Brighton & Hove Albion 0 United 2

Sunday 19 May 2024 18:02

Manchester United ended the Premier League season with a victory, winning 2-0 at Brighton & Hove Albion, but have to settle for eighth spot in the Premier League table.

The Reds kept our side of the final-day bargain by collecting three points on the south coast but Newcastle United's 4-2 triumph at Brentford kept the Magpies ahead of us on goal difference.

It means we have to beat Manchester City in next Saturday's Emirates FA Cup final to obtain European football next term, in the Europa League.

Diogo Dalot and substitute Rasmus Hojlund grabbed the goals in a much-improved display after the break to ensure Erik ten Hag's men approach the big day at Wembley on the back of successive victories.


A largely listless opening 45 minutes saw Brighton carve out the better chances but there was little to enthuse the Amex Stadium supporters.

Jakub Moder made an important challenge to prevent Alejandro Garnacho going through early on and there was a brief sight of Jason Steele's goal when Kobbie Mainoo nicked the ball from Joao Pedro, with Bruno Fernandes's chip failing to get enough elevation to trouble the home keeper.

Seconds later, Andre Onana had to be alert to block a Valentin Barco effort with his left leg, after the full-back was afforded far too much space on the left. Andy Webster was a threat from set-pieces, heading wide and then forcing Lisandro Martinez to clear from close to his own goalline. Sandwiched between those attempts by the defender, Scott McTominay blazed over, at the end of United's one move of quality of the half, involving Amad, Mainoo and Fernandes.

Joao Pedro looked certain to open the scoring in the 32nd minute, tearing through when the ball came off Fernandes inside the Reds' box, but firing a glaring opportunity wide of Onana's right-hand post.

With a distinct end-of-season feel about proceedings, there was a moment of inspiration from Garnacho, skinning Mulder close to half-time, but Steele ushered the Argentina international's cross behind.


Brighton thought they had gone ahead five minutes after the interval, when Moder was left unchecked beyond the far post and teed up Joao Pedro. The Brazilian's attempt was cleared off the line by Casemiro and Adam Lallana's rebound deflected off target.

It was another let-off for the Reds and prompted our best period so far. Garnacho's drive cannoned off Webster's head and flew wide, after a fine pass by Fernandes, before McTominay was smothered out when the ball came off Mainoo and fell to him in a shooting position.

Two chances then presented themselves in a matter of minutes but McTominay's shot was blocked, following approach work by substitute Rasmus Hojlund and Amad. And then Amad fired over, when Hojlund had won the ball well by showing some aggression.

A goal arrived in the 73rd minute, from Casemiro's long through ball. It flicked off Igor Julio's hand, as he challenged Hojlund, and ran on to Dalot, who kept his cool and slotted a precise finish past Steele.

With time running out, Hojlund collected a pass from substitute Christian Eriksen and went on his own, shifting the ball onto his right foot and shooting low into the net for the clincher. He moves on to 16 goals in his maiden campaign in England, one ahead of Fernandes in the top-scorer stakes.

It meant the away fans could enjoy a win on the road in the sunshine and hope for lifting silverware and dashing Manchester City's hopes of a Double next weekend.


Brighton: Steele; Moder, Webster, Julio, Barco (Lamptey 81); Baleba (Gilmour 81), Gross; Adringra (Fati 81), Lallana (c) (Enciso 57), Pedro; Welbeck. 

Verbruggen, Offiah, Peupion, Baker-Boaitey, Buonanotte.

Booked: Gilmour.

Onana; Wan-Bissaka, Casemiro, Martinez (Evans 60), Dalot; Mainoo (Eriksen 75), Amrabat (Varane 69), McTominay; Amad (Rashford 75), Fernandes (c) (Hojlund 60), Garnacho.

Substitutes: Bayindir, Kambwala, Collyer, Antony.

Goals: Dalot 73, Hojlund 88.

Booked: Amrabat, Fernandes, Casemiro.