Manchester United comfortably beat League One side Shrewsbury Town by 3-0 at New Meadow in the FA Cup fifth round game on Monday. Now the Red Devils will face West Ham United at Old Trafford in the quarter-final tie. An easy victory gave temporary relief to embattled manager Louis van Gaal, who is in trouble these days and the speculations are circling that he will be replaced by ex-Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho in the summer. Van Gaal knew defeat by a Shrewsbury side lying 21st in their division was unthinkable – and possibly terminal for his employment prospects.
Manchester United, instead, gave their manager a comfortable night as they strolled into the last eight. Chris Smalling opened the scoring with a scuffed shot in the 37th minute and Juan Mata’s smart free-kick doubled their lead just before the break and after that they never threatened to surrender. Shrewsbury midfielder Abu Ogogo had an effort scrambled off the line by United substitute Joe Riley as well as heading wide late on, but overall they didn’t really give tough time to Manchester United.
And Jesse Lingard sealed the victory for Manchester United by putting third and final goal of the game on Ander Herrera’s shot in the 16th minute of second half. Van Gaal’s injury problems worsened when substitute Will Keane came off leaving the United to play the last 14 minutes with 10 men. Manchester United may have struggled to make their supremacy count, although keeper Jayson Leutwiler saved well from Memphis Depay and Ogogo scrambled Antony Martial’s effort off the line, but once they were ahead through Smalling this was all over as a contest.
They were helped by a Shrewsbury side who seemed overawed by the occasion. Van Gaal will be both relieved and delighted to leave Shropshire unscathed – another crisis averted, for now at least. Now Manchester United will host FC Midtjylland in their Europa League last-32 second leg tie on Thursday. If they want to stay in that competition, then they must beat the Danish side with minimum of 1-0 because they are trailing 2-1 from first leg.
Curated from Shrewsbury Town 0-3 Manchester United – BBC Sport