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Ratings: Pogba poor, Sanchez poor, Lukaku worked hard – that should be the ethic but it is not!

Manchester United were knocked out of the UEFA Champions League by Sevilla after a 2-1 defeat at Old Trafford. The first half of the game was goalless and it took substitute Wassim Ben Yedder to score two goals in just over two minutes late in the second half to spoil the evening and possibly the season for United. Romelu Lukaku did score a consolation goal, which was not enough.

Key Moments:

38′ – Marouane Fellaini forced a fine save from Sergio Rico after winning the ball just outside the box, running into the box and striking his shot towards the near post. The Sevilla goalkeeper made the save, stopping what could have been a great goal by the Belgian.

60′ – Paul Pogba replaced Marouane Fellaini, the first substitution of the match. The Frenchman was soon misplacing passes and losing the ball. Not the best start for the Frenchman.

74′ – Wassim Ben Yedder opened the scoring after Ever Banega turned in midfield feeding Pablo Sarabia who then looked up to find Ben Yedder who scored with his superb effort into the bottom right corner past David De Gea. Manchester United were seemingly heading out of the Champions League.

77′ – Manchester United conceded another goal, with Wassim Ben Yedder the scorer again. Joaquin Correa crossed the ball from the left, there was a weak header towards the goal and David De Gea looked to tip the ball over. The ball touched the crossbar and just crossed the line. The referee gave the goal after it being confirmed by his assistant.

84′ – Manchester United scored a consolation goal through Romelu Lukaku, his 24th goal of the season, assisted by Marcus Rashford. The 20-year-old whipped his corner into the box with the Belgian at close-range slamming his shot past Sergio Rico. It was just not going to be enough for United though.

Match Statistics:

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

The Spanish number one hardly had anothing to do for the majority of the match. He was unlucky for the first goal but could have perhaps done more to deter the second. Not all his fault though. A goalkeeper is only as good as his defence, and this season, there are some careers which are questionable.

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25 Antonio Valencia

Defensively, Valencia was solid and did what he needed to do the majority of the time. Attacking wise, which is one of his strong points, he just did not do enough to threaten.

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3 Eric Bailly

Put in a perfectly times challenge to deny Correa. He was poor in possession during the game though. It was an awakening for him after Saturday's victory over Liverpool.

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Chris Smalling

Too many shaky displays. Seems unable to be confident. Gave away too many silly fouls. Still not convinced.

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18 Ashley Young

Defensively, Young was rarely dealt with a problem. His distribution though was questionable. I still think Luke Shaw needs to be given a decent crack of the whip.

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31 Nemanja Matic

Had more defensive duties and will have missed McTominay. Isolated at times but he was the one rallying the troops at times. United lacked any urgency, even when it was too late.

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27 Marouane Fellaini

The Belgian had a bright start for United despite four months on the sidelines. Had a decent shot on goal late in the first half, forcing a save by Rico. He faded into the second half and was replaced by Pogba.

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14 Jesse Lingard

Started the game well, had an effort on goal saved and had some decent link-up play with Lukaku. He faded into the game though.

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Alexis Sanchez

Everything seems to be changed for Sanchez and if he doesn't perform, it should not be the case. Needs to be dropped after a string of poor performances.

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10 Marcus Rashford

After hitting the headlines against Liverpool, it was a spectacular fall from grace for Rashford. Switched from the left to the right may have been the problem. He assisted for Lukaku, albeit from a corner.

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Romelu Lukaku

The Belgian workes tirelessly and was let down by his teammates with a distinct lack of service. His hold up play is getting stronger and he had a great chance to open the scoring early in the game. Eventually scored United's only goal of the game.

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Substitutes

6 Paul Pogba

Replaced Fellaini 60'. Was a let down. Lost possession, misplaced passes. Just didn't look all that interested.

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8 Juan Mata

Replaced Valencia 77'. Should have started the game. He helps the attack, perhaps not with his pace but with his ability and mind.

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9 Anthony Martial

Replaced Lingard 7'. The Frenchman added some spark in attack but it was too late to change the game.

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Goals: Romelu Lukaku 84′

Assists: Marcus Rashford 84′

Manchester United: De Gea; Valencia (Mata 77′), Bailly, Smalling, Young; Matic, Fellaini (Pogba 60′); Lingard (Martial 77′), Sanchez, Rashford; Lukaku

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Lindelof, Darmian; McTominay

Bookings: Marcus Rashford 90+3′

Report: Manchester United crash out of the Champions League after poor performance against Sevilla

Manchester United were knocked out of the UEFA Champions League by Sevilla after a 2-1 defeat at Old Trafford. The first half of the game was goalless and it took substitute Wassim Ben Yedder to score two goals in just over two minutes late in the second half to spoil the evening and possibly the season for United. Romelu Lukaku did score a consolation goal, which was not enough.

Jose Mourinho made two changes from the team which beat Liverpool in the Premier League at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon. Marouane Fellaini replaced Scott McTominay and Jesse Lingard replaced Juan Mata. Paul Pogba was fit enough to take a place on the bench for this important match which United must win.

United started the game well, creating chances from the start. Romelu Lukaku was unlucky not to get his name on the score sheet after some good interplay with Jesse Lingard. In the sixth minute of the match, United won a free-kick in the final third after Ever Banega fouled Alexis Sanchez and was booked, meaning he will miss the next game for Sevilla, whether it is this season or whenever.

