It’s a Six!
|Source: The Hitavada Date: 04 Jan 2017 08:55:55|
MANCHESTER United benefited from a controversial red card and an equally debatable goal to beat 10-man West Ham 2-0 in the English Premier League, earning a sixth successive victory.
Substitute Juan Mata gave United the lead before Zlatan Ibrahimovic secured victory from what clearly appeared to be an offside position, after referee Mike Dean had controversially dismissed Sofiane Feghouli in the opening stages.
Despite its numerical advantage, United struggled to break down the home side for long spells and required a number of saves from goalkeeper David de Gea to keep West Ham out.
“I think it was not a very good performance,” United manager Jose Mourinho said. “I think it’s very difficult to play football in these circumstances, 48 hours,” after both teams’ previous fixtures.
“Only when I brought fresh people on, Mata and (Marcus) Rashford, the team was different,” Mourinho added. “We gave width with Rashford, we gave an extra body in the creative area with Mata.”
West Ham manager Slaven Bilic said his club would appeal against the three-game ban Feghouli is facing after his challenge on Phil Jones. “I was very surprised (at the red card), I wouldn’t have been happy with a yellow. The more times I’ve seen it, it’s the other way round, it was Jones who made a more dangerous tackle than Feghouli,” Bilic said.
“We are gutted and frustrated, but I’m very proud of the team and I told them after the game that if we continue to work hard and play for each other, we don’t have to worry, we’re going to be very high on the table.”
Feghouli, making his first Premier League start for West Ham, was sent off after just 15 minutes in what replays suggested was a harsh decision.
Manuel Lanzini brought two strong saves from De Gea before the break, while Michail Antonio was crucially denied by the Spanish goalkeeper when through one-on-one on the hour mark. West Ham was made to pay just three minutes later with Mourinho’s alterations proving crucial as Rashford set up Mata.