Manchester United are out of the FA Cup! After exiting the League Cup in January at the hands of Manchester City at the semifinal stage, here the Devils are out one round earlier, as Leicester City beat them 3-1 at the King Power Stadium.
It was a great performance from Brendan Rodgers’ side that got the much needed win to qualify them for a Wembley date sometime in mid-April. Kelechi Iheanacho opened the scoring after a horrible Fred backpass which was intercepted, before Mason Greenwood equalised quarter of an hour later.
However, there was nothing more to come from United in the second half, despite getting back in the game at the right time. It was Youri Tielemans who scored just seven minutes into the second half, before Iheanacho completed his brace with a goal with 12 minutes to go. Then, it became obvious – this was the end for Man United.
Here are the four things we learned from this game.
Man United Poor In Central Areas
When you look at all the strong sides in European football, one thing is usually a theme among them – they have a strong spine. And that is simply not the case for Man United and it has not been for a while. The Devils are simply not good enough in central positions, both in defence and midfield. On the day, we had seen Fred make terrible mistakes, we have seen Nemanja Matic being overrun and also Harry Maguire had a nightmare. He was poor communicating with the players around him, he was often too slow for pacey Leicester attackes and also he had missed a few challenges that he should have gotten to.
We Still Do Not Know What Think Of The Goalkeeping Race
Dean Henderson was in goal on the day and David de Gea on the bench, this time due to the young Englishman being our goalkeeper in the FA Cup. But after six consecutive matches in goal, we still have no clue whether Henderson will remain the number one goalkeeper once the team returns from the international break. On the day, Henderson conceded three goals and for neither of them could he be blamed, but also it felt he could have maybe positioned better. In these past six matches he either had a match like this one against Leicester when he was mostly powerless, or he did not have much job to do…
Leicester Could Make Dreams Come True This Season
This was a big chance for Manchester United and Leicester will know that all too well. They will play Southampton in their semifinal match at Wembley, with a realistic chance of reaching the big final. On the other side of the draw are Chelsea and Manchester City, meaning they are still far from winning the whole thing. However, considering Leicester are third in the Premier League standings, just behind United and with seven points more than the fifth placed West Ham, this could mean their season could be dreams come true – reaching the FA Cup final and qualifying for the Champions League.
What Now For United?
Man United now have two competitions left to play in and things are pretty clear. United will not win the Premier League, therefore their goal should be to finish second and never question that position of theirs. The other goal should now definitely become trying to win the Europa League. They are in the quarterfinal against Granada and will play either Ajax or Roma if they go through, meaning there is still a lot to play. But the importance of Europa League trophy is now obvious, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could end another campaign without silverware if the Devils do not make it…