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Man United 4-3 Liverpool (AET): Wasteful Reds knocked out of the FA Cup

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Liverpool got what they deserved in the end, exiting the FA Cup at the quarter-final stage after a wasteful second-half display ended up with a 4-3 win for Man United after extra time.

Man United 4-3 Liverpool (AET)

FA Cup Quarter-Final, Old Trafford
March 17, 2024

Goals

McTominay 10′
Mac Allister 44′ (assist: Nunez)
Salah 45+2′
Antony 87′
Elliott 105′ (assist: Bradley)
Rashford 112′
Amad 120′


Rising to the occasion, it was all United early on, with a big save from Caoimhin Kelleher needed to deny Marcus Rashford, though at the other end Mo Salah went close with an improvised volley.

It took the hosts just 10 minutes to beat Kelleher, though, with the Irishman’s initial stop to keep out Alejandro Garnacho falling for Scott McTominay to tap in.

There were still positive signs for Liverpool on the transition, notably with a one-two between Andy Robertson and Luis Diaz which ended in a chance the left-back should have buried but, predictably, he skied over.

They had the ball in the back of the net with just over 35 minutes on the clock as Wataru Endo found the bottom corner, but the goal was ruled out for a tight offside against Salah.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 17, 2024: Liverpool's Alexis Mac Allister celebrates after scoring the first equalising goal during the FA Cup Quarter-Final match between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC at Old Trafford. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

No flag could stop the eventual equaliser, with Jarell Quansah‘s slaloming run from the centre circle seeing him find Darwin Nunez, whose cutback was fired in by Alexis Mac Allister.

And then the goal that put Liverpool ahead, crafted by their high-pressing approach as Diaz fed Nunez, whose shot was palmed out by Andre Onana and converted via by the post by Salah.

Half time: Man United 1-2 Liverpool

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 17, 2024: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (L) celebrates with team-mate Luis Díaz after scoring the second goal during the FA Cup Quarter-Final match between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC at Old Trafford. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool were bullying United as the second half began, with second balls and 50-50s all going the visitors’ way and the hosts losing their heads as the referee waved their protests away.

United should have gone down to 10 men as Bruno Fernandes caught Dominik Szoboszlai with a sliding challenge, but with the Portuguese already booked, John Brooks decided not to anger those inside Old Trafford by making the right decision.

An extended period of calm, suffocating possession should have led to a third goal for Liverpool, with Jurgen Klopp frustrated on the sideline despite his side’s dominance and especially after a 5 vs. 2 situation somehow resulted in no goal.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 17, 2024: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp during the FA Cup Quarter-Final match between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC at Old Trafford. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The introduction of Harvey Elliott, and later both Conor Bradley and Cody Gakpo, gave the Reds more impetus to push for another, though Gakpo frustratingly fluffed his pass in a five-on-two break.

It was one of United’s substitutes, the much-maligned Antony, who levelled the scores when Liverpool should have been well away, turning Endo in the box and finding the bottom corner.

End of 90 mins: Man United 2-2 Liverpool

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 17, 2024: Liverpool's Harvey Elliott scores the third goal, in extra-time, during the FA Cup Quarter-Final match between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC at Old Trafford. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool should have seen the game out long before, but instead they were forced to play an extra 30 minutes to decide who would progress.

Elliott eventually grabbed a goal, drilled low and deflected beyond Onana by the trailing boot of Christian Eriksen to seemingly send the Reds into the semi-finals.

But after another wasted break, this time from Nunez, United were able to equalise through Rashford – and then seal the winner through Amad Diallo in the 120th minute.


TIA Man of the Match: Virgil van Dijk

Referee: John Brooks

Man United: Onana; Wan-Bissaka (Maguire 71′), Varane (Amad 85′), Lindelof (Mount 106′), Dalot; Mainoo (Eriksen 80′), McTominay; Garnacho, Fernandes, Rashford; Hojlund (Antony 71′)

Subs not used: Heaton, Kambwala, Amrabat, Forson

Liverpool: Kelleher; Gomez (Tsimikas 101′), Quansah, Van Dijk, Robertson (Bradley 76′); Endo, Szoboszlai (Elliott 72′), Mac Allister; Salah (Gakpo 76′), Diaz (Clark 113′), Nunez

Subs not used: Adrian, McConnell, Gravenberch, Danns

Next match: Brighton (H) – Premier League – Sunday, March 31, 2pm (BST)