Manchester United VS Athletic Club 8/6/2023 | Athletic Club’s Official Website

Manchester United1 : 1Athletic Club

N. Williams29'
Aviva Stadium
5:00 PM
Date and time
8/6/2023 - 5:00 PM

Athletic play well in draw against Man United

Nico Williams gave the Lions the lead and Pellistri equalised in stoppage time

Aug 6, 2023

The last test of the pre-season before facing Real Madrid CF at San Mamés on Saturday 12 August in the first matchday of the EA Sports LaLiga, ended in a draw against Manchester United at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.

It started with a scare, Pellistri's pass leaving Sancho in front of Unai Simon, but the Murgia goalkeeper responded with a brilliant intervention with his foot. After another couple of chances for the Red Devils, the lions responded with a transition shot headed in by Iñaki Williams after a rebound from the English defence. The red and white striker had another chance after a combination on the right.

Manchester United continued to try to stop Valverde's side, who once they had overcome the pressure, looked to get to Heaton's goal quickly. In one such dizzying move, the referee initially pointed to a penalty on Nico Williams, although he then took the offence out of the area on a pinpoint observation. In the end, Lekue's shot was caught by the Red Devils goalkeeper.

The speed in the opposition's three-quarter of the pitch was again on display in the combination that allowed Athletic to take the lead, a steal by Lekue found its way to the feet of Sancet and the Mendillorri man slipped the ball through to Nico Williams to beat Heaton just before the half-hour mark. Before the break, the English looked for Van de Beek's surprise breakthroughs from the second line but they failed to trouble the Basque defence too much. After the restart, both sides made changes, with Villalibre the only change for the Lions, moving Iñaki Williams to the right wing. The first attempt came from young Daniel Gore, but Simon saved well. Despite this, Athletic did not lose their nerve at any point and remained firm in their approach. After a couple of close calls, in the 66th minute, Aitor Paredes was sent off after grabbing Hannibal, who was on his way to a one-on-one with the keeper.

It was a case of rowing with one less, but, in addition to the workout, there were clear attacking options. For example, Muniain's shot went narrowly wide. Ten Hag's men, meanwhile, also had chances at the feet of Hannibal. All shortly before the introduction of Nolaskoain, Imanol and Ander Herrera, who was acclaimed by his former fans.

Faced with the pressure from the Mancunian side, the Lions continued to defend like a cat on a cat's back, both against crosses through the middle and against lateral crosses. And so it was until stoppage time, when an extension by Maguire, converted into a striker, was exploited by the Uruguayan Pellistri to equalise. Thus ended the match that closed the intense and global red and white pre-season. Now, all eyes and energies are focused on the league opener.