Sheffield United 1 Tottenham 0 (Ndiaye 80′)
By Jason Mellor at Bramall Lane — Iliman Ndiaye upstaged Harry Kane as Tottenham frittered away another opportunity to end 15 years of hurt since lifting their last major trophy.
Kane came off the bench in a bid to inject some urgency into a lacklustre Spurs display, but it was his fellow substitute Ndiaye who stole the show as Sheffield United sealed their place in the last eight for the third time in the last four seasons.
In contrast, Tottenham have fallen at this hurdle for the last three years, and they could have few complaints after being second best to their hosts for large parts of a breathless contest.
To rub salt into the wounds, Kane had a late chance to level, but headed weakly wide from an Ivan Perisic cross deep into stoppage time.
The hosts were good value for their win, and should have led at the break but spurned the clearest chance of the first-half three minutes before the interval in what was the clubs’ first FA Cup meeting for 65 years.
Defensive indecision saw Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s attempted header back to Fraser Forster fall short of the Tottenham goalkeeper, allowing Ismaila Coulibaly in on goal. The Blades midfielder had time to steady himself but fired woefully wide from less than a dozen yards in a major let-off for the Premier League side.
It was a rare opening in a keenly-contested opening 45 minutes that saw
Richarlison wasted a chance to repay the faith put in him in a rare start in his favoured central striker’s role, one of six changes in place of the rested Harry Kane.
The Brazilian beat the offside trap to run onto a Davinson Sanchez ball into the area. Despite the diminishing angle, the former Everton forward should have done better when forward blazed wastefully over as the hosts appealed in vain for an assistant’s flag.
As the hosts were further pressed back, Sam Baldock was no doubt relieved there was no recourse to VAR after an ugly studs-up challenge left Hojbjerg clutching his shin in a coming together surprisingly deemed unworthy of censure by referee John Brooks.
Hojbjerg’s glancing near post header from a corner early in the second half tested Wes Foderingham but it proved to be Spurs’ last opening until Kane’s late header summed up his side’s lack of cutting edge up front.
An equaliser at that stage would have been unfair on the Blades, outdid their loftier opponents by making eight changes in a clear indication that their attempts to secure a return to the Premier League after a two-year absence.
It meant Ndiaye was among those rested, but the young Senegal forward made up for lost time, scoring the winner just four minutes after his late introduction as he picked up a loose ball in the area before slaloming past three tired defensive challenges before beating Fraser Forster at the keeper’s near post.
FA Cup results in full
- Burnley 1-0 Fleetwood Town
- Man Utd 3-1 West Ham
- Sheffield Utd 1-0 Tottenham
- Southampton 1-2 Grimsby
Manchester United 3-1 West Ham
By Ian Whittell at Old Trafford — A dramatic Alejandro Garnacho winner on the stroke of full-time not only kept alive Manchester United’s quadruple dream and carried them through to the FA Cup quarter-finals.
It also suggested that Erik ten Hag’s claims that his squad is deep enough to remain in the hunt for their three remaining honours this season was not too fanciful.
The final score was given a lopsided look when Wout Weghorst won the ball in the dying seconds of added time, allowing Fred to slot home a third goal which flattered his side.
But United also had to display all their new-found belief and confidence as they fought back from a controversial opening goal from Said Benrahma.
United, fresh from the EFL Cup Final win on Sunday, we’re trailing before ten Hag called for reinforcements off his bench and his team claimed a dramatic 77th minute equaliser.
Bruno Fernandes curled over a superb delivery from a left-wing corner and Hammers defender Nayef Aguerd could only head the ball into his own net under pressure from Weghorst.
Then, with virtually the last kick of the 90 minutes, Weghorst saw a shot blocked with the ball bouncing up kindly for Garnacho who look composed and calm before curling in the winning goal.
West Ham had snatched their deserved opening goal on 54 minutes although it was hotly debated as Tomas Soucek kept the ball in play while United defenders stopped.
Emerson Palmieri moved the ball on to Benrahma who skilfully weaved his way into the area before unleashing a terrific shot into the far corner off the home goal with VAR confirming the goal after a check.
But for all the feel-good factor this win will have once more created around the club, it was worth noting ten Hag needed some help from familiar faces off his bench to bring about the comeback.
In many ways, it was a throwback to the Ole Gunnar Solskjaer years, with ten Hag ringing the changes and Harry Maguire anchoring United’s defence and that was not necessarily a good thing.
Certainly not when he and Victor Lindelof were picked apart by Benrahma’s 23rd minute through ball and Michail Antonio waltz through on goal only to be denied by David de Gea’s outstretched hand.
The Antonio miss had former United boss David Moyes furious on the West Ham bench but there would be another chance before the break, following a poor kick from de Gea.
West Ham countered and Antonio, again, was denied by the United keeper although this save was far more routine.
To their credit, post-Wembley celebrations, United had started well enough with Weghorst’s intelligent lay-off setting up an early 18-yard shot for Marcel Sabitzer, which Alphonse Areola saved well at full stretch.
Antony curled one of his trademark left-footers just over and Alejandro Garnacho’s sharp blast was parried by Areola, with Diogo Dalot unable to do anything with the rebound.
But West Ham responded, giving as good as they got, and by the interval ten Hag had seen enough, bringing on man of the moment Casemiro to take a hold of the tie.
It did not work, even before the controversial opener, Soucek rose brilliantly to meet Benrahma’s cross and forced another fine save out of de Gea.
And the opening goal could hardly be said to have come against the run of play and Pablo Fornals almost made it 2-0 with a low shot that flew just wide.
It was to become an absorbing cup tie – especially when ten Hag called for the cavalry, in the form of Marcus Rashford, just before the hour.
Garnbacho drilled a shot straight at Areola before Antonio wasted another glorious chance, shooting at de Gea when there were better options open to him.
Not even Casemiro could replicate his usual magic touch, with his solid 20-yard shot well saved by the diving West Ham keeper and his 71st minute headed “goal” was ruled out for offside by VAR.