Manchester United have progressed to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup as they managed to defeat Derby County 3-0 away from home.
Luke Shaw opened the scoring for the Red Devils with a lucky back-deflection from Jesse Lingard and Odion Ighalo was also lucky to score in the first half. It was Ighalo again in the second half with great presence in front of the goal to cement the win for the Mancunian outfit who are now unbeaten in 9 games in all competitions.
1. Solskjaer Going All In for Trophies
It is quite evident that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is keen on securing silverware this campaign to compensate for shortcomings elsewhere.
Under the Norwegian gaffer, the FA Cup has certainly become a favored chomping grounds with the club having scored 10 goals across the competition and more remarkably, conceding none.
This is a title that is clearly on his radar and despite not being commercially viable, it is a spot that is waiting to be filled in United’s rather dusty trophy cabinet.
2. Odion Ighalo – All Settled
Odion Ighalo is adding to the love that fans have been pouring on him as the Nigerian striker netted two goals on the night. This has been his second full start and the second time he has scored, making the rather controversial decision of buying him on loan late in the winter window a brilliant one.
Given Marcus Rashford’s absence, Ighalo will continue to be instrumental in games like this.
3. Wayne Rooney – Not His Tale
Wayne Rooney at Derby taking on his former club was supposed to be the story of the night. However, the record-holding former Red Devil who now plays in a deeper role simply didn’t have his moment.
The away fans did cheer him on and towards the end of the game and it looked certain that the Englishman would net a symbolic consolation goal from a free-kick in added time but Sergio Romero denied him even that.
4. Sergio Romero’s Brilliance
United’s fortunes at having a player like Romero as their back-up goalkeeper are simply too great.
The Argentinian was outstanding and this cleansheet has added to a brilliant tally. Romero has now kept 10 cleansheets in 13 appearances so far this season. These are defining numbers and perhaps ones that may beg a closer look given David De Gea’s recent mishaps.
5. Norwich City Next
Qualification means that United will next face Norwich City at Carrow Road. While it may have been a rosy path forward so far Solskjaer’s men, this next fixture will be anything but.
Norwich displayed great resilience and an attractive brand of football in the manner in which they took on Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur to qualify forward. Needless to say, United will be meted out a similar treatment and an electric encounter is bound to follow.