United 2 Nottingham Forest 0

Wednesday 01 February 2023 22:07

Manchester United are through to the final of the Carabao Cup after beating Nottingham Forest 2-0 at Old Trafford and winning 5-0 on aggregate.

Substitute Anthony Martial opened the scoring, following a quick counter-attack, before Fred doubled the advantage after a great piece of build-up play to book the Reds a spot at Wembley against Newcastle United on 26 February.
United looked in total control and have now won 12 games in a row at Old Trafford after completing the job. Jadon Sancho made his return to the United side, coming off the bench to replace Antony to a warm ovation from the United faithful. 

United reach Carabao Cup final


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The Reds stepped out onto the Theatre of Dreams to a thunderous cup semi-final atmosphere and this motivated United to control the game early, looking comfortable in possession but we did not get a significant attack until 10 minutes into the half.

Luke Shaw made a quick run down the left-hand side, but his cross into towards Wout Weghorst was too high and went out of play. Five minutes later, United advanced again when Alejandro Garnacho made a tricky run into the area, twisting and turning past the Forest defence before he appeared to be pushed by Neco Williams, but the referee immediately said no penalty.

Shaw whipped in a wonderful free-kick that was headed by Casemiro towards goal but Wayne Hennessy was quick to stick a leg out and prevent the chance. Antony hammered in a fierce drive that cleared the bar as the scores remained goalless.

Forest had been quiet until the last three minutes of the half. Brennan Johnson, who had been first to work Tom Heaton, broke away down the right-wing and fired a low cross towards Emmanuel Dennis. The Nigerian forward looked to have opened the scoring, but his effort was blocked by his own player, Sam Surridge, and Fred then made a vital intervention, which kept the game level.

United immediately broke away and had our best chance of the the half when Casemiro's floated pass found the head of Weghorst. But the giant Dutch forward's header smashed the post and was cleared away.


United started the second half like the first, dominating possession but failing to create a big opportunity. There were big shouts for a penalty when Scott McKenna brought down Weghorst, but the referee and VAR both ruled no spot-kick, much to the dismay of the United fans in the Stretford End.

Garnacho, who seemed to be United's biggest threat in the first half, came close to grabbing the lead. Reciving the ball from Bruno Fernandes, he took on and beat Williams, before striking the ball with his left foot, but it was saved by Hennessey. This would be the last action for the Argentina Under-20 international, as he, Weghorst and Antony all made way for Marcus Rashford, Martial and Sancho. And it was the two of the trio who managed to break down the Forest defence and secure Erik ten Hag's men a place at Wembley.

Casemiro's pass allowed Martial to break away with pace. His pass to Rashford was blocked by McKenna, but the ball fell back to the Frenchman, who converted the chance to give United the lead. Not long after that, the lead was doubled thanks to Fred. United's no. 17 started the move, picking out the pass to Martial, who linked up with Sancho and Fernandes. The Portuguese midfielder's cross found Rashford who sent the ball back into the path of Fred and he just touched the ball into the net to grab his fourth of the season and make it 5-0 on aggregate.

Heaton made a fine stop to deny Danilo and keep Forest off the scoresheet, with Surridge blazing the rebound over.

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United: Heaton, Wan-Bissaka, Varane (Lindelof, 79) Martinez, Shaw, Casemiro (Maguire, 79) Fred, Antony (Sancho, 61), Fernandes (c), Garnacho (Rashford, 61), Weghorst (Martial, 61)

Subs not  used: De Gea, Malacia, Mainoo, Pellistri.

Goals: Martial 73, Fred 76.

Booked: Fred, Casemiro.

Forest: Hennessey, Williams, McKenna, Boly, Lodi (Aurier, 64) Mangala, Freuler (c) (Danilo, 64) Johnson (Mighten, 64) Scarpa (Hammond, 85) Dennis, Surridge (Osong, 85).

Subs not used: G. Shelvey, Cook, Worrall.

Booked: Surridge.