Michael Carrick has admitted he was relieved to earn an FA Cup replay following Manchester United’s 1-1 draw with West Ham United on Sunday.
The outlook for Man United looked bleak when Dimitri Payet fired in a 35-yard free-kick during the second half at Old Trafford.
However, Anthony Martial equalised late on, meaning another match will be needed to decide who reaches the semi-finals of the competition.
“Of course there’s relief, it’s a big opportunity. It’s the FA Cup and we all want to go far in this competition. To go 1-0 down in the second half and then be pushing for a winner is positive,” Carrick said.
“It was a great free-kick [from Payet] but I thought we showed character to get back into the game and push for a winner – we just couldn’t get it. We were building pressure and probably had more opportunities. The final pass didn’t quite happen for us and we didn’t work the goalkeeper enough.
“It’s the FA Cup, it was end-to-end at times and there was a lot happening in the box but I thought it was a good cup tie. With penalty decisions, sometimes you get them and sometimes you don’t, so one goal each way is probably fair I think.
“Irrespective of the Liverpool game, today was a one-off. We were well aware of that going into the game and wanted to go through in this competition. We haven’t quite done it yet but we live to fight another day.”
United are hanging on in the FA Cup, Europa League and Premier League but only by the skin of their teeth.
For a club of United’s stature, with the resources they have at their disposal, results have not been good enough. The fact that United’s players and management are so accepting of mediocrity serves as a damning indication of where the club is at right now.