Marcus Rashford set up two goals and scored another from the penalty spot as Manchester United overcame a David de Gea first-half error to beat Everton 3-1 in the FA Cup third round at Old Trafford on Friday.
Rashford laid United’s first goal on a plate for Antony after just three minutes and then did all the hard work before Conor Coady turned the ball into his own net to put the home side back ahead seven minutes into the second half.
The England forward then sealed the win deep into stoppage time when converting a penalty after a foul on substitute Alejandro Garnacho.
Earlier, De Gea had made a mess of a low cross to allow Coady to equalise for Frank Lampard’s struggling Everton on 14 minutes.
The visitors thought they had a second equaliser after half-time, but Dominic Calvert-Lewin‘s close-range finish was ruled out for offside in the buildup following a VAR check to allow United to seal a seventh straight win in all competitions.
In his first experience of the competition, Man United manager Erik ten Hag showed he was taking the FA Cup seriously by fielding an almost full-strength side, with the exception of Luke Shaw partnering Raphael Varane in the center of defence.
It was the reinvigorated Rashford, though, who stole the show, taking his run of goal contributions to five-straight games for the first time in the 25-year-old’s United career.
“In terms of performances, it’s probably the best that I’ve been so I feel good on the pitch,” Rashford told ITV. “I’m getting into positions and areas to score goals. If I keep creating chances, I feel like I’ll keep scoring.
“We’re pleased to go through to the next round and more importantly we keep momentum going and winning games.”
He was heavily involved as the home side raced into an early lead. After scoring four goals in four games since returning from the World Cup, this time Rashford played creator by breezing past a defender down the left of the box before laying the ball across the face of goal for Antony to slide in and apply the finish.
The goal will be a boost to the Brazilian, who had not found the net since scoring against the same opponents on Oct. 9.
It appeared at that stage that United would go on to cruise to victory, particularly when Anthony Martial soon shot just wide from 20 yards.
But out of nothing Everton were given a gift-wrapped way back into the contest.
Only moments after catching a break when Demarai Gray‘s shot came back off the post and bounced inches wide off the goalkeeper’s back, De Gea handed Everton an equaliser.
Amadou Onana did well to create the space to squeeze in a cross but De Gea was caught completely unaware to allow the ball to ricochet between his legs and fall for Coady to produce a simple tap-in.
United continued to threaten to go back in front. Martial was denied by Jordan Pickford when put through one-on-one while Rashford and Christian Eriksen also went close. But Everton, buoyed by leveling the score, were able to get more of a foothold in the contest as they sought to arrest a slide that saw them without a win since October.
The visitors’ resolve, though, would last only a few minutes into the second half.
Right after losing Alex Iwobi to a worrying injury, Coady found the net at the Stretford End for the second time, this time sliding in and diverting the ball into his own goal.
The credit, though, goes to Rashford, who gave a full display of his renewed confidence, befuddling Seamus Coleman and getting to the byline before his cut-back was met by Coady.
Everton continued to show belief and briefly thought they had pulled level once more but Rashford’s late penalty confirmed that they would be left to focus on a Premier League campaign that has seen them drop into the relegation zone.
Man United, meanwhile, seal an FA Cup fourth round spot for the ninth successive season as they seek their first trophy of any kind in six years.
Information from Reuters was used in this report.