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Man Utd verdict: Red Devils grind out tense win vs West Ham but wastefulness in front of goal could dent top-four charge

MANCHESTER UNITED’S wastefulness in front of goal could dent their top-four charge with more ruthless teams making them pay.

The Red Devils managed to grind out a 1-0 win against the Hammers, but it was a game littered with misplaced passes and very little shots on target.

United's wastefulness could cost them ground in the top-four race


United’s wastefulness could cost them ground in the top-four raceCredit: EPA

Marcus Rashford scored the winner, rising high at the back post to meet Christian Eriksen’s inch-perfect cross.

The win lifts United above top-four rivals Chelsea and one point behind fourth-place Newcastle.

Three points is all well and good but they didn’t make it easy on themselves.

They played a toothless West Ham side, who can’t seem to penetrate the 18-yard box to save their lives.

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And United out-shot their opponents, but mustered just three shots on target from 16, with numerous shots fizzing wide of the target.

Wantaway star Cristiano Ronaldo had a golden opportunity to put the game to bed in the second half, but slashed his shot wide of Alphonse Areola’s right post and high into the Stretford End.

The Hammers’ anonymous performance in front of goal should come as no surprise to anyone, with David Moyes’ team taking just four from an available 72 before their trip to Old Trafford.

But better, more ambitious sides will have no trouble making United sweat, taking a point or all three.


Sloppy passing at times in the game also presented the opposition with the chance to get at United – but Moyes’ men passed on the opportunity.

United now won’t play a league home game until after the winter World Cup.

But they have favourable Premier League fixtures against Aston Villa and Fulham where they can put it right and meet Erik ten Hag’s expectations of controlling games.

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