Cristiano Ronaldo failed to score for the first time since returning to Manchester United and that was just the tip of the iceberg for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on a sobering afternoon.Aston Villa’s first win at Old Trafford since 2009 – and United’s first league defeat of the season – was earned by Kourtney Hause’s late header.When United were handed a golden opportunity to save the game in injury-time, Bruno Fernandes blasted the opportunity into the Stretford End while Ronaldo stood and watched.Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes missed a late penalty as Manchester United lost 1-0 at home to Aston Villa The highly impressive Villa celebrated with jubilation after a famous away win saw them move to seventh in the table The way side took the lead with just two minutes to play as Kortney Hause dramatically headed home past David de Gea By Joe Bernstein for MailOnline Man Utd (4-3-3) : De Gea 6: Wan-Bissaka 6, Varane 7.5, Maguire 5.5 (Lindelof 67 6), Shaw 5.5 (Dalot 34 6); McTominay 5.5 (Cavani 82), Fernandes 6, Fred 6; Greenwood 6, Ronaldo 6.5, Pogba 5.5 Subs unused: Heaton (Gk), Matic, van de Beek, Lingard, Sancho, Martial Booked: Shaw, Fred Aston Villa (5-3-2 ): Martinez 6.5: Cash 8, Hause 7, Konsa 7.5, Mings 7, Targett 6.5; Ramsey 6.5 (Archer 85), Luiz 6.5, McGinn 6.5; Watkins 6, Ings 6 (Buendia 78 6) Booked: McGinn, Cash Goal: Hause 88 Subs unused: Steer (Gk), Young, Nakamba, El Ghazi, Traore, Chukwuemeka, Bogarde Referee: Mike Dean 5.5 Adding to the midweek Carabao Cup exit against West Ham, was the first time United have failed to score in consecutive home games for 18 months.In a title race expected to be closer than ever, dropped points at home to mid-division opposition us likely to be costly and injuries to Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire were also disruptive.It reduced Solskjaer to only one attacking change and he left that until the 82nd minute when Edinson Cavani was preferred to Jadon Sancho.Even so, they could have got out of jail when Villa’s goal hero Hause handled in the box.After loud protests from Cavani in particular, referee Mike Dean pointed to the spot.
There was huge interest to see if Ronaldo would try to take penalty duties from Fernandes, but he didn’t.Maybe the pressure – and the delay caused by Villa goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez and his team-mates surrounding Fernandes and arguing with everyone in sight including the officials – affected the midfielder.Fernandes boasted a wonderful record of 21 penalty conversions out of 22 for United prior to yesterday’s game.But instead of his usual stutter and jump, he ran up to the ball and hit it as hard as possible – several metres over the crossbar.
Martinez was hugged by his jubilant Villa team-mates in the aftermath, presumably feeling his gamesmanship – he appeared to suggest Ronaldo should take the kick – had got into the United player’s head to a point where he didn’t have to make a save.Solskjaer, who complained on Friday that United weren’t getting penalties, is in full Fergie mode at the moment, complaining Ollie Watkins was offside and interfering with David de Gea’s line of sight when Hause scored, and that Villa players should have been booked for their pre-penalty antics.But given the resources available to the likeable Norwegian, this is a season in which he has to deliver and this hasn’t been the best of starts.Wednesday’s Champions League game against Villarreal comes off the back of defeat to Young Boys in their opening group game.£73million winger Jadon Sancho didn’t get a kick off the bench.‘It is such a fine line between heaven and hell and unfortunately today he (Fernandes) missed,’ reflected Solskjaer.
Roaming defender Matt Targett missed from close range with the away side enjoying the better of the first-half chances Central defender Ezri Konsa missed another massive chance for Villa who simply couldn’t take the lead in the opening 45 Cristiano Ronaldo, returning to the XI, tried his luck with a free-kick but was unable to test goalkeeper Emi Martinez of Villa In a further blow for United, England left-back Luke Shaw was booked and subsequently forced off through injury As was club captain Harry Maguire, who had to be replaced by Victor Lindelof after struggling with an injury of his own ‘The game ebbed and flowed, good for the neutral probably, and unfortunately they got a goal.We could have and should have slowed the game down at times.‘We didn’t have enough control even though we had 30 shots and 60 per cent possession.’ For Villa, it was a win that finally put to rest they were the Jack Grealish team last season.
Manager Dean Smith trusted his three central defenders to keep United’s frontline quiet and allowed wing-backs Matt Cash and Matt Targett to push forward.The matchwinner Hause was only playing because loanee Axel Tuanzebe was ineligible to face his parent club.‘We have had a lot of suffering at this stadium,’ said Smith.
‘This was a big performance and we deserved the win.We were aggressive and brave.‘What epitomised the gameplan was the chance we had Cash crossing for Targett in the six-yard box.That showed our intent.’ United bossed a pulsating lunchtime game in terms of possession but Villa arguably had the better opportunities.Dean Smith made sure to celebrate with the match-winner Hause, as Villa claimed their standout result of the season to date The Fernandes-Ronaldo conundrum – and the fear each with diminish rather than enhance the other – was on display in the first half when United won two dangerous free-kicks.Fernandes took the first, Ronaldo the second, both after much discussion, and the taker hit the wall on each occasion.Emiliano Martinez saved from Mason Greenwood and his defenders regularly put their bodies on the line with blocks.But Villa were always dangerous too.
Maguire’s dodgy back pass to De Gea was miscontrolled by the Spaniard who played it to Watkins.The goalkeeper then made amends by blocking the shot with his foot.Cash gave Luke Shaw a torrid time before the England left-back limped off injured after 34 minutes.
Ronaldo was quiet and though the crowd loved the way he charged down Hause and blocked his clearance for a throw, it’s not why United signed the multiple Ballon d’or winner.
A late home spurt before half-time saw Martinez save Maguire’s header and then Paul Pogba missed a header from close range after a flick-on by Varane.Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, meanwhile, consoled a highly disappointed Fernandes as United lost their first league game this season Temperatures were raised in the second period when John McGinn was shoved over by Maguire as he led a break, without a foul being given.Maguire was then left aggrieved as he was tugged in the box by Ezri Konsa.The United skipper departed soon after having taken a kick on the achilles by Danny Ings.
United fans started chanting “Bring on Cavani” but it wasn’t until the 82nd minute that Solskjaer introduced the Uruguayan.Yet Villa it was who broke the deadlock after 88 minutes when Hause headed in Douglas Luiz’s corner and Watkins’ presence in the box went unnoticed.‘Inconsistency,’ fumed Solskajer, who compared it to Leicester’s disallowed goal against Brighton last weekend.United’s potential lifeline came after 93 minutes via the whistle of referee Mike Dean.Martinez goaded and Fernandes missed..