Lukaku scores brace, leads Man United to 3-2 win over Southampton

Romelu Lukaku
IANS|03-Mar-2019 15:39

Manchester, March 3 : Striker Romelu Lukaku netted a brace to lead Manchester United to a thrilling 3-2 win over visiting Southampton in Premier League action at Old Trafford.

The victory in that Matchday 29 contest on Saturday catapulted the Red Devils (58 points) into the fourth spot ahead of Arsenal (57 points), who earlier in the day were held to a 1-1 draw by host Tottenham Hotspur, reports Efe news.

Southampton remain in the 17th spot with 27 points and, with only a two-point lead over Cardiff City, are still precariously close to the relegation zone.

The visiting side opened the scoring on young French defender Yan Valery's remarkable long-range blast in the 26th minute, and that lead held up until half-time.

After the break, Brazilian playmaker Andreas Pereira drew United level with a right-footed blast that went past visiting goalie Angus Gunn and into the back of the net in minute 53.

Just six minutes later, Lukaku gave United the lead for the first time when he received a pass from Pereira and scored on a close-range right-footed shot.

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Midfielder James Ward-Prowse, however, drew Southampton level with a stylish right-footed free-kick that traveled over the United wall and into the top-left corner of the goal in the 75th minute

United still had one more goal up their sleeve though - a strike in the 88th minute by Lukaku that gave Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men their 17th win of the season.

French midfielder Paul Pogba had a chance to increase Man United's margin of victory, but his penalty try in the dying minutes was saved by Gunn.

In other Premier League action Saturday, Algerian star Riyad Mahrez scored league-leading Manchester City lone goal in a 1-0 away win over 12th-placed Bournemouth at Vitality Stadium.

Mahrez, who took the field in first-half stoppage time in place of Kevin De Bruyne, sent a right-footed shot from the right side of the box into the bottom-left corner of the goal in the 55th minute.

Teammate David Silva was credited with the assist.

With the win, Man City (71 points) provisionally climbed into first place ahead of Liverpool (69 points), who can move back atop the standings by defeating Everton on Sunday in the Merseyside derby.