UEFA Europa League: Man United comes back from behind to beat Barca 2-1, progresses to round of 16 on 4-3 goals aggregate

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By Sakiru Olopade 

It was a sweet victory for the Red Devils in the round of 32 of the Uefa Europa League as Erik Ten Hag’s side came from behind to beat Barcelona by 2goals to 1 and progressed to the round of 16 on aggregate of 4-3 win.

The atmosphere at Old Trafford was colourful, charged, poised with fans expectant nothing short of victory from their darling team.

The encounter was a game of two halves, Barcelona were the better side in the 1st half while Manchester United were much better side in the 2nd half with two stupendous goals.

The visitors got the opener, when Robert Lewandowski converted a penalty kick that was almost saved by David De Gea in 18th minute, after Bruno Fernandes committed needless foul against Alejandro Balde.

The in form Marcus Rashford looked threatening whenever he had the ball but Sergio Busquets and Frenkie De Jong put him in check from wreaking any havoc.

At the resumption of the 2nd half, Manchester United were all out to ensure qualification for the round of 16. The ineffective Wout Weghorst was withdrawn for Alejandro Garnacho and Anthony were introduced into the game to add fire power into the United attack.

This substitutions paid off as United raided Barcelona defense ceaselessly. The much needed equalizer was registered in the 47th minute, with the Brazilian, Fred receiving a square pass from the skipper, Bruno Fernandes to fire a low drive beyond Ter Stegen to restore parity.

The goal that broke the carmel’s back was scored in the 73rd minute with a clinical finish from Antony after two attempts from Bruno Fernandes and Alejandro Garnacho were blocked, capitalizing on the rebounce, Antony curled a fierce shot into the bottom left corner to send theatre of dreams into frenzy atmosphere.

It was a victory well deserved by the Red Devils, beating Barcelona, leader in La Liga, eight points ahead of Real Madrid. The victory was the first time since April, 2008 ending their five game winless run against the Spanish side.

The Erik Ten Hag’s side will square up against Newcastle in the carabao cup final on Sunday while hosting West Ham United in the FA cup on Wednesday.


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