Raphael Varane came on in the 93rd minute but his first touch saved the game for Man Utd
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Raphael Varane was only on the pitch for the last couple of minutes of Manchester United's win over Everton, but his first touch still saved Erik ten Hag's team.
United fans might have been worried when Varane was forced off injured in the Manchester derby eight days ago, especially as without him on the pitch the team had a collective brain fart and allowed Christian Eriksen to mark Erling Haaland at a corner.
The Frenchman has created quite the partnership at centre-back with Lisandro Martinez in recent weeks, and any prolonged absence would not have been good for the team.
On Sunday evening, the World Cup winner was named as a substitute for the match against Everton, at Goodison Park, with Victor Lindelof filling in from the start.
It looked like the visitors were missing the former Real Madrid defender, when fellow ex Los Blancos alumni Casemiro messed up to let Alex Iwobi open the scoring.
Antony became the first United player to score in their first three Premier League games to tie things up before Cristiano Ronaldo, on as a substitute, made it 2-1, scoring his 700th goal.
United dominated the second half but couldn't add to their lead, with Marcus Rashford having a goal disallowed, before Ten Hag sent on Varane to see out the game, in the 93rd minute.
And the manager will be glad he did, after Everton came within inches of equalising, as they got a corner deep into injury time. Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford went up to grab a dramatic equaliser and Varane just managed to head it away from the England number one.
This is what you call a Rolls Royce defender.. pic.twitter.com/JYfRv1A3Ma— 🎟️ (@SackOIe) October 9, 2022
If it hadn't have been Pickford, then Toffees' midfielder Amadou Onana was also in position to head home, if it wasn't for Varane's intervention.
It was the 29-year-old's first touch since coming on and was the kind of moment that makes a mockery of Paul Scholes' claim the Frenchman wasn't a good signing.
One fan was accusing the United manager of being able to see into the future, saying, "Can Ten Hag predict the future? He brought him [Varane] on before that set piece was taken."
"Although Lindelof did well yesterday this clip shows exactly why Varane should play over him," another added.
The impact of conceding an equaliser to a goalkeeper was also discussed, with another fan adding, "Conceding to Pickford would have killed us, thank you Varane for saving us."
"Raphael Varane deserves a special type of award for stopping Jordan Pickford from scoring a last minute equaliser. Can you imagine?" a fourth questioned.
"That Varane header at the end. He’s virtually won us the game otherwise that’s a certain goal for Pickford," said a fifth.
VARANE CLUTCH pic.twitter.com/O4ulyphQwH— 🇨🇩🇸🇱 (@F1avss) October 9, 2022
Many were asking whether Haaland would have scored his first of three in the Manchester derby, if Varane had been on, but rival fans weren't convinced.
In the replies, non United fans were questioning how they could call him a 'Rolls Royce defender' a week after conceding six against Manchester City.
In his defence, Varane was off the pitch for the second goal, clearly injured for the third and was then replaced by Lindelof for the final three goals.
Featured Image Credit: Twitter
Topics: Premier League, Manchester United, Jordan Pickford, Everton, Raphael Varane