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West Ham 1-0 Manchester United: De Gea blunder and blunt attack has Reds in tailspin

More dropped points on the road…

West Ham United v Manchester United - Premier League Photo by Andrew Kearns - CameraSport via Getty Images

Manchester United faced a massive setback in their hopes to qualify for next season’s Champions League after losing 1-0 to West Ham United at the London Stadium on Sunday. The Red Devils made two changes to the line-up that lost 1-0 to Brighton in midweek, with Wout Weghorst coming in for Jadon Sancho and Tyrell Malacia coming in for the Diogo Dalot at left-back.

Marcus Rashford led the line with Wout Weghorst behind him in a deeper role; Bruno Fernandes was moved to the left with the freedom to roam inside. United had plenty of chances to go up in the first-half, with Antony, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, and Christian Eriksen coming close, but the Hammers took the lead against the run of play in the 27th minute after David De Gea failed to prevent a soft effort from Said Benrahma from going into the back of the net.

The Hammers posed little to no threat prior to the goal but found some belief after going up, and looked less vulnerable at the back. Manchester United lacked urgency at the start of the second-half, while West Ham showed some promise on the counter-attack and set-pieces.

Erik ten Hag brought on Anthony Martial for Weghorst in the 57th minute to spark things up; Martial played upfront with Rashford moving to the left, and Fernandes moving into central midfield, but the Red Devils didn’t look any better. Ten Hag made a double substitution in the 74th minute by getting Jadon Sancho and Marcel Sabitzer for Antony and Christian Eriksen, which led to an instant improvement in the play, but the goal didn’t come.

West Ham had dropped deep into their own half in the final minutes and looked happy to defend the league. Ten Hag’s final roll of the dice saw Diogo Dalot and Fred coming on for Aaron Wan-Bisakka and Tyrell Malacia. There were eight minutes of second-half stoppage time with two chances falling to Anthony Martial right at the end, but the Frenchman couldn’t get the ball past Lukasz Fabianski.

United had a fantastic opportunity to go above Newcastle United in the league, but are now just one point ahead of Liverpool with a game in hand.