Luke Shaw praises Manchester United duo Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho for taking penalties despite past horror
Manchester United beat Brighton and Hove Albion in the FA Cup semi-final via a penalty shootout where both Rashford and Sancho converted their penalties.
We know what happened the previous time these two took spot-kicks in a shootout at Wembley – the Euros final against Italy where they missed their respective penalties.
To banish that and show the confidence to take and convert the penalties, takes immense courage. Shaw echoes these thoughts. Here’s what the left-back said (h/t Guardian):
“I was next to Jadon. I said: ‘Whatever happens happens, just be confident. It’s part of football, things happen, these things happen.’ And I think maybe what was playing on their minds are the things that come with it, the racism and stuff that they experienced last time.
“They showed amazing confidence to step up because the last time they took one in a shootout it was, of course, at Wembley and the memories of that. I’m really happy for both of them to put themselves forward and take really good penalties. It massively shows their courage.”
In a game where United struggled for rhythm and consistency, Shaw played well as a makeshift centre-back alongside Victor Lindelof to shut out an in-form Brighton attack.
Once the game was level after 120 minutes, anything could have happened in the shootout. Although the Seagulls took great penalties, one moment of lapse from Solly March was enough for Erik ten Hag’s men to pounce through a winning penalty by Lindelof.
This sets up an enthralling FA Cup final against city rivals Manchester City. It is the first time in this competition that we will have a Manchester derby as a final.
While Pep Guardiola’s men would potentially be chasing a treble ahead of that game, United have a chance to win a cup double and simultaneously stop their neighbours from winning the treble.
Ten Hag hopes that star defender Raphael Varane could be back for the final, which would be a massive boost because City possess an array of attacking options to hurt United’s defence, notwithstanding someone like Erling Haaland.
More Manchester United News:
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- AC Milan demand ‘huge offer’ for Manchester United target Fikayo Tomori
- Victor Lindelof relieved to score the winning penalty to help Manchester United reach the FA Cup final
The Red Devils would be hoping to finish the league campaign on a high before that big cup final. The race to finish in the top four is still not done.