It was never expected to be an easy trip for Norwich City to Old Trafford, even with Manchester United’s recent struggles. Norwich had slowly but surely sank to the bottom of the Premier League and climbing out of the relegation zone seems more and more unlikely by the day. Two draws from their last two fixtures, against Tottenham and Crystal Palace, raised some hope but the visit to Manchester brought to light the absolute difference between a Premier League club and the Championship one. The hosts gave no mercy and trounced their visitors by 4-0 win and the numbers were justified.
Manchester United had not lost at home in Premier League since the end of August, when Crystal Palace took the jackpot, but they had fallen to draws a couple of times since – against the likes of Aston Villa and Everton. Norwich had their hopes built on those results and their effort is not to blame. They had had decent experiences from their defensive play in their recent road games, only conceding one goal on average from the last four, but the results just haven’t gone their way. Against Manchester United though, it was evident from early on that the defense would be in trouble.
It took 27 minutes for the hosts to find an opening, with Juan Mata sending in an inwards curling cross and Marcus Rasford finishing it from close range without an effort. United controlled the game for the first half, but couldn’t convert their 66% of ball possession and three shots on goal to more than one goal. Norwich’s single effort by Todd Cantwell was parried brilliantly by David De Gea.
United went further ahead in the second half. Tim Krul brought down surging Brandon Williams in the penalty area and Rashford scored his second of the night from the spot. Anthony Martial then exploited the lackluster Norwich’s marking, nodding in a cross by Juan Mata in the middle of the five-yard-box. The game was all over on the 54th minute and United pulled back, giving Norwich the control of the ball. Norwich was too far gone by then and only managed to threaten De Gea’s goal three times with no avail. United’s Mason Greenwood then finished Norwich off on 76th minute with a left-footed drive from 20 yards out.
It does not seem to be getting any easier for Daniel Farke’s Norwich, as the relegation trouble worsens by the day. Seven points now separate them from safety and their rivals have a game in hand. The Canaries will next travel to visit Bournemouth on 18th of January.
Don’t miss out on Dafabet’s Norwich City Prediction Challenge in order to win free weekly bets!