Manchester United were undone by a late West Ham comeback which saw Michail Antonio and Winston Reid score inside 10 minutes to give the Hammers a 3-2 win. It was the very last game to be played at Upton Park and the home fans got a perfect send-off from their players.
Following an emotional night at Boleyn Ground, we take a look at the key talking points and things we learned from West Ham’s 3-2 win over Manchester United.
Manchester United’s Champions League hopes are over
What looked a certainty after Man City’s draw vs Arsenal has now turned in to an impossible task for Manchester United. For Louis Van Gaal’s team to qualify for Champions League, they need to win their game against Bournemouth next weekend and hope for City to lose their game against Swansea. With such permutations as stake, United’s Champions League dreams are as good as over right now.
Dimitri Payet – Premier League’s free-kick specialist?
Apart from scoring stunning free kick goals, Payet’s delivery for his attackers is second to now. Payet’s balls are vital for West Ham, who rely on balls coming in from the wide areas and their attackers heading it towards the goal. When Hammers were down and out, Payet came up with two delicious balls and it saw West Ham get a vital win in hope to clinch an automatic Europa League qualification berth.
Blind will have one of these games every now and then
Most of the British media have ripped in to Daley Blind’s less than impressive display against West Ham. Despite the Dutchman’s fine work this season, one cannot ignore his lack of strength when it comes to defending against bigger teams.
Van Gaal persisted with him and the end result was a horrific night for Blind and a very poor result for Manchester United on when they needed to win at all cost. Blind has developed in to a viable option for Man United this season but fans must be prepared from an off-day like this one every now and then.
Upton Park deserved the incredible farewell
The stadium was buzzing and for best part of the night Martin Tyler’s voice was not audible because of the constant songs and music being played by the West Ham fans. In all sense of the word, those fans dragged West Ham from 2-1 down to guide them through to the win.
The moment Antonio’s goal went in; you could sense there was only one winner in the game. And when Reid scored from his headers roof almost came down on Upton Park. For all the fanatic support over the years and last night, Upton Park and West Ham deserved a final game and result like last night.
United’s robotic style taking them to ground
The most ardent of Van Gaal’s prosecutors would shift the blame on United players and how they let the club down with a sorry end to the game.
However, last night’s result was a typical Van Gaal performance in a nutshell. After an awful performance, United somehow got themselves back in the game and following a false hope the sad reality of their substandard football came through.
Those who have followed Man United this season would know how far the club has fallen under the Dutchman and much of it is down to the rigid and robotic tactics from Van Gaal, where players aren’t given the freedom to express themselves on the pitch.
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