Andre Onana howlers so bad only one Man Utd team-mate went to console him

Andre Onana is dejected and hugged by Altay Bayindir

In Hell, Andre Onana was the greatest sinner. The hapless goalkeeper was the miscreant who has left Manchester United on the brink of Champions League elimination.

Two-nil ahead then 3-1 up and yet United could only draw with Galatasaray. Each time Onana was at fault. Each time his role in this United team, and the £47.2 million manager Erik ten Tag persuaded the club to spend to bring him from Inter Milan, was under more and more scrutiny.

United should have won. Make no mistake. Instead Onana made mistake after mistake. This report should have been about Ten Hag’s team taking the game to their opponents in a white-hot atmosphere and taking the temperature out of it with three fine goals and a bold, attacking intent.

It should have been about 19-year-old Alejandro Garnacho scoring his first Champions League goal with a flourish and having the ‘cojones’ to celebrate in front of the furious home fans – cupping his ear and then reprising the Cristiano Ronaldo ‘calma, calma’ gesture.

Garnacho celebrate
Garnacho celebrated cheekily in front of the home fans - Getty Images/Seskim Photo
And then signalled to them to calm down - Getty Images/Seskim Photo

It should have been about a stunning strike from captain Bruno Fernandes. It should have been about a lovely team goal finished by the relentless determination of Scott McTominay. Maybe, at 3-3, it should have been about a late winner from substitute Facundo Pellistri. Instead, the winger was horribly wasteful from just six yards.

Indeed it should also have been about another strong defensive performance from Harry Maguire and another show of character from McTominay, two players who Ten Hag was happy to sell in the last transfer window.

“It’s not about an individual,” Ten Hag protested when questioned about Onana and as well as his team attacked they once again lacked control. But the fact that it was Onana who intensified that vulnerability is without question even if it leads to even more questions.

United had more efforts on goal – 18 to 17 – but Onana made just one save. Only one. By comparison Galatasaray’s Fernando Muslera made six. At the final whistle no United player apart from reserve goalkeeper Altay Bayindir went over to console Onana.

Of course Ten Hag will want to persist with the Cameroonian, with whom he worked at Ajax, although he did not sign him when he was available for free in 2022, but this is the kind of poor display even he cannot ignore.

The blunders mean that no team in the Champions League this season has dropped more points than United from winning positions while they have conceded 14 goals. In just five games.

Yes, Onana actually saved a penalty in the final minute that preserved their one victory, at home to Copenhagen, but his mistakes hugely outweigh that. The 27-year-old is a liability.

Altay Bayindir consoles Andre Onana at the final whistle
Love from the goalkeepers' union – first United reserve stopper Bayindir comforts Onana... - Getty Images
Fernando Muslera consoled Onana at the whistle
... then Galatasaray keeper Fernando Muslera offers his opposite number some sympathy - Reuters/Mura Sezer

Welcome to Hell read a huge tifo banner prior to kick-off, a reminder of the hostility and provocative signs United faced in crashing out of this competition 30 years ago at the old Ali Sami Yen Stadium.

And Galatasaray again created a wonderfully intimidating atmosphere with the piercing whistles when United were in possession proving quite extraordinary.

Onana cannot blame the rain which was torrential all day in Istanbul with fears at one stage that the game might be called off. But the pitch was not a factor. Instead Onana must question his own technique – surely being the only sweeper-keeper in history who wants to remain rooted to his goal-line when the opposition have the ball?

Ten Hag sounded like a man in denial as he hailed the “brilliance” of Hakim Ziyech’s free-kicks. Ziyech, on loan from Chelsea, is another player he knows well having also coached him at Ajax but there was nothing brilliant about either of his two goals.

Hakim Ziyech scored twice against his former manager Erik ten Hag's side
Hakim Ziyech scored twice against his former manager Erik ten Hag’s side - AP/Francisco Seco

Both free-kicks were conceded by Fernandes, perhaps needlessly, and both after United surrendered possession cheaply. Even so Onana should have dealt with them. Comfortably. At 2-0 Fernandes ran back to foul Lucas Torreira and as Ziyech stood over the ball, 25 yards out, United’s wall looked suspect.