In the ninth minute of the match, Sevilla from a corner, nearly scored but the shot was off target with the ball careering over the crossbar after Joaquin Correa reached the cross from the corner with a header. In the 12th minute, United’s defence did not look the best as they were welcoming Sevilla to attack and the Spanish side looked to be ready to take any opportunity to score.

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In the 14th minute, United were still sloppy in defence and Sevilla, through good interplay between Correa and Luis Muriel, had another shot on goal, which Muriel took but the shot was well off target. United needed to do so much better so far in the game. They started brightly but soon lost that edge they needed to see them through the match and into the quarter-final stages.

In the 22nd minute, Marcus Rashford had a run on the ball, up the right flank and into the box, attempting to create something for United. When the 20-year-old tried to pass to a teammate, Sevilla regained possession and attempted an attack of their own. Sevilla had another chance in the 28th minute with Muriel firing a shot across goal which was just off target.

United had a change at the other end of the pitch but Lukaku was unable to catch the ball the threaten the Spanish side. The tempo of the game then changed and the supporters sprung into life, for both teams. United had a chance in the 33rd minute after Lingard put a lovely ball to pick Marouane Fellaini out but the Belgian’s header did not find a teammate. Banega then fired wide for the visitors.

In the 38th minute, Fellaini picked up the ball in the final third, ran into the box and forced a save from Sergio Rico, winning a corner. Rashford then had a moment of joy on the ball but the referee stopped play as the ball apparently crossed the line for a Sevilla throw-in. United won a corner in the 43rd minute after Lingard tried to create something, his pass being blocked and put out of play.

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The corner came to nothing, although United still had possession of the ball, running into their own half before attacking again through Sanchez. The half ended 0-0 with all still left to play for. United seemed to be getting warmed up halfway into the half. They would need to be a little bit more ruthless in the second half, finding an early goal, or two, in order to win the tie.

At the start of the second half, there were no changes for either team. United did go out on the attack through Sanchez, unable to get anything from the game immediately from the whistle. United had a few early chances in the second half with Rashford looking as lively as he did against Liverpool at the weekend.

In the 54th minute, Sanchez set Rashford loose down the right flank but the 20-year-olds cross was over hit with the ball going out of play. Sevilla had shown that they were just as capable of threatening too but United seemed more determined so far. Sevilla then attacked in the 57th minute, breaking forward and getting a shot which was wide of the target.

In the 60th minute of the match, Mourinho made his first substitution with Paul Pogba coming on for Fellaini. Pogba was poor ever since he came on, misplacing passes and losing possession. He needed to do so much better. So far, his mistakes have not cost United anything but that is not the point.

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Rashford was fouled on the edge of the box in the 67th minute, earning United a free-kick in a dangerous area. Rashford was going to take the set-piece which was a disappointing effort, aiming for the far post, whether it was a shot or a cross, heading out of play for a goal kick. United needed to be more ruthless, taking no prisoners.

Sevilla made their first substitution with Luis Muriel being replaced by Wissam Ben Yedder. Straight away, the French attacker looked to create something for his side, being thwarted by David De Gea. Sevilla then took the lead in the match through Ben Yedder, going 1-0 up in the tie, meaning United needed to score twice to make the quarter-finals of the competition.

United made a double substitution in the 77th minute of the match with Juan Mata and Anthony Martial replacing Jesse Lingard and Antonio Valencia. Shortly after the change, Sevilla scored their second goal, meaning United now needed to score three goals to win the tie. United won a free-kick on the edge of the box, coming close to scoring, but not able to make it count.

United got a goal back in the 84th minute through Romelu Lukaku, assisted by Rashford who whipped in the corner and the Belgian was there to slam the ball past Rico. United needed two more goals tonight. United did have some other chances, which did not come and there was some controversy with a possible back pass to the goalkeeper, but nothing was given by the Dutch referee.

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There were four minutes of time to be added at the end of the match with United vying for their lives in the Champions League. Chris Smalling had a chance just after Sevilla were through on goal but De Gea made the save with his feet and United went on the attack with Smalling missing a header, which was not on target anyway. Rashford was booked for a challenge.

Sevilla had another chance at the end of the game, pressuring this United side who did not seem that great with Pogba on the pitch, shooting at goal and the ball being deflected out of play. That was it in the Champions League this season for United. Sevilla were through into the quarter-final winning 2-0. United’s only chance of a trophy this season will be in the FA Cup.

Key Moments:

38′ – Marouane Fellaini forced a fine save from Sergio Rico after winning the ball just outside the box, running into the box and striking his shot towards the near post. The Sevilla goalkeeper made the save, stopping what could have been a great goal by the Belgian.

60′ – Paul Pogba replaced Marouane Fellaini, the first substitution of the match. The Frenchman was soon misplacing passes and losing the ball. Not the best start for the Frenchman.

74′ – Wassim Ben Yedder opened the scoring after Ever Banega turned in midfield feeding Pablo Sarabia who then looked up to find Ben Yedder who scored with his superb effort into the bottom right corner past David De Gea. Manchester United were seemingly heading out of the Champions League.

