Manchester United beat Brighton & Hove Albion in a tense penalty shootout in their FA Cup semifinal clash at a rain-lashed Wembley Stadium after the game was finished 0-0 after extra time. United defender Victor Lindelof scored the decisive spot kick after Solly March missed his chance, blasting the ball high over the bar. Lindelof’s strike helped United to secure a 7-6 shootout victory, setting up the final against Manchester City. It will be the first-ever all-Manchester clash in the FA Cup summit clash, scheduled to be played on June 3 at Wembley Stadium.
Earlier on Saturday, treble-chasing Manchester City defeated Sheffield United 3-0 to reach the final. Erik Ten Hag’s men, 12-times FA Cup winners, are bidding for a cup double after winning the League Cup in February 2023. The quality of the penalties in a relentless downpour was superb with United finding the net with all seven of their spot kicks. Brighton’s first six efforts were equally impressive until their winger March fired wildly off target.
Both teams battled well and fought hard to somehow find the net throughout the game but none could do so. The match was a thriller as it had the fans on the edge of their seats with numerous chances for both sides to break the deadlock, including several in extra time. United star player Marcus Rashford’s deflected shot in the extra time was saved well as Brighton’s goalkeeper Robert Sanchez dived to push it wide.
Japanese winger Kaoru Mitoma nearly won it for Brighton late in extra time but missed after colliding with United keeper David de Gea in the box. Brighton gave everything and dominated possession for most of the game. But they will reflect on certain moments, especially Danny Welbeck’s header at 0-0 and Sanchez almost saving Marcel Sabitzer’s penalty at 5-4. He got a decent piece of it, leading with his left hand as he dived to his right, but the Austrian hit it with just enough height and power to get it through. United showed reserves of stamina and resilience to come through against a fine Brighton side who went into this match as the favorites.
It felt great and it was a great relief as we are glad to be in the final, Lindelof told the BBC. I have confidence in myself and I knew which penalty I wanted to take and that’s what I did, he concluded.