As Ziyech struck there was a huge gap between Fernandes and Rasmus Hojlund which had been occupied by two Galatasaray players. That is on Onana as was his awful decision to take a step to his left which did not allow him to easily field Ziyech’s relatively weak, low effort that actually went down the centre of the goal. If he had simply stayed still he could have bent and caught it.

Similarly after McTominay restored United’s two-goal advantage Onana was equally at fault. Ziyech’s free-kick from the right was good and maybe substitute Kobby Mainoo should have headed it away. Fatally the teenage midfielder looked unsure – was there a call? – and sort of ducked under it with Onana somehow scooping it into his own net.

As ever he was stuck on his line. A more competent goalkeeper comes and cleans that out or, less advisedly, demands his defender heads it. Neither happened and Onana did not take responsibility as he again allowed Galatasaray back in with the Turkish champions seizing the opportunity.

Yes, the shot for the equaliser from substitute Kerem Akturkoglu, as he ran onto a through ball, was powerful but it caught out Onana at his near post. Maybe it would have beaten another goalkeeper but maybe that other goalkeeper would have got something on it. Or at least got close. Onana barely moved.

After that both teams continued to go for the win. “Russian roulette football,” is how Galatasaray coach Okan Buruk described it. Unfortunately for bottom of the group United, Onana had already found the bullet.

Galatasaray vs Manchester United: As it happened . . .

08:30 PM GMT

I am off for a lie down

I need it after that humdinger of a match.

Arsenal are currently on fire against Lens and you can follow that match here.

08:24 PM GMT

Scott McTominay speaks to TNT Sports - 'We play as a team'

On how they let another lead slip...

“It’s tough to say in games and atmospheres like this. It can happen it’s football. We regroup together and look forward to [Newcastle on Saturday].”

On Onana’s errors...

“We’re a team no matter who is playing well or bad. There are no individuals we play as a team.”

08:19 PM GMT

Erik ten Hag speaks to TNT Sports - 'We have to learn from that'

On the result...

“We’re winning, then losing. We should have three points. Not just in this match but at home against Galatasaray, away in Copenhagen. I have to compliment the team but also criticise it. The defending not good enough. When we are leading 3-1 we cannot afford to make those mistakes.”

On the errors...

“Every goal has it’s own story...we don’t block the middle, or unnecessary free-kick. We have defend it better...we were not organised. In the Champions League you get punished and you have to learn from that.”

On the performance...

“I am very pleased. The team are dynamic, proactive, brave. I am pleased with the performance. We could have won this game. Good football.”

Who takes responsibility for letting another lead slip...

“Me, always me, I am responsible for this.” BUT...”We are in the right direction. Am sure we’ll be successful.”

08:11 PM GMT

Bruno Fernandes speaks to TNT Sports - 'We have to be smart enough'

On the result...

“It’s bad. We conceded really bad goals. We have to take control of this situation. [We had] many chances to score another one and close the game. We weren’t clinical enough.”

On whether he can explain the slip up...

“I have nothing to explain - we concede the goals, we could have done better, but it is what it is.”

Were there scars from the Copenhagen slip up?

“No. Every time we concede we had chances to score again. [When we had our chances] sometimes we have to put our heads up and play in another player. When you have the ball the team comes first then ourselves.”

On this season’s Champions League campaign...

“Another game when we could have closed the game. What we’ve done in the Champions league is not enough. We have to secure these results, we have to be smart enough.”

07:50 PM GMT

Not a stat for United fans to look at..

Man United have dropped eight points from winning positions in the Champions League this season. No team in the competition has dropped more.

Dropping the ball... - Reuters/Dilara Senkaya

07:47 PM GMT

Here's how that result affects Group A

  1. Bayern Munich (Q) 12 pts

  2. Galatasaray 5 pts

  3. FC Copenhagen 4pts

  4. Manchester United 4 pts

In short United’s hopes of making the knockouts hang by a thread. If Copenhagen win tonight, they are out.

