Join our whatsapp sports news group:
Scott McTominay came off the bench to score twice for Manchester United in stoppage time and secure a memorable comeback win at home to Brentford.
Erik ten Hag’s men were stifled by the Bees for much of a glorious afternoon at Old Trafford but persevered and were rewarded for their efforts.
Thomas Frank’s side would have been good value for all three points due to some heroic defensive displays but head back to west London empty-handed after collapsing at the last.
How the game unfolded
There was little to separate the two sides in the opening stages of the game, with Aaron Hickey’s two long-range and speculative strikes at the end of clever corner routines the closest either came to a goal early on.
United’s first chance of note came straight from a goal-kick which caught Brentford cold, with Bruno Fernandes setting through Mason Mount, only for the summer signing to be denied by a flying block from Ethan Pinnock.
Brentford broke the deadlock midway through the first half. Casemiro was dispossessed on the halfway line and the Bees swarmed forward in numbers. Though Victor Lindelof thought he had dealt with a loose touch by Yoane Wissa in the box, the ball cannoned back off his retreating Brazilian teammate into the path of Mathias Jensen, and he curled past Andre Onana who ought to have done much better to keep out a trickling shot.
The recently-maligned Marcus Rashford did well to dance his way in from the touchline past Mads Roerslev and Wissa to get a shot away, forcing Premier League debutant Thomas Strakosha into a save at his near post.
Ten Hag threw on Christian Eriksen for Casemiro at half-time as United threw caution to the wind. The ex-Bee nearly came back to haunt his former side when he saw a 25-yard strike spilled by Strakosha, with Nathan Collins clearing before any forward could pounce.
Brentford went close to doubling their advantage with a long throw-in. Jensen’s delivery was flicked on by Kristoffer Ajer and then Collins before Diogo Dalot cleared to safety before Wissa could tap in from point-blank range.
United’s frustration was evident when Rasmus Hojlund neatly took a pass from Sofyan Amrabat away from goal but fired from a tight angle anyway, finding the side-netting.
Onana was forced into a save with under ten minutes remaining when substitute Neal Maupay let fly from distance, with the Cameroonian this time managing to claw the ball to safety. He was also on hand to keep out a free Christian Norgaard header from the resulting corner.
United thought they had scored an 89th-minute equaliser when Scott McTominay found the net, but Anthony Martial was judged to have been offside from both the initial free-kick the hosts had and then Alejandro Garnacho’s cross which led to the Scotsman slamming home.
McTominay did draw United level midway through six minutes of added time, though. Dalot’s fierce shot was palmed away by Strakosha, but only as far as McTominay, who made no mistake from around 12 yards.
With one last attack, United took the three points. Harry Maguire flicked on a long free-kick and McTominay flicked it in to complete the turnaround and send Old Trafford into bedlam.
Manchester United player ratings (4-2-3-1)
GK: Andre Onana – 5/10 – Just absolutely has to do much, much better for Jensen’s goal. It’s not moving particularly quickly and is in the middle of the net. Redeemed himself to some extent with a couple of big saves in the second half.
RB: Diogo Dalot – 7/10 – Settled defensively but stifled going forward by Hickey until the latter stages.
CB: Jonny Evans – 7/10 – Kept his calm despite the calamity around him. Not a bad performance for United’s fifth-choice centre-back.
CB: Harry Maguire – 7/10 – Similarly fine. United’s main problem was the duo’s lack of pace restricted them from playing a high line but they did most of their jobs well. Came up with the winning assist.
LB: Victor Lindelof – 4/10 – An asset going forward but like Amrabat in midweek was flummoxed by his defensive responsibilities in tandem. Poor for Brentford’s opener.
CM: Casemiro – 3/10 – Surely one of the worst performances of his career. Offered little control and Brentford honed in on his lack of pace, leading to the opener. Withdrawn at half-time.
CM: Sofyan Amrabat – 6/10 – Linked defence and midfield well though had to do a lot of Casemiro’s running for him in the first half and ran defensive responsibilities alone in the second.
RM: Bruno Fernandes – 5/10 – Swapped positions with Mount for the second half but made little difference. Continually a picture of frustration and is lacking his killer edge.
AM: Mason Mount – 4/10 – Still not sure of where he’s meant to be playing in this United team. A willing presser but again this left his side exposed whenever Brentford played through from the back.
LM: Marcus Rashford – 4/10 – Tried to free himself from the shackles of Roerslev and Ajer but had little luck inside the Brentford box. Hooked on the hour mark.
CF: Rasmus Hojlund – 6/10 – Threw himself all over the frontline holding play up but was starved of service and support.
SUB: Christian Eriksen (46′ for Casemiro) – 7/10 – Didn’t provide quite the same creative spark as he did against Galatasaray but was always positive.
SUB: Antony (63′ for Mount) – 5/10
SUB: Alejandro Garnacho (63′ for Rashford) – 7/10
SUB: Anthony Martial (71′ for Lindelof) – 5/10
SUB: Scott McTominay (87′ for Amrabat) – 10/10 – Literally no more that he could have done in his time on the pitch.
Subs not used: Bayindir (GK), Hannibal, Pellistri, Van de Beek
Erik ten Hag – 6/10 – Goodness me, did United make that hard for themselves. They lacked invention and got frustrated but dug in deep to take the points.
Brentford player ratings (5-3-2)
GK: Thomas Strakosha – 5/10 – Produced several saves required of him on his first ever Premier League appearance but couldn’t quite keep a clean sheet at the last.
RB: Mads Roerslev – 6/10 – Frank has made little secret of his reliance on Roerslev to clamp down opposition wingers in big games and this was another fine performance for the young Dane’s collection despite the late collapse.
CB: Kristoffer Ajer – 7/10 – Supported both Roerslev and Pinnock in their battles well. Guilty of prematurely celebrating with 92 minutes on the clock.
CB: Ethan Pinnock – 6/10 – Introduced Hojlund to a proper Premier League battle, blocking various shots and forays into the box.
CB: Nathan Collins – 6/10 – Endured quite a rough start to his time at Brentford, but this was better from the Irishman.
LB: Aaron Hickey – 7/10 – Recovered excellently from an early yellow card again to stubbornly deny United’s right flank.
CM: Vitaly Janelt – 5/10 – Covered so much ground in his 70 minutes on the pitch, breaking play up for the most part.
CM: Christian Norgaard – 6/10 – A decent performance in the heart of midfield, disrupting United’s flow one way or another.
CM: Mathias Jensen – 7/10 – A touch of fortune about the goal owing to Onana’s poor goalkeeping but he won’t mind. A constant threat from set pieces as per.
CF: Bryan Mbeumo – 6/10 – Lacked his usual finesse and cynicism but played his heart out considering he was dead on his feet for the last half an hour.
CF: Yoane Wissa – 6/10 – Accused of laziness in recent weeks but put in one hell of a shift up top, with his endeavour leading to Jensen’s first-half goal.
SUB: Neal Maupay (70′ for Wissa) – 6/10
SUB: Frank Onyeka (70′ for Janelt) – 6/10
SUB: Saman Ghoddos (83′ for Jensen) – 5/10
Subs not used: Balcombe (GK), Zanka, Kim, Yamrolyuk, Brierley, Olakigbe
Thomas Frank – 6/10 – Brentford set out to make United’s day miserable but were undone at the back-end of a match they tried to elongate.
Player of the match – Scott McTominay (Manchester United)