Manchester United 3-1 West Ham: Late show sends Red Devils into quarter-finals

Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images

Alejandro Garnacho and Fred scored late goals as Manchester United backed up their EFL Cup triumph with a 3-1 comeback win over West Ham to reach the FA Cup quarter-finals.

Erik ten Hag's side lifted their first major trophy since 2017 by defeating Newcastle United on Sunday and followed up that success with another victory at Old Trafford three days later.

United made six changes from the Wembley showpiece and fell behind after Said Benrahma's 54th-minute strike, but a Nayer Aguerd own goal restored parity 23 minutes later.

Garnacho edged United ahead in the 90th minute before Fred sealed victory to send United into Wednesday's last-eight draw, where they were paired with Fulham, still in pursuit of further silverware.

United paraded their EFL Cup trophy before kick-off but did not look winners in a frustrating first half.

Alphonse Areola produced smart stops to deny early Marcel Sabitzer and Alejandro Garnacho chances, but the industrious West Ham soon grew in confidence.

Michail Antonio should have opened the scoring after 23 minutes but clipped a timid effort straight at the onrushing David de Gea.

Ten Hag sent on Casemiro at half-time, but that did little to stem the pressure from West Ham as Benrahma curled into the top-right corner from Emerson's offload.

De Gea prevented further damage by denying Antonio before Casemiro saw a header ruled out by the VAR for offside.

But United hit back as Aguerd headed into his own net from Bruno Fernandes' corner, with Garnacho then expertly curling into the far-right corner in the closing stages.

Fred added gloss to the victory as he fired past Areola following an Aguerd error inside his own area.

What does it mean? United can still dream of unlikely quadruple

Manchester City and Arsenal appear embroiled in a two-horse Premier League title race, yet United are still just eight points adrift of the top two in third.

Although wiping out that deficit remains a somewhat unlikely scenario, Ten Hag's men kept their faint hopes of a quadruple alive with their fifth straight FA Cup victory over West Ham, albeit while requiring late drama.

A two-legged Europa League last-16 clash with Real Betis follows after a top-flight meeting with Liverpool in what could prove to be another pivotal week for United's ambitions.

Brilliant Benrahma efforts in vain

Benrahma was central to all the problems the impressive West Ham caused Ten Hag's men, yet he ended up on the losing side.

The Algeria international whipped in his opener in clinical fashion, while he created three chances – only Wout Weghorst (five) managed more key passes.

Rotated Red Devils fail to impress

Harry Maguire and Scott McTominay, in for Lisandro Martinez and Casemiro respectively, failed to take their chance in the starting XI after largely unconvincing showings.

The pair both received first-half cautions, with McTominay replaced at half-time, as the two squad players for United squandered their opportunity to impress Ten Hag.

Key Opta Facts

– United have now reached at least the quarter-finals of the FA Cup in eight of the last nine seasons, only failing to do so in 2021-22, going out in the fourth round to Middlesbrough.
– West Ham have now been eliminated from the FA Cup in four of their last five ties away to Premier League opposition, three of which have been to United. 
– Garnacho (18y 243d) is the youngest player to score a winning goal in the FA Cup for United since Danny Welbeck against Southampton in January 2009 (18y 39d).
– Each of Benrahma's last two goals for West Ham in all competitions have come in the FA Cup, also scoring against Brentford in the third round – the Algerian had failed to score in nine appearances in the competition prior to this season.

What's next?

United visit fierce rivals Liverpool in the Premier League on Sunday, while West Ham travel to Brighton and Hove Albion the day before.