07:43 PM GMT

Mutual feeling?

Galatasary and Bruno Fernandes
The expressions of both players possibly summing up the moods of both sides - PA/Nick Potts

07:41 PM GMT

What this draw does mean is that...

...United cannot qualify for the knockout stages if Copenhagen shock Bayern Munich this evening.

07:41 PM GMT

That match is...

...why we love the game. It was utterly bonkers, to hell with systems and structures, that was great to watch.

As I type Paul Scholes scolds such thinking by saying: “That is not how you go way in Europe and win.” And to be fair he’s probably right...but, again I’ll say it, what a match.

07:39 PM GMT

FULL TIME: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

It’s all over.

There are two ways to look at that...

What a great match, great finishes, great goals, end-to-end stuff. Manchester United were great for large parts.


United should, and will, be kicking themselves there. They so deserved the win there but again in Europe let a good lead slip, throwing it away.

07:37 PM GMT

92 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

Will there be one more chance for United - you wouldn’t bet against it.

07:36 PM GMT

90 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

Three minutes added time.

Corner for United. One last chance. The delivery is cleared, it comes back, it’s cleared again, it comes back again BUT McTominey heads well wide...

07:35 PM GMT

89 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

This is remarkable stuff - bad at times but brilliant because of it. United attack down the right, the ball is played into the box low. There’s a bit of pinball wizard and the ball falls to Pellistri and it’s a great save from Muslera.

Not sure how United didn't score from this - post pinball wizard... - AFP/Yasin Akgul

07:33 PM GMT

87 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

Another chance for United and this time Martial holds onto the ball too long...

There have been 33 chance between both side tonight and I reckon a few more could well be on the way.

07:32 PM GMT

Bonkers match

Five minutes of regulation time remaining and it would be a surprise if there wasn’t a seventh goal in this utterly bonkers game. End to end, both teams peppering each other but unable, so far at least, to find a decisive finish

07:31 PM GMT

86 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

A tactician would pick this match apart, but the tactician would have no soul. This is so good.

07:30 PM GMT

83 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd


Two great chances in the matter of seconds...

(i) Zaha works an opening after one of his trademark steopovers, cutting in onto his right before testing Onana. This time there is no howler from the United keeper.

Then, 20 second later...

(ii) United counter and the ball comes to Fernandes, whose shot beat the Gala keeper, Muslera, but not the post.

SO GOOD TO WATCH!! (yes, defo worth caps lock...)

07:27 PM GMT

80 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

Did I say this was a bit like schoolboy football?! It’s Pellistri again with a chance - his second in four minutes - and again (like a schoolboy) he shoots (having made his way into the box from the left) rather than play in a team-mate...head up, boy!

07:24 PM GMT

76 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

Another chance for United (this like exciting schoolboy football - all shape has seemingly gone...). This time Antony taks on players down the right and it’s Pellistri who has a shot that is high and not so handsome. Shaw had made a great run on the left and if I was him id’ be fuming I wasn’t played in.

Before that Garnacho and Wan-Bissaka made way for Pellistri and Dalot.

07:21 PM GMT

74 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

There’s so much space for the forward men - it must be so much fun to play in.

Two chances for United, this time.

First - it’s four-vs-four and Garnacho has a dig from just outside the box.

Second - it’s three-vs-three and McTominay goes for goal (when, perhaps, playing in Martial was the better option) and his attempt just goes wide of the left upright.

07:19 PM GMT

73 mins: Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

This is such a great watch - it’s end-to-end, it’s basketball, it’s caution thrown to the wind etc etc etc...

United are hanging on at the moment...

07:14 PM GMT


Galatasaray 3-3 Man Utd

Another great goal in this relentless classic encounter. The attack comes again down from the right. The sub Kerem Aktürkoğlu is played in in the inside-right channel, his first touch is perfect, his second is even better - a thunderbolt of a strike that gives Onana no chance at the near post.

