Everton 1-3 Manchester United: Bruno Fernandes relieves growing pressure on Solskjaer

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LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 07: Bruno Fernandes of Manchester United celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the Premier League match between Everton and Manchester United at Goodison Park on November 07, 2020 in Liverpool, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Carl Recine - Pool/Getty Images)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer picked up a massive 3 points at Goodison Park to relieve mounting pressure on the Norwegian. Everton on the other hand lost their third successive match. A Bruno Fernandes double and a late Edinson Cavani strike turned the score in Manchester United’s favour after Bernard had looked to compound the pain onto the Red Devils.

Bruno’s back

Pogba was dropped to the bench for the visit to Goodison Park with Fred and McTominay partnering each other at the base of the United midfield. Juan Mata, Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford made up the attacking midfield three in behind Anthony Martial who returned from suspension.

Everton, still without Richarlison because of his own suspension, had Lucas Digne back after his red card ban was reduced after an appeal.

The Toffees scored their first clear-cut chance of the match. Bernard, who was deputising for Richarlison, swung a cross in for the Everton top scorer Dominic Calvert-Lewin and the England international headed over the bar. But United came back and Martial had a left-sided shot drag just wide of Pickford’s left post.

However, the home side took the lead just before the halfway point of the first period. A long ball up from Pickford was poorly dealt with by Victor Lindelöf, the Swede headed backwards into the path of Bernard. The Brazilian took a touch inside and hit the ball low past David De Gea’s right.

But within minutes United were level. Luke Shaw’s cross found the Portuguese midfielder Fernandes and the header from the unlikely source curled past Pickford.

Both sides battled for the momentum of the game and Digne’s run on the left-flank found the Frenchman darting into the box. With the option of a low cross to Calvert-Lewin available, the full-back decided to go for goal and smashed his shot off the outside of the post.

United took the lead just minutes later, Rashford’s incisive run forward found Bruno Fernandes on the left. The Portuguese’s cross looked to have met Rashford but the England international couldn’t meet it, however, the cross was so well hit the ball ended up in the corner of Pickford’s net.

Tepid attempt

The second half sparked controversy. Firstly, a high ball up to Harry Maguire looked to be an easy catch for Pickford. However, the England keeper dropped the ball and Maguire swivelled to strike getting his shot wrong and over the bar. Although, both Pickford and Michael Keane put strong contact on Maguire. Michael Oliver in the VAR room deemed it not worthy of a penalty, but Peter Walton in the BT Sport commentary disagreed.

Seconds later, a through ball from Dominic Calvert-Lewin found Lucas Digne but Maguire’s strong tackle took the ball off the Frenchman. Calvert-Lewin was offside but the tackle from Maguire appeared to hurt Digne. This sparked the debate as to whether offside plays should be allowed to continue.

Little in terms of clear-cut chances were created by both sides. Ancelotti brought on Alex Iwobi and Cenk Tosun in an attempt to put further pressure on united in search of a winger. James Rodriguez departed after a fairly absent display from the Colombian.

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Everton however could not create anything big with the best chance falling to Abdoulaye Doucoure who blazed over the bar.

Then, in a desperate attempt to equalise, the Toffees committed too many men forward and United broke after another Doucoure scuff. Fernandes laid the ball off to Cavani who scored his first Premier League goal.

The win takes United up to 10 points with a game in hand over many of the teams around them, not enough to drag them out of the bottom half but a loss would have been catastrophic. Everton remain 5th but with many teams below them still to play, the Toffees could drop considerably by the end of the game week.

See also: “The performance wasn’t good enough” – Pressure increases on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as Manchester United lose in Istanbul


This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Southampton FC 8 4 16
2 Liverpool FC 7 2 16
3 Leicester City FC 7 8 15
4 Tottenham Hotspur FC 7 9 14
5 Everton FC 8 2 13
6 Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 7 0 13
7 Chelsea FC 7 7 12
8 Aston Villa FC 6 6 12
9 Arsenal FC 7 2 12
10 Manchester City FC 6 1 11
11 Newcastle United FC 8 -3 11
12 Leeds United 7 0 10
13 Manchester United FC 7 -2 10
14 Crystal Palace FC 7 -3 10
15 West Ham United FC 7 3 8
16 Brighton & Hove Albion FC 8 -3 6
17 Fulham FC 7 -7 4
18 West Bromwich Albion 7 -10 3
19 Burnley FC 7 -9 2
20 Sheffield United FC 7 -7 1
Player Team Goals
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur FC 8
Calvert-Lewin, Dominic Everton FC 8
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City FC 7
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 7
Bamford, Patrick Leeds United 7
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur FC 6
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United FC 6
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United FC 5
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace FC 5
Ings, Danny Southampton FC 5
Grealish, Jack Aston Villa FC 4
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 4
Werner, Timo Chelsea FC 4
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion FC 4
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa FC 4
Jimenez, Raul Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 4
Rodriguez, James Everton FC 3
Jorginho Chelsea FC 3
Adams, Che Southampton FC 3
Ward-Prowse, James Southampton FC 3



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