As Man U defeat Everton in FA Cup, Rashford shines

With a well-earned FA Cup victory at Old Trafford, Marcus Rashford scored for the sixth game in a row as Manchester United piled the pressure on Everton manager Frank Lampard.

When Antony converted Rashford’s far-post cross after only three minutes, Everton’s side was stunned to find themselves behind but maintained their composure to come back, earning praise from the away crowd.

When David de Gea tragically allowed Neal Maupay’s seemingly harmless cross to roll through his legs as he appeared to think it was set to touch the outside of his post in the 13th minute, Conor Coady slammed home an equalizer.

Lampard’s team fought valiantly even after Alex Iwobi was carried off in obvious discomfort after suffering an ankle injury in a collision with Tyrell Malacia.

However, the visitors’ spirit proved insufficient as Rashford’s exquisite approach play tricked Coady into putting the forward’s cross in his own net.

Additionally, man of the match Rashford maintained his composure to beat England international teammate Jordan Pickford from the penalty spot deep into injury time to score for the fifth game in a row for the first time in his club career after Dominic Calvert-Lewin had a goal disallowed for offside.

Rashford excels, while De Gea struggles

Ironically, De Gea’s terrible error came the same day that United announced former England goalkeeper Jack Butland had joined them on loan.

Ten Hag had taken the uncommon step of discussing Butland in the lead-up to the game before his loan from Crystal Palace until the end of the season had been finalised. The United manager repeatedly stated that De Gea was his top pick while doing this.

The goal itself was awful, but De Gea, whose play this year has been great overall, nearly handed Everton a second equalizer late in the second half when he hesitated on a clearance outside of his area. It’s a good thing Calvert-Lewin didn’t take advantage of the situation.

The former goalkeeper from Spain is still negotiating to extend his deal, which is set to expire in the summer. Even if it is anticipated that a compromise stance would eventually be reached, errors like those in this game will support United’s position that he is not deserving of his current salary of £375,000-a-week.

Rashford, on the other hand, is in excellent enough shape to believe that United’s leadership would like him to remain much longer than the end of next season, which is the length of his current contract.

In addition to his goal and two assists, Rashford was by far the most dangerous attacking threat on a squad that didn’t always perform at its peak. He also forced a stunning fingertip save from Pickford.

However, United are in excellent spirits heading into a week that features an EFL Cup quarterfinal against League One Charlton before they host Manchester City on January 14. They have won 10 of their last 11 games overall.

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