Astonishing stuff.

07:14 PM GMT

69 mins: Galatasaray 2-3 Man Utd

Just over 20 minutes to go and the match is being played in the United half. The visitors need to try and keep their composure and the ball as far away from Onana as possible...

07:12 PM GMT

67 mins: Galatasaray 2-3 Man Utd

Yet more lightning in Istanbul and yet another chance for the hosts. The attack comes in from the right - Icardi laying the ball off to Ziyech  before the Moroccan tests Onana with a shot-cum-cross that the United keeper manages to deal with.

07:10 PM GMT

64 mins: Galatasaray 2-3 Man Utd

If you were a Gala player you would be shooting on sight whenever you get the chance and that is indeed exactly what they are doing. This time Icardi having a go from outside the box, Onana stops it (it wasn’t a tough stop) and even then he doesn’t catch it cleanly.

07:07 PM GMT


Galatasary 2-3 Man Utd

Onana (again) look away now...Ziyech (again) from a free-kick BUT this mistake is way worse than the first...the United keeper gets a hand to it, but he almost accidentally punches in to the net. His technique is awkward, never more than with this goal...

Ouch... - Shutterstock

07:04 PM GMT

57 mins: Galatasaray 1-3 Man Utd

And having reclaimed the two-goal lead Ten Hag brings on Mainoo. You suspect the idea behind that is that the teen sensation with impose his calm on the ball and take whatever sting is left in this match. Amrabat makes way, with Hojkund also off, Martial replaces the Dane.

06:59 PM GMT


Galatasaray 1-3 Man Utd

McTominay with a fine goal on the counter. Juast what United needed so early on in the second half. United counter attack at pace and in numbers. But what makes this such a good strike is that every pass was timed to perfection and hit with the perfect weight. Fernandes drives into the Gala half, before playing in Wan Bissaka on the right. He looks up and plays a low ball into the near post which screams ‘attack me’. McTominay does just that and slot home first time. Perfect.


06:58 PM GMT

52 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

Ten Hag is complaining about the rough stuff being dealt out to Garnacho and not without reason. Meanwhile, the Argentine has a half-chance that just goes wide. This really is relentless stuff.

06:56 PM GMT

50 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

A Fernandes cross from the right nearly catches out Muslera who actually then does well to keep the ball away from a lurking-with-intent Hojlund.

This is still end-to-end stuff.

06:55 PM GMT

49 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

United have possession and once again, as with the first half, are trying to slow the game down and eliciting a few thousand whistles from the home fans as a result - just what Ten Hag wanted before kick-off.

There’s been flashes of lighting in the Istanbul sky. There’s a fair amount of electricity on the pitch as well...

06:53 PM GMT

47 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

It’s raining again in Istanbul, conditions not ideal under foot. And as I type Angelino wins a free-kick for the hosts. It’s 30 yards out and once again Ziyech stands over it. This time he crosses and this time United deal with the threat well.

The ball then ultimately comes back and it’s a great chance for the hosts, Ayhan stayed up there and vollesy with the outside of his nearest boot rather than let the ball come across him. As a result the shot goes wide from all of six yards out...let off for United.

06:49 PM GMT

45 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

They’re back under way for the second half, no changes at the break. Will this 45 minutes be as entertaining as the first, let’s hope so. What’s not in doubt is that this is YET AGAIN another huge half for United.

06:39 PM GMT

Here are United's two goals - sit back and enjoy

Garnacho’s emphatic finish...

And Fernandes’ piledriver...

06:35 PM GMT

HALF-TIME: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

What a brilliant, entertaining, relentless (yes, that word again...) half of football. United were 2-0 in front insde the first 19 minutes and well worth the advantage. But Onana might well need to apologise at the break as he should have done better with Ziyech’s equaliser from a free-kick.

I could do with a breather, so cannot imagine how the players feel...

06:33 PM GMT

46 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

Amrabat sees yellow for what looks like a decent challenge on Icardi...

