It was a lively start from both sides despite the extremely warm and humid conditions with home captain Nia Bayunu's header failing to trouble Pierluigi Gollini as the action went from end to end.
Michael Oates headed a Joe Shaw cross against the bar and it prompted United into creating opportunities of their own with Josh Harrop blasting over and Ashley Fletcher seeing a goal disallowed for offside.
After Andy Smart's free-kick was off target, the deadlock was broken just before the half-hour mark. Wilson always looked a handful for the defenders and he latched onto Fletcher's through ball to supply a trademark rounding of the keeper, Tom Read, to score.
Fletcher and Sean Goss threatened to undo the Trafford defence only for the move to fizzle out as the Reds went into the interval a goal to the good. Harrop again had a shot that was too high and Fletcher also fired over from close range as the Reds threatened to extend the lead.
Byrne duly obliged with a header from fellow substitute Jack Barmby's corner and Barmby almost added a third with four minutes remaining when his low drive fizzed wide.
United: Gollini; C.Evans, Love, McConnell, Rowley (Barmby 59); Adarabioyo (Weir 59), Rudge, Harrop, Goss; Fletcher, Wilson (Byrne 59).