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Everton dent United’s Champions League hopes

Manchester United lost further ground in the battle for a Champions League place as they were thumped 4-0 at Everton yesterday. Richarlison acrobatically fired the…

Manchester United lost further ground in the battle for a Champions League place as they were thumped 4-0 at Everton yesterday.

Richarlison acrobatically fired the hosts into the lead after 13 minutes before a thunderbolt from Gylfi Sigurdsson put Marco Silva’s side in control at the break.

The jubilant home fans stood to applaud Lucas Digne’s strike to make it 3-0 from the edge of the area after 56 minutes, and substitute Theo Walcott completed the rout when he fired past David de Gea after being sent through on goal by Sigurdsson.

The result moves Everton up to seventh place in the Premier League, while United remain sixth – but could finish the day five points off fourth-placed Arsenal.

United’s afternoon did not get off to the best of starts as Richarlison gave Everton an early lead after a Digne long throw had caused all sorts of problems, meaning United have now conceded in 11 consecutive games in all competitions for the first time since December 1998.

Things went from bad to worse for a error-strewn United as Sigurdsson doubled Everton’s advantage, beating De Gea from fully 30 yards – the Spain goalkeeper will certainly feel he could have done better.

United finished the half without having had a single meaningful attack all half, and just 11 minutes after the break they were three goals behind as Digne drilled home from 25 yards through a crowd of players.

By the time Walcott had slotted home his fourth of the season to complete the rout, the United players had given up the ghost, with that fine finish in the end of a Sigurdsson pass meaning United have conceded more goals (48) than they have in any league season in 40 years.

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