06:32 PM GMT

44 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

There will be two minutes of added time as Gala make another foray into the United box. They visitors defend the threat well with Zaha making a nuisance of himself...

06:31 PM GMT

41 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

The ball finds the back of the net through Icardi. It’s a crossfield ball that beats a fairly high United line leaving the Argentine one-on-one with Onana and he finds the top corner with a composed finish...alas, he was, just, just, offside and United breathe a huge sigh of relief.

Did I say this match was relentless?!

06:28 PM GMT

38 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

United have slowed the game down a bit these past few minutes - taking their time over set pieces, what they need to do. Antony cuts inside before unleashing a shot with his left - it’s left blocked.

Meanwhile, Boey is shown a yellow for a cynical chop on Garnacho. The right-back now has to be careful for the remaining 50-plus minutes, expect Garnacho to run at him given every opportunity.

06:24 PM GMT

36 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

Corner for United, can they make this count? Nope, but not without a good effort as McTominay meets Fernandes’ delivery, but heads over.

This match is relentless.

06:23 PM GMT

34 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

Another good Galatasaray chance and another good block from Maguire. This time it’s Zaha who finds space inside the box before shooting with his left, the United defender doing what he has to do to prevent Onana from having to make the save.

From the corner there’s another chance and this time Onana does make a save as the ball comes back into the box. It wouldn’t have counted, however, as the Gala man was offside.

This is entertaining stuff.

Onana is all over the place. Galatasaray players know it and are looking to target him at every opportunity.

06:21 PM GMT

'Terrible goal to concede'

A terrible goal for United to concede. They were on the attack and, interestingly, Fernandes ended up shouting across to McTominay almost as if to ask why he’d rushed a cross that was cut out. Galatasaray countered and Fernandes gives chase but ends up bringing down Torreira. United’s defensive wall for the free-kick left much to be desired, with Ziyech’s free kick flying between the gap between Fernandes and Hojlund. Onana took a step to his left as Ziyech struck and the ball flew in.

06:20 PM GMT

31 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

This is some match, the atmosphere, pace of play it’s all pretty intoxicating if you love your Big European Nights.

Key for United is to keep doing what they were doing before that Ziyech goal. Key word once again: concentration...

06:18 PM GMT

29 mins: Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

That strike from a Ten Hag old players at Ajax has reinvigorated this crowd and it’s not as though they need much encouragement to remind United they’re playing in ‘Hell’...

06:15 PM GMT


Galatasaray 1-2 Man Utd

Chelsea old boy Ziyech somehow scores from a free-kick...Fernandes show real determination to get back and defend for United but in the porcess gives away a free-kick. It’s 30 yard out on the left and should be defendable but somehow the ball creeps past the wall and a stationary Onana who had just shuffled to his left (the wrong way.).

Ziyech sees his attempt find the back of the net - Reuters/Murad Sezer

06:13 PM GMT

25 mins: Galatasaray 0-2 Man Utd

United could so easily be 3-0 up...Hojlund is having a good game. He holds the ball up before then playing in Shaw, who had continued his run into the middle. It falls to the left-back on his right (the wrong boot) and the chance goes begging...impressive from the visitors so far...

06:12 PM GMT

23 mins: Galatasaray 0-2 Man Utd

United are growing in confidence - winning games and going 2-0 up early tends to do that - and controlling this at the moment. They are looking calm as the back and dangerous in the final third.

06:10 PM GMT

The crowd noise has gone down a decibel or two...

Oh my word. That’s quite stunning from Bruno Fernandes. Rifles one from 25 yards into the top corner. Now that has quietened the home crowd - at least for the moment. They’d had their tails up too - Maguire clearing one off the line and then an Onana error almost getting the United goalkeeper into trouble. But that’s some strike from Fernandes. 2-0 up with 18 gone.

06:09 PM GMT

20 mins: Galatasaray 0-2 Man Utd

Ten Hag would have eaten his right arm for a 2-0 lead within the first 20 minutes. But having weathered the early storm United have kept the ball well and taken their (half) chances. They had a two-goal lead early on against Copenhagen and lost that, can they ensure history doesn’t repeat itself here.

