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Manchester United Given Huge Scare by Newport County in Their Narrow 4-2 Victory

Manchester United Given Huge Scare by Newport County in Their Narrow 4-2 Victory

When 13-time English Premier League winners Manchester United received Newport County, a team playing in the fourth-tiered EFL League Two, as their FA Cup Fourth Round opponents in the 2023/2024 Season, they must have thought the domestic cup tie at Rodney Parade would be an easy task to complete. However, the reality of last night’s matchup turned out to be a tough one for the Red Devils, as Newport County stormed back from a 2-0 disadvantage to level things up shortly after the break, and Erik ten Hag’s only managed to escape Newport County in this FA Cup Fourth Round encounter with two goals in the final 26 minutes.


Wasteful United Drew Level by Newport County

The visiting Manchester United raced to a 2-0 early lead in the opening half, thanks to goals from captain Bruno Fernandes and Kobbie Mainoo. The Portuguese midfielder scored his second goal in as many matches in the FA Cup with winger Antony setting him up via a cross from the left flank. Shortly after ten Hag’s men scored the opener, 18-year-old academy graduate Mainoo received the ball just inside the penalty box, followed by the England player’s first-time shot into the bottom left corner. The goal meant he has now opened the scoring account of his professional senior career in football.

United’s joy was cut short by the home team Newport County, who fought relentlessly to make things all square again. Bryn Morris, a 27-year-old defensive midfielder for Newport County, reduced the deficit to one, when he scored a long-ranged cracker in the 36th minute. United’s goalkeeper Altay Bayındır, who made his debut for the club last night since his move to Old Trafford earlier this summer, was forced to concede another goal, when Will Evans fired in the equaliser from close range. Evans’ goal brought the roof down as the home fans roared to celebrate the effort.

The visitors were forced to dig deep against a Newport County side that are playing three tiers below than them in the English football league system. They would go on to regain the lead with 22 minutes remaining in the normal playing time, courtesy of Antony’s first goal of the 2023/2024 Season. The former AFC Ajax flanker, who has been plagued with accusations of domestic violence on his former partner, scored from a Luke Shaw strike that deflected off the post, leaving the unguarded Antony to slot home United’s third.

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Højlund Sealed the Victory for Manchester United Versus Newport County

Right at the death of the match, another new summer signing for Manchester United Rasmus Højlund put the game to bed with his eighth goal in 26 appearances in all competitions for his new club. The young Danish striker was benefited from a chaotic situation inside the dangerous zone, followed by his strike into the unguarded net. The 4-2 victory for United against Newport County meant they are through to the FA Cup Fifth Round and will face the winners between Bristol City and Nottingham Forest in the following round of the oldest football competition in the entire world.

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Ten Hag on Beating Newport County: “We Stayed Calm.”

Ten Hag was a relieved man after his Manchester United side defeated Newport County at the latter home. “The first 35 minutes it was very dominant. We did not give the opponent any chance and should have been three, four, five-nil up. Out of nothing they score a goal and straight after half-time again. We have to be critical of bad defending in transition. Poor defending from the cross, it’s 2-2, and they turned it around. But you see how resilient we are. We stayed calm, went back in our game, got the third and fourth goal, so job done,” said the Manchester United gaffer.

The Dutchman also added this during the post-match conference: “I know the character from Licha (Martínez), Casemiro, Luke Shaw, (Raphaël) Varane, Bruno, Antony, (Alejandro) Garnacho, Højlund. All fighters. Sometimes you are in this situation. It was a bad pitch, but we totally dominated them for 35 minutes.”

Graham Coughlan, 49-year-old head coach for the losing side of this FA Cup Fourth Round Newport County, offered his thoughts about the game too. “We gave ourselves a mountain to climb first 10 or 15 minutes. You can’t start a football game like that against that quality of opposition. They hit us hard, they were clinical and we learned quickly what the Premiership is all about in that first 10 or 15 minutes. It was just unfortunate we couldn’t reach our cup final and go back to Old Trafford. I thought we had them at two-all. They were rattled. But the Premier League class shone through, so full credit to United.”

Also Read: EFL Cup Semifinal Second Leg: Chelsea Hammer Middlesbrough 6-1 at Stamford Bridge to Reach Final


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Is There Something Brewing Between ten Hag and Rashford?

A key absentee for Manchester United in their FA Cup Fourth Round tie against Newport County was none other than their top scorer for last season Marcus Rashford, in which ten Hag cited as an internal matter to deal with. Rumour has it that the Dutchman, who had public feuds with Cristiano Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho since taking over the club back at the start of the 2022/2023 Season, could be faced with another similar incident with the England international this time around. “He reported ill. The rest is internal matter. I deal with it, we will deal with it. I don’t go in this case. We talked before about it.”

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Steven Mosier

"Eat, breathe and sleep sports" is the life motto of mine. My professional athlete career ended way earlier than I thought, but the passion remains till the present, which is why I am here writing you all the sports news you crave! Also, I am a huge fan of the Premier League as well the NBA.

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