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Dublin: 12 °C Saturday 20 October, 2018


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Hello, and welcome to today’s liveblog.

As always, we’d love to hear your thoughts on the game. E-mail, tweet @the42_ie, post a message to our Facebook wall, or leave a comment below.

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Kick off is at 12.30pm.

Let’s get started with some team news shall we…

Today’s teams are:

Man United: De Gea, Bailly, Smalling, Jones, Valencia, Herrera, Matic, Young, Mkhitaryan, Lukaku, Rashford.

Subs: Mata, Martial, Lingard, Blind, Romero, Darmian, McTominay.

Tottenham: Lloris, Alderweireld, Dier, Vertonghen, Aurier, Eriksen, Winks, Alli, Davies, Sissoko, Son.

Subs: Trippier, Rose, Sanchez, Vorm, Nkoudou, Llorente, Dembele.

The crowds are flooding into Old Trafford for this afternoon’s kick-off.

Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League - Old Trafford Source: Martin Rickett


Kick-off: We’re underway….


Ooooof. Very early chance from Romeulu Lukaku as he swaps the ball between his feet brilliantly before forcing a low save from Hugo Lloris with a left-footed strike inside the box.


A ball over the top from the boot of Ander Herrera sees United continue to mount early pressure on Tottenham. The visitors are yet to break out of their own half after five minutes.


Yeeesh. Another quick attack from United sees Ashley Young perform a brilliant nutmeg before crashing a dangerous low cross veering across the penalty area which only needed a slight deflection to go in. The player has found a new lease of life deployed at wing-back.


CHANCE. Oooh that was close once again for United. That was utterly calamitous from Tottenham as a litany of defensive lapses sees them gift the ball to Marcus Rashford just inside the penalty area.

Spurs seemed to be relaxing a little bit more into the game, but once again United’s press worked wonders to cause panic.

Rashford did well to retrieve the ball from a mountain of bodies and feed it to Lukaku, however the Belgian’s effort on goal was well wide of the mark.


Another one! Marcus Rashford records a shot on his own as he fizzes a powerful free-kick which forces a last-ditch save from Lloris, who only saw it flying over the top of his wall late.


Serge Aurier receives the ball inside the box but United again force Tottenham out and then back into their own half.

It seemed like Spurs were like a little bit like a rabbit caught in the headlights throughout the opening 10 minutes, but have now began to settle into the game as they relax and see more of the ball

The absence of Harry Kane will be mighty — and indeed Spurs will very much have to learn as they go on how to play without him for the very first time this season.

That said, the quality of players like Christian Eriksen and Son Heung-min has been evident today in these early exchanges.


And just like that Tottenham record another shot from range. This time it’s Moussa Sissoko, but it’s pretty straightforward for David De Gea who catches it with ease on his goal-line.


Christian Eriksen has been in the thick of the action so far this afternoon.

Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League - Old Trafford Source: Dave Thompson


Pochettino’s side are in total command now. It’s been a case of roles-reversed over the course of the last 15 minutes as bodies clad in white jerseys dash to and fro between enemy lines easily.

The home supporters at Old Trafford sense a bit of worry as Spurs up the tempo — Harry Winks’ constant darting runs from midfield into attack personifying his side’s determination not to be pushed back again.


Ashley Young has gone down holding his face and will require some medical attention. Competing for possession on a high ball the 32-year-old takes a knock to the side of his face, but he seems okay now as play continues8


There’s a bit of bad blood now following that exchange.

Neither side would give the ball back to one another as referee Jon Moss attempted to re-start play, resulting in a contested drop-ball — something you don’t see very often as one side is usually quite happy just to kick it back.

Ashley Young and Delle Ali come shoulder-to-shoulder in a heated exchange. If nothing else the argy-bargy has added to the atmosphere inside Old Trafford



A succession of chances for Tottenham first through Serge Aurier and then two from the boot of Dele Alli, who is in fine form this afternoon.

The second came closest as the England winger took the ball between his feet inside the box. Beating his marker, Alli simply didn’t have enough width on his effort to curl it into the bottom corner as De Gea saves low to his left to keep it scoreless.


Another effort goes begging for Tottenham, but Aurier does force a corner. The Ivory Coast defender has been fantastic inside this first half.


Ooooh chance! That was close from Dele Alli who’s acrobatic effort forces a measured catch from De Gea on his goal-line.

Had that flown in it would have been a superb piece of individual brilliance to take the lead just before the break.

But De Gea’s namesake as quite probably the best goalkeeper in the world at the moment, well, it is earned with saves like that. Brilliant from the Spaniard.


