Manchester United hosted the FA Youth Cup holders Chelsea in the fourth round of the competition at Altrincham’s J. Davidson Stadium.
Ike Ugbo and Tammy Abraham put the Blues 2-0 in front in the first half. Charlie Scott scored first in the second half but Mason Mount, Jay Dasilva, and Mukhtar Ali responded to send Chelsea through to the fifth round of the competition with a 5-1 win.
United were without Axel Tuanzebe and Ethan Hamilton in defence, which proved difficult against a Chelsea side containing previous winners of the Youth Cup that had only lost once in all competitions this season.
Unsurprisingly, it was the visitors who dominated the first half, in front of a 1,104 strong crowd containing Louis Van Gaal, Ryan Giggs, David Gill and Sir Bobby Charlton. Oliver Byrne was called into action early on to produce a fantastic save to deny Charlie Wakefield.
Jay Da Silva was a threat on the left flank and put in a decent cross into the box. Abraham got a strong header but Byrne made a brilliant clearance. Ike Ugbo managed to head home the rebound and Byrne wasn’t able to get enough on it to make the double-save.
Chelsea were then able to comfortably control the game and United would have been content to have gone in at half time only trailing by one goal to nil. Unfortunately that wasn’t to be the case, as Abraham scored a goal in the second minute of added time, getting a bit of space between himself and RoShaun Williams and curling in off the post from a difficult angle.
Given the first half performances the Reds had a mountain to climb in order to try to get a result or force extra time. United were more competitive in the second half but the task got harder when Zach Dearnley was lost to injury, early in the half, appearing to have pulled his hamstring.
Charlie Scott looked to have sparked a comeback in the 67th minute, scoring from outside the box to give hope back to the Red Devils. However, it was extremely short-lived hope as Chelsea scored from the restart, with Mason Mount restoring the two-goal cushion.
There was a penalty claim when Marcus Rashford went down in the penalty area following a challenge from Nathan Baxter but the referee waved it away. Jay Da Silva scored a cheeky chip, lobbing Byrne with his right foot after collecting the ball from Ugbo. Mukhtar Ali wrapped up the win for the Blues with a finish from close range.
Chelsea will face AFC Wimbledon, conquerors of Newcastle United, in the fifth round.
Manchester United: Byrne, Warren (Kenyon ’83), Williams, Fosu-Mensah, Reid, Dearnley (Boonen ’56), Whelan, Scott, Kehinde, Gribbin (Gomes ’85), Rashford.
Unused Substitutes: Moutha-Sebatoui, Dunne.
Goal(s): Scott (’67)
Chelsea: Baxter, Grant, Chalobah, Tomori, Wakefield, Ali, Scott (Christie-Davies ’65), Dasilva, Mount (Maddox ’71), Ugbo, Abraham (Sammut ’84).
Unused Substitutes: Thompson, Sterling.
Goal(s): Ugbo (’19), Abraham (’47), Mount (’68), Dasilva (’82), Ali (’87).