10-man Bournemouth held Man United to a 1-1 draw in a game which had plenty of controversy.
United dominated the opening stages and could’ve been battering Bournemouth after 20 minutes. Bournemouth had conceded 51 goals in the league before this game, and it was clear to see why with their shaky defence at the beginning of the game. Paul Pogba had a great chance running through on goal, after a long ball by Luke Shaw which went over the defence. Artur Boruc made a great save to deny Pogba’s left foot shot.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic could’ve scored, but his touch let him down when Wayne Rooney squared it to him. Boruc also made saves to deny Pogba again, Rooney and Anthony Martial. Ibrahimovic definitely should’ve scored when Martial squared it to him two yards from goal, but it hit the side of his foot and Bournemouth were able to clear.
United finally went in front in the 23rd minute, when Marcos Rojo diverted Antonio Valencia’s strike into the net. With all the United dominance, Bournemouth found a shock equaliser in the 40th minute from the penalty spot. Phil Jones brought down Marc Pugh and Joshua King converted from the spot.
Then came the main incident just before half-time. Tyrone Mings and Ibrahimovic had been talked to by referee Kevin Friend early on in the half. Then at the end of the half, Mings appeared to land on the Swede’s head, who was lying on the floor after hurling Rooney to the floor after a tackle. From a following corner, Ibrahimovic appeared to elbow Mings in the face, which looked like it was because Mings had caught his head moments before.
As Mings’ team-mates had seen the incident, Andrew Surman came in and pushed the United striker. Surman had earlier been shown a yellow card for a follow-up on a tackle and was shown his second yellow card. He was consequently shown a red card, which Friend realised after a long delay. In an unsavoury end to the half, Bournemouth assistant Jason Tindall was also sent off for his protestations for what had happened with the corner.
United carried on dominating in the second half, but couldn’t break down a resilient Bournemouth defence. Boruc made another save to deny another Pogba effort. Then in the 71st minute, United had a great chance to go back in front when they were awarded a penalty. Adam Smith handled Pogba’s flick and Ibrahimovic had a chance to score from the spot. But, Boruc dived to his right to deny him. It wasn’t the greatest penalty though.
United remain in sixth place in the league. It was Bournemouth’s first league point in five games. But, United had 20 efforts but only scored one. Next up for United is a trip to Russia to play FC Rostov in the first leg of the last 16 of the Europa League on Thursday, the 9 March.