There will be just one minute of additional time to come as United go down the other end and bombard Tottenham’s penalty area with crosses.


Almost a chance at the death for United, but Antonio Valencia’s cross is poor and that is that for the opening half.


An early free-kick for United as Ben Davies body-checks Antonio Valencia 30 yards from goal. It’s a deep delivery from Henrikh Mkhitaryan but it’s ultimately poor and ends up going out for a throw-in to Spurs.


Another superb dart down the left wing from Ashley Young precedes a dangerous cross into the box which forces Hugo Lloris to come and gather. Young really has been excellent all afternoon.


Spurs go up the other end — it’s more good work by Christian Eriksen, however the Dane’s cross aimed towards Dele Alli fizzes wide to his and every other Spurs fans frustration inside Old Trafford.


CHANCE! Oh goodness that was close for United! Mkhitaryan with the first effort following some excellent dribbling inside penalty area which Hugo Lloris saves, but then immediately spills to the panic of everyone around him inside the box.

Marcus Rashford tried to prod the ball home from three yards out but a last-ditch interception form Ben Davies saw the ball hoofed clear by the defender.

Old Trafford is bouncing.


United have come back into this game in the second half and are well and truly reigning a host of chances down on Hugo Lloris. Spurs’ defence are holding on — but just about.

Jose Mourinho’s side look like scoring almost any time they exit their own half, but having that it’s still quite end-to-end as Tottenham prepare to make a pair of substitutions.


Substitution for Tottenham: Fernando Llorente replaces Son Heung-Min


Substitution for Tottenham: Mousa Dembélé replaces Moussa Sissoko


Shot from range! It’s Antonio Valencia who crashes an almighty effort after a corner was headed onto the edge of the penalty area. The winger gets just too much lift on it though, and it flies well over the crossbar.

We have seen him score those types of long-range efforts before, mind.


Substitution for Man United: Jesse Lingard replaces Henrikh Mkhitaryan


Substitution for Man United: Anthony Martial replaces Marcus Rashford


Chance again for United as Anthony Martial almost makes a dramatic entrance. Valencia does well to beat his man with a drop of the shoulder before crossing towards the back post.

Martial has his name on it and attempts a spectacular overhead kick, but the French forward failed to make a decent connection with the ball and the chance went missing.

It’s finely poised with just under 20 minutes to go for us to find a winner here. A draw combined with a Man City win against West Brom later this afternoon would extend the Blues’ lead in first to seven points.


It’s a yellow card for Anthony Valencia as the player goes down inside the penalty area a little too easily for Jon Moss as he is booked for simulation.


A half-chance for Spurs as Christian Eriksen finds space outside the box — he takes the ball onto his right boot, but ultimately rushes his shot which balloons over the crossbar.


SO CLOSE! Oh goodness how did that not go in?

It’s a deep cross from Eriksen who pinpoints the run of Dele Alli perfectly with a dink, but the 21-year-old just can’t get anything on it — a head, a flick, a knee, a toe — anything would have seen it fly past David De Gea but the cross ends up wide of the post.


AND AT THE OTHER END TOO! Romelu Lukaku smashes the post following some brilliant work from substitute Jesse Lingard.

It’s an early cross from the right and the Belgian rises like a mighty salmon — only to see his effort bounce off the bottom of Hugo Lloris’ post.

It’s end-to-end as both sides completely scramble to hit a winner!


Oooooh wow, we finally have a goal! It had been coming it was just a matter of who would grab it!

It’s a David De Gea kick-out which Romelu Lukaku heads onwards along the half-way line.

Anthony Martial peels away from Ben Davies to get himself in behind enemy lines only to knock the ball past Hugo Lloris who came from his line to retrieve it.

What an impact from Martial off the bench! He was only on the pitch 11 minutes.


That could be the mighty blow which puts Tottenham to the sword. They have come out of the blocks to grab a late, great leveller, however Jose Mourinho’s penchant for tough defensive resilience will surely come into play now.

One goal will do it for his side.


Ooooh so close to 2-0 for United. Tottenham have pushed every single body forward and as a result Marcus Rashford broke at the other end with only one body back.

He bore down on Lloris’ net with only the goalkeeper at his mercy, however nevertheless blasted his effort over the crossbar to keep it at 1-0.


There will be three minutes of additional time to come at the end of the second half.


Substitution for Man United: Matteo Darmian replaces Ashley Young


It’s all very congested but Man United have earned a kick-out as they try to wear down the clock and cling onto this slim one-goal lead. This really would be a massive three points.

About the author:

Aaron Gallagher


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