77′ – Manchester United conceded another goal, with Wassim Ben Yedder the scorer again. Joaquin Correa crossed the ball from the left, there was a weak header towards the goal and David De Gea looked to tip the ball over. The ball touched the crossbar and just crossed the line. The referee gave the goal after it being confirmed by his assistant.

84′ – Manchester United scored a consolation goal through Romelu Lukaku, his 24th goal of the season, assisted by Marcus Rashford. The 20-year-old whipped his corner into the box with the Belgian at close-range slamming his shot past Sergio Rico. It was just not going to be enough for United though.

Match Statistics:

Goals: Romelu Lukaku 84′

Assists: Marcus Rashford 84′

Manchester United: De Gea; Valencia (Mata 77′), Bailly, Smalling, Young; Matic, Fellaini (Pogba 60′); Lingard (Martial 77′), Sanchez, Rashford; Lukaku

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Lindelof, Darmian; McTominay

Bookings: Marcus Rashford 90+3′

Confirmed Starting XI: Bailly starts, Lukaku, Rashford, Sanchez & Lingard lead the line; Pogba & McTominay on the bench

Manchester United face Sevilla in the second leg of the round of 16 in the UEFA Champions League at Old Trafford on Tuesday evening, a must-win encounter following the 0-0 draw in Spain almost three weeks ago.

United manager Jose Mourinho will be confident of securing a quarter-final place in the elite European competition this season, especially after his last three results, beating Chelsea and Crystal Palace, despite coming from behind, also beating Liverpool to go five points of the Merseyside club in second place, only for Tottenham Hotspur to push them into fourth, now sitting four points behind United.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Valencia, Bailly, Smalling, Young;

Matic, Fellaini;

Lingard, Sanchez, Rashford;

Lukaku

Substitutes:

Romero; Lindelof, Darmian; Pogba, Mata, McTominay; Martial

Manchester United and Sevilla have played one competitive match in the history of both clubs and that was a 0-0 draw in Spain last month. United had previously face Sevilla in Rio Ferdinand’s testimonial, losing that match at the Theatre of Dreams.

United did not have a great record in European competition in Spain until recently and that 0-0 draw, despite no goals being scored will be seen as a positive. United will, however, need to stop Sevilla from scoring at Old Trafford, which is what they did against Liverpool at the weekend.

For every goal Sevilla may score, United will in effect need two goals to nullify it. This match is going to be make or break for United. Making it into the last eight of the competition will be something Jose Mourinho and his side wants.

How Manchester United could look utilising a 4-2-3-1 formation in must-win match against Sevilla in the Champions League

Manchester United face one of the biggest matches this season at Old Trafford on Tuesday evening – the second leg of their round of 16 clash with Sevilla in the UEFA Champions League. After a 0-0 draw almost three weeks ago in Spain, United will need a complete shutout also a convincing performance to earn a place in Friday’s quarter-final draw which could see them pitted against any of the English sides left in the competition, which at this stage is just Manchester City and Liverpool as Tottenham Hotspur exited the competition after being beaten by Juventus. Chelsea face Barcelona this week, so there could be up to four teams from England in the last eight of the competition.

During Jose Mourinho’s press conference ahead of Tuesday night’s match, it was confirmed that Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo, and Daley Blind are still not in training and Paul Pogba did not train in the open training session on Monday morning but the manager confirmed the Frenchman did undergo some training after the media left. Anthony Martial and Zlatan Ibrahimovic were involved in the training session though, so United’s attacking power will be strengthened ahead of the must-win fixture. It should be a great atmosphere at the Theatre of Dreams, especially after the last three results in which United came from behind to beat both Chelsea and Crystal Palace, then beating Liverpool on Saturday. This will be a big week for United.

Starting XI and Formation Prediction:

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Goalkeeper: David De Gea

David De Gea has been great for Manchester United this season. 15 clean sheets in the Premier League, averaging 3.3 saves per match in the competition, which is more than he has ever succeeded on average in any of his seasons at the Old Trafford club. With the Spaniard comes great confidence, which comes after a turbulent first season at the club in which Sir Alex Ferguson trusted him, not choosing to drop him after some questionable performances. That confidence has brought forward the goalkeeper we see today – arguably one of the best in world football. Looking at Victor Lindelof, who has had a similar start at United to De Gea, those who slate him should be able to see what a bit of positivity does. That is who those who are qualified to manage do just that and those that are not, watch football.

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Back Four: Antonio Valencia, Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly, Ashley Young

Manchester United’s defence has some problems this season; injury being the biggest one, the form of some players being questionable. One moment Phil Jones is the flavour of the month and Chris Smalling is the villain, then the roles are swapped for a period of time. As Nemanja Vidic has said, he does not think the pair have developed in the way they were expected to as there has not been any senior players to guide them. That could be the case, but it is on the duo also. They have both been great at times, together or partnered with other teammates, but then the mistakes they make seem to suggest they are not professionals. With Eric Bailly fit and seemingly back to his best, starting him will be needed.

As Smalling has played a lot recently, playing Victor Lindelof with Bailly, which was a pairing most supporters wanted to see in the summer, should be tested. Lindelof is a decent defender but has made mistakes at times, he’s also done a lot of good but those fickle enough to mock that will pretend he hasn’t. It is too soon to write off a player. I’m glad some United supporters don’t run the club as there would forever be a revolving door at the club with players no longer the flavour of the month being forced out for silly things. Lindelof deserved a chance to show what he can do. As a fan of the club, you should support him instead of picking on anything which gets you credit which those who think football is something they control.

Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young should be the fullbacks against Sevilla. Both are in some great form right now, the latter more than the former, especially with the way he managed to keep Mohamed Salah out of the Liverpool match this weekend. Mourinho will, however, need to think about his plans going forward as the club cannot rely on the pair heading into next season, especially not for the majority of the season, with players needing to be given sufficient chances to cement their places in the team; Timothy Fosu-Mensah and Luke Shaw for instance.

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Midfield: Nemanja Matic, Scott McTominay

The Manchester United midfield is starting to look a bit stronger right now. Nemanja Matic and Scott McTominay have been performing in recent weeks and with the Academy graduate starting more, he has repaid the confidence Jose Mourinho had in him. With strong performances in his last five matches; against Huddersfield Town, Sevilla, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, and Liverpool, his stock has risen. McTominay recently chose Scotland as his international team and he has been selected for the friendly fixtures later this month.

Paul Pogba is a doubt for the Sevilla match after receiving an injury in training on Friday. Mourinho has suggested that he does not know if the Frenchman will play and ultimately that will be decided at some point tomorrow. Marouane Fellaini is back from injury and Michael Carrick is ready and waiting to be called upon after confirming that he will retire at the end of the season and assume a place in Mourinho’s coaching team.

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Attacking Midfield: Juan Mata, Alexis Sanchez, Marcus Rashford

Manchester United’s attack is riddled with talent throughout. This is something that should perhaps be working much better than it is but not everything works correctly 100% of the time. Many may see this as an excuse but there are many factors as to why United’s attack have looked blisteringly on pace, then disheveled at times this season. Right now Juan Mata is a player who needs to be in the fabric of the team. He does not have the pace others have, but his forethought and the fact he reads the game well from an attacking position really glues an attack together.

Alexis Sanchez needs to continue his settling in at the club, playing as many matches as he can and perhaps soon he will fit like a glove into the squad. Anthony Martial has been training, but after sitting on the sidelines for a number of weeks, starting Marcus Rashford again will be much better, especially after he scored twice against Liverpool at the weekend – his confidence will be sky-high. United have the likes of Jesse Lingard, Anthony Martial, and Zlatan Ibrahimovic to bring on should they need to, which will give the squad a bit more attacking support if needed.

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Striker: Romelu Lukaku

The Belgian striker has scored 23 goals in all competitions for his club last season, with eight league matches remaining, plus at least two other matches; one in the UEFA Champions League (Sevilla) and another in the Emirates FA Cup (Brighton and Hove Albion). Lukaku scored 25 goals in the Premier League alone last season for Everton and no doubt, despite his tally so far this season and the fact he has performed in all four competition, including the step up in the Champions League, the media, pundits, and ABUs will most likely suggest Lukaku’s move to United has shown him as a flop. Granted, he could have done better in the league, but based on the fact this United side is improving, having a player score almost as many as Zlatan Ibrahimovic did last season (28) will not be seen as a negative.

Preview: Manchester United need to go all out for the win against Sevilla – it will be a tough encounter

Manchester United -v- Sevilla

Old Trafford, Manchester

UEFA Champions League 2017/18

Tuesday 13th March 2018; KO 19:45 GMT

Live on BT Sport in the United Kingdom

Manchester United face Sevilla in the second leg of the round of 16 in the UEFA Champions League at Old Trafford on Tuesday evening, a must-win encounter following the 0-0 draw in Spain almost three weeks ago. United manager Jose Mourinho will be confident of securing a quarter-final place in the elite European competition this season, especially after his last three results, beating Chelsea and Crystal Palace, despite coming from behind, also beating Liverpool to go five points of the Merseyside club in second place, only for Tottenham Hotspur to push them into fourth, now sitting four points behind United.

United earned a Champions League place by winning the UEFA Europa League last season, coming through their group with five wins out of six and being drawn against the Spanish side, the first time both teams have faced each other competitively. United will feel at home in the latter stages of the competition which puts them in the driving seat ahead of this fixture, the biggest of the season so far. United also won the EFL Cup and the FA Community Shield last season, not the greatest things to win, but the League Cup and the Europa League are both major honours and it signalled the fact that United were back on the right road following the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson almost five years ago.

United may not have the benefit of an away goal, which would have made this match seem a little better. Mourinho’s side will need to thwart any attempt of Sevilla scoring a goal as United would need to respond with two goals for each one the Spanish side manage to score. Thinking in this way, you would see Sevilla as the favourites, especially if they managed to bag a goal early on. United were outplayed by Sevilla in Spain and despite having more than 20 attempts on goal, United kept a clean sheet. It may have been a tactical plan for Mourinho but that still won’t make the second leg any easier, unless United manage to start the way they did against Liverpool at the weekend.

Sevilla are not in the best of form but that does not mean they are not capable of beating United. In the match following the 0-0 draw three weeks ago, Sevilla were beaten 5-2 by Atletico Madrid which was deemed embarrassing for them as they beat the club twice in the Copa del Rey earlier in the season. Whilst United have fewer defeats and draws in their last six matches, Sevilla are still a side to contend with. The Spanish side have lost twice, drawn once and won three times whilst United have been beaten once, won four times and drawn once in their last six matches. This is going to have to be another great performance by Manchester United or their season could start to unravel with the Emirates FA Cup coming up this weekend too.

