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Manchester United: Diogo Dalot was the real hero vs Everton

Manchester United became the first team to progress through to the fourth round of the FA Cup as they beat Everton 3-1 on Friday night.

Erik ten Hag’s men had the dream start to the game as Marcus Rashford continued his fine form at the top end of the pitch by delivering a delicious cross along the Toffees’ box for Antony to convert into an empty net.

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However, Frank Lampard’s side pegged them back ten minutes later as David De Gea allowed a simple cross to squeeze between his shins and Conor Coady was on hand to tap it in on the line.

The home team reacted well to that setback, though, as they continued to put pressure on their fellow Premier League side and eventually went back in front at the start of the second half as Rashford’s cross forced Coady into an own goal.

Manchester United found their third in the sixth minute of stoppage time as a foul from Ben Godfrey in the box allowed Rashford to convert from the spot.

Whilst the English dynamo was electric on the left wing and assisted both of the side’s first two goals and scored on the night, the real hero for ten Hag was Portuguese international Diogo Dalot.

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The £25k-per-week defender, who has had to watch Aaron Wan-Bissaka start in his place due to his involvement at the World Cup, put in a terrific display at right-back and was arguably the team’s top performer.

Defensively, the former AC Milan loanee was almost faultless for the Red Devils. As per Sofascore, he won five of his six (83%) individual duels and made four tackles, two interceptions, one block, and one clearance off the line.

This shows that he was exceptional out of possession as he won the ball back for his side on a number of occasions and physically dominated the opposition in his battles on the pitch.

Dalot was also reliable on the ball as he completed 89% of his attempted passes and created two chances for his teammates. This shows that he was not a liability to the team and helped ten Hag’s men to control the match at times.

Therefore, the 23-year-old defender was the real hero for United on the night as he put in an excellent display in and out of possession, which could tempt his manager to bring him back into the starting XI for the next Premier League outing.