West Ham 1-2 Man United: Well that was pretty fun

Date published: Sunday 19th September 2021 4:02 - Matthew Stead

Jesse Lingard and Cristiano Ronaldo

Jesse Lingard and David de Gea combined to rescue victory for Manchester United against West Ham.

The visitors repeated one of their regular tricks from last season in going behind away from home but still emerging with all three points.

Said Benrahma had put West Ham ahead on the half-hour mark but Cristiano Ronaldo scored an equaliser five minutes later to restore parity.

Both sides had legitimate penalty claims thereafter but the deadlock was only broken again when substitute Lingard cut in from the left and curled a wonderful effort into the top corner.

West Ham had an opportunity to salvage a draw soon after Ronaldo had a penalty claim turned down, when Luke Shaw was adjudged to have handled the ball but De Gea kept out Mark Noble’s effort, the Hammers captain having been brought on solely to take the spot kick.

David Moyes did not watch the Euro 2020 final.

It was a hugely dramatic end to a thrilling match which saw Lingard return to haunt the club for whom he starred on loan last season.

In a bitter blow for West Ham and David Moyes, who tried to re-sign Lingard over the summer, the England forward curled in what turned out to be the winner two minutes from time.

Ronaldo had earlier scored his fourth goal in three matches since returning to Manchester United, cancelling out Benrahma’s deflected opener for the hosts.

Fred, Pablo Fornals and Scott McTominay

Defeat was tough on West Ham, who showed no signs of fatigue from their Thursday night exertions in Europe as they went at Manchester United from the off.

Benrahma robbed Harry Maguire in the area and pulled the ball back for Jarrod Bowen ten yards out, but his shot lacked power and was blocked by Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

Moments later a glorious cross-field move from the Hammers culminated in another chance for Bowen, whose deflected shot was kept out by the boot of De Gea, with Tomas Soucek firing the rebound over.

Ronaldo’s first glimpse of goal came midway through the first half, with a couple of stepovers gaining him a yard on Vladimir Coufal before shooting straight at Lukasz Fabianski.

Manchester United seemed to have weathered the early storm and almost took the lead through Bruno Fernandes, Fabianski getting the smallest of touches to tip his effort onto a post.

But moments later West Ham went ahead when Benrahma’s shot from the edge of the area took a huge deflection off Raphael Varane to wrongfoot De Gea and roll into the net.

The lead lasted only four minutes before Ronaldo struck, guiding a Fernandes cross into the chest of Fabianski and reacting quickest to tuck in the rebound.

Fabianski got down well to deny Ronaldo a second before Nikola Vlasic skied a chance for the Hammers as a breathless first half came to an end.

West Ham had a major let-off at the start of the second when a wayward pass from Pablo Fornals allowed Fernandes to slip Ronaldo in, but he was denied by Fabianski.

Ronaldo felt he should have had a penalty when he went down under Coufal’s challenge in the area, but referee Martin Atkinson thought otherwise.

The Portugal star was also denied by a timely block from the impressive Kurt Zouma as he looked to get on the end of another Fernandes cross.

Lingard came on as a 73rd-minute substitute and 15 minutes later found the top corner with a fine curler.

When Shaw handled Andriy Yarmolenko’s cross to concede a VAR-awarded penalty the script was written for Noble, but De Gea tore it up with a diving save to secure the points.

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