DEJECTED Cherries skipper Simon Francis described as a “real sickener” conceding an injury-time winner against Manchester United yesterday.

England striker Marcus Rashford came off the bench to grab a dramatic late goal to earn the Red Devils a 2-1 victory at Vitality Stadium.

Cherries had taken an early lead through Callum Wilson’s opportunist 11th-minute opener, the frontman’s seventh goal of the season.

However, Eddie Howe’s team were made to pay for squandering a host of other presentable chances as they dominated for long periods during the first half.

Wilson, Ryan Fraser and Junior Stanislas all went close to breaking the deadlock as Cherries had United rocking in the opening stages.

But Cherries were rewarded for their endeavours when Wilson steered his shot past David de Gea after Lewis Cook’s superb pass had set Stanislas free to cross from the right.

United were fortunate not to be further behind when Anthony Martial levelled against the run of play following good work by Ashley Young and Alexis Sanchez.

Even United boss Jose Mourinho admitted he had been the “luckiest manager in the Premier League” after his side had reached the break at 1-1.

Although the visitors edged the second half, Cherries had looked destined to preserve their unbeaten home record in the top flight this season until Rashford had the final say.

Put to him that the goal must have seemed like a dagger to the heart, Francis replied: “Even that is an understatement. The lads were gutted and rightly so.

“I thought we gave everything, especially in the first half. It was possibly the best first-half performance we have had against one of the top teams.

“We could have been two or three up at half-time and continued to have chances in the second half.

“It was a different game after the break. They came on strongly in the second half and took a lot of risks. They left a lot of players up and countered really well.

“Although they created chances, it was still a real sickener to concede in injury time. I could hear their fans celebrating and you could see how much it meant to them. That was also credit to us and how well we performed.”

Francis added: “I don’t think they could have had any complaints had we gone in two or three up at half-time.

“Both teams had chances in the second half. David Brooks had a good one for us and they hit the crossbar. Nathan Ake made an unbelievable block and they had a couple of other chances as well. The second half was more equal but we were disappointed to lose.

“Based on how we have been performing this season and the confidence we have been displayed, it was a game we felt we could have got something from.

“I thought we showed all the capabilities and attributes to do that but it just wasn't to be. It was hard to take but I am sure we will take lots of positives going into the Newcastle game.”