Form: Manchester United have been beaten once in their last six matches; Sevilla have been beaten twice – United in better form heading into Old Trafford battle

Manchester United: WWWDWL – Liverpool 2-1 W, Crystal Palace 3-2 W, Chelsea 2-1 W, Sevilla 0-0 D, Huddersfield Town 2-0 W, Newcastle United 1-0 L

Sevilla: DLWWLDW – Valencia 2-0 L, Athletic Bilbao 2-0 W, Malaga 1-0 W, Atletico Madrid 5-2 L, Manchester United 0-0 D, Las Palmas 2-1 W

Top Scorers (all competitions): Manchester United have scored 86 goals, whereas Sevilla has only scored 71 goals in all competitions this season

Manchester United: 23 – Romelu Lukaku, 13 – Jesse Lingard, 12 – Marcus Rashford, 11 – Anthony Martial, 4 – Marouane Fellaini, 3 – Juan Mata, Paul Pogba, Antonio Valencia, 2 – Own Goal, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Chris Smalling, Ashley Young, 1 – Eric Bailly, Daley Blind, Ander Herrera, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Nemanja Matic, Alexis Sanchez

Sevilla: 17 – Wissam Ben Yedder, 8 – Luis Muriel, Pablo Sarabia, 7 – Joaquín Correa, 4 – Éver Banega, Ganso, Clément Lenglet, Nolito, Franco Vázquez, 3 – Sergio Escudero, Jesús Navas, 2 – Simon Kjaer, Guido Pizarro, 1 – Michael Krohn-Dehli

Previous Matches: One match played and it is all even – it has to be decided at Old Trafford on Tuesday evening though…

Manchester United and Sevilla have played one competitive match in the history of both clubs and that was a 0-0 draw in Spain last month. United had previously face Sevilla in Rio Ferdinand’s testimonial, losing that match at the Theatre of Dreams. United did not have a great record in European competition in Spain until recently and that 0-0 draw, despite no goals being scored will be seen as a positive. United will, however, need to stop Sevilla from scoring at Old Trafford, which is what they did against Liverpool at the weekend. For every goal Sevilla may score, United will in effect need two goals to nullify it. This match is going to be make or break for United. Making it into the last eight of the competition will be something Jose Mourinho and his side wants.

Team News: Paul Pogba may miss another important match this season; Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo, and Daley Blind still on the sidelines

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho could be without Paul Pogba for another match after he was injured in Friday’s training session, missing the victory over Liverpool. Mourinho, speaking after the match on Saturday, stated that he did not know how long Pogba could be out of action. The United squad were training ahead of tomorrow night’s must-win fixture this morning and Pogba was not involved in the open training session. Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo, and Daley Blind were also absent. Zlatan Ibrahimovic was involved and it was suggested that the Swede would be in contention to face Sevilla, which could be his second appearance in the competition this season, his eighth appearance in all competitions, scoring one solitary goal so far. Mourinho’s press conference will take place around 14:00 GMT today, so there will be updates as to who is available for selection and who is not.

Predicted Starting XI: Mourinho should have the players capable of getting the much-needed result against Sevilla

Predicted Score: Manchester United should be strong enough to get a result against Sevilla and earn a place in Friday’s UEFA Chapmions League quarter-final draw

Manchester United 3-1 Sevilla

Ratings: De Gea the Man of the Match; Pogba rusty in Sevilla draw

Manchester United drew 0-0 with Sevilla in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 clash. David De Gea became the man of the evening after making a few great saves to deny the home side from taking the lead in the match. United, with De Gea in goal, have kept 19 clean sheets this season – 20 being the most for him in a season. This match will now be decided at Old Trafford.

Key Moments:

16′ Ander Herrera injured himself whilst running into the Sevilla box. He immediately took his left boot off and sat down – unable to continue. Paul Pogba warmed himself up and was brought on within a minute to aid United.

42′ David De Gea made a save by diving to his left to deny Joaquin Correa from scoring the opening goal of the match.

45′ Victor Lindelof made a huge challenge on the edge of the box cutting out Sergio Escudero’s pass giving Sevilla a corner. David De Gea made a superb save to deny Steven N’Zonzi scoring at the end of the half, tipping the shot over the crossbar.

Man of the Match: David De Gea

The Spanish goalkeeper was the man of the moment for United, keeping them in the game after a great striker by Lucas Muriel was dealt with by an even better save. This was where De Gea would be the hero of the game in an important match in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League – and it has been a long wait for that – five years to be exact.

Match Statistics:

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

Man of the Match for me. The Spanish number one made a great save to deny Muriel just before half time. This was his 19th clean sheet of the season - the most he's had is 20 clean sheets in a season.

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25 Antonio Valencia

Valencia played well at times but going forward left the defence exposed at times with him being caught out of position.

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2 Victor Lindelof

The Swede played well but a mistake between him and De Gea could have seen the hosts take the lead. Needs to play a lot more to build his confidence after arriving last summer.

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Chris Smalling

The England defender was made to put in a shift after Sevilla's attack saw him have to put his heart into his game.

