Chris Smalling and Romelu Lukaku netted for United
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Manchester United took a step closer to securing second place in the Premier League this season with a 2-0 win at Bournemouth on Wednesday night.
Jose Mourinho made seven alterations to his side with one eye on Saturday's FA Cup semi-final against Tottenham.
However, the wholesale changes didnt hurt the Red Devils' performance and United were in control at half-time thanks to Chris Smalling's second goal in three games.
The centre-back, who scored the winner in United's dramatic victory over Manchester City, was in the right place to tuck home Jesse Lingard's low cross in the 28th minute after Herrera's neat ball opened up the Bournemouth defence.
The Cherries finished the half on top and had their best chance on the stroke of the break, Josh King forcing David De Gea to beat away his powerful shot.
The visitors doubled their lead with twenty minutes remaining in the second half as Romelu Lukaku came off the bench to dink a neat finish over Asmir Begovic after Paul Pogba burst through from midfield to set him up.
The result leaves United four points clear of Liverpool and six better off than Tottenham in the battle for second place.
Star man – Paul Pogba
Despite huge criticism for his performance against West Brom, Paul Pogba returned to form against Bournemouth. Together with Ander Herrera, the Frenchman controlled almost everything in midfield and was key to United retaining defensive solidity as well as demonstrating attacking prowess.
Moment of the match
With the game still up for grabs at 1-0, Paul Pogba picked the ball up in midfield and began to gallop forward. His presence had troubled the Cherries all night long and this moment was no different as he set Romelu Lukaku up to place a beautiful chipped shot over Asmir Begovic for the second goal.