West Ham pile misery on Man Utd, Mourinho with convincing win

Date published: Saturday 29th September 2018 2:21

Manchester United’s troubled season reached a new low after a 3-1 defeat at West Ham.

Felipe Anderson’s early strike, a Victor Lindelof own-goal and Marko Arnautovic’s finish left United manager Jose Mourinho increasingly feeling the heat.

The drama at Old Trafford is rapidly turning into a crisis as United equalled their worst start to a Premier League season with just 10 points from their opening seven matches.

Their record matches that of United four years ago under David Moyes, who did not see out the season.

It was a desperate end to a miserable week which saw United knocked out of the Carabao Cup by Derby and Mourinho’s relationship with record signing Paul Pogba become even more fractured.

Despite taking the vice-captaincy off Pogba Mourinho started the Frenchman at the London Stadium, although he was taken off after a pedestrian 69-minute display.

Alexis Sanchez was a notable absentee from the squad, while Mourinho stationed midfielder Scott McTominay as a centre-half in a back three.

It did not work. West Ham, buoyed by a fortnight which had seen them take four points from Everton and Chelsea before putting eight past Macclesfield in the cup, were ahead after five minutes.

Pablo Zabaleta was slipped in behind Luke Shaw down United’s left and his low cross was met at the near post with a deft backheel from Anderson.

West Ham’s front three of Arnautovic, Anderson and Andriy Yarmolenko had United’s rearguard constantly on the back foot throughout the first half.

However, whenever Romelu Lukaku is on the pitch West Ham have to be wary.

The Belgian striker had previously scored 11 goals in 11 games against the Hammers and was inches away from a dozen when he headed Ashley Young’s cross against the post.

But if United looked occasionally dangerous in attack they were constantly unconvincing at the back, and they fell two behind just before half-time.

Nemanja Matic stood off Yarmolenko as he tried to make space to shoot and when the Ukrainian did pull the trigger his effort ballooned off Lindelof and flew into the top corner.

Mourinho stuck to his guns at half-time, sticking with the same personnel and formation.

The malaise continued, though, with Young firing a corner straight at Mark Noble, who was able to start a counter-attck which ended with Arnautovic firing over the crossbar.

With the away fans demanding their side ‘attack, attack, attack’ Mourinho replaced Lindelof with England striker Marcus Rashford.

Young responded with a sharp run down the right and crossed for Marouane Fellaini, but his downward header was superbly clawed out by Lukasz Fabianski.

Moments after Pogba had left the field United halved the deficit, this time Rashford with the clever flick at the near post.

But gaps at the back remained and when Mark Noble played an inch perfect ball between United’s two remaining centre-halves, Arnautovic burst through to seal a deserved win and pile on the misery for Mourinho.

 

Here’s how the match unfolded on our live score centre…

 

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