Man U was robbed of one goal however the guys rode the daily double of Romelu Lukaku 3rd and 55th minutes for a hard fought 2-0 win over Huddersfield
The Guardians Paul Wilson wrote:” Paul Pogba missed this game through illness, leaving Manchester United to book their place in the last eight of the FA Cup without him. Thanks to Romelu Lukaku’s 20th and 21st goals of the season they managed it comfortably enough, the striker showing the value of possessing an accomplished goalscorer when chances are few and far between.
Huddersfield could have done with a similarly potent spearhead, since for all their attacking intent they came up short in front of goal. With the benefit of an early lead United could afford to be economical, letting their opponents have most of the ball and hitting them effectively on the counter. The visitors were not at their swaggering best, yet the home side ended up grateful to a VAR call at the end of the first half for helping keep the scoreline respectable. “We didn’t get the result we wanted but confidence wise we are going in the right direction,” David Wagner said. “We are building up momentum again.”
José Mourinho agreed. “Huddersfield played in a different way than they did in the league,” the United manager said. “They were offensive and dangerous. In the second half we were in control but in the first they pushed us quite hard.”
This was a pulsating tie, with enough noise to satisfy even Mourinho, a notorious hater of quiet grounds. United supporters had the away end to themselves and as is often the case created more volume in the first 20 minutes than is generally heard in an afternoon at Old Trafford.
Eddie Howe commented last week that the atmosphere generated by the Huddersfield crowd had unsettled his players and contributed to Bournemouth’s defeat and, if anything, the home backing now was even more impressive, particularly as the Terriers were behind inside three minutes.
Lukaku was merely testing the strength of the defence as he played a one-two with Juan Mata in United’s first attack but the quality of the return pass was so inviting he found it a simple matter to round Christopher Schindler and slot home past an exposed Jonas Lössl.
Huddersfield simply shrugged and carried on, taking the game to United and setting up a few decent chances to keep the crowd enthused. Tom Ince was first to go close, before Chris Smalling got away with a suggestion of handball in the area, a potential penalty reviewed and rejected by the VAR team.
Rajiv van La Parra saw a header held by Sergio Romero, then, from the most teasing of Florent Hadergjonaj crosses behind a static United defence, Ince was inches away from applying a finishing touch in front of goal.
As half-time approached Huddersfield had enjoyed almost two thirds of possession and shown the greater willingness to attack, without quite managing to find a way through. Philip Billing was on target with a shot from distance that Romero held comfortably, though it was perhaps significant the home side were already resorting to attempts from outside the area. United had been sluggish and disjointed going forward, with Lukaku hardly in the game and Alexis Sánchez a peripheral presence.
When Mata neatly rounded Lössl to turn in Ashley Young’s cross on the stroke of the interval it appeared Huddersfield had been hit with a sucker punch they barely deserved. Fortunately for them the VAR system took the same view, the goal eventually being disallowed for a borderline offside. It was fair enough if the correct decision was arrived at, though again the process took far longer than advertised, with players originally returning to restart positions and having to stand around for a couple of minutes while Kevin Friend attended to his earpiece.
Replays suggested Mata might have been beyond the last defender Schindler by a kneecap which, while a relief for Huddersfield, was a pity from United’s point of view. A dashing run by Young and the most composed of finishes had come to nought.
Huddersfield had a chance to equalise right at the start of the second half when Ince’s deflected free-kick came through to Van La Parra on the six-yard line, though the ball was at an awkward height and the winger’s attempted volley was not a moment he will want to remember. That, however, and another free-kick from Philip Billing that resulted in a corner, was as good as it got for the Terriers. Breaking quickly, Lukaku found Sánchez on the halfway line and continued his run in anticipation of a return. When it came it was excellent, giving the striker the run on the covering defender Danny Williams, as Huddersfield paid the price for sending two many of their backline forward. Lukaku had the pace and strength to hold off Williams’ challenge and the poise to slip a shot past Lössl in front of the travelling support.
The away end was the only one still singing at the close, to such an extent the normal repertoire was exhausted and ancient hymns to Eric Cantona, Cristiano Ronaldo and even Paul Scholes were reprised. It was quite a performance, though one suspects Mourinho will not be completely happy until it is repeated at Old Trafford.”