Javier Hernandez took United to within three games of Wembley on Tuesday night when his 90th-minute winner sunk Wolverhampton Wanderers and settled an absorbing Carling Cup tie.
The Mexican striker came off the bench with less than 10 minutes to play and, as he's done so many times already in his short 11-game United career, made an instant impact. His winner, a cool left-footed finish after he'd sold a defender a sublime dummy, was his sixth for the club and his fourth in three games.
His late goal settled a game that epitomised one of football's biggest cliches. It really was a game of two halves: the first was largely free from action, the second featured five goals as Wolves twice clawed back deficits before suffering their final, agonising fate.
Plenty of questions have been raised in the last week about United’s capacity for long-term success, but on this evidence there's little sign that the silverware is about to dry up. On a mild Tuesday evening a string of youngsters were handed a chance to impress, including Robbie Brady and Ravel Morrison, neither of whom had previously been involved in a first-team squad. They began on the bench – Morrison eventually came on for a 60-second cameo but didn't get a touch – alongside fellow youngster Magnus Eikrem (an unused substitute at Scunthorpe), club captain Gary Neville, Rafael, Tomasz Kuszczak and match-winner Hernandez.
Sir Alex's men, Carling Cup holders and undefeated at home in the competition since September 2007, began confidently and, given the hodgepodge nature of the team selection, cohesively. Amos was making only his second senior appearance in goal, the back four had never played together, Bebe was also involved from the first whistle for the first time, while Gabriel Obertan