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Other SportsMan United 2-0 Everton: Bruno Fernandes, Rashford goals end losing run for...

Man United 2-0 Everton: Bruno Fernandes, Rashford goals end losing run for Ten Hag’s side

Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford scored first-half spot kicks as Manchester United ended their two-match losing run with a comfortable home win which deepened Everton’s relegation concerns.

Alejandro Garnacho won both penalties, James Tarkowski bringing down the winger to afford Fernandes the opening goal and Ben Godfrey mistiming a challenge to set up an opportunity Rashford took to double the lead.

Everton started promisingly but offered little in attack and are five points above third-bottom Luton Town, although the Toffees are 11 games without a win in the Premier League and the Hatters have two matches in hand on them.

Fifth-placed Tottenham have a three-point cushion and two games in hand on United, who had lost at home to Fulham and away to Manchester City in their two preceding matches.

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Man United vs Everton result: Relief for Ten Hag

After their seven-match unbeaten start to the year ended with those successive defeats, United have little room for slip-ups as they try to catch Spurs and reach the fifth spot which is likely to guarantee Uefa Champions League qualification in 2024/25.

Fulham had not won away since August but scored a last-gasp winner last time out at Old Trafford, and there would have been jitters among the home fans when Everton threatened early on.

Garnacho’s incisive runs relieved the tension for United manager Erik ten Hag, drawing Tarkowski and Godfrey into late tackles before Fernandes and Rashford beat Pickford with excellent penalties.

There will be a debate around whether United should rotate penalty takers, and Fernandes almost had a second when Pickford pawed his curling free-kick away with the score 1-0.

United were twice denied penalties after VAR checks, Everton defender Vitaliy Mykolenko being adjudged to have accidentally handled on both occasions.

Despite containing Everton for longer periods during the second half, United still looked vulnerable and would have been punished but for their opponents’ lack of ruthlessness.

Godfrey was among the culprits, failing to test goalkeeper Andre Onana when Mykolenko provided him with a header in front of goal, but Ten Hag will be more concerned by the shots count, representing the fifth time in their last six Premier League games in which Onana has faced 20 or more attempts.

United are next in action at home to Liverpool in the FA Cup quarter-finals on March 17, while Everton are away to Bournemouth on March 30.

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