Manchester United out of the top 4 as Cristiano Ronaldo’s dry spell continues

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Out of the FA Cup, now out of the top four of the Premier League.

Manchester United is going through a rough patch under Ralf Rangnick _ and Cristiano Ronaldo is currently not in the form to score enough to get the team out of the situation.

Ronaldo didn’t even start Burnley’s 1-1 draw for last place on Tuesday, only appearing as a second-half substitute and failing to score for the fifth game in a row. That is his worst run without scoring at club level since 2010.

However, the problems run deeper than the scoring slump of one of the world’s best strikers.

The way United went down in the second half was alarming, just as the team did in the second half of their FA Cup game at home to second-tier Middlesbrough on Friday. United lost on penalties on that occasion.

Also alarming was the defense of England center back Harry Maguire who allowed lanky striker Wout Weghorst, Burnley’s new signing, to turn him around in midfield and play on Jay Rodriguez for the 47th-minute equaliser.

Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo, center, looks on during the English Premier League soccer match between Burnley and Manchester United at Turf Moor in Burnley, England, Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2022. (AP Photo/Jon Super)

That canceled out Paul Pogba’s opening goal in the 18th minute, starting for the second match after a long injury layoff and probably United’s best player in the first half.

In fact, United scored three times before half-time, but two were disallowed, first for an offside against Maguire, before he blocked Rodriguez before Raphael Varane headed in, and then for a seemingly innocuous foul by Pogba. .

United dropped to fifth place, a point behind West Ham, which beat Watford 1-0 on Tuesday.

“A frustrating night for us because we should have won that game handily,” Rangnick said. “We scored three goals in the first half so I can’t blame the team for not having a killer instinct in the first half.

“In the end it was also a small matter of luck. One point for a performance like this is not enough.”

ZUMA MOCKS

Jarrod Bowen’s second-half goal secured victory for West Ham, but the main talking point was the inclusion of Kurt Zouma, who was named in the starting lineup despite a video, shared widely on social media, that it shows him kicking and slapping a cat.

West Ham had previously said they “unreservedly condemn our player’s actions” and Zouma had apologized.
West Ham manager David Moyes said Zouma will remain available for selection, adding: “The club will sort out the other side and I’ll take care of the football side.”

Visiting Watford fans relentlessly booed every Zouma touch and chanted, among other things, ‘RSPCA, RSPCA’ _ a reference to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Watford dropped one place, to penultimate place.

NEWCASTLE ON THE RISE

Newcastle beat Everton 3-1 in the other game to climb out of the relegation zone and move four points ahead of Burnley.

Everton, meanwhile, are sinking closer to the bottom three, with just three points separating the team from penultimate Norwich.

Frank Lampard’s first game in charge of Everton was a 4-1 victory over Brentford in the FA Cup on Saturday, but he was given a reality check, despite his side taking the lead thanks to Jamaal Lascelles’ own goal. .

Mason Holgate also scored an own goal a minute later to equalize Newcastle, before second-half goals from Ryan Fraser and Kieran Trippier, one of five signings from the Saudi-owned club in January.

It was Newcastle’s third victory of the season.

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