Pogba penalties seal victory for Manchester United over West Ham

April 13, 2019
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Two penalties from Paul Pogba earned Manchester United a 2-1 win over West Ham at Old Trafford as they moved up to fifth, within two points of fourth-placed Chelsea.

Pogba converted in the first half after Robert Snodgrass was adjudged to have fouled Juan Mata and after Felipe Anderson equalised early in the second, struck again after a foul on Anthony Martial.

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer rested Victor Lindelof, Marcus Rashford and Scott McTominay ahead of next week’s Champions League game at Barcelona while Marko Arnautovic did not even make the bench for West Ham.

Fred had a shot from outside the area blocked after the ball fell to him from a Mata corner, and Declan Rice cut out a Martial pass as United tried to work the ball into the box.

After 10 minutes, West Ham had the ball in the net when Anderson hooked home amid defensive confusion, only for United to be reprieved by a tight offside call.

But after 19 minutes Pogba who put United ahead from the spot after Snodgrass challenged Mata just inside the area.

Lanzini saw a free kick deflected over after Pogba was penalised for a high foot 25 yards out, and Anderson’s flick-on went across goal with no teammate able to get a touch.

Romelu Lukaku set up a chance for Pogba, whose strike was blocked, and he was again involved when he found Dalot, whose attempt was wayward.

With the first half entering its final 10 minutes, Mata’s cross was steered over by Martial from a difficult angle and then Chris Smalling’s header from a Mata corner was too high.

But West Ham needed only four minutes of the second half to level, Lanzini producing an excellent cross for Anderson to steer past De Gea from close range.

The visitors were growing in confidence, Pablo Zabaleta trying his luck with a shot from outside the area that was held by De Gea.

Solskjaer made an early change as he looked to refresh his side, Rashford on for Mata, and Rashford almost made an instant impact when his angled strike was stopped by Lukasz Fabianski.

Lanzini suffered an injury and was unable to continue, Grady Diangana replacing him and then Rashford headed over from close range when he should have scored.

Marcos Rojo tried his luck from 25 yards, Fabianski saving, and at the other end Rojo blocked a fierce Rice effort.

Former United player Javier Hernandez made way for Michael Antonio after 72 minutes and Solskjaer made a double change, Mason Greenwood on for Lukaku and Andreas Pereira replacing Rojo.

Moments after West Ham had introduced Ryan Fredericks for Zabaleta, Antonio smashed a fine strike against the crossbar from the edge of the box with De Gea well beaten, and the United keeper then conjured a stunning save from the same player’s header.

And the Hammers were left to rue those moments when United were awarded their second penalty, Fredericks fouling Martial and Pogba stepping up to convert again for the game’s decisive moment.

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