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Dublin: 10 °C Saturday 16 February, 2019

Lukaku double secures much-needed win for Mourinho's Man United at Burnley

The visitors had Marcus Rashford sent off in the second half, but were comfortable winners at Turf Moor.

Lukaku scored twice for United at Turf Moor.
Lukaku scored twice for United at Turf Moor.
Image: Dave Thompson

MANCHESTER UNITED CRUISED to a much-needed Premier League victory at Burnley this afternoon, as a vastly improved performance and a first-half double from Romelu Lukaku earned the visitors all three points at Turf Moor.

Following back-to-back defeats to Brighton and Tottenham, Jose Mourinho was in desperate need of a positive result and his side responded in kind to ease the pressure on the embattled United boss.

The visitors were in dominant form from the outset at Turf Moor, and took a deserved 2-0 lead into the break thanks to Lukaku’s double.

Paul Pogba had the chance to extend United’s lead from the spot in the second period but saw his penalty saved by Joe Hart, and then Marcus Rashford was sent off just eight minutes after coming on.

Rashford clashed with Phil Bardsley on the byline and was shown red by referee John Moss for an apparent headbutt on the ex-United defender, who received yellow for his part in the incident.

Nevertheless, United had done all the hard work and cruised to their second victory of the season, leaving Burnley firmly in the relegation zone with just one point from their opening four games. 

A banner protesting against executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward was flown over the ground before kick-off, but United were not distracted from the job at hand in the early exchanges, with Jesse Lingard missing three chances in a dominant opening spell.

Burnley grew into the game but found themselves behind 27 minutes in, when Lukaku got above his man to head a fine Alexis Sanchez cross past Joe Hart from six yards out.

Burnley v Manchester United - Premier League - Turf Moor It was a big win for Mourinho. Source: Dave Thompson

It needed a fine save from Hart to deny Lukaku a quick second after a swift break involving Sanchez, but the Belgium striker smashed home from point-blank range to make it 2-0 before half-time after Lingard’s shot hit first Charlie Taylor and then Ashley Westwood.

Pogba wasted the chance to make it 3-0 when Hart comfortably saved his rather tame penalty, and Burnley hopes of a comeback were increased two minutes later when substitute Rashford was sent off for pushing his head into Bardsley’s after he appeared to kick out at the forward.

Sean Dyche’s men pushed forward with the man advantage but Lukaku should have killed off the game, the forward wasting two opportunities when put clean through one-on-one with Hart.

United held firm for their second win of the season, though, allowing Mourinho to head into the two-week international break in a happier mood. 

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Ryan Bailey

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