Manchester United vs Charlton Athletic. Carabao Cup Quarter-Final.
Match report and free highlights as Man Utd beat League One side Charlton 3-0 at Old Trafford to reach the Carabao Cup semi-finals; Marcus Rashford scores late double after Antony's stunning first-half strike; Man Utd youngsters Kobbie Mainoo and Facundo Pellistri make senior debuts
Wednesday 11 January 2023 15:49, UK
Marcus Rashford continued his fine form by scoring twice as Manchester United beat Charlton 3-0 at Old Trafford to reach the Carabao Cup semi-finals.
Substitute Rashford's late double (90, 94) sealed an eighth consecutive victory for a much-changed United after Antony's stunning first-half strike from distance had given them the lead (21).
England international Rashford has now scored for a sixth game in a row since returning from the World Cup and an eighth straight home match. He already has 15 goals for United this season, 10 more than he managed during the whole of last term.
"I have told you many times, when Marcus brings himself into position, when the team puts him in the positions, in the one-on-ones in the box, he will score and that is what he is doing at this moment," United manager Erik ten Hag said.
"What you see now with him is quite obvious. It wasn't at the start of the season but now he is in the right moment. If he keeps the focus and keeps putting the effort in, he will keep on scoring."
Man Utd: Heaton (7), Dalot (6), Maguire (7), Martinez (7), Malacia (6), McTominay (6), Fred (8), Antony (7), Mainoo (6), Garnacho (7), Elanga (6).
Subs: Wan-Bissaka (6), Eriksen (6), Rashford (8), Casemiro (7), Pellistri (7).
Charlton: Maynard-Brewer (7), Clare (6), Inniss (6), Ness (6), Sessegnon (6), Morgan (6), Dobson (7), Fraser (6), Rak-Sakyi (6), Leaburn (6), Blackett-Taylor (6).
Subs: O'Connell (6), Payne (6), Stockley (n/a), Henry (n/a).
Player of the match: Fred.
It was a satisfying night in the end for Ten Hag, who made eight changes to his side following Friday's FA Cup victory over Everton and gave senior debuts to 17-year-old midfielder Kobbie Mainoo and Uruguay winger Facundo Pellistri.
League One Charlton knocked out Brighton in the previous round and occasionally threatened to cause another upset against Premier League opposition, but Dean Holden's team lacked quality in the final third and could not prevent United from securing their ninth win in a row at Old Trafford.
They could make it 10 on Saturday when they return to Premier League action by hosting neighbours Manchester City, who play their Carabao Cup quarter-final against Southampton at St Mary's on Wednesday. The draw for the semi-finals will take place after that match, live on Sky Sports.
United only made sure of their progression to the last four as the tie headed towards stoppage time but it could have been more convincing had they taken one of the early chances that the prodigious talent Alejandro Garnacho created.
The Argentine made an opening for Diogo Dalot after cutting inside from the byline but the defender, who was forced off in the first half due to injury, blazed over from a good position.
Garnacho then twice tried to go on his own, first cutting in and fizzing a shot just wide before a jinking run into the penalty area ended with him dragging his effort off target.
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag made eight changes from the side that beat Everton 3-1 in the FA Cup third round on Friday.
Centre-back Lisandro Martinez started for the first time since winning the World Cup with Argentina. Goalkeeper Tom Heaton came into the XI and there was a debut for 17-year-old midfielder Kobbie Mainoo.
Captain Harry Maguire, Scott McTominay, Fred, Anthony Elanga and Alejandro Garnacho also started.
The players to make way were David de Gea, Raphael Varane, Luke Shaw, Casemiro, Christian Eriksen, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and the suspended Bruno Fernandes.
Charlton boss Dean Holden made one change from the team that beat Lincoln 2-1 in League One on Saturday.
That change came in goal, as Craig MacGillivray was replaced by Ashley Maynard-Brewer - who was the hero in the Addicks' last-16 shootout win over Brighton. Maynard-Brewer was absent at the weekend due to concussion protocols.
But it was from the right where United forged their 21st-minute opener. They worked the ball across the pitch and Fred found Antony, who made space on his preferred left foot before sending a curling effort past Ashley Maynard-Brewer and into the top corner.
The hosts were within inches of doubling their lead 10 minutes before the break when the impressive Fred saw his 30-yard free-kick crash against a post, with Maynard-Brewer a bystander.
Charlton, roared on by 9,000 travelling supporters and manager Holden - a die-hard United fan - had battled hard and enjoyed their best period of the game heading into the interval as Albie Morgan whipped a free-kick wide before Tom Heaton had to claim Sean Clare's low cross with Corey Blackett-Taylor waiting to pounce.
