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A Late Sirgudsson free-kick condemns United to yet another home draw

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Manchester United’s push for the top four spot were dealt a heavy blow as they drew 1-1 with the Swans at Old Trafford on Sunday.

By Carlo Chikomba

A beautiful Gylfi Sigurdsson free-kick earned Swansea a precious point in their battle to remain in the English top flight.

The Iceland international curled over the wall from about 20 yards to cancel out Wayne Rooney’s penalty and move the Swans to within two points of 17th-placed Hull.

The result sees the Red Devils remain fifth, a point behind both Manchester City and Liverpool after the same number of games.

As if that was not enough, Mourinho’s men also lost both Eric Bailly and Luke Shaw to injuries, with the two joining an evergrowing list that already includes fellow defenders Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Marcos Rojo.

But the result was probably fair on Swansea, who had every reason to claim Marcus Rashford dived for the penalty that Rooney converted.

Surprisingly, the visitors were the better side for much of the first half, enjoying the majority of possession as a lethargic United had to rely on the heroics of non-other that David de Gea to keep out the likes of Fernando Llorente and Jordan Ayew.

Swansea will feel a bit hard done by the referee’s decision to award a penalty to United after Marcus Rashford went down in the penalty box with replay suggesting that the 19-year old blatantly dived.

That decision seemed to have knocked the wind off the sails of the visitors as they looked deflated in the second half, but were rejuvenated by the introduction of Leroy Fer on the hour mark.

They got what they deserved through the brilliance of Sigurdsson, and after a bizarre build-up to a central free-kick just outside the United penalty area.

As the Icelander waited, Ander Herrera dropped from the United wall to goalline, only to be waved away by De Gea. Turns out that was a bad decision from the United no. 1 as Sigurdsson duly placed the ball exactly where Herrera had been standing.

Swansea could even have won it, another free-kick from Sigurdsson not converted by Llorente, who was unmarked inside the six-yard box.

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