second final whistle was heard immediately and United took all three points.
Before the dramatic finale, this was the definition of daylight robbery from the side of Le Le Gunnar Solskar. Part of Marcus Rash Rashford’s personal brilliance seemed to be enough to save a unique United performance and secure enough wins, just to intervene in late March, to give the scoreline a beautiful reflection of the balance of the game. In short, it is.
Brighton deserved at least one point and it looked as if they could take all three when Maupa put forward towards the end of the first half before the majestic penalty. United would quickly equalize with Lewis Dunk’s own goal, but even after Rushford switched to a magnificent solo goal, the hosts were on an even better side in almost every division.
Graham Potter and his players will cry not only for bad models fine rewards, but also for their bad luck. Brighton struck Woodwork a total of five times. Leandro Trosard completed the set – hitting both posts and crossbars – while March and Adam Webster were also rejected by the goal frame. And while it’s not your day, it’s not really your day. Perhaps the significant late penalty should come as no surprise, as everything was just against Brighton.
United were lucky enough to say the least, and lucky to go to break level after half a display before one-pace. This was not the same old story that occupied Solskj સોr’s side but was struggling to break down an organized defense like the Palace. Brighton drilled and disciplined back five was still a united step, but five in front of them were too dominant, space exploitation and running behind.
Trosard hit both posts within the opening 21 minutes and Brighton’s goal seemed imminent when Websart forced David de Gea to score on the crossbar. In contrast, the moments of attacking the United threat were between few and many. Mason Greenwood thought for a moment that he had a one-on-one success – perhaps the only one – a free-flowing offensive move but Rash Rashford strayed to the sidelines.
There was little surprise when Bright was eventually led by a Maupay penalty. Bruno Fernandez admitted it, bringing down Tariq Lamptey as Brighton got into wing-back trouble, and that meant United gave spot-kicks in two league games for the first time in 11 years. She spoke with confidence flowing from Brighton at the time that Moupe converted with a wonderful Panenka.
His lead will only last four minutes. United did not qualify for the equalizer, but the level was drawn by a quick Fernandez free-kick, which Nemanja Matic brilliantly returned to the goal face. Harry Maguire claimed to have tapped by converting from inside the six-yard box, but the final touch began to come out of Dunk’s boots. Whether or not he had his own goal, United had his recovery.
The second half will come early in the second half when Paul Pogba bundled inside Aaron Connolly’s back through the box. Referee Kavanagh initially pointed to the spot but was persuaded to keep a close eye by the pitchside monitor and reversed his decision. Once again a few minutes later, another rush did not allow another United goal for Shefford offside.
Yet if Rash Rashford had been watching most of the afternoon, he was flawless for United’s second goal. Rash, with a deep deep set behind Fernandez, was brightened by Rashford’s ball but it was Rashford’s own magnificent step that chased down poor Ben White, who fell to the ground twice while trying to block the never-coming shots. Once Rash Shefford felt he had made enough of a toy with White, he raised the ball in the far, right-hand corner.
If only Brighton were so clinical. March had already moved closer, seeing a low, drilled shot bounce back to the base of the distant post and back to the target, but added for sure that by reaching the distant post in the fourth minute of time, de Gia trapped by the back head. Justice was found to have been done, just to brush Maupe’s hand at the last breath of Mag Guer. There can be no complaints about the decision – about how the handball law is. However, once a surprising turn of events has sunk, no one will blame Brighton for the outrage.
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