EPL

Calvin Bassey: Fulham ‘wanted’ victory more than Manchester United

By Sports Desk February 25, 2024

Goalcorer Calvin Bassey felt Fulham just “wanted it more” than Manchester United after the Londoners claimed a shock win at Old Trafford.

Alex Iwobi struck in the seventh minute of stoppage time as the Cottagers killed off a late United fightback to snatch a last-gasp 2-1 victory in the Premier League on Saturday.

Fulham had been course for what seemed a deserved success courtesy of Bassey’s opener but United produced a strong finish and Harry Maguire appeared to have salvaged a point for the hosts in the 89th minute.

Yet while United pushed for a late clincher themselves, they were caught on the counter-attack and Iwobi capitalised to secure his side’s first win at Old Trafford since 2003.

“I don’t think you can just come here and overrun them,” said defender Bassey, whose goal was his first for the club. “You can see the quality of the players they have.

“They have got top players and a top manager and players that can have an effect off the bench, but we were just at it more and I felt we wanted it more. That showed in the way we played.

“(The equaliser) was a bit annoying, but we had done so well to even get 1-1, so then it was about making sure we didn’t leave with nothing. But then we got a chance and we were able to bury it.”

Mid-table Fulham’s victory was only their second in their last six games in what has been an inconsistent season but Bassey hopes a corner has been turned.

“It is always nice to win a game and hopefully we can keep this momentum going,” the Nigeria international said.

The result put an end to United’s four-game winning run in the league and dented their hopes of reaching the top four.

Maguire feels the team need to get it out of their system quickly ahead of Wednesday’s FA Cup trip to Nottingham Forest and then the derby against Manchester City next weekend.

The England centre-back told MUTV: “We know it’s going to be a tough game in midweek. Our full focus is on that one. We’ve got to bounce back.

“A big reaction is needed. It’s going to be a tough game, but one that we got to go there and produce a performance like we did there last year.”

Maguire admitted United were caught out in the end by Fulham but said pushing for the win seemed the right approach at the time.

He said: “This season we’ve scored numerous late goals, numerous late winners. So we had great belief that we were going to go on to win the game.

“Obviously in hindsight now we can all sit here and say that we should have been more cautious, we were far too naive.

“We can look back and I’m sure we’ll assess it in terms of areas that we can improve on but, ultimately, over the 90 minutes we didn’t do enough to win the game.”

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