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18 Ashley Young

I would rather see Luke Shaw at left-back. Young was stretched defensively and lost possession of the ball too many times to be efficient in his role.

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21 Ander Herrera

The Spaniard lasted 17 minutes after suffering an injury when United were on the attack with Herrera running into the box and pulling up.

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31 Nemanja Matic

Matic made a few fouls and was lucky not to be booked. Played well with McTominay in midfield and Herrera before he was injured which saw Pogba come on.

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39 Scott McTominay

McTominay played a great game. He is not world class but is of United standard. Not the star but a player with the ability to get involved. Had a first half shot saved and was very tidy in possession.

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8 Juan Mata

The Spanish attacking midfielder was busy throughout the game but there was no real end product fro United's attacking.

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Romelu Lukaku

Got stuck into the game and worked hard throughout. The Belgian volleyed an effort over the crossbar in the first half and did score in the second half, but it was denied for handball after hitting the top of his arm.

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Alexis Sanchez

The Chilean was full of energy and determination to win. Booked late in the first half for pulling back Navas.

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Substitutes

6 Paul Pogba

Replaced Herrera 17'. Seemed rusty. Had a chance to get himself back into the side ahead of Sunday's Chelsea clash. Failed to prove a point but did put in a shift.

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10 Marcus Rashford

Replaced Sanchez 75'. Came on late in the game. Took a free-kick which was just wide but could not change the game for United.

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9 Anthony Martial

Replaced Mata 80'. Had ten minutes plus stoppage time. Navas will remember him.

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Manchester United: De Gea; Valencia, Lindelof, Smalling, Young; Herrera (Pogba 17′), Matic, McTominay; Mata (Martial 80′), Lukaku, Sanchez (Rashford 75′)

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Bailly, Darmian; Lingard

Bookings: Alexis Sanchez 41′

Report: David De Gea shone with superb save in Sevilla stalemate

Manchester United drew 0-0 with Sevilla in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 clash. David De Gea became the man of the evening after making a few great saves to deny the home side from taking the lead in the match. United, with De Gea in goal, have kept 19 clean sheets this season – 20 being the most for him in a season. This match will now be decided at Old Trafford.

Jose Mourinho made a few changes from the side which beat Huddersfield Town in the Emirates FA Cup at the weekend, the biggest shock being that Paul Pogba was on the bench. After reading some discontent on social media, it made me realise how pathetic people really are. If you start a war, you don’t fire all your bullets in the first 45 minutes, you save some, make plans and hold things back.

United started poorly with Sevilla taking control of the game and having the lion’s share of possession, also dominating in United’s final third – a similar approach United adopted against Huddersfield at the weekend. Sevilla are in great form at home but they have not kept a clean sheet in six knockout stage Champions League matches, so there is a way to break in and find a goal or two.

United started to get involved in the attacking aspect of the game in the ninth minute but nothing became of it. A few minutes later Alexis Sanchez was passed the ball and he ran into the box to get a shot but was dispossessed. At the other end of the pitch, Sevilla, through Jesus Navas had another shot on goal which did not really threaten David De Gea.

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In the 16th minute of the match, Ander Herrera suffered an injury and could not continue which meant Paul Pogba was soon to be involved in the match. Herrera made way for the Frenchman in the 17th minute of the match. Twenty minutes into the game, United were still not fully in the game with Sevilla getting stuck in and trying to find the first goal of the game.

Steven N’Zonzi was booked for a challenge on Alexis Sanchez in the 21st minute of the match. The free-kick nothing of it for United. Romelu Lukaku had a great chance to open the scoring in the 25th minute of the match after Sanchez picked him out. The Belgian had the time to react and fire United ahead but his first touch was poor as he sent his shot into the stand behind the goal.

After a period where both teams battled in the middle of the pitch, with a few fouls, Scott McTominay had a shot on goal from outside of the box after a driving run from Ashley Young. The Sevilla goalkeeper manager to make the save though. A minute or so later, Sevilla won a corner, which came to nothing, after a spell in possession pressuring United.

With five minutes of the half remaining, United were on the attack and Navas dispossessed Sanchez but the Chilean tracked back to recover the ball, making a foul by pulling Navas back, earning a yellow card. A minute later, De Gea made yet another save to deny Sevilla from taking the lead at this stage of the game.

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Sevilla broke forward from a United corner, gaining ground with Victor Lindelof defending and deflecting the ball behind for a corner. The Spanish side aimed to take the lead with an acrobatic attempt on goal just being tipped over the crossbar by De Gea. De Gea then made an error in the box with the ball but recovered with Lucas Muriel firing a shot at the end of the half, De Gea making the save.

There were no changes for either team at the start of the second half of the game. Sevilla won another corner in the 53rd minute of the match after getting forward through Muriel and having a shot on goal which was deflected. It was Sevilla’s 11th corner of the game and De Gea made a comfortable catch to thwart the home side from gaining anything from the set piece.

Sevilla had another shot on goal in the 58th minute of the match through Muriel but De Gea stood and watched the effort go wide of the target. United won a free-kick int he 60th minute of the match after N’Zonzi fouled Sanchez – lucky not to be booked for the challenge. Lukaku took the free-kick – which came to nothing.

