Manchester United broke a three-game losing streak in all competitions by winning the Premier League for the first time since August 26 courtesy to a brilliant volley from Bruno Fernandes at Turf Moor, sending Burnley to the bottom of the league.
On the stroke of halftime, the Portuguese playmaker met a wonderful long ball from defender Jonny Evans and scored emphatically from a tight angle to give his team their first away points of the season with the solitary goal of a nervy victory.
Evans, making his first appearance for the club since 2015 after returning in the summer, felt he had headed the opening before Fernandes scored but was rejected by a VAR judgment that Rasmus Hojlund was offside from United’s corner. It would have been his first goal in nine years if it had counted, but the review determined Hojlund to be interfering with the goalie in an offside position.
Burnley dominated possession and struck a post via Zeki Amdouni during the first half, looking for their first win of the season after picking up their first point with a draw against Nottingham Forest on Monday.
United moved up to eighth place ahead of two games in a week against one of the teams they surpassed, playing Crystal Palace in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday and the league on Sunday.
Burnley, meanwhile, sit two points behind 17th-placed Bournemouth and now have three away games in eight days, beginning with a Carabao Cup match at Salford City on Tuesday and a trip to Newcastle United on Saturday. On October 3, they will play fellow top-flight newcomer Luton Town.
Burnley vs Man United final score
ScoreGoal scorersBurnley0—Man United1Bruno Fernandes (45′)
Burnley: (4-2-3-1): Trafford (GK) – Roberts, Beyer, Al Dakhil, Taylor – Cullen, Brownhill (Benson, 86′) – Gudmundsson (Tresor, 20′), Ramsey (Berge, 74′), Koleosho (Larsen, 74′) – Amdouni (J. Rodriguez, 73′).
Man United: (4-3-1-2): Onana (GK) – Dalot, Evans (Amrabat, 89′), Lindelof, Reguilon (Varane, 79′) – Hannibal, Casemiro, McTominay – Fernandes – Rashford, Hojlund.
Burnley vs Man United post match overview, analysis
Missing several players through injury and deprived of Antony and Jadon Sancho because of situations off the pitch, Erik ten Hag and his squad were under pressure and in no position to choose the manner of ending their slump.
Ten Hag will be optimistic, however, because of the run of six home games in seven ahead of United. Of their next 10 league matches, only Palace and leaders Manchester City, who visit Old Trafford on October 29, are currently in the top half of the table.
They also host the two weaker teams in their Champions League group, Galatasaray and Copenhagen, in October. If United can hit form, their fixture list could put them in a much stronger position by the time they head to Liverpool on December 16.
Fernandes goal gives Man United much-needed win
Stopping the rot was the priority for United after a dreadful run. Their defeat at Bayern, compounded by a terrible Onana mistake, arrived hot on the heels of a comprehensive 3-1 loss to Brighton & Hove Albion last Saturday and a late defeat by the same scoreline at Arsenal.
Their 2-0 defeat at Tottenham on 19 August came in between a fortunate 1-0 victory against Wolves and a rescue act at home to Nottingham Forest when they recovered from two goals behind after four minutes to win 3-2.
Thus, it was of critical importance that United respond from the chalked-off Evans goal by snatching an opener that would stick, and Bruno Fernandes did just that, recalling shades of Robin van Persie against Aston Villa, when he slammed home a ball from Wayne Rooney.