Manchester United finished off League One side Tranmere Rovers early in an emphatic 6-0 win in the FA Cup 4th Round. Ole sent out several starters for this one, and got goals from some unlikely sources to move on to the next round.
It was a decent start for the home side minnows, who forced United’s defenders, particularly Phil Jones, into a couple uncomfortable positions. They even got off a handful of shots in the opening minutes. However, United responded the way you’d expect from a Premier League side against the 21st placed team in League 1.
As they won over possession and began pressing, the Red Devils went 3 for 3 with their first shots on target, featuring a Harry Maguire screamer, a Diogo Dalot drive, and a Jesse Lingard curler. A shell shocked Tranmere side was no match after the flurry of goals, despite starting with some confidence against a United side struggling for form.
Tranmere settled down a bit, and got a couple half chances out of their no. 10, Morgan Ferrier, but nothing really made Sergio Romero uncomfortable. Ferrier would be Tranmere’s only chance at goal for most of the match.
United rounded out the half in style with another 2 goals. Phil Jones became the 3rd surprise scorer of the day, hitting the target with a looping header into the far side of the goal off of a corner 5 minutes from halftime. Anthony Martial soon followed onto the scoresheet with an excellent curled strike from outside the area. With the score 5-0 at half-time it felt well and truly over with.
Ole made 2 changes at halftime, bringing on Fred and Tahith Chong for Nemanja Matic and Anthony Martial respectively. Soon after the restart they got their 6th via a Mason Greenwood penalty. Chong raced into the area and was brought down by Scott Davidson. Greenwood then sent him the wrong way and calmly placed his spot kick in the bottom left corner.
Tranmere made a late push for a goal as the Reds settled in to see out a much needed comfortable win. Chong, who played will in a forward position, nearly bagged a 7th, but was denied by the woodwork.
It was a good showing against inferior opposition for Ole’s United, who was in need of some positives after a difficult week. The Red Devils move on to the 5th Round of the FA Cup and keep hopes of silverware alive and well in what has been a difficult season. However, they’ll surely face a much tougher test in the next round.