United's Under-21s had to settle for a goalless stalemate against West Ham at Upton Park on Friday night.
Warren Joyce's side missed out on an opportunity to climb to second in the table and, despite pressing towards the end, never really did enough to secure the three points.
Things were rather flat on a chilly night in the capital with chances few and far between in a disappointing first half. Frederic Veseli, tried in a holding midfield role, fired the first shot of note off target and Wellington Paulista's speculative long-ranger bounced in front of Ben Amos but was easy for the goalkeeper to field.
Sebastian Lletget was guilty of taking the wrong option when shooting wastefully into the side-netting while Jeff Schlupp lashed well wide from a neat Adnan Januzaj flick with little goalmouth incident taking place.
Paulista clipped his finish just wide when presented with the clearest opening of the first period but United then carved out a couple of opportunities. Jesse Lingard pulled a left-foot shot across goal following some good work by Larnell Cole and Veseli before Januzaj could only blast over when Schlupp got the better of Pelly Ruddock. The Belgian's shot was always rising and he had Cole in space beyond him.
After the interval, Januzaj had a shot blocked by Ruddock and then sent over a corner that led to Sean McGinty forcing Jake Larkins' first save, albeit a straightforward one. Around the hour mark, the Reds tried to gain a crucial advantage but no penalty was awarded after Ruddock clearly felled Schlupp inside the box. Seconds later, McGinty's cross was met on the volley by Lingard but Larkins produced an excellent save.
It proved to be the visitors' best spell as Elliot Lee robbed Januzaj to work Amos and the over-aged keeper also had to be alert to clutch a George Moncur cross at the second attempt with Lletget lurking. Schlupp had a clear sight of goal when