It’s been a rollercoaster ride of a season for both Leicester City and Manchester United, but coming into the final game of the season, they were both hoping that they could pull out a big performance in order to finish in the top four and qualify for next season’s UEFA Champions League competition. In the end, only one of the two was able to achieve their goal – and that was Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Red Devils.
Misery and elation
It was the definition of an uninspiring game from both sides, especially in the first half. There was just no real drive or determination behind anything they were trying to do, and that goes for both Leicester and United. In the second half things didn’t really change up until the last 20 minutes or so, and at that point, the visitors were given the chance to take hold of their own destiny.
After Anthony Martial was brought down inside the box, Bruno Fernandes stepped up and gave United the lead from the penalty spot. The Foxes went in search of an equaliser but it never came, and instead, Kasper Schmeichel was left with egg on his face after his mistake opened the door for Jesse Lingard to seal the result and his club’s place at the top table of European football.
The next step
A late Jonny Evans red card didn’t exactly help matters for the home side, as Brendan Rodgers begins the process of reflecting on what exactly went wrong for them towards the end of the campaign. They seemed to be on track for an easy top four finish, but as time went on, they continued to shoot themselves in the foot.
Manchester United, on the other hand, will be pleased with the progress they’ve been able to make since the restart. There’s still a long way to go before they can be viewed as potential title contenders in the top flight, but Solskjaer has them playing with the sort of flair that we haven’t really seen from the former kings of English football in many years.
Leicester: Schmeichel (4.5), Evans (4.5), Morgan (5.5), Justin (7), Thomas (7), Tielemans (6.5), Ndidi (7), Choudhury (6), Albrighton (6.5), Iheanacho (6.5), Vardy (6.5), Hirst (6), Gray (6.5), Barnes (6), Perez (6), Praet (6)
Manchester United: de Gea (6.5), Wan-Bissaka (7.5), Lindelof (7), Maguire (7), Williams (7.5), Pogba (7), Matic (7), Greenwood (6.5), Fernandes (7), Rashford (6.5), Martial (6.5), McTominay (6.5), Lingard (7), Ighalo (6), Fosu-Mensah (6)
Referee: Martin Atkinson
Goals: Fernandes pen, Lingard
Yellow Cards: Lindelof, Maguire, Williams, Pogba, Matic
Red Cards: Evans
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