Scott McTominay came off the bench to score twice in stoppage time as Manchester United came from behind to earn a dramatic win over Brentford.
Brentford took the lead midway through the first half after a flurry of counter-attacks which United’s back row struggled to deal with and the ball eventually fell to Mathias Jensen to hit a left-footed first-time effort that eluded the hands of Andre Onan.
The visitors’ search for a goal saw Marcus Rashford denied by Thomas Strakosha and Rasmus Hojlund smashing the side netting with an ambitious effort.
Manchester United then had a goal ruled out by VAR after Anthony Martial was ruled offside in an own-goal clearance.
Just as Erik the Hag looked to be staring at a third home defeat in a week, substitute McTominay slotted into the bottom corner after a goal scramble.
But there was one final twist and it was the Scotland international who proved the toast of Old Trafford as he nodded home at the near post to take victory from the clutches of defeat and ease the pressure on his manager.
United remain ninth in the table, while the Bees are without a win since August 19.
Manchester United player ratings (4-2-3-1)
GK: Andre Onana – 5/10 – Just absolutely has to do much, much better for Jensen’s goal. It’s not moving particularly quickly and is in the middle of the net. Redeemed himself to some extent with a couple of big saves in the second half.
RB: Diogo Dalot – 7/10 – Settled defensively but stifled going forward by Hickey until the latter stages.
CB: Jonny Evans – 7/10 – Kept his calm despite the calamity around him. Not a bad performance for United’s fifth-choice centre-back.
CB: Harry Maguire – 7/10 – Similarly fine. United’s main problem was the duo’s lack of pace restricted them from playing a high line but they did most of their jobs well. Came up with the winning assist.
LB: Victor Lindelof – 4/10 – An asset going forward but like Amrabat in midweek was flummoxed by his defensive responsibilities in tandem. Poor for Brentford’s opener.
CM: Casemiro – 3/10 – Surely one of the worst performances of his career. Offered little control and Brentford honed in on his lack of pace, leading to the opener. Withdrawn at half-time.
CM: Sofyan Amrabat – 6/10 – Linked defence and midfield well though had to do a lot of Casemiro’s running for him in the first half and ran defensive responsibilities alone in the second.
RM: Bruno Fernandes – 5/10 – Swapped positions with Mount for the second half but made little difference. Continually a picture of frustration and is lacking his killer edge.
AM: Mason Mount – 4/10 – Still not sure of where he’s meant to be playing in this United team. A willing presser but again this left his side exposed whenever Brentford played through from the back.
LM: Marcus Rashford – 4/10 – Tried to free himself from the shackles of Roerslev and Ajer but had little luck inside the Brentford box. Hooked on the hour mark.
CF: Rasmus Hojlund – 6/10 – Threw himself all over the frontline holding play up but was starved of service and support.
SUB: Christian Eriksen (46′ for Casemiro) – 7/10 – Didn’t provide quite the same creative spark as he did against Galatasaray but was always positive.
SUB: Antony (63′ for Mount) – 5/10
SUB: Alejandro Garnacho (63′ for Rashford) – 7/10
SUB: Anthony Martial (71′ for Lindelof) – 5/10
SUB: Scott McTominay (87′ for Amrabat) – 10/10 – Literally no more that he could have done in his time on the pitch.
Subs not used: Bayindir (GK), Hannibal, Pellistri, Van de Beek
Erik ten Hag – 6/10 – Goodness me, did United make that hard for themselves. They lacked invention and got frustrated but dug in deep to take the points.