Rock-bottom level Sheffield United put a huge dent on Manchester United's Premier Group title hopes about Wednesday, beating Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's off-key side 2-1 at Classic Trafford.
United knew that they had to respond following Manchester City leapfrogged them by the summit with a 5-0 hammering of West Brom on Tuesday however they were very well short of their finest in a frustrating night.
Kean Bryan gave the guests a shock first-50 % lead that ex - Blades defender Harry Maguire cancelled away, limited to Oliver Burke's heavily deflected strike to seal a first away win against Manchester United since 1973.
The effect leaves United on 40 points -- one behind City -- but Pep Guardiola's side will have a game at hand and so are looking increasingly more likely to win a third title in four seasons.
Solskjaer told BT Sport the "magic was first missing" from his side, who slipped to their first league defeat since November 1, and said the referee had produced two mistakes.
"They defended well, good play to them but we didn't possess the proper ideas or alternatives," said the Norwegian.
"The first target is a foul, Billy Sharp incurs David de Gea. At the other end, no foul for the disallowed objective for all of us but it's that sort of season. Two blunders by the referee."
Even in this unpredictable season, this end result stood out among the biggest shocks of the campaign.
Before the meet Sheffield United had simply five points showing from 19 games -- the worst type of haul in Premier League history -- and hadn't beaten the Red Devils since 1993.
- Sloppy Man Utd -
Manchester United's Marcus Rashford flashed an early on shot narrowly wide nevertheless they were short of tips against the battling away crew.
The Blades broke the deadlock midway through the first half when Bryan rose to glance residence John Fleck's corner after De Gea didn't punch clear.
Billy Sharp appeared to nudge the Spanish goalkeeper from in back of however the goal was permitted to stand.
Manchester United had the ball found in the web after half a great hour's play but Anthony Martial's effort didn't count because referee Peter Bankes had already blown his whistle for a good foul by Maguire on goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.
United lacked urgency when the initial period wore in, struggling to get in back of Chris Wilder's organised rear line.
Bruno Fernandes fashioned half of a opportunity for United when he ran beyond the last line of defence and hooked the ball back but Martial cannot get enough get on the header.
The house side tried to intensify a gear in the beginning of the second half but nonetheless lacked sharpness within their passing, with Rashford off the pace.
Mason Greenwood, who actually scored found in United's FA Cup win against Liverpool on Sunday, snatched at a prospect after an excellent through ball from Fernandes.
United were now showing more urgency but David McGoldrick went near to doubling Sheffield United's lead with a clever effort with the exterior of his correct foot.
Solskjaer's guys were level found in the 64th minute when a great outswinging corner from Alex Telles was met with a good thumping header by Maguire at night diving Ramsdale.
Edinson Cavani replaced Greenwood occasions later as United looked to carefully turn the screw.
But Sheffield United were back front again in the 74th minute when Manchester United didn't clear and Burke's hit took a wicked deflection off Axel Tuanzebe and went in off the underside of the bar.
Solskjaer threw on Luke Shaw and Donny van de Beek as being United desperately sought a great equaliser however they had to handle the intense frustration of 3 dropped points.
"There will be zero big inquest," said Solskjaer. "There were so many odd effects this season but with the world as it is we have been the most consistent crew. It struck us today."
Sheffield United now have eight points -- still 10 from safety.