Manchester United 1-1 Fulham: Edinson Cavani wonder goal not enough as fans return to Old Trafford

·2-min read
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Manchester United were held to a frustrating 1-1 draw by Fulham despite a moment of magic from Edinson Cavani as fans returned to watch a game of football at Old Trafford for the first time in 14 months.

Cavani scored a sensational first-half chip from 40 yards to the delight of United supporters in the stands, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side failed to kill off the game - and Joe Bryan earned Fulham a point with a header 15 minutes from time.

Though United were promising in attack, poor finishing cost them - and more poor defending in the absence of captain Hary Maguire will be a real concern as they sleepwalk towards a Europa League Final against Villarreal on May 26.

United supporters had already been inside Old Trafford earlier in May, though they were not exactly welcomed by the club as fans furiously protested on the pitch in extraordinary events which led to the postponement of their Premier League clash against Liverpool.

United lost that rearranged fixture 4-2 last week on top of previously falling 2-1 to Leicester on the Thursday, and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side didn’t want to make it a hat-trick of home defeats in the run-up to their Europa League Final against Villarreal on May 26.

Around 10,000 United fans were back at the Theatre of Dreams, though little of their anger against the club’s owners, the Glazers, had dissipated as the socially-distanced crowd was a sea of green and gold - the protest colours of the anti-Glazer movement.

As Bruno Fernandes led United out as captain, hundreds of placards reading: ‘Go - Glazers Out’ were held aloft - but Cavani had fans on their feet for a different reason midway through the first half.

A David De Gea goal kick was seemingly flicked on by Fernandes, and Cavani spotted Fulham goalkeeper Alphonse Areola off his line and lobbed him first-time from 40 yards out.

It was an incredible moment for Cavani and the United fans who have waited well over a year for such a moment, though there was a hint of controversy over the goal. Cavani would have been offside from De Gea’s initial kick, and though Fernandes didn’t appear to get a touch the ball, VAR could not confirm whether or not he had - so the goal stood.

United were well on top, but the likes of Fernandes and Mason Greenwood wasted chances to put the game to bed - and the hosts were made to pay.

Good work from Fulham down the right flank saw Bobby De Cordova-Reid cross for Bryan to head home unmarked, and that was enough to earn Scott Parker’s men a respectable point.

As for United, another worrying home performance will raise concerns for Solskjaer as his players look to be running out of steam just before the Europa League Final.

Read More

Chelsea legend Lampard inducted into Premier League Hall of Fame

Man Utd given Europa League Final warning after another home setback

Solskjaer namedrops Messi and Ronaldo after Kane transfer question