Football

Subs the hero in Manchester United routine win over Leeds in the Premier League

Manchester United players celebrating Fred's goal against Leeds. | PHOTO: Getty Images |
  • Manchester United enjoyed a routine win against Leeds United winning 4-2 against the Yorkshire side in Elland Road.
  • Substitutes Fred and Elanga were the match winners scoring the third and the fourth for United respectively.
  • The result has given Manchester United’s top-four hopes a huge boost.

Midfield substitute Fred was the hero as Manchester United withstood a second-half fightback to defeat rivals Leeds United 4-2 and become the first team to register 700 Premier League wins on Sunday evening.

First-half goals from Harry Maguire and Bruno Fernandes had the visitors seemingly coasting towards three points in Sunday’s contest at a sodden Elland Road in the Northern Derby.

Leeds United 2 – 4 Manchester United

Harry Maguire scored the opener for Manchester United against Leeds in the Premier League clash on Sunday, Feb 20 2022 at Elland Road. | PHOTO: Getty Images |

But Leeds’ reputation for chaos coupled with United’s for showing a soft centre each came to fruition as two goals in the space of 59 seconds from Rodrigo and Raphinha turned the game on its head.

There would be another twist, though, as Fred drilled home just three minutes after entering the fray to help the Red Devils secure a double over their cross-Pennine rivals, with a slice of history confirmed when fellow substitute Anthony Elanga netted late on.

Blood was literally spilt by Robin Koch after a clash of heads with Scott McTominay, which later led to the Leeds defender going off and being replaced by Junior Firpo.

David de Gea beat away an Adam Forshaw stinger prior to Paul Pogba laying the ball across the face of the goal for Cristiano Ronaldo, who scooped a close-range effort straight at Illan Meslier.

Leeds 2-4 Manchester United

Manchester United players celebrate after Anthony Elanga scored the fourth against Leeds in the Premier League clash. | PHOTO; Getty Images |

Meslier kept out Fernandes but from the follow-up corner, Maguire emphatically headed in Luke Shaw’s delivery.

Fernandes then nodded in a beauty of a dinked cross from Jadon Sancho at the end of a slick counter to double the lead on the stroke of halftime.

A chaotic 59-second period in the second half dramatically saw Leeds level by the 54th minute.

Rodrigo’s cross from the left deceived De Gea and found the far corner before Forshaw robbed Fernandes of possession prior to Dan James’ low cross being met on the slide by half-time sub-Raphinha.

But United would regain the lead when Fred hammered past Meslier at his near post after being teed up by Sancho with 20 minutes to play, and Elanga rolled home a fourth with the clock winding down.

The result leaves Leeds United in 15th position with 23 points while Manchester United climb to the fourth position with 46 points. Manchester United will be back in action on Wednesday in the UEFA Champions League with La Liga Champions Atletico Madrid while Leeds will be in Premier League action the same day at Anfield against Liverpool.

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