The visitors started the second half strongly as well and missed a golden opportunity to equalise when Scott Fraser put a left-footed shot over the crossbar from a promising position.
Anthony Elanga had a goal ruled out for a clear offside but it was Charlton who continued to press and, such was their impact, Ten Hag introduced Rashford, Casemiro and Christian Eriksen on the hour mark.
That experienced trio helped United gain control of the match and they created some chances to kill the game off as Garnacho brought a flying save from Maynard-Brewer, who also got down low to keep out Eriksen's effort.
United eventually got the second that made the game safe in the 90th minute as debutant Pellistri teed up Rashford before the in-form forward scored again after being played through by Casemiro.
The win sees United make the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup for the third time in six seasons since they won the competition in 2017 under Jose Mourinho.
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag: "The first half an hour I was quite happy. I was less happy with not being clinical in front of goal. We need to be more effective there because we created good chances in the first half an hour.
"We should have scored more in the first half and also in the second half there was a good save and a few moments where we needed an extra pass, but we didn't so until the end we had to fight for it.
"I don't think they created really good open chances but still you never know. We are progressing after the winter break, this is the third time we have won 3-0 which is good but we have to be more clinical."
Charlton manager Dean Holden: "I have pride in the performance and the way we have shown ourselves as a football club on and off the pitch.
"We rode our luck in the first 20 minutes, but which team doesn't have to do that in the Premier League? We grew into the game.
"We had a big chance early in the second half and I thought we had a grip of the game, I turned to my left and Erik was bringing them three on, Rashford, Casemiro and Eriksen.
"I thought it was a harsh scoreline to be honest, but I am proud of the performance.
"Erik invited me into his office after the game and he told me about the quality of our youngsters, which gives me great pride."
Sky Sports' Dan Sansom at Old Trafford:
February 26, 2023.
It's a date Manchester United supporters will have marked in the diary as their side's resurgence under Erik ten Hag continues to gather pace. It may be premature, especially with Manchester City still in the competition, but it would take a brave person to bet against United winning the Carabao Cup next month.
They may have only beaten Charlton, a team sitting 12th in the third tier of English football, but it is now eight consecutive wins in all competitions for Ten Hag's team. It's nine victories in a row at Old Trafford. Unexpectedly, United have dragged themselves into the Premier League title race in recent weeks and remain alive in three cup competitions.
Ten Hag won six trophies with Ajax, including three Eredivisie titles. But steering United to Carabao Cup glory in his debut campaign would rank as one of his best achievements and should not be underestimated either. It could be the catalyst for more significant silverware. It was, after all, Pep Guardiola's first major honour as Manchester City manager. He's won eight more since.
Success at Wembley would also strengthen Ten Hag's hand and serve as a reminder of the progress he's made since taking charge of United last summer. His win rate is an impressive 74 per cent after 27 matches - better than Guardiola's after the same number of games with City - and that's despite Ten Hag losing his opening two fixtures in August. He's made some big calls already during his short reign. So far, they've been vindicated.
There is still a long way to go in this unprecedented season, but under the meticulous and no-nonsense Dutchman, United finally look capable of ending their six-year trophy drought.
"United are coming back," Guardiola said in October. After a run of 15 wins in 18 games since a 6-3 defeat at the Etihad, Ten Hag is proving his old colleague right.
Saturday's Premier League clash between the two Manchester clubs is now a much more difficult one to call.
Sky Sports' Dan Sansom at Old Trafford:
It was a huge night for 17-year-old Manchester United midfielder Kobbie Mainoo, who made his first-team debut in a Carabao Cup quarter-final.
The Stockport-born teenager became the eighth United player to debut under Ten Hag and the second academy prospect to be promoted to senior football by the Dutchman after striker Charlie McNeill.
Mainoo, who was part of United's FA Youth Cup-winning squad last season, scored in a friendly against Cadiz during the World Cup break and has represented England at both U17 and U18 level.
The youngster held his own against Charlton alongside Scott McTominay and Fred before his substitution in the 60th minute. He was not afraid to receive the ball under pressure and deservedly received a standing ovation from United supporters as he left the pitch.
Mainoo's future at Old Trafford could be a bright one.
Manchester United 3-0 Charlton
Nottingham Forest vs Wolves - Wednesday, kick-off 7.45pm
Southampton vs Manchester City - Wednesday, kick-off 8pm - live on Sky Sports
Manchester United return to Premier League action at 12.30pm on Saturday when they take on rivals Manchester City at Old Trafford.
Erik ten Hag's side then travel to Crystal Palace at 8pm on Wednesday before a mouth-watering clash with Arsenal at 4.30pm on January 22, live on Sky Sports.
Up next for Charlton is a home match against Barnsley in League One at 3pm on Saturday before a trip to Peterborough at the same time on January 21.