Premier League | 4 April 2017 | Old Trafford | Attendance: 75,272 | Scorers: Ibrahimovic 90+4 pen; Jagielka 21
Zlatan Ibrahimovic almost announced his return from a three-pronged suspension with an early goal in the fifth minute but United’s no.9 was denied what would’ve been a victory lap by a fine defensive block by Williams after finding a way through the middle. However, Ibrahimovic’s penalty salvaged a point for Manchester United as Jose Mourinho’s men were held to a 1-1 draw by Everton at Old Trafford.
Zlatan converted a late spot-kick in the 94th minute after Everton’s centre-back Ashley Williams was sent off for handball. His dramatic equalizer rescued United after Phil Jagielka had hooked home to give the Toffees their lead in the first half.
Photo: United’s no. 9 striker, Zlatan Ibrahimovic (right), came back from a three-pronged suspension to rescue United with a very late spot-kick penalty that saved United in the matchup at Old Trafford on Tuesday night | 04.04.2017.
After this second successive draw in the space of four days at home, Jose Mourinho’s men are now unbeaten in 20 Premier League games – a run which also saw the same scoreline when the both sides met at Goodison Park in December.
HALF-TIME MATCH STATS
Possession: United 59% Everton 41%
Shots: United 6 Everton 6
Shots on target: United 2 Everton 2
Corners: United 3 Everton 2
Hoping to inject more urgency into proceedings, Mourinho introduced Paul Pogba, who had missed the previous two games with a hamstring injury, in place of Blind at the interval.
United increased the tempo in a bid to stretch the Toffees defence and the recently arrived Frenchman almost drew the Reds level on 54 minutes. After Rashford was upended by Gareth Barry, Young’s free-kick was inadvertently glanced on by Lukaku and Pogba’s header rebounded back off the crossbar.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic felt Manchester United deserved more than the late point his penalty earned from Tuesday’s Premier League game against Everton. It finally came through Ibrahimovic’s 27th goal of the season but the Swedish football maestro admitted United really needed all three points in the continuing quest for a top-four spot.
“I think we deserved a little bit more. We conceded a goal by a mistake: first we made a mistake by missing Williams’s header and then the goal came out of nothing. We need to keep focused; we cannot afford these mistakes because it’s very important points, especially with the table like it is. We are close but still we don’t get the points we need. We were attacking for most of the game and we had good chances; we hit the post but we have to do more.” Zlatan Ibrahimovic said to BT Sport.
FULL-TIME MATCH STATS
Possession: United 62% Everton 38%
Shots: United 18 Everton 11
Shots on target: United 3 Everton 4
Corners: United 6 Everton 5
Manchester United: De Gea; Young (Shaw 65), Bailly, Rojo, Blind (Pogba 46); Carrick (c) (Mkhitaryan 65), Fellaini; Lingard, Herrera, Rashford; Ibrahimovic.
Subs not used: Romero, Fosu-Mensah, Darmian, Martial.
Everton: Robles; Holgate, A.Williams, Jagielka (c), Baines; Davies, Barry, Gueye; Mirallas (Pennington 66), Lukaku, Barkley (Calvert-Lewin 80).
Subs not used: Stekelenburg (GK), Kenny, J.Williams, Valencia, Lookman.
Booked: Gueye, Barry, Davies
The busy April schedule for United continues for Mourinho’s men in the Premier League on Sunday with the third of nine games this month against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light (kick-off 13:30 BST).
Up Man U!