06:04 PM GMT


Galatasary 0-2 Man Utd

Fernandes with a screamer - what a strike and United are two goals to the good.

The ball comes in from the left from Shaw - the captain still has a bit of work to do, he has his head up (as ever) but decides to let fly and it’s not a bad decision as the ball does a great impression of an exocet missile into the top corner. Muslera in the Gala goal had no chance.

06:03 PM GMT

12 mins: Galatasaray 0-1 Man Utd

Great point-blank save from Onana - it’s from a Gala corner, the header comes in at the near post from Torreira and the United keeper instinctively gets his body in the way before Maguire blocks from the rebound.

Meanwhile, there is a Var check for handball as the ball hits McTominay’s upper arm. It’s not given, however, as his arm looked ‘in a natural position’. Correct decision (hope no Newcastle fans saw that...).

United will have craved an early goal and they’ve got one. Worked the ball very well from right to left where Garnacho drills Fernandes’ pass into the top corner. Garnacho’s third minute bicycle kick quietened down the Everton crowd somewhat - fat chance of the same happening here it seems

05:57 PM GMT


Galatasaray 0-1 Man Utd

Garnacho put visitors ahead. Great finish, maybe not the flourish of the overhead kick on Sunday but still special. United are patient in possession, with Hojlund laying the ball off to Fernandes who plays in the Argentinian inside the box on the left, he has a look and smashes the ball with his left boot into the roof of the net. Emphatic. And just the start United wanted.

05:57 PM GMT

9 mins: Galatasaray 0-0 Man Utd

The match has settled a bit, and most of the match is being played in midfield - no real chances to speak of in the past five minutes or so.

It’s absolutely deafening in the Rams Park. High pitched whistle screams every time United touch the ball. Fans bouncing up and down. One banner reads “Your nightmare is back again!”

05:55 PM GMT

'Free Palestine' banner unfurled

A large ‘Free Palestine’ banner was unfurled just before kick-off by Galatasaray fans behind the Manchester United goal. That and a flare set off at the opposite side of the stadium may lead to an investigation by Uefa. Meanwhile on the pitch there are piercing whistles every time United are in possession. It is, as promised, quite some atmosphere.

05:54 PM GMT

7 mins: Galatasaray 0-0 Man Utd

United are seeing more of the ball now and as I type Fernandes has a chance to release Garnacho down the left but holds onto the ball too long. The more they have the ball the more they can play at their tempo and, crucially, try and quieten this raucous crowd.

05:52 PM GMT


blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-media-max-width="560">

The Red Devils are welcomed to hell 👹

The atmosphere is booming in Istanbul as Man Utd face a stern test against Galatasaray...#UCL

— Football on TNT Sports (@footballontnt) November 29, 2023

05:52 PM GMT

5 mins: Galatasaray 0-0 Man Utd

First chance for United as Garnacho drives down the left before crossing low for Hojlund who gets in front of him man but cannot get a meaningful touch on it...promising signs though...

05:51 PM GMT

4 mins: Galatasaray 0-0 Man Utd

Another Galatasaray half-chance as Zaha lays the ball off for Mertens and his long shot is easily saved by Onana.

05:49 PM GMT

2 mins: Galatasaray 0-0 Man Utd

The noise is deafening, it will be key for United to keep their concentration which is exactly what they do as Ziyech is one-on-one with Shaw who does well, but it’s a corner for the hosts.

The set piece is whipped in but Torreira heads well over.

05:46 PM GMT

1 min: Galatasaray 0-0 Man Utd

And they are under way in a damp, raucous Istanbul. Huge night for United can they keep their calm in their history-making kit (see post below...).

United have never won or scored at Galatasaray...and they’ve been here with some good sides...

05:45 PM GMT

'Not for the faint of heart'

A giant tifo bearing the words ‘welcome TO HELL’ is erected on one side of the stadium. It’s quite the sight, as is the accompanying music. This is unlikely to be a game for the faint of heart.

