Harry Maguire and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer were left confused as to why West Brom’s opener in Manchester United’s 1-1 draw on Sunday was allowed to stand after an apparent foul.
United dropped points for the fourth time in five Premier League games, as the Red Devils were unable to make the most of their dominance at The Hawthorns.
Bruno Fernandes got United’s goal on the stroke of half-time, taking him to 38 goal involvements for the club in as many league games, a record bettered by only Andy Cole (46) in his first 38 Premier League games.
But United failed to build on that as they struggled to break West Brom’s packed defence down, meaning Mbaye Diagne’s early goal consigned them to another disappointing result.
But there was more than a hint of controversy around Diagne’s goal, which stood despite the striker clearly catching Victor Lindelof in the face with his hand.
0.48 – Manchester United amassed an Expected Goals (xG) total of just 0.48 against West Brom, the lowest figure for any side against WBA in the Premier League since Everton in December 2017 (0.46). Stifled. pic.twitter.com/BV8mtZSzfl
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) February 14, 2021
The situation left Maguire and Solskjaer baffled.
Maguire, who had a goal of a similar nature disallowed against Burnley, told Sky Sports: “We created a lot of chances – enough to win the game.
“It was tough for ourselves with the goal we conceded – for us it was a foul. We played the game in their half. We can do more and improve but it’s disappointing. It was a tough job against a team that defends deep.”
Speaking to beIN SPORTS, Solskjaer added: “I’m an ex-forward, so it’s not as if I’m going to say it’s a big foul against Victor, but why did Harry’s goal against Burnley – and I know I’m going back a bit here – [get disallowed] … Where’s the consistency here? There’s absolutely no consistency in any of these decisions.
“If Harry’s against Burnley is a foul, that is miles worse. As a striker you say well done, because if that had been taken away from me I would have been disappointed, so it’s just the consistency we’re looking for.”
The draw put United second again but meant they were seven points adrift of leaders Manchester City, who also have a game in hand.