Manchester United escaped FA Cup disaster against fourth-tier underdog Newport County, clinging to a 4-2 victory thanks to Antony’s first goal of the season.
A dominant first half saw Bruno Fernandes and Kobbie Mainoo put United ahead, but plucky Newport roared back with goals from Bryn Morris and Will Evans, sending Rodney Parade into a frenzy.
Just when a giant-killing seemed inevitable, Antony stepped up, breaking his drought and putting United back in front. Rasmus Hojlund sealed the win in stoppage time, masking a shaky performance from the Red Devils.
Erik ten Hag faced further challenges amidst the drama, addressing reports of a clash with Marcus Rashford, who was absent due to illness, according to the manager. However, rumours claimed Rashford was spotted partying just hours before training, adding to the tension.
Newport, known for their FA Cup heroics, threw everything at United. A packed stadium, buzzing with anticipation, erupted when Morris’s volley and Evans’s deflected effort levelled the score, bringing dreams of another upset to life.
United wobbled, but Antony found his composure after hitting the post, burying the rebound to finally break the Newport resistance. Hojlund added a late insurance goal, but questions remain about United’s form and internal strife.
While avoiding a humiliating upset, Ten Hag faces lingering issues. Rashford’s unexplained absence, rumoured nightclub visit, and alleged tension with the manager cast a shadow over the win.