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Tottenham 0-1 Manchester United: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men hang on to beat Spurs

David de Gea saves
David de Gea made a string of saves in the second half

Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea produced a Wembley masterclass as interim manager Ole Gunnaer Solskjaer made it six wins out of six to damage Tottenham's Premier League title ambitions.

Marcus Rashford's low finish from Paul Pogba's superb pass on the stroke of half-time stretched Solskjaer's flawless start - but the Norwegian had De Gea to thank for a magnificent display as Spurs laid siege to United's goal after the break.

The Spaniard made a succession of crucial interventions, 11 in total, including many with his feet, as Spurs tried in vain to avoid a defeat that makes their task of keeping pace with Liverpool and Manchester City even more arduous.

United showed great resilience to back up their early positive approach but it was De Gea who broke Spurs' hearts by denying Harry Kane on several occasions, as well as Dele Alli and Toby Alderweireld.

The result leaves Spurs nine points behind leaders Liverpool and United level on points with fifth-placed Arsenal as they revive their top-four hopes.

Solskjaer staking his claim

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Man Utd earned the right to win - Solskjaer

Few would have placed Solskjaer as a serious contender on any list to replace Jose Mourinho when he was sacked as United boss in December.

And while he may not be the front-runner yet, he has done everything asked of him and this victory against a team in title contention - and with a manager in Mauricio Pochettino who many regard as favourite to be next in the chair at Old Trafford - was the biggest statement of his credentials yet.

Make no mistake, Solskjaer relied hugely on De Gea's brilliance as he formed a one-man barrier to defy Spurs to secure this win, but he also arrived with a positive mindset and team selection that put United right in the game and led to them getting that half-time lead through Rashford's goal on the counter-attack.

This was his sternest test after a relatively friendly introductory fixture list and, with the help of De Gea, he was able to complete it successfully.

Solskjaer has given a disaffected squad unity of purpose once more, with Pogba seemingly instantly rejuvenated by Mourinho's departure, and this run of wins has rebuilt fractured confidence and belief.

The odds on may yet be against Solskjaer claiming the job permanently as other names, such as England manager Gareth Southgate and Atletico Madrid's Diego Simeone, are mentioned, but if he is undertaking an audition, wins like this do his chances no harm.

Spurs pay for lack of cutting edge

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Pochettino hails 'best' Spurs display as boss

De Gea gave a brilliant demonstration of goalkeeping - showing that feet can be utilised as successfully as hands when the occasion demands - but there was also real cause for frustration for Spurs.

Pochettino's side created chance after chance after half-time only to be thwarted by De Gea, captain Kane his victim on several occasions.

No-one could question Spurs' heart or application but they may feel they could - and should - have done better with many of their opportunities, often giving De Gea the chance to make the saves when more accurate finishing would have left him with no hope.

This result is a bitter blow to Spurs as they try to keep pace with Liverpool and Manchester City and the sight of Kane limping heavily and accompanied by a physio after the final whistle is an added worry for Pochettino.

Spurs have had damaging home defeats to Wolves and now United in recent weeks - they cannot afford many more if they are to maintain a meaningful title pursuit.

Man of the match - David de Gea

David de Gea
There is no debate over this one. Without De Gea, United would not have only surrendered their victory, but would have probably suffered a heavy defeat.

'Man Utd expect to win every game' - what they said

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino: "I am so pleased and I'm proud. After four and a half years, the second half was the best performance I have seen Tottenham play. It was amazing. In football, sometimes you deserves to win and don't and other times, you do not and you win. That is why we love football.

"We conceded a counter-attack in the first half but the second was the best performance I have seen. We were not clinical and sometimes you score with less opportunities but it is nothing to complain about. The team played unbelievable football and everyone who watched the game can feel the same as myself."

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solksjaer: "You expect to win every single game at Manchester United. You won't, but you must think that. That's the mentality of this group.

"In the first half we were excellent and in the second they put us under pressure. We could have scored a few as well but we had a good back four and David [de Gea] was unbelievable.

"We created enough chances to put the game away by the break, but if you don't score you will be under pressure. We defended fantastically."

