Premier League
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Manchester United 2-2 Southampton: Late equaliser sets back hosts' top-four hopes

Southampton celebrate
Southampton have avoided defeat in both Premier League matches against Manchester United for the second time, after doing so in 2013-14 (both 1-1 draws)

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says his players "will put it right" after they missed a chance to climb into the Premier League's top four by conceding an injury-time equaliser against Southampton.

United led 2-1 for 73 minutes before substitute Michael Obafemi scored in the 96th minute, bundling in a set-piece at the back post after it had been flicked on by Jan Bednarek.

Stuart Armstrong had given Southampton a 12th-minute lead, but Anthony Martial set up Marcus Rashford to equalise before firing a superb second goal for United.

Solskjaer's side were on course to leapfrog top-four rivals Chelsea and Leicester - who both suffered defeats over the weekend - and move up to third but they remain fifth with three games left in the chase for Champions League qualification.

"The mentality has been brilliant. We have had a few setbacks this season. This is another challenge for us," said Solskjaer.

"I am very confident in [the players'] mentality. I'm disappointed of course, but you have to take the disappointments as well as the positives. We have learned a hard lesson. We will put it right. I trust the boys in that respect."

Armstrong had opened the scoring for Southampton, following Paul Pogba's mistake, and after fighting back to draw, the visitors now sit five points outside of the top 10 and level on points with Everton.

Despite United's setback, they will still qualify for the Champions League if they win their last three games, as they travel to the King Power Stadium to face Leicester on the final day of the season.

Solskjaer was unhappy with what he called a "nasty" first-half challenge by Oriol Romeu on Mason Greenwood, for which the Southampton midfielder went unpunished after a video assistant referee review.

"I know my ankle wouldn't take that challenge," Solskjaer said. "It was a nasty one but we have said enough about VAR."

Man Utd chained to fifth spot

United's fate remains in their own hands.

But the late goal from Obafemi came as a blow for the Red Devils, who had been the better side for most of the match.

They had chances to extend their lead at 2-1 - Martial proving a constant threat throughout, while Rashford came close with a driven effort from long range after having a goal ruled out for offside in the first half.

But the Saints never looked out of it and the clinical edge United had shown coming into this match - they had scored 15 goals in their five previous games - seemed to evade them in the second half when Rashford's effort was blocked on the line by a sliding Ryan Bertrand.

There will be concern for Solskjaer over Luke Shaw, who hobbled off in the second half after he seemed to twist his ankle, before Brandon Williams took a heavy blow to the head.

However, United's hopes of Champions League football are still very much alive.

Saints' bright form continues

Southampton players celebrate Stuart Armstrong's goal
Southampton took an early lead through Stuart Armstrong

Southampton were full of confidence heading to Old Trafford, having lost just one of their past five matches and seen off Manchester City earlier this month.

They showed that in the opening stages - Bertrand and Kyle Walker-Peters getting in behind the United defence before Nathan Redmond's cross to Armstrong was fired into the far corner for the opening goal.

But United's in-form attackers were quick to respond - Martial's neat first touch, smart turn and determined poke through finding Rashford unmarked in the box for the equaliser before he cut inside of Walker-Peters with ease and smashed it beyond Alex McCarthy for their second.

That goal looked set to be the winner as Rashford and Martial continued to threaten and Southampton remained in the game thanks to Bertrand's stunning block in the six-yard area.

But as the game went on, Southampton sensed there was an opportunity - Redmond drew a save from David de Gea with five minutes of normal time remaining before Bednarek's flick wasn't dealt with by United and Obafemi pushed the ball over the line, having been on the pitch for less than 10 minutes.

Man of the match - Anthony Martial

Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford
Martial (two assists) and Rashford (four) have combined for six Premier League goals this season - no Manchester United duo have ever combined for more in a single campaign. The Frenchman also became the 10th player to score 50 Premier League goals for Manchester United

'The guys deserved the point' - what they said

Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl, speaking to Sky Sports: "If you stop being brave, stop being on the front foot, then you have problems against one-on-one quality.

"It was a very strong start from my side. We scored and we were really aggressive.

"We gave two chances away but then just before half-time we got back to our game and then I could feel we were better. We had good possession and good balance and had good chances in the second half. The guys really deserved the point, I think."

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Ralph Hasenhuttl praises 'multi-dimensional' Saints display

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, speaking to Sky Sports: "It was the worst time to concede a goal but it happens in football. We have won so many games in that way. It is all part of the learning for this team. You think you have three points in the bag but we probably didn't deserve three points today.

"Southampton are a good team, they run, and run and chase. We never got into our rhythm today. We played some fantastic football at times. The two goals we scored were very, very good. It was just one of those days where we did not take our chances and they took theirs."

