Lousy Man U gifts ri­val EPL ti­tle

Sun.Star Cebu - - PRIME SPORTS -

Manch­ester United gifted the Premier League ti­tle to fierce ri­val Manch­ester City in im­prob­a­ble fash­ion by los­ing 1-0 to last­place West Bromwich Al­bion on Sun­day.

A week af­ter pre­vent­ing its neigh­bors from clinch­ing the ti­tle in front of their own fans by ral­ly­ing from 2-0 down to win 3-2, United de­liv­ered a sim­i­larly un­likely re­sult as man­ager­less West Brom pulled off one of the shocks of the sea­son.

Jay Ro­driguez headed in a 73rd-minute win­ning goal to seal only a sec­ond win since Au­gust and al­low City to clinch the ti­tle with­out kick­ing a ball.

City man­ager Pep Guardi­ola might have rubbed his eyes in dis­be­lief at events at Old Traf­ford when he re­turned from his round of golf with his son. His de­ci­sion to forego the match looked jus­ti­fied con­sid­er­ing West Brom’s dread­ful form, but the vis­i­tors eas­ily coped with United’s pon­der­ous at­tacks and looked dan­ger­ous go­ing for­ward.

West Brom is still nine points from safety and looks des­tined for rel­e­ga­tion. United is now just one point above third-place Liver­pool.

United should have had a firsthalf penalty af­ter Craig Daw­son caught An­der Her­rera, but com­pla­cency seeped in and West Brom showed fight un­der care­taker boss Dar­ren Moore that has been sorely lack­ing this sea­son.

United was too nar­row and pre­dictable, with wide play­ers Alexis Sanchez and Juan Mata con­stantly cut­ting in­side and leav­ing the mid­field con­gested. /

We couldn’t play fast, we couldn’t think fast, ev­ery­thing was com­pli­cated. One more touch to con­trol the ball, one more flick, one more trick. We al­ways gave them the op­por­tu­nity to be solid, com­pact in the low block with strong phys­i­cal play­ers.

JOSE MOUR­INHO, Man United man­ager

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