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DESPITE conceding late against Manchester United, a 1-1 draw was celebrated like a win by Everton supporters at Old Trafford yesterday.
United’s second-half substitute Mason Greenwood cancelled out a first-half Victor Lindelof own-goal to salvage a point for the home side after 77 minutes.
But Toffees caretaker manager Duncan Ferguson punched the air at full-time as his side made it four points from two games following victory against Chelsea last weekend, having taken over from Marco Silva earlier this month.
The fixture marked the 4,000th consecutive game United had featured a homegrown player — a run started in 1937 when Thomas Manley and Jackie Wassall were in the starting 11 that lost 1-0 in a second division game at Fulham.
And it was one of United’s graduates that had the chance to put the home side into the lead inside the first 15 seconds of the game, Jesse Lingard’s snap shot narrowly missing the target from 12 yards.
Everton came close themselves when a speculative long-range effort from Mason Holgate almost caught out David de Gea before Richarlison tested the Spanish keeper with a curling effort.
But it was the home side who were on the front foot for most of the opening exchanges as the Toffees’ backline failed to handle the pace of United’s attack — Marcus Rashford and Daniel James both coming close to scoring.
Rashford came close again midway through the first half with a 22-yard free kick that stung the hands of Jordan Pickford before Dominic Calvert-Lewin had a 25-yard effort saved by De Gea.
The away side’s injury problems continued when Lucas Digne was forced off after 25 minutes to be replaced by Leighton Baines.
And it was the 35-year-old, once a target for United under David Moyes, who helped produce the opening goal as De Gea failed to deal with his in-swinging corner from the right, which came off Lindelof from three yards out.
Chances for either side after the break were few, the best of them falling to Lindelof — a left-footed effort from inside the box following a United corner which shaved the top of Pickford’s goal.
But with the away side beginning to drop deep another United graduate, Greenwood, produced a goal out of nothing with a shot from the edge of the box that beat Pickford at his near post.
Despite both teams pushing for the winning goal they had to settle for a share of the spoils with a lack of quality from both sides in the final third.
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