Luton 1-2 Manchester United: Rasmus Hojlund makes history in frantic win over brave Hatters

Rasmus Hojlund scored twice in a nervy win (Action Images via Reuters)
Rasmus Hojlund scored twice in a nervy win (Action Images via Reuters)

Manchester United moved to within five points of the top four as they survived a real scare to beat Luton 2-1 in a frantic encounter.

Tottenham’s defeat to Wolves on Saturday had presented United with the chance to close the gap on those above them, and Erik ten Hag’s side made the perfect start in their bid to do so in an electric spell.

Rasmus Hojlund needed just 37 seconds to score for the sixth Premier League match in a row, the youngest player to ever do so, as he pounced on a disastrous backpass from Amari'i Bell and finished cooly.

And within seven minutes he had doubled his and United’s tally in front of a stunned Kenilworth Road crowd, though how much he knew about it is up for debate as Alejandro Garnacho’s volley hit his chest and bobbled into the far corner.

The response from Luton to that shocking start was typically impressive, Carlton Morris swiftly pulling one back with a brave header as he beat Andre Onana to the ball, and from then onwards it was the Hatters who were by far the better side.

A succession of promising attacks came and went before the break, with United far from convincing. Luke Shaw was forced off with an injury, while Casemiro was hugely fortunate to avoid a second yellow card for a lunge on Ross Barkley.

There was not quite the same intensity from Luton in the second-half, as United wasted a number of chances to finally put the match to bed. Bruno Fernandes, Garnacho and Rasmus Hojlund all found themselves clean through on goal, but could not find a ruthless edge, as a combination of brilliant goalkeeping from Thomas Kaminski and heroic last-ditch defending from Albert Sambi Lokonga kept the Hatters in it.

It mattered not in the end though, Luton falling short in their bid to find a late equaliser. Barkley was inches away from providing it in the dying seconds, as his flicked header bounced off the top of the woodwork. For United, a fourth League win on the bounce, even if a controlled, composed performance still feels a long way off.