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"Wembley is calling", "Martinez with a MOTM performance" - Twitter explodes as Manchester United all but confirm their place in Carabao Cup final

Nottingham Forest v Manchester United - Carabao Cup Semi Final 1st Leg
Manchester United take massive step towards Wembley.

Manchester United romped to a comfortable 3-0 win over Nottingham Forest in their Carabao Cup semi-final first leg at the City Ground. Erik ten Hag's side have one foot in the final at Wembley Stadium after easily dispatching Steve Cooper's men on Wednesday (January 25) night.

The Red Devils will host Forest at Old Trafford in the second leg next Wednesday (February 1). However, the tie was essentially ended by United after an emphatic 3-0 victory.

Manchester United's first goal arrived in the sixth minute as Marcus Rashford continued his incredible form. The English forward drove at Joe Worrall, pacing into the box before firing a left-footed strike past Forest goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey.

Ten Hag's men dominated proceedings and their new frontman Wout Weghorst got himself on the scoresheet in the 45th minute. The towering Dutchman was the first to react following a shot Hennessey had saved. He tapped home from close range to score his first goal in United colors.

Forest had threatened before Weghorst's strike, with Morgan Gibbs-White and Brennan Johnson causing problems. However, the Red Devils' second goal arriving on the stroke of half-time was a killer blow.

Manchester United sought a third goal throughout the second half, and they were the more threatening side. Ten Hag tinkered with his side as an extensive run of fixtures looms. Youngsters Alejandro Garnacho, Facundo Pellestri and Anthony Elanga were all introduced.

Pellestri and Elanga contributed to Bruno Fernandes' fine strike in the 89th minute, which pretty much confirmed United's place in the Carabao Cup final. The ball arrived to Pellestri in the Forest box, the Uruguayan tried to get it under control, but Neco Williams was on the floor attempting to clear it. The ball then fell to Elanga, who lifted a perfectly chipped pass to Fernandes, who struck a neat strike past Hennessey.

The win means the Red Devils will take a 3-0 lead back to Old Trafford for the second leg next week. United's hopes of winning their first major trophy since 2017 are alive and well.

Here are some reactions from Twitter to a night where Ten Hag's men took one giant step towards the Carabao Cup final:

Weโ€™re the famous Man Utd & weโ€™re going to Wembleyโ€ฆ๐ŸŽถ๐ŸŽถ๐ŸŽถ https://t.co/KPipua9bFt
Perfect night for United, thatโ€ฆAnother Ten Hag miracle ๐Ÿ˜‰
Nottingham Forest hadnโ€™t lost at home since September 16 and were 8 unbeatenโ€ฆUnited have just blitzed through them and barely entered third gear.Impressive season continues. To end the trophy drought at the first time of asking would be an almighty achievement.
I see a bit of Sadio Manรฉ in Elanga you know.
Excited to see Weghorst get his goal, but he's been class for Man Utd regardless.His hold-up and link-up play has been seriously good.
Wout Weghorst has scored his first goal for Manchester United. It is his 172nd career club goal.Account open. ๐Ÿ’ฅ https://t.co/RxlN8aXSm4
Weghorst gets his first for #mufc ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ https://t.co/rGh6TJWOHr
WEGHORST THE BEST STRIKER IN THE WORLD WE HAVE ARRIVEDDS
Yes!! Unstoppable @MarcusRashford ๐Ÿ”ฅ๐Ÿ’ช๐Ÿป
Rashford keeps scoring, Weghorst first goal, Bruno banger, 3 goals, clean sheet and Wembley is calling. A beautiful night ๐Ÿค
Marcus Rashford might be the best player on the planet based on current formโ€ฆ
โ€˜That Marcus Rashford looks good.โ€™โ€˜Gareth, you brought him on for 5 minutes against France.โ€™ https://t.co/94hsmwFAOR
They were talking about Rashford needing to track back: https://t.co/EpuTrWaiCP
Marcus Rashford started his run in his OWN half to score that solo goalโ€ฆGENERATIONAL. ๐ŸŒŸ https://t.co/mPHWFrJBri
Marcus Rashford is on ๐Ÿ”ฅ
Lisandro Martinez with a MOTM performance ๐Ÿ‘ https://t.co/IUzY7B8c5w
Bruno appreciated @AnthonyElanga's assist ๐Ÿ˜š https://t.co/NmS3z4tvpc
That Elanga assist wowzers I get it why Dortmund want him
Man Utd signing Lisandro Martinez for ยฃ55m was an absolute bargain.WHAT A PLAYER!!! ๐Ÿ”ฅ https://t.co/CHrwsfftQx
That Elanga assist was cheeky we deserve another ยฃ2M on that loan fee for that @BVB
I like Facundo Pellistri. Getting to the by-line and getting a cross in.
๐Ÿšจ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ท Casemiro NOW has 7 goals + assists for Manchester United so far this season, thatโ€™s 2 more than he managed for Real Madrid all of last season. @StatmanDave https://t.co/nJ51e0eFne
Ten Hag just 6 months into the job has us firmly in the top 4 and in a final. Let him cook, heโ€™s here to take care of us bro๐Ÿ˜ญ
Garnacho, Amad & Pellistri next season? Iโ€™m gassed

Manchester United legend Roy Keane lauds Martinez after impressive performance in win over Forest

Lisandro Martinez has been in red-hot form.
Lisandro Martinez has been in red-hot form.

Martinez was superb against Forest, keeping up the magnificent form he has managed since arriving at Manchester United from Ajax last summer for ยฃ55 million. Many are choosing Casemiro as Ten Hag's best signing, but the Argentine defender has rarely put a foot wrong since joining the club.

Keane has been impressed with what he has seen from Martinez. The Irishman heaped praise on the defensive abilities he possesses. He told Sky Sports:

โ€œHe's got that pride in his defending. You've seen his character and his desire. He wants to defend. He's the kind of person you want to be in the trenches with.โ€

Next up for Manchester United is the visit of EFL Championship side Reading in the FA Cup fourth round on Saturday (January 28).

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Edited by Matthew Guyett
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