Bruno Fernandes.

Leicester City 0 United 2

Sunday 26 July 2020 18:14

Manchester United beat Leicester City 2-0 on the final day of the Premier League season to secure our spot in the 2020/21 Champions League.

The Reds headed into the clash knowing a win would guarantee us a place in Europe’s premier tournament and Bruno Fernandes’s penalty midway through the second period and Jesse Lingard’s late effort, after Jonny Evans's red card, ensured we grabbed the decisive result.

It was a tense opening at the King Power Stadium with the first major point of interest coming when Brandon Williams was clumsily tackled in the box by Wilfred Ndidi, however referee Martin Atkinson decided it was not worthy of a spot-kick.

Soon after, Mason Greenwood headed just over Kasper Schmeichel’s crossbar from a long, floated ball by Marcus Rashford, before Ndidi and Marc Albrighton had efforts that failed to hit the target.

Just before the drinks break in the first period, Kelechi Iheanacho tested David De Gea with a right-footed shot, and the eagerly awaiting Jamie Vardy was ruled offside when he aggressively followed up on the parried stop.

Not long after play resumed, the Reds found the back of the net, only for Bruno Fernandes to see his effort ruled out for offside. It was Paul Pogba who found the Portuguese midfielder inside the box, and his touch and finish certainly deserved a goal. However, Fernandes had sadly just strayed beyond the last defender.

Leicester had the next attempt but Youri Tielemans’s weak attempt trickled harmlessly past De Gea’s post.

The Reds finished a tight first half on top and Rashford was close with a side-footed shot that went over the cross bar, after a spinning ball by Pogba deceived James Justin.

Pogba was beginning to dictate things and he played Anthony Martial through, only for his shot to be deflected for a corner, and, from the resultant set-piece, Rashford came close with a fizzing effort in the box that produced a save out of Kasper Schmeichel.

The second period started much as the first ended and the Reds came close to slipping Martial in on several occasion, yet good defending denied the visitors a significant chance.

Just after the hour mark, Leicester's leading scorer Jamie Vardy came within inches of breaking the deadlock, only for his flicked header to clip the top of the woodwork.

The striker then smashed an effort high over the crossbar, as the Foxes pushed to find a much-needed goal.

As the match headed closer to a nervy finish, the Reds were awarded a penalty when a mixture of Wes Morgan and Evans brought down Martial in the box, although it was the latter who was adjudged to have committed the offence and was booked.

After a significant VAR delay, it was Fernandes who stepped up and our no.18 cooly slotted the ball past Schmeichel to give United a vital lead.

Anthony Martial is fouled in the box.
The goal was followed by the second drinks break of the afternoon and substitute Harvey Barnes created the first chance after the resumption when his scruffy shot inside the box was held by De Gea.

The Foxes were then presented with a great opportunity 10 minutes from the end, but Morgan’s air-shot failed to test the United keeper – nor did Demarai Gray’s effort which deflected off Harry Maguire.

Leicester continued to push but United held firm and snuffed out any opposition chances. In stoppage time, Evans was sent off in injury-time lunging tackle on Scott McTominay, getting a straight red card from referee Atkinson.

Right at the death, Lingard added a second when he capitalised on a mistake by Schmeichel, dispossessing the Dane and finishing with his left foot into an empty net for his first Premier League goal of the season to end things on a real high.


Leicester: Schmeichel; Justin, Morgan, Evans; Albrighton (Gray 73), Ndidi, Tielemans (Barnes 73), Choudhury (Praet 73), Thomas (Hirst 87); Iheanacho (Perez 58), Vardy.
Subs not used: Ward, Bennett, James, Mendy.

Sent off: Evans 90+4.

United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire (c), Williams; Matic, Pogba; Greenwood (Lingard 77), Fernandes (McTominay 85), Rashford (Fosu-Mensah 90+7); Martial (Ighalo 90+7).

Subs not used: Romero, Bailly, Mata, Fred, James.

Scorers: Fernandes 71, Lingard 90+8.

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