Manchester United were left stunned after suffering their first Premier League defeat of the season to Aston Villa on Saturday afternoon.
English Premier League
Result: Manchester United 0-1 Aston Villa
Date: 25 September 2021
Venue: Old Trafford
Man United were unchanged from their dramatic league win over West Ham United, with lone-striker Cristiano Ronaldo supported by the front trio of Mason Greenwood, Fernandes and Paul Pogba while Axel Tuanzebe was barred from playing against his parent club for Villa.
The Red Devils nearly went behind in the 16th minute after Matthew Cash got past Luke Shaw and delivered a decisive square pass towards the back post but Matt Targett blasted his shot over the bar.
Villa should have punished United's sloppiness at the back midway through the first stanza after a bad back pass by Harry Maguire led to Ollie Watkins going one-on-one with David de Gea but the Spanish shot-stopper made a crucial save with his legs.
After Diogo Dalot replaced the injured Luke Shaw, Pogba had United's best chance on the stroke of half-time with a glancing header from a corner that missed the far post by a whisker, as the first stanza ended without goals.
Neither side could carve out clear opening in the early exchanges of the first stanza but the game opened up after the hour-mark, with Greenwood forcing a save out of shot-stopper Emiliano Martinez in the 67th minute.
The Red Devils were forced to make another defensive change just after that, as Maguire succumbed to injury and he was replaced by Victor Lindelof.
Dean Smith made his first change 12 minutes before time, as Emiliano Buendia replaced Danny Ings upfront while Solskjaer made a tactical change in the last eight minutes, in search of the winner, as Edinson Cavani replaced Scott McTominay.
Villa kept the game on the edge in the dying minutes and got their reward as Kortney Hause broke the deadlock for Smith's men two minutes before time with with a glancing header at the near post from a corner.
Hause almost went from from hero to villian in stoppage time after he conceded a penalty for the visitors with a handball inside the box from Cavani's header but Fernandes could not rescue a point from the spot-kick, as he blasted his spot-kick over the bar.
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