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Sevilla 2-1 Manchester United: 5 Talking Points as Sevilla beat Red Devils to reach the final | Europa League 2019-20

Sevilla defeated Manchester United 2-1 to advance to the final of the 2019-20 Europa League.
Sevilla defeated Manchester United 2-1 to advance to the final of the 2019-20 Europa League.
Vaibhav Joshi
ANALYST
Modified 17 Aug 2020
Feature

Goals from Suso and Luuk de Jong sent Sevilla through to a record sixth Europa League final as they defeated Manchester United 2-1 in Koln on Sunday evening.

Having gone behind to an early Bruno Fernandes penalty, the Spanish outfit showed remarkable poise and resilience to complete the turnaround and send their English opponents crashing out of the competition.

The match started off exactly as Manchester United would have hoped for, with Bruno Fernandes putting the English side ahead from the penalty spot in the ninth minute.

Diego Carlos was adjudged to have taken out Marcus Rashford inside the box, and the Portuguese international dispatched yet another nerveless penalty into the top left-hand corner. 

However, Sevilla did not take long to hit back and were on level terms in the 26th minute. Former Liverpool man Suso was on hand to turn home Sergio Reguilon’s inviting ball across the face of the Manchester United goal.

After an even first half, Manchester United started the second with a flurry of chances only to be denied a second due to a combination of Sevilla's brilliant goalkeeping and last-ditch defending.

Anthony Martial was guilty of missing a couple of clear-cut chances, having been put through on goal more than once. Manchester United’s profligacy in front of goal would come back to haunt them in the 76th minute when Luuk de Jong put the Spanish side in front.

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Having allowed Sevilla to find a way back into the match after their early dominance in the second half, Manchester United switched off at the back. That allowed De Jong to remain unmarked in the six-yard box when Jesus Navas swung in a cross.

Both Victor Lindelof and Aaron Wan-Bissaka were left looking at each other as the Dutchman prodded home from close range for his first Europa League goal since November 2014.

The goal seemed to knock the stuffing out of Manchester United's sails as they surged forward in the hope of an equaliser, but none was forthcoming as Sevilla stayed firm to see out the win.

The Spanish side will now face either Inter Milan or Shakhtar Donetsk in the Europa League final, while Manchester United are left to rue another season without any silverware.

On that note, here are five major talking points from an eventful Europa League semi-final tie in Germany.

Five major talking points from Sevilla's 2-1 Europa League semi-final win over Manchester United;

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#1: Sevilla are Europa League specialists for a reason

It will be a record sith appearance in the final of the Europa League for Sevilla.
It will be a record sith appearance in the final of the Europa League for Sevilla.

Sevilla are the most decorated club in Europa League/UEFA Cup history, having lifted the title on a record five occasions. With their win over Manchester United, Sevilla head into the final in search of a sixth Europa League win.

History will be on their side too, Sevilla have reached the Europa League semi-final on three previous occasions and have gone on to win the title all three times.

In fact, including their three consecutive Europa League wins between 2013 and 2015, Sevilla have only been eliminated in one of their last 20 knockout ties in the competition; they lost 6-5 on aggregate to Slavia Prague in the last-16 in 2018-19.

When it comes to the business end of the Europa League, Sevilla know how to get the job done better than most other teams.

#2: Three isn’t the lucky charm for United and semi-finals

A third semi-final defeat of the season for Manchester United.
A third semi-final defeat of the season for Manchester United.

The defeat against Sevilla condemns Manchester United to their third semi-final defeat of the season, having been knocked out of the Carabao Cup by local rivals Manchester City and being dumped out of the FA Cup by Frank Lampard’s Chelsea. 

Questions may be asked about Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tactics in high-stakes knockout ties, with Manchester United seemingly unable to find results when it counts.

While the Manchester United side on the pitch against Sevilla was arguably as full-strength as it could get, waiting till the 85th minute to make his side’s first substitution, more than ten minutes after conceding the second, shows Solskjaer’s lack of experience at the highest level.

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Published 17 Aug 2020, 03:51 IST
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