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer unhappy with tackle on Mason Greenwood

The best of the stats

  • Obafemi's equaliser for Southampton was the latest Premier League goal Manchester United have conceded since Opta began collecting exact goal-time data (2006-07).
  • In this season's Premier League, Manchester United have now lost one home match (against Crystal Palace) and drawn another (against Southampton) thanks to conceding in the 90th minute or later - in their 519 home games in the competition before this season, they'd only dropped two points as a result of conceding so late (one draw).
  • United are unbeaten in their past 18 games in all competitions (W13 D5), last having a longer run between April and November 2010 (29 games).
  • Southampton's Armstrong has been involved in five goals in his last six Premier League games (two goals, three assists) - as many as he had been in his previous 40 appearances in the competition.

What's next?

Southampton host Brighton in their next Premier League match on Thursday, 16 July (20:15 BST), while Manchester United play at Crystal Palace at the same time.

Line-ups

Man Utd

  • 1de Gea
  • 29Wan-BissakaBooked at 86mins
  • 2Lindelöf
  • 5Maguire
  • 23ShawSubstituted forWilliamsat 75'minutesSubstituted forat 90+3'minutes
  • 6PogbaSubstituted forFredat 63'minutes
  • 31Matic
  • 26GreenwoodSubstituted forJamesat 84'minutes
  • 18Bruno FernandesSubstituted forMcTominayat 84'minutes
  • 10Rashford
  • 9Martial

Substitutes

  • 3Bailly
  • 8Mata
  • 15Pereira
  • 17Fred
  • 21James
  • 22Romero
  • 25Ighalo
  • 39McTominay
  • 53Williams

Southampton

  • 1McCarthy
  • 24Walker-PetersBooked at 56mins
  • 5StephensBooked at 53mins
  • 35Bednarek
  • 21Bertrand
  • 17ArmstrongSubstituted forSmallboneat 69'minutes
  • 16Ward-ProwseBooked at 44mins
  • 14RomeuSubstituted forObafemiat 87'minutes
  • 22Redmond
  • 9Ings
  • 10AdamsSubstituted forLongat 64'minutes

Substitutes

  • 4Vestergaard
  • 7Long
  • 20Obafemi
  • 23Højbjerg
  • 27Smallbone
  • 28Gunn
  • 29Vokins
  • 38Danso
  • 47Ferry
Referee:
Chris Kavanagh

Match Stats

Home TeamMan UtdAway TeamSouthampton
Possession
Home47%
Away53%
Shots
Home8
Away9
Shots on Target
Home4
Away5
Corners
Home4
Away6
Fouls
Home14
Away15

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Manchester United 2, Southampton 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Manchester United 2, Southampton 2.

  3. Post update

    Ryan Bertrand (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Daniel James (Manchester United).

  5. Post update

    Foul by Michael Obafemi (Southampton).

  6. Post update

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

  7. Goal!

    Goal! Manchester United 2, Southampton 2. Michael Obafemi (Southampton) right footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jan Bednarek following a corner.

  8. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Jan Bednarek (Southampton) header from the left side of the six yard box is blocked. Assisted by James Ward-Prowse with a cross.

  9. Post update

    Corner, Southampton. Conceded by Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

  10. Post update

    Brandon Williams went off injured after Manchester United had used all subs.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Kyle Walker-Peters (Southampton).

  12. Post update

    Brandon Williams (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Scott McTominay (Manchester United).

  14. Post update

    Shane Long (Southampton) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  15. Substitution

    Substitution, Southampton. Michael Obafemi replaces Oriol Romeu.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Southampton. Conceded by Nemanja Matic.

  17. Booking

    Aaron Wan-Bissaka (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  18. Post update

    Corner, Southampton. Conceded by David de Gea.

  19. Post update

    Attempt saved. Nathan Redmond (Southampton) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Oriol Romeu.

  20. Substitution

    Substitution, Manchester United. Scott McTominay replaces Bruno Fernandes.

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Liverpool35303276274993
2Man City35233991345772
3Chelsea351861163491460
4Leicester351781065362959
5Man Utd351611861352659
6Wolves351413848371155
7Sheff Utd35141293833554
8Tottenham351410115445952
9Arsenal35121495144750
10Burnley35148133947-850
11Everton35129144152-1145
12Southampton35136164558-1345
13Newcastle351110143652-1643
14Crystal Palace35119153045-1542
15Brighton35812153652-1636
16West Ham3597194459-1534
17Watford35810173354-2134
18Bournemouth3587203660-2431
19Aston Villa3586213865-2730
20Norwich3556242667-4121
View full Premier League table

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