Man Utd back into third with win over Everton

Manchester United‘s Scott McTominay and Anthony Martial secured a well-earned 2-0 victory over Everton as the hosts climbed above Newcastle United into provisional third spot in the Premier League on Saturday.

Erik ten Hag’s United are in the thick of the race to finish in the top four, with 56 points from 29 games, three ahead of Newcastle, who have a game in hand, and six more than Tottenham Hotspur, with those sides playing later on Saturday.

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The defeat for Sean Dyche’s Everton, who are battling to avoid relegation, leaves them in 16th spot, outside the drop zone only on goal difference and level on 27 points with Nottingham Forest in 17th place and AFC Bournemouth who are 18th.

“It was great football from ourselves and we were disappointed to only go in [at half-time] 1-0 up,” United captain Harry Maguire told BT Sport. “The game should have been gone.

“The lads started on the front foot, we were aggressive, we created chance after chance after chance and I think if the score was three, four or five nobody would have any arguments.”

United pressed goalkeeper Jordan Pickford into duty early at a sun-drenched Old Trafford and set up camp in Everton’s half for most of the game.

They could have got on the board in the 12th minute when Antony‘s shot rebounded off the post to Aaron Wan-Bissaka, who missed an easy tap-in, sending the ball wide of the far post.

Ellis Simms had Everton’s best chance in the 20th minute. His shot beat keeper David De Gea but rolled just wide of the net and Dyche buried his head in his hands.

United were finally rewarded in the 36th minute when Jadon Sancho threaded a pass to the charging McTominay who netted from close range.

Bruno Fernandes nearly doubled United’s lead in the 67th minute but Pickford leapt to tip the ball over the crossbar.

Marcus Rashford, who had numerous chances on his 350th appearance for United in all competitions, set up Martial’s goal in the 71st with a cross that found the second-half substitute alone in the box to score.

United were missing Casemiro, who completed a four-game ban on Saturday, but fellow midfielder Christian Eriksen returned from an ankle injury when he came on after 77 minutes for his first appearance since Jan. 28.

Everton have won only once on the road this season in early October against Southampton but have had improved results in recent weeks including a home draw with Spurs on Monday.

Since Dyche took over in January, Everton have lost just four of their last 10 games, a streak that included a victory over league leaders Arsenal.

Later on Saturday, Newcastle visit Brentford, while Tottenham host Brighton who are sixth.


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