Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Luton Town 1-2 Manchester United: What Were The Main Talking Points As Erik Ten Hag’s Side Claim A Thrilling Victory In Berkshire?

Tom Dunstan in Editorial, English Premier League 19 Feb 2024

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In what was a pulsating affair from Kenilworth Road on Sunday afternoon, Manchester United snatched a 2-1 victory away at Luton as they extended on their top-four charge.

Getting off to a flying start in Berkshire as the red-hot Rasmus Hojlund opened the scoring after just 37 seconds, Erik ten Hag’s men didn’t have to wait long to double their advantage.

With Hojlund producing a smart flicked finish off his chest just six minutes after handing United the lead, Luton were always facing a real uphill battle.

However, backed by another vocal home support at Kenilworth Road, skipper Carlton Morris set up a real thriller as the 28-year-old headed home from close range in the 14th minute.

Continuing to receive a string of plaudits and causing United’s defence a string of issues here, the Hatters will certainly feel that they missed out on the chance to claim an iconic scalp.

On an afternoon when Manchester United made it four Premier League victories on the spin, we have taken a look at the key talking points from Sunday’s fiery battle.

United are still eyeing a top-four charge

Crashing out of the Champions League back in December and with no European adventure on the cards for this year, it is no secret that ten Hag has found a huge amount of scrutiny over his long-term future at Old Trafford.

However, while Sunday’s guests might have signed off 2023 with a 2-1 defeat away at Nottingham Forest, the former Ajax boss has seen his squad come roaring back in some style.

Showing some real resolve here and overcoming a plucky Luton here, the Reds have now won all of their previous four Premier League appearances on the spin and they have not suffered a single defeat across any competition since opening the New Year.

Extending on their FA Cup adventure last month thanks to an action-packed 4-2 victory away at League Two outfit Newport, Manchester United are still dreaming of the chance to mount a shock late top-four charge.

Picking up some notable scalps over the past few weeks and with their recent purple patch highlighted by a 2-1 victory away at fellow Champions League dreamers Aston Villa, the mood in ten Hag’s camp should be at a real high.

Luton suffer more heartbreak at Kenilworth Road

Putting in what was another eye-catching performance here and eventually falling short of what they would have billed as a deserved point on home soil, Luton will undoubtedly still be feeling heartbroken following Sunday’s 2-1 defeat.

Although Rob Edwards’ men might have continued to relieve a string of admirers since making a famous Premier League return this season, the Hatters still have a major uphill battle on their hands.

Holding just a one-point buffer from dropping back into the drop zone and tipped as a leading contender to be hit with an immediate Championship return in 2024, Luton have claimed just a single win from any of their previous six top-flight appearances.

Suffering what could turn out to be a season-defining 3-1 defeat at home against fellow strugglers Sheffield United earlier in the month, Edwards will have a headache over his side’s extended issues in Berkshire.

In fact, the Hatters have recorded just a pair of Premier League victories at Kenilworth Road since the end of November.

Hojlund makes Manchester United history

Arriving from Atalanta last summer for a fee in the region of £72million, it is fair to say that Hojlund initially struggled to find much Premier League stability after arriving at Old Trafford.

However, since opening his top-flight account against Aston Villa on Boxing Day, the 21-year-old is now enjoying a record-breaking romp.

Bagging a seven-minute brace here and spearheading Manchester United’s fourth consecutive Premier League victory, Hojlund has now got on the scoresheet in all of his previous six domestic appearances on the spin.

Becoming the youngest player in Premier League history to find the net in six consecutive appearances, ten Hag was once again filled with praise for the impact the Hojlund has made since his arrival.

Clearly relishing his role as United’s leading man and living up to his £72million price tag, the Danish international is quickly become a major fan favourite around Old Trafford.

Match Report

Luton Town: Kaminski, Mengi, Osho, Bell, Doughty, Barkley, Lokonga, Chong, Ogden, Morris, Woodrow

Subs: Townsend, Clark, Berry

Manchester United: Onana, Dalot, Varane, Maguire, Shaw, Casemiro, Mainoo, Garnacho, Fernandes, Rashford, Hojlund

Subs: Lindelof, McTominay, Amrabat

Goals: Luton Town: Morris (14’) – Manchester United: Hojlund (1’, 7’)

Yellow Cards: Luton Town: Woodrow, Townsend, Osho – Manchester United: Mainoo, Casemiro, Lindelof, Shaw, Maguire

Red Cards: N/A

Referee: David Coote

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan

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