Match report and highlights for Barcelona v Man United in the Europa League



Erik ten Hag felt his team had a good plan coming into the game and the Reds overcame a strong Barça start to create a wealth of first-half opportunities.

Bruno Fernandes was at the core of United’s early play, flashing a dangerous cross in front of goal inside 30 seconds.

He then connected with Rashford’s cross and had a shot well blocked by Jordi Alba minutes later, before Tyrell Malacia’s follow-up was also smothered.

Those chances aside, it was an opening 20 minutes edged by the home side. Robert Lewandowski, facing United for the first time in a competitive match, nudged the ball clear of Luke Shaw in the ninth minute to shoot left-footed across goal, but David De Gea palmed his strike clear.

Marcos Alonso stood over a free-kick at the end of a probing move moments later but whipped his effort inches over De Gea’s crossbar, and exciting youngsters Gavi and Pedri combined as the latter fired over on the volley.

A loose Jules Kounde backpass gifted the Reds a corner and it was perhaps from that point where the tide of the first half began to turn.

Ten Hag’s men proceeded to create four fantastic chances within five minutes, as Aaron Wan-Bissaka pulled back to Sancho who swept a first-time shot just wide with the help of a Frenkie de Jong deflection.

Fernandes was then again in the thick of it, with a sensational ball through the middle to find Weghorst, but Ter Stegen kept out the Dutchman’s strike with his feet, and Casemiro was next to benefit from Bruno’s vision as he nodded a header straight at the Barça ‘keeper.

Rashford was next to get sight of goal, running on to Sancho’s pass down the left channel, with our no.10 striking early to draw Ter Stegen into another smart save.

Barça began to find some rhythm again before the break as Wan-Bissaka was forced into a superb last-ditch challenge on Alba, but it was the Reds who headed into the break having had the better opportunities.


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