In what started as a riot outside the Upton Park when Manchester United’s bus was attacked by the mob resulting in a 45 minute delayed kickoff, ended as a goal riot with visitors beaten 3-2 courtesy of some high intensity football by West Ham and poor defending by United which has more or less ended United’s hope of qualifying for UEFA champions league.
United were coming to Upton Park with a match in hand and 2 points behind fourth placed local rivals Manchester City, a win would have helped them leapfrog City to Champions League Qualification spot but in the end United didn’t seem like the team who wanted to get that spot and as some may say it they don’t deserve to be in the top 4. Manchester United were left founding in the first half, West Ham created attack after attack from the start and managed to take the lead in 10 minutes when Diafra Sakho’s shot was deflected into the bottom corner of the goal beating an out stretch David De Gea by inches. West Ham should have had more goals in the first half, Andy Carroll missed a sitter in front of goal, Dimitri Payet West Ham’s player of the year had a wild shot from a close range and Antonio goal was disallowed after the ball went out of play momentarily in the buildup.
West Ham were made to pay for these missed chances as United made amends in the 2nd half. Michael Carrick was brought on for Morgan Schneiderlin the move paid immediate dividends as United who had not managed to have even a single shot on goal managed to equalize in the 51st Minute through Anthony Martial’s, courtesy of some great inter linking play between him and Juan Mata. West Ham continued to squander off chances in the second half as well and Manchester United made the most of it and Martial fired home his second in the 72nd minute beating an erring Randolfh and United were in front 2-1 with 20 minutes of play left and European Nights in sight.
But there were still some twists left and West Ham had some other plans. Louis Van Gaal in his pre match press conference had warned that West Ham aerial presence could be a threat and his fears came true in the last 20 minutes of the match when West Ham fired home two headers from set-pieces one each from Michail Antonio and Winston Reid to instill a 3-2 defeat on United a first since December 2007.
As things stand this result consolidates West Ham chances of playing in the Europa League next season in their new Olympic Stadium as they go 2 points clear of 7th place Southampton. As for United they can only hope for a miracle. Their chances of making it to the top 4 stands on Swansea City beating Manchester City and more importantly on their going past Bournemouth in the last match of the league.