U21 MATCH REPORT: Arsenal 1-1 Manchester United

Premier Under 21 League

Arsenal 1 Manchester United 1

A young United team shared the points with a more experienced Arsenal side in windy conditions at Boreham Wood.  Although United had the best of the earlier part of the game, they were grateful for a fine save from Joel Perreira that preserved the draw in the closing minutes.

United took the lead with a penalty after ten minutes.  With the linesman furiously flagging for a foul earlier in the move, the referee played the advantage and allowed United to advance, only for Janko to be clumsily bundled over when he received the ball in the area.  Larnell Cole showed his customary composure to score from the spot.

Arsenal came back strongly and Afobe’s overhead kick just landed wide of the post, while Eisfeld also went close.  Despite that, these proved to be the best chances for the home side in a first half in which United’s three man midfield of Rothwell, Cole and Pearson kept control of the game for long periods.

It was a different story in the second half, however, as Arsenal stepped up their game and equalised through a decisive strike from ex-Dortmund midfielder Eisfeld.  While United continued to look dangerous on the break, the Gunners looked the more threatening in the later stages and it was only that crucial intervention from Pereira, whose reputation between the posts continues to grow, that allowed the Reds to walk away with a share of the spoils.  Following the save, Eisfeld’s follow-up shaved the post and Arsenal gained a series of corners as they pressed for a winner.

It wasn’t to come, though, and while this results keeps United in the bottom half of the table, it was a hard-won away point against one of the Under 21 league’s better sides.

1 Comment

  1. I think that there is something lacking in the play of United. Like the under 18s United teams always seem to be outplayed and they only recover by individual talent . Take the under 18 against Burnley, a team not in the same league as United but Burnley completely outplayed them this year and last year. This year they were done by the brilliance of Pereira and Wilson.
    The same was shown in the under 19s in the Champions League. All the other teams were playing triangles all over the pitch but I do not think United players know what it is. I think United are short of a top coach for the under 18s.

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