Sevilla won a free-kick in United’s half after Correa was fouled by Antonio Valencia. The set piece was sent into United’s box, a header was attempted with no power and De Gea made another save to deny the Spanish side from taking the lead in the match. Sevilla had another shot moments later which was off target and posed to threat to United nor De Gea.

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Sevilla won another free-kick in United’s half by the resulting kick was straight to De Gea and posed no threat to him. United immediately powered to the other end of the pitch winning a corner themselves, which came to nothing. With just over twenty minutes remaining, Mourinho had Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard warming up.

Sevilla won another free-kick, on the replay, there was no contact on the player. Sevilla had a good chance to take the lead in the 71st minute of the match by Muriel was unable to get into the danger area quick enough, missing the connection with the ball which could have seen the home side take the lead in the match.

Mourinho made his second substitution of the game in the 75th minute with Marcus Rashford making his return from injury and Sanchez coming off. After a purple patch in the game, Mourinho made his final substitution with Anthony Martial replacing Juan Mata in the 80th minute of the match.

United found the back of the net in the 83rd minute through Lukaku but the goal was disallowed after the ball seemed to hit the Belgian strikers arm. United had a change after breaking forward in the 87th minute of the game, moments after Navas performed a dive in the box. United were unable to capitalise by scoring a goal though.

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United won a free-kick in the 89th minute of the match with Rashford stepping up to take the kick. The shot on goal was just wide of the target. At the end of the second half, there were two minutes of stoppage time added. It was going to be a 0-0 draw in Spain, which was a good result but an away goal could have been beneficial for Mourinho’s side.

Key Moments:

16′ Ander Herrera injured himself whilst running into the Sevilla box. He immediately took his left boot off and sat down – unable to continue. Paul Pogba warmed himself up and was brought on within a minute to aid United.

42′ David De Gea made a save by diving to his left to deny Joaquin Correa from scoring the opening goal of the match.

45′ Victor Lindelof made a huge challenge on the edge of the box cutting out Sergio Escudero’s pass giving Sevilla a corner. David De Gea made a superb save to deny Steven N’Zonzi scoring at the end of the half, tipping the shot over the crossbar.

Man of the Match: David De Gea

The Spanish goalkeeper was the man of the moment for United, keeping them in the game after a great striker by Lucas Muriel was dealt with by an even better save. This was where De Gea would be the hero of the game in an important match in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League – and it has been a long wait for that – five years to be exact.

Match Statistics:

Manchester United: De Gea; Valencia, Lindelof, Smalling, Young; Herrera (Pogba 17′), Matic, McTominay; Mata (Martial 80′), Lukaku, Sanchez (Rashford 75′)

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Bailly, Darmian; Lingard

Bookings: Alexis Sanchez 41′

Confirmed Starting XI: Pogba on the bench; De Gea, Valencia & Herrera return

Manchester United return to action in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday evening in the round of 16 first leg of the elite European competition. Sevilla are the side United will have to contest to head into the last eight of the competition this season, which is what Jose Mourinho’s side will be tasked to do.

United have not reached the round of 16 stage of the competition since the 2013/14 season where the club did so in the beleaguered season under David Moyes, who was sacked as manager of the club before the end of that season.

United are currently second in the Premier League but trail leaders Manchester City by 16 points which gives them an impossible task to challenge for the title this season, which is something Mourinho has already conceded.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Valencia, Lindelof, Smalling, Young;

Herrera, Matic, McTominay;

Mata, Lukaku, Sanchez

Substitutes:

Romero; Bailly, Darmian; Pogba, Lingard; Martial, Rashford

Manchester United and Sevilla have not yet faced each other competitively in any competition so therefore Wednesday’s fixture will be the very first competitive match between the two clubs.

However, United have met Sevilla in the last five years for Rio Ferdinand’s testimonial which ended with a 3-1 defeat for David Moyes’ United side. United have played 23 matches in Spain but do not have the best form, winning only two of those matches.

Recently though, United have played eight matches in Spain – losing only one of those. Last season in the UEFA Europa League, United face Celta Vigo in Spain, winning 1-0. This match will mark United’s 50th in European competition against a Spanish side, United have won 13, drawn 20 and lost 16 times of the 49 played so far.

How Manchester United could look in a 4-3-3 formation against Sevilla in the UEFA Champions League

Manchester United face Sevilla in the round of 16 first leg of the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday evening. This is the first time since the 2013/14 season that United have reached the knockout stages of the elite European competition and it will be Jose Mourinho’s task to ensure they reach the last eight of the competition this season, which will be seen positively in terms of the club seeking to reach the dizzy heights of glory which was served up by Sir Alex Ferguson during his near-27 year reign at the Theatre of Dreams. In their last six matches, in all competitions, United have won four and lost twice – meaning they will need to continue fighting to earn the plaudits this season.

Starting XI Formation and Prediction: Mourinho to field a 4-3-3 formation with Paul Pogba playing in his favoured role?

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Goalkeeper: David De Gea

The Spanish number one was rested in the Emirates FA Cup victory over Huddersfield Town with Sergio Romero coming in for the United shot-stopper. Mourinho confirmed that De Gea was the only player rested from that match with the club suffering many injuries in the run-up to the game. De Gea is the player who could be the difference between United winning and losing in his native Spain. Being back in the Champions League is where De Gea will want to be and it will also be something he will want to win with the Old Trafford club.

