"Wembley beckons" – Jota doubles Wolf's head
Wolverhampton Wanderers had an outstanding second-half performance against Manchester United and reached their first FA Cup semifinal for 21 years on an atmospheric night in Molineux.
The men of Nuno Espirito Santo, in their first quarter-final since 2003, fully deserved their victory as United produced his worst performance under the interim leadership of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
United's goalkeeper, Sergio Romero, of David de Gea, had maintained United's level thanks to the brilliant rescuers of Diogo Jota and Raul Jimenez on either side of the interval, before the Mexican striker deviated from the surface to give the Wolves the reward of their deserved domination of 20 minutes. remaining.
The wolves were unleashed and it was no surprise when the dangerous Jota doubled his lead six minutes later, pulling United's Luke Shaw out before the break, before firing past Romero.
United's defender, Victor Lindelof, received a red card from referee Martin Atkinson for a Jota touchdown challenge, but he was demoted to yellow after a VAR exam and, although Marcus Rashford in Withdrawn one in time out, the Wolves were the big winners.
Wolves a growing threat
& # 39; It was done & # 39; – Jimenez gives the wolves head
The celebrations on and off the field at Molineux when the final whistle sounded showed what this victory meant for the Wolves.
Their resurgence under Nuno is illustrated by the way they are simply too powerful, too energetic and too inventive for United while Solskjaer suffers his second consecutive defeat.
The wolves have a real quality in the group with the class and experience of Ruben Neves and Joao Moutinho in the middle of the field, plus the movement, pace and threat of Jota and Jimenez.
They have the spine of Captain Conor Coady and Willy Boly – and they were simply better than United in all areas of the field.
Now they are heading to Wembley and, make no mistake, they have the quality and confidence to threaten the teams still competing in the FA Cup.
Manchester United has what it deserves
Solskjaer and United were right to welcome their dramatic revitalization since Jose Mourinho's dismissal in December. The highlight was the spectacular reversal of the Champions League against Paris St-Germain in France earlier this month.
This is a performance that pushed back the months of the Mourinho era and is probably worse than some of the events presented under the Portuguese.
Paul Pogba was reinstated captain while another Mourinho move had been cleared, but he was poor – even though he was not alone there.
United barely threatening Wolves goalkeeper John Ruddy, and slowly but surely their performances collapsed to near-shambolic levels in the second half as Wolves covered them and shredded them away.
Solskjaer hopes the crisis will only be temporary, but the fight is now well underway for the top four and Barcelona, the opponent of the Champions League, will not lose a moment of sleep after watching United here.
The man of the match – Raul Jimenez (Wolves)
BBC Sport readers have noted the wolf forward, Raul Jimenez, the man of the match after scoring the opening goal of his team.
"A big step backwards" – reaction
Nuno Espirito Santo, responsible for the wolves, addressing BBC Sport: "I'm very proud of the players, we had the calm, the form, a good race, the boys played very well and the atmosphere was fantastic."
"That means a lot because we know how great the wolves were in the 1950s and 1960s and there are people in the stadium who remember it.
"Trying to reach the same goal is a lot harder now, but we're going to try it step by step – we'll respect everyone in the semifinals."
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, addressing BBC Sport: "We started too slowly and played in their hands.Our possession was not bright enough and fast, so it is disappointing.
"I did not think we had enough quality in the last third, not enough combination play, we had decent domination with the ball in the first half, but it does not help if you give it and that he can counter.
"It was a big step back, mainly because of the quality of possession and passing."
First successive defeats of Solskjaer – stats
- Wolves reached their 15th FA Cup semifinal and their first since 1997-98. They have been eliminated in each of their last four semi-final appearances.
- United lost for the first time two consecutive games against Solskjaer. In December 2018, Mourinho was at its head.
- The wolves have won three consecutive FA Cup games for the first time since February 2003.
- The wolves have won six of their last seven home games in all competitions (D1), as well as their previous 16 home games (W6 D5 L5).
- United lost for the first time since January 1973 a clash against the Wolves in the England Cup, and for the first time since four such games in the quarter-finals.
- Raul Jimenez has scored 15 goals in all competitions this season, at least eight more than any other Wolves player.
Manchester United host Watford in the Premier League on Saturday, March 30 at 15:00 GMT, while the Wolves are absent at Burnley at the same time.