Three observations: Late heroics from United see West Ham crash out of FA Cup

Manchester United beat West Ham 3-1 in the FA Cup fifth round at Old Trafford.

The win led to a 10th consecutive home draw for the Reds in the quarter-finals, with Fulham set to visit Old Trafford for a place in the next round.

Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof started as the centre-back pairing as Erik ten Hag made a number of changes ahead of Sunday’s trip to Liverpool. Tyrell Malacia started at left-back and Scott McTominay was given the role as the deep-lying midfielder.

Wout Weghorst led the line with Alejandro Garnacho and Antony on either flank.

Here are three things we observed tonight:

Dull first half

There was a common view at half-time that the line-up was proof we lack quality in our squad. This was an opportunity for certain players who are knocking on the manager’s door about game time to prove themselves, but that wasn’t the case in the first 45 minutes. That’s why Casemiro replaced Scott McTominay at half-time.

United failed to create any clear cut chances while West Ham played with a low block. It was a snore fest.

Casemiro sparked life into United’s midfield

United only took control of the game when Casemiro came on the pitch. McTominay was the one to be hooked at half-time, but he can’t complain about that after seeing how the second half went. It was night and day apart.

Casemiro constantly looked to make the forward pass and a number of his through balls found United players in the final third. He also did a good job protecting the back four.

He also had a goal ruled out for offside.

Alejandro Garnacho threatening as ever

The youngster proved his critics wrong again tonight as he looked United’s most threatening attacker.

Played on his preferred left side, Garnacho showed glimpses of brilliance and scored the goal to make it 2-1 in stoppage time.

He made Ben Johnson look like an amateur at times.

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