Sanchez and Herrera seal comeback to book FA Cup final spot

Alexis Sanchez scored the equaliser as United went on to win 2-1
Alexis Sanchez scored the equaliser as United went on to win 2-1

Manchester United came from behind to beat Tottenham 2-1 at Wembley on Saturday and secure their place in the FA Cup final.

Ander Herrera struck the winner midway through the second half, after Alexis Sanchez had cancelled out an opening goal from Dele Alli.

United lost on their league visit to Spurs this season after falling behind to an early goal and it looked like Mauricio Pochettino's side could repeat the feat when Alli turned home Christian Eriksen's cross.

Scroll to continue with content

HOW IT UNFOLDED: Manchester United v Tottenham

This time, however, Jose Mourinho's men responded, with former Arsenal star Sanchez scoring for the eighth time in eight appearances at England's national stadium to draw his side level.

With the match finely balanced, Herrera blasted home following a quick United break forward to hand his side victory in their record-equalling 29th semi-final and secure a showdown with either Chelsea or Southampton.

The defeat ends Spurs' hopes of silverware for another season and means they have now lost eight times in a row at this stage of the competition.

Spurs led after 11 seconds of their Premier League win over United at Wembley in January, and they needed only 11 minutes to go 1-0 up on this occasion.

Eriksen raced onto a long ball down the United left, with Ashley Young caught well out of position, and he crossed for Alli to tap home on the stretch at the far post.

Mourinho looked a frustrated figure on the touchline, but his team got the response they needed 24 minutes in, when Paul Pogba, having robbed Mousa Dembele near the Spurs box, curled in a fine cross from the left that Sanchez headed past the static Michel Vorm.

The hectic early pace began to drop towards the end of a very balanced first half, although Pogba had a dipping effort tipped wide by Vorm and Eric Dier's low drive smacked the base of the left-hand post after taking a deflection.

It was United who made the most of the next good chance, though, 17 minutes into the second half. Sanchez gathered the ball down the left and squared it to Romelu Lukaku, Jesse Lingard let his pass run and Herrera drilled beneath Vorm from the edge of the area.

Mourinho's side threatened to move two goals clear, with Vorm saving well from Pogba and Lukaku, before dropping deep to keep Spurs frustrated in the closing minutes and send the travelling fans into raptures at the final whistle.

Key Opta Stats:

  • Manchester United have reached their 29th major domestic cup final (20 FA Cup, 9 League Cup), more than any other side in English football.

  • The Red Devils have reached the FA Cup final in two of the last three seasons, having failed to reach the showpiece in eight consecutive seasons previously.

  • Tottenham haven’t lost a single Premier League game in which they’ve led this season, but have now been eliminated from their three other competitions this season in games in which they took the lead (2-3 vs West Ham in the League Cup, 1-2 vs Juventus in the Champions League).

  • Spurs also extended their record run of consecutive FA Cup semi-final defeats to eight, last winning one in 1991.

  • Romelu Lukaku has been directly involved in 14 goals in his last 12 FA Cup appearances (12 goals, 2 assists), including seven in five for Manchester United.

  • Alexis Sanchez has scored eight goals in his eight appearances at Wembley for club and country, including six goals in five FA Cup matches.

  • Paul Pogba has now recorded 12 assists in all competitions this season – twice as many as he registered last season.

  • Christian Eriksen has had a hand in 10 goals in his last six FA Cup appearances for Spurs (3 goals, 7 assists).

  • Ander Herrera has scored in each of his last two FA Cup games, as many as he had in his previous 15 in the competition.

  • Jose Mourinho has reached his sixth major domestic final in England (2 FA Cup, 4 League Cup), winning each of his previous five.

What to Read Next