Manchester United sailed into the FA Cup quarter-finals with a comfortable 3-0 victory over third-tier Shrewsbury on Monday night.
- Smalling gives United the lead
- Mata converts free kick
- Lingard makes it 3-0 after the break
- Lingard, Keane come close to a fourth
Manchester United set about dominating possession right from the start, although they would have to wait until the 37th minute before Anthony Smalling fired them into the lead.
Juan Mata doubled their advantage just before half-time thanks a beautiful curling free kick and Jesse Lingard virtually made sure of the points nine minutes after the break.
Lingard could have added a fourth not long after, while Will Keane also came close to scoring after another superb team move, but it stayed 3-0 until the final whistle.
Early signs suggested the home side were more than happy to adopt a defensive posture and look to counter, allowing United to dominate possession if need be.
The visitors were passing and probing in the final third, and their first decent chance arrived in the 11th minute when Depay created some space inside the box before forcing Jayson Leutwiler into a smart save.
Shrewsbury were holding firm at the back, but they came desperately close to conceding in the 28th minute, Abu Ogogo’s intervention off-the-line only just preventing an Anthony Martial opener.
The healthy contingent of United fans in the stadium were starting to get restless, but their patience was finally rewarded on 37 minutes.
Cameron Borthwick-Jackson started the move, before Morgan Schneiderlin flicked it on to Anthony Smalling, whose shot from inside the box went in off the bounce to hand United the lead.
Within minutes, Shrewsbury, who had held out manfully, found themselves 2-0 down as Juan Mata sent in a curling free kick from just outside the box. Zak Whitbread was the man who gifted the opportunity right on the stroke of half-time when he brought down Martial.
United were full value for their lead, however, with Shrewsbury failing to offer a single shot at goal in the first half.
The visitors came close to another goal in the 54th minute, Depay’s initial shot just deflecting wide of the post before Martial nearly headed home the resulting corner.
United’s third did arrive seven minutes later, however, a team effort involving several players but ending with a superb Ander Herrera cross and Jesse Lingard firing home from in front of goal.
Lingard could have added another not long after but was wide of the target despite having time and space inside the box, while Will Keane’s effort, after another quality United move, struck the post just minutes later as it finished 3-0 to Louis van Gaal’s men.