Red Devils struggle to FA Cup 5th round

Owen celebrates equalizer

Sir Alex could have paid cash his ‘disrespect’ for the FA Cup as he left out the main men, including Van Der Sar, Fletcher, Carrick, Vidic, Evra, Rooney and Berbatov, while Lindegaard was handed his first start in goal. It needed yet another one of the magical comebacks to finally claim a win and head to the FA Cup 5th round courtesy of Owen and Chicharito.

United looked out of place from kick-off, and it was Southampton which was controlling the game. It needed only 7 minutes for the Saints to find the net, although on this occasion the goal was ruled out for offside, and a few minutes later Owen found the upright in an attempt to cross the ball but which instead swerved towards the opposition goal. However the Saints were up for the challenge and were eventually rewarded on the 45th minute, when Chaplow ran inside the United box and unleashed a powerful shot past the helpless Lindegaard to give the Saints a well deserved lead at half-time.

Southampton kept the pressure in the second half, and it finally needed the introduction of Giggs and Nani to eventually get United going. Owen gave a warning on the 64th minute as he ran across to cut Nani’s cross, but just over the bar. But a minute later he was celebrating as Obertan’s cross took a slight deflection off a Saints defender, and fell nicely to Owen to guide his header home for the equalizer. Southampton were nearly ahead again some minutes later, but Harding’s low cross was fortunately not met by anyone and United could catch a breath. But the next goal came for United, as Giggs sent a low cross in the box, and Chicharito did well to get away from his marker, control the ball, and slide it past the diving keeper to complete yet another dramatic comeback. United then held on for the remaining minutes to see off the 4th round and head to the 5th one, while Rooney and co. watched from the bench as the ‘reserves’ claimed an important win. Lindegaard was lucky to finish his first match in a win, and he does seem to need some more work if he wants to be No.1, while United target, Oxlade-Chamberlain, being coveted by Arsenal and Man City as well, showed some real pace and good play in the first half, although he was kept more in check by Wes Brown in the second half.

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