Manchester United’s season saw yet another all-time low in a 4-0 loss to Brighton and Hove Albion. United were unchanged from last week’s game against Brentford, partly because of injuries but also because they put in one of their better performances of the season against the Bees.
The writing was on the wall after Brighton dominated early proceedings by having the lion’s share of possession and being rewarded with a lead in the 15th minute. 20-year-old Moises Caicedo’s shot from range went past Victor Lindelof’s legs. On first viewing, it looked like David De Gea could’ve done better but his pathway was blocked by a sea of red. The Reds were also careless when recovering the ball but credit must go to Graham Potter’s side for pinning United back.
The Seagulls didn’t have many clear openings but had some attempts at goal in the first half. Their best chance of the half came when Rafael Varane couldn’t get his feet sorted and nearly gifted Danny Welbeck a goal. The former United man sent his effort over the bar. One can’t help but wonder what’s going through the Frenchman’s mind at the moment after his former club made it to yet another Champions League final in midweek.
United had longer spells of possession after Caicedo’s strike but were unable to create anything meaningful. Cristiano Ronaldo made a clumsy challenge to end the half, which summed up United’s performance for the full 90. United surprisingly ended the first-half with 51% of the possession.
Ralf Rangnick made two subs at half-time with Edinson Cavani and Fred coming on for Nemanja Matic and Antony Elanga. Elanga was bullied by Mark Cucurella in the first half, who went on to score his first goal for the club in the 49th minute. The half of shame was up there with the first half from earlier in the season against Liverpool, where the team’s defensive organization was non-existent.
Pascal Gross got on the scoresheet eight minutes later. United were completely static in the lead up to the goal. Three minutes later, Leandro Trossard made it 4-0 after Danny Welbeck’s chip was cleared onto the Belgian, whose touch forced the ball past the goal line. There was a little VAR check to see if it was a handball but the foal stayed.
Edinson Cavani had the best chance of the game from a header that was saved by Robert Sanchez. Cavani thought he’d scored a few minutes later but his shot was ruled offside. United will end this season with their lowest points tally in the Premier League era. It was yet another broken performance in a broken season for the Reds.