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Back Four: Antonio Valencia, Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly, Luke Shaw

United’s defence has not been the best recently with the comedy duo Chris Smalling and Phil Jones doing what they do best – not performing. Smalling did play much better in the victory over Huddersfield at the weekend, but he was not all that convincing. Now that Bailly is back, it will be a welcome addition. With Marcos Rojo out of action due to injury, having both Lindelof and Bailly involved could be a blessing. Lindelof played at the weekend, but he has not played a lot recently. The defensive duo could be flanked by Valencia and Shaw, which is my first-choice fullback pairing.

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Three-Man Midfield: Ander Herrera, Michael Carrick, Paul Pogba

The midfield has been short of players recently with Marouane Fellaini, Pogba and Herrera all out of action, the Belgian for the foreseeable future. With Herrera and Pogba seemingly back in the squad for this important match, it would be fitting that alongside Carrick, the trio form a three-man midfield with Pogba able to play a more advanced role, which is where he excelled at stages this season. United need to control the midfield which will leave one less attacking player but with the three attackers I have chosen here, there should be enough to contend with Sevilla and possibly return to Manchester with multiple away goals and a foot in the door for the next round.

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Forward Three: Alexis Sanchez, Romelu Lukaku, Anthony Martial

United have some great attacking players. Martial must play on the left as it is his favoured position. Having Sanchez on the left against Huddersfield left Shaw exposed as the Chilean seldom tracked back to help him. In time, that will change, which means United will need to play the strongest players in their strongest positions. Playing Sanchez on the right is not his favoured role, but he could drift into a more central position. Valencia, playing as the right-back will not need as much support as Shaw would on the left, meaning the Ecuadorian would be fine if the Chilean drifted into a central role, where he could help United drive for victory.

Preview: Mourinho to set Manchester United up to challenge Sevilla in Spain?

Sevilla -v- Manchester United

Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, Seville, Spain

UEFA Champions League 2017/18

Wednesday 21st February 2018; KO 19:45 GMT

Live on BT Sport

Manchester United return to action in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday evening in the round of 16 first leg of the elite European competition. Sevilla are the side United will have to contest to head into the last eight of the competition this season, which is what Jose Mourinho’s side will be tasked to do. United have not reached the round of 16 stage of the competition since the 2013/14 season where the club did so in the beleaguered season under David Moyes, who was sacked as manager of the club before the end of that season. United are currently second in the Premier League but trail leaders Manchester City by 16 points which gives them an impossible task to challenge for the title this season, which is something Mourinho has already conceded.

Last season, United won the EFL Cup, now the Carabao Cup but their participation in that competition ended before the end of 2017 with Bristol City beating them. United have two chances to win some silverware this season; the Emirates FA Cup, of which they are in the last eight and face Brighton and Hove Albion at Old Trafford next month and the UEFA Champions League, which will be the toughest of the two tasks. One thing that goes in United’s favour is that the club will only need to worry about two matches in each round and depending on how much the team wants to win it, will depend on whether they actually get close to that. Realistically, United would be happy with a place in the quarter-final or even a semi-final place.

Form: Manchester United have won more in their last six matches but Sevilla have only been beaten once in their last six matches

Manchester United: WLWLWW – Huddersfield Town 2-0 W, Newcastle United 1-0 L, Huddersfield Town 2-0 W, Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 L, Yeovil Town 4-0 W, Burnley 1-0 W

Sevilla: WWWLDD – Las Palmas 2-1 W, Girona 1-0 W, Leganés 2-0 W, Eibar 5-1 L, Leganés 1-1 D, Getafe 1-1 D

Previous Matches: United do not have the best form in Spain in the past, but more recently they have only lost once in eight visits

Manchester United and Sevilla have not yet faced each other competitively in any competition so therefore Wednesday’s fixture will be the very first competitive match between the two clubs. However, United have met Sevilla in the last five years for Rio Ferdinand’s testimonial which ended with a 3-1 defeat for David Moyes’ United side. United have played 23 matches in Spain but do not have the best form, winning only two of those matches. Recently though, United have played eight matches in Spain – losing only one of those. Last season in the UEFA Europa League, United face Celta Vigo in Spain, winning 1-0. This match will mark United’s 50th in European competition against a Spanish side, United have won 13, drawn 20 and lost 16 times of the 49 played so far.

Team News: Mourinho boosted by the return of Bailly, Valencia, Pogba, Herrera, and Rashford ahead of Sevilla clash

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has been boosted recently with the return from injury of Eric Bailly, who came off the bench late in the 2-0 victory over Huddersfield Town in the Emirates FA Cup at the weekend. Bailly could make his 50th appearance for the club if he plays against Sevilla. It has been confirmed by the media that Antonio Valencia, Ander Herrera, Paul Pogba, and Marcus Rashford have all travelled to Seville – all of whom had missed the FA Cup match at the weekend, some have missed much longer periods due to injury. Zlatan Ibrahimovic was pictured in training at the AON Training Complex in Carrington this morning but it does not look like he has travelled to Spain.

Predicted Starting XI: Mourinho to field a 4-3-3 formation with a midfield able to challenge the Spanish side?

Predicted Score: 

Sevilla 1-2 Manchester United

copyright: JW