05:44 PM GMT

The teams are out on the pitch

The ridiculous Uefa anthem has blared out and we’re ready to go...

05:43 PM GMT

This is the scene that await the United players

Welcome to hell...think Galatasaray should copyright that from now on... - TNT Sports

05:41 PM GMT

A sartorial first for Man Utd tonight...

For the FIRST TIME EVER (yep this info is worth caps lock...) they are wearing a combo of white shirt and red shorts...This is the first time since 1957 since they’ve worn red shorts. Am sure that will fascinate a few of you.

And here is a pic of the last time they wore red shorts - the 1957 European Cup semi-final against Real Madrid. They lost 3-1, hope that’s not a bad omen for them tonight...(know the photo is black and white, but trust me, it’s red...)

Real Madrid and Man Uted
For those watching in black and white Real are in all white and United in all red... - Getty Images

05:32 PM GMT

Experience over youth in midfield for United

Erik ten Hag has decided against starting Kobbie Mainoo in central midfield, despite his superb showing against Everton at the weekend. So it’s Sofyan Amrabat who is asked to anchor the midfield. I thought we might see both players start but McTominay and Fernandes complete the midfield with Antony given a start on the right of the attack. Rasmus Hojlund, scorer of five goals in the Champions League already this season, is passed fit to start after hamstrung trouble and Alejandro Garnacho, scorer of that stunning bicycle kick against Everton, keeps his place on the left unsurprisingly.

05:26 PM GMT

Everything these days is a HUGE match

But this really is for Man Utd...

Lose and qualification is no longer possible...also they can kiss the knockout stages goodbye if they draw and Copenhagan beat Bayern...

  1. Bayern Munich (Q) 12 pts

  2. Copenhagen 4pts

  3. Galatasaray 4pts

  4. Man Utd 3pts

05:15 PM GMT

Erik ten Hag speaks to TNT Sports - 'It's just like Manchester'

On the weather and the pitch...

“This is Manchester weather - we are used to it. The pitch is actually good.”

On picking Hojlund over Martial...

“We are happy that [Martial] is fit, he is important player for us. But Hojlund is a huge weapon for us and he’s done well in [Europe for us].”

On Dropping Mainoo and starting Amrabat...

“Amrabat is experienced and used to playing in big games. We are comfortable with Mainoo, but he cannot play in every game has to get used to it.”

On the hostile crowd...

“We told the players they have to make the crowd whistle, that means we are playing well - we look forward to it.”

05:10 PM GMT

If you are of a certain vintage...

You’ll remember Man Utd’s infamous ‘Welcome to Hell’ contretemps against Galatasaray back in 1993. High on their first top-flight title in 26 years there was much hope for United in the recently rebranded European Cup (change the name to Champions League, let teams other than the champions play in it etc etc etc...). Not least when in the second round they were drawn against the Turkish giants.

Win this two-legged tie, make the group stage and see what happens against the really tough opposition - easy peasey, or so everyone thought, including this naive youngster (as I was then (still am, bar the young part...)). Turkish clubs had never done much in Europe and progression was guaranteed... But having drawn the first leg at Old Trafford 3-3 United knew they were up against it in Istanbul and what transpired was a match that would live long in the memory of those who were there. And in their number was our very own Jim White, who has written this great piece on the fractious affair...

READ: I was there for Manchester United’s ‘Welcome to Hell’ in 1993 - it was mayhem

A welcome like no other.... - PA
Colourful is one way to describe the hostile atmosphere - Getty Images/Laurence Griffiths

04:54 PM GMT

And here are both XIs in good, old fashioned black and white

GALATASARY XI TO FACE MAN UTD: Muslera, Boey, Bardakci, Ayhan, Angelino, Torreira, Ndombele, Ziyech, Mertens, Zaha, Icardi. Subs: Akturkoglu, Demirbay, Guvenc, Tete, Nelsson, Sergio Oