Alejandro Garnacho came off the bench to score a stoppage-time winner for Manchester United as they beat Fulham 2-1 at Craven Cottage in their final Premier League game before the World Cup break. Christian Eriksen scored the opener in the 14th minute, his first goal for the club, before ex-United forward Dan James levelled in the second half.
Fulham were the team pushing to win the game in the closing moments only for Eriken and super-sub Garnacho to combine in the 93rd minute to beat Bernd Leno and condemn the hosts to successive last-gasp defeats.
The result leaves Manchester United in fifth place ahead of returning to top-flight action at home to Nottingham Forest on December 2. Fulham travel to Crystal Palace for a London derby on December 26. Read back all the action from Craven Cottage below, including expert insight and analysis from Nick Purewal!
Fulham vs Man United latest news
GOAL! James against his former club!
GOAL! Eriksen slides in for first goal
Prediction: Score draw on the cards
Fulham FC 1 - 2 Manchester United FC
18:36 , Alex Young
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18:24 , Alex Young
94min: That was virtually the last kick of the game! He’s won it for United.
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93min: Garnacho has won it at the death! A star is born!
He runs through and slot the ball under Leno.
For the second week running, Fulham lose it in injury time.
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91min: Cairney is replaced as Fulham wind down the clock. Onomah is on.
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89min: Three minutes added on.
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86min: Palhinha has been everywhere, in all the right ways.
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83min: McTominay should score! Shaw’s superb cross meets the midfielder six yards out with the goal gaping, but he gets the header all wrong.
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United are toiling but create an opening through Eriksen, who’s cross towards McTominay finds Fernandes on the right-hand side of the area. A simple look out and cross back in is required, but the Portuguese’s effort is wildly overhit.
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80min: It’s a free header for Palhinha but he gets it all wrong and it spins wickedly wide.
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76min: Shouts for a penalty as Garnacho takes a tumble inside the area, but the referee isn't interested.
The youngster made a meal of that one.
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73min: Martial makes way for Garnacho.
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71min: It looks like Garnacho is coming on. Fernandes on the wing has not worked.
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69min: Just 135 seconds between James coming on and James scoring. Super sub!
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67min: Only one team trying to win this at the moment. Fulham with all the momentum.
Nick Purewal at Craven Cottage
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“Dan James joins the ranks of former players twisting the knife on old clubs with a tap-in finish against United.
“Three minutes on the pitch and the Wales forward dragged Fulham back into this. “Who are you?” chant the home faithful. United’s identity remains to be determined under Ten Hag.”
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61min: That didn’t take him long!
Dan James levels it up at the back post, tapping home Cairney’s fizzed in cross after a mistake from Fernandes.
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59min: Wilson is replaced by James, both will be heading to the World Cup with Wales.
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56min: It looks like McTominay has taken Fernandes’ no.10 role as the latter moves to the wing where Elanga once patrolled.
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55min: First change for United as McTominay replaces Elanga.
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53min: That’s an even better save! Reid gets on the end of Cairney’s cross which De Gea pushes over at the back post.
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52min: Straight up the other end as a deflected cross falls to Vinicius inside the area, and the striker does very well to twist, turn and then test De Gea.
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51min: Leno again called into action as Martial has a pop from the edge of the area. Never really troubling the keeper, that.
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49min: Double chance for United.
First Elanga runs through and is denied by Leno, and then Rashford can’t bury the follow-up.
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47min: Early sight of goal for Cairney after United fail to properly clear a corner, but his half-volley is well wide.
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46min: Back underway.
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No changes at the break. Fulham looking to become the first team this season to beat United after trailing at half-time.
Nick Purewal at Craven Cottage
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“United should be 2-0 up at the break after Eriksen sidefooted wide of the post.
“But in truth the Red Devils have been second to everything in midfield and Malacia has been overrun down the right. Fulham can still force their way back into this.”
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Eriksen's first goal for the club is the difference, but the hosts are still in this.
An intriguing second half awaits.
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47min: The referee has seen enough.
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46min: Almost a second for Eriksen! Martial cuts the ball back for Fernandes, who spots Eriksen darting into the area but his shot is a yard wide.
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44min: Marco Silva is fuming as Palhinha goes into the book for a light pull on Shaw.
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40min: Martial goes close again!
Shaw stands up a fine cross but Martial mistimes his jump so his glancing header spins over the bar.
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36min: He may not like the scoreline but Pereira is enjoying himself today. Just whipped in a stunning cross to win a corner.
Nick Purewal at Craven Cottage
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“Willian is having one of his on days today. The former Chelsea and Arsenal winger is giving Malacia a torrid time out wide so far.”
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30min: Martial does within inches of doubling United’s lead as his shot at Leno almost beats the keeper before he scrambles back to smother behind him.
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28min: Fulham are pushing here. Cairney cuts inside and tests De Gea from 20 yards.
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26min: So close!
Pereira skips past Martinez to drill in a low cross for Wilson, who fires straight at De Gea.
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23min: Willian has been lively again, which certainly wasn’t part of his game when at Arsenal. Twice he’s created to carve United open on the flank.
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21min: Half a sight of goal for Rashford, who tries to volley home a superb, whipped cross from Fernandes but gets his feet all wrong before the offside flag is raised.
Nick Purewal at Craven Cottage
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“Fernandes might claim an assist for Eriksen’s opener here, but his clipped strike deflected off Issa Diop’s heel – straight into the Dane’s path. Tough on Fulham who had been busy and bright until the early goal.”
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17min: Away fans in full voice in the corner.
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14min: Christian Eriksen has his first goal for United!
A sweeping move sees Martial play Fernandes into the area, who drills a low pass towards the back post which Eriksen slides in to convert.
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12min: Fulham have started well, while United have been guilty of far too more sloppy passes.
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10min: The corner comes to nothing.
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9min: Rashford is in the mood. One ball forward cuts out the Fulham defence for the striker to run onto it, wait for Martial whose shot is deflected behind.
That was well-worked.
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8min: Fulham appear to be targeting Malacia, and you can't blame them.
The referee, meanwhile, is seemingly reluctant to reach for his whistle.
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5min: First shot on target and it falls to Fulham striker Vinicius, who almost gets the better of De Gea inside the area but a small deflection from Malacia helps his goalkeeper.
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3min: A cagey start from both teams.
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1min: Here we go!
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A rendition of The Last Post before kick-off as it’s Remembrance Sunday.
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Here come the teams at Craven Cottage.
We are minutes away.
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A narrative which may have gone under the radar is Aaron Wan-Bissaka's future at Manchester United.
Even with Diogo Dalot out today, it is Tyrell Malacia who Erik ten Hag turns to to cover at right-back, not the player who cost around £50million a few summers back.
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Both teams will be looking for a positive sign-off before the mid-season break, and both will feel confident about doing so. Mitrovic is a big loss for Fulham, but United are hardly a closed shop at the back.
Marcus Rashford looks to be getting back to his best, and Martial is back amongst the goals after returning from injury. Should be plenty of entertainment at Craven Cottage, we’re backing a 2-2 draw.
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Harry Maguire would have been hoping for more minutes ahead of the World Cup.
Even with Raphael Varane out, he remains on the bench today.
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So, it's two forced changes for Fulham with both Kenny Tete and Harrison Reed are suspended and Bobby De Cordova-Reid back from his own match ban. Tom Cairney also starts.
United make four changes, though Cristiano Ronaldo is not one of them as he again misses through illness. Diogo Dalot is suspended after picking up five yellow cards, while Alejandro Garnacho and Donny van de Beek drop out.
Bruno Fernandes, now suspension-free, is back, and supports a frontline featuring Anthony Elanga and Anthony Martial. Tyrell Malacia deputises at right-back.
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You have to feel for YouTuber IShowSpeed, who is in London to see his idol Cristiano Ronaldo for the first time... only for the main man to be a no-show.
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...and the visitors.
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Here’s how the hosts look.
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It sounds like, as expected, Cristiano Ronaldo is absent today and Anthony Martial is starting in attack.
Confirmed teams in 15 minutes.
Ten Hag: It’s going to be really tough
15:06 , Alex Young
Erik ten Hag says the impending World Cup cannot be a distraction and underlined the need for his players to do everything in their power to beat an energetic Fulham side.
"I think the players are all aware of the importance of the game against Fulham. I will not take the World Cup in regard," United boss Ten Hag said. "We play the best team - until Sunday, it is the interest of Manchester United and only the interest of Manchester United.
"That is going to be a really tough game. I think in the Premier League everything is very close, and what I have seen from Fulham so far is really energetic.
"They also play really decent football out from the back - I remember the game against Liverpool at the start of the season - so you have to be really good there to get a result.
"We have to do everything in our power to get the right result - that is what we're preparing now."
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Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag will be desperate to sign off for the World Cup on a high.
Last week’s loss to Aston Villa was quickly corrected by knocking the same opponent out of the Carabao Cup four days later, and fifth spot heading into Christmas is now secured despite a fluctuating start as United manager including back-to-back defeats in his opening two games in charge and a humiliating 6-3 loss to Manchester City.
There have also been hugely encouraging wins against Liverpool, Arsenal and Tottenham, but anything less than three points at Craven Cottage today will leave an ill taste in the mouth for the next six weeks.
Pereira with a point to prove
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There are likely to be many out there today with a point to prove, but Fulham's Andreas Pereira should be near the top of that list given his time at United.
The 26-year-old has settled well following a permanent summer move from United, having spent time on loan at Lazio and then last season with Flamengo, and scored from the penalty spot against Man City last weekend.
"I cannot talk about what happened before (at Manchester United), but we are pleased to have him here," Fulham boss Marco Silva said ahead of the weekend.
"He is performing well, has adapted really well in our squad and also in our philosophy.
"What I expect from him is even more because I know he has the quality to do more things, to keep improving. We will see much more and better things coming from him."
Mitrovic still out as two suspended
14:32 , Alex Young
Aleksandar Mitrovic will be missing again today as he recovers from a foot problem, which it is hoped will not limit the striker's impact for Serbia at the World Cup.
Bobby De Cordova-Reid returns for Fulham following a one-match ban, but defender Kenny Tete and midfielder Harrison Reed must serve their own suspensions after collecting five yellow cards.
Ronaldo out as Martial comes in
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Cristiano Ronaldo is today expected to miss the game after failing to join the squad that travelled down to London.
Ronaldo was absent from Thursday’s 4-2 Carabao Cup win over Aston Villa and Erik ten Hag said after that game that the Portuguese star was suffering from illness.
With uncertainty over his future and talk of a January move away from Old, it means Ronaldo could have played his last game for United. In his absence, and even if he was available in truth, Anthony Martial is expected to start.
United have Bruno Fernandes available again after a Premier League suspension, but Diogo Dalot has picked up five yellow cards so will sit this one out.
How to watch
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TV channel: In the UK, today’s game will be broadcast live on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Premier League, with coverage beginning at 4pm GMT ahead of a 4:30pm kick-off.
Live stream: Sky Sports subscribers will be able to watch live online via the Sky Go app.
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Good afternoon and welcome to the Evening Standard’s LIVE coverage of the Premier League clash between Fulham and Manchester United.
It’s the final top-flight game ahead of the World Cup break, with league action resuming on Boxing Day. So it better be a cracker.
Kick-off at Craven Cottage is at 4.30pm. Stick with us.