Man Utd talisman Bruno Fernandes celebrates his winning free-kick
Bruno Fernandes came off the bench and scored a superb free-kick to seal a 3-2 win for Man Utd against rivals Liverpool in a cracking FA Cup Fourth Round tie at Old Trafford.
Mo Salah scored both of Liverpool’s goals to give the visitors hope of progressing to the next round. The first was a nerveless chip over the onrushing Dean Henderson to give his side an 18th-minute lead. Mason Greenwood levelled with a typically cool finish, after Marcus Rashford’s searching long ball eluded James Milner.
Salah struck again in the 58th minute after Rashford had put United ahead with another clinical finish – Rashford gave Liverpool’s young defender Rhys Williams a torrid time for much of the game; to be fair to Williams, who is a natural centre-back, tackling Rashford in this form would give most defenders nightmares.
As the second half wore on, Liverpool looked the more likely winners but it was Bruno who won the day with his 28th goal in all competitions for the club since his debut in February 2020.
10 – Manchester United have eliminated Liverpool from the FA Cup proper for the 10th time; in the competition's history, only Liverpool themselves (12 v Everton) have knocked a particular side out more times (including finals). Bragging. pic.twitter.com/Uh1ByptM1J
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 24, 2021
“We played some really good stuff, good goals, we have to defend well against them and we managed to react well,” United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said afterwards.
“When you leave him [Bruno] out like I did today, he stayed about 45 minutes after training yesterday shooting free kicks so I was pretty confident he could score one if he got the chance,” Solskjaer added.
United’s reward is a last-16 tie against in-form West Ham. For Liverpool, that is now just one win in seven matches, but at least the Premier League champions showed signs of improvement in this defeat.
Man of the match: Marcus Rashford (Man Utd)