Bruno Fernandes penalty was ‘inevitable’ after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Jurgen Klopp jab

In pictures: Man Utd v Aston Villa

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Aston Villa boss Dean Smith felt it was “inevitable” Manchester United were going to get a penalty on Saturday, but felt justic was done when Bruno Fernandes fired over the bar. United were frustrated throughout the contest as Villa proved tough to break down.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were looking to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League table.

But it was Villa who struck first in the game as Kortney Hause crashed a powerful header past David de Gea with two minutes left of normal time.

United pressed for a dramatic equaliser and were given a lifeline when the referee gave awarded the hosts a penalty.

Hause was deemed to have handled inside the box with Fernandes stepping up to take the spot-kick.

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But Old Trafford was left stunned as the Portugal international smashed his effort over the bar to bring their unbeaten start to the season to an end.

The awarding of a penalty to United comes just a day after Solskjaer claimed Jurgen Klopp’s intervention on how many spot-kicks the Red Devils receive made a “big difference”.

And Smith believes it was “inevitable” that United would win a penalty in their match on Saturday.

“I think Gabby [Agbonlahor] scored the winner that day. It’s been a long time coming,” he said.


“Our performance levels have been good the last couple of times we’ve been here.

“What that does is it gives an awful lot of belief to the players now.

“Went toe-to-toe with Chelsea, and we came here and went toe-to-toe.

“They probably had a lot more chances than us but they were smaller chances and we had some really big chances and deserved the win.

“We caused them problems from set-pieces and we get that goal and want to see the game out then but inevitable when we play Man Utd we give a penalty away.

“Extremely harsh, I’m not sure where he’s meant to put his arm and probably justice was done.

“They’ll enjoy that one and certainly our fans will because it’s a long time coming.”

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