Solskjaer matches Busby - the stats

  • Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has equalled Sir Matt Busby's all-time record of winning his first five league games in charge of Manchester United.
  • Tottenham have lost consecutive home Premier League games for the first time since May 2015.
  • Tottenham have lost four home league games this season - double the amount they had lost at home in their previous two Premier League campaigns combined (2).
  • United have kept back-to-back clean sheets in the Premier League - they had only kept two in their first 20 league matches this season.
  • Marcus Rashford has scored in three consecutive Premier League games for the first time in his career.
  • Paul Pogba has been directly involved in 53% of United's 15 Premier League goals since Solskjaer took charge (4 goals, 4 assists).
  • De Gea made 11 saves - only against Arsenal in December 2017 has he ever made more in a Premier League match (14). This was the most saves he has made in a top-five European league game while also keeping a clean sheet.
  • Tottenham's Harry Kane had seven shots in this match - he last had more without finding the net in a Premier League game in January 2018 (8 vs Manchester United).

What's next?

Manchester United return to Old Trafford on Saturday, when Brighton are the visitors at 15:00 GMT. Spurs do not play until next Sunday when they travel across London to meet Fulham at 16:00.

Line-ups

Tottenham

  • 1Lloris
  • 2Trippier
  • 4Alderweireld
  • 5Vertonghen
  • 33Davies
  • 8WinksSubstituted forLlorenteat 81'minutes
  • 17SissokoSubstituted forLamelaat 43'minutes
  • 23Eriksen
  • 20AlliBooked at 50mins
  • 10Kane
  • 7Son Heung-Min

Substitutes

  • 3Rose
  • 6D Sánchez
  • 11Lamela
  • 18Llorente
  • 21Foyth
  • 22Gazzaniga
  • 52Skipp

Man Utd

  • 1De Gea
  • 18Young
  • 2Lindelöf
  • 4Jones
  • 23Shaw
  • 31Matic
  • 21HerreraBooked at 66mins
  • 6PogbaBooked at 78minsSubstituted forMcTominayat 90+2'minutes
  • 14LingardSubstituted forDalotat 83'minutes
  • 10Rashford
  • 11MartialSubstituted forLukakuat 73'minutes

Substitutes

  • 8Mata
  • 9Lukaku
  • 15Pereira
  • 17Fred
  • 20Dalot
  • 22Romero
  • 39McTominay
Referee:
Mike Dean
Attendance:
80,062

Match Stats

Home TeamTottenhamAway TeamMan Utd
Possession
Home61%
Away39%
Shots
Home21
Away13
Shots on Target
Home11
Away8
Corners
Home7
Away4
Fouls
Home8
Away8

Live Text

Match ends, Tottenham Hotspur 0, Manchester United 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Tottenham Hotspur 0, Manchester United 1.

Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Luke Shaw.

Substitution

Substitution, Manchester United. Scott McTominay replaces Paul Pogba.

Attempt saved. Paul Pogba (Manchester United) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Luke Shaw.

Attempt blocked. Romelu Lukaku (Manchester United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ander Herrera.

Attempt saved. Fernando Llorente (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Kieran Trippier with a cross.

Offside, Tottenham Hotspur. Dele Alli tries a through ball, but Son Heung-Min is caught offside.

Attempt saved. Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Fernando Llorente with a headed pass.

Foul by Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham Hotspur).

Marcus Rashford (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Kieran Trippier (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Marcus Rashford (Manchester United).

Substitution

Substitution, Manchester United. Diogo Dalot replaces Jesse Lingard.

Foul by Fernando Llorente (Tottenham Hotspur).

Ashley Young (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Paul Pogba (Manchester United).

Substitution

Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Fernando Llorente replaces Harry Winks.

Attempt missed. Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Erik Lamela.

Booking

Paul Pogba (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card.

Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Paul Pogba (Manchester United).

Attempt saved. Paul Pogba (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by David De Gea.

Attempt saved. Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Manchester United. Romelu Lukaku replaces Anthony Martial.

Foul by Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham Hotspur).

Marcus Rashford (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt saved. Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Phil Jones (Manchester United).

Attempt saved. Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the right side of the six yard box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Christian Eriksen with a cross.

Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Jesse Lingard.

Attempt blocked. Son Heung-Min (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

Attempt missed. Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left from a direct free kick.

Booking

Ander Herrera (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Ander Herrera (Manchester United).

Attempt saved. Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Harry Kane.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Liverpool22183150104057
2Man City21162356173950
3Tottenham22160646222448
4Chelsea22145340172347
5Arsenal22125546321441
6Man Utd22125544321241
7Watford229583232032
8Leicester229492625131
9West Ham229493032-231
10Everton228683331230
11Wolves218582325-229
12Bournemouth2283113142-1127
13Brighton2275102430-626
14Crystal Palace2264122028-822
15Burnley2263132343-2021
16Southampton2247112339-1619
17Cardiff2254131941-2219
18Newcastle2246121631-1518
19Fulham2235142049-2914
20Huddersfield2225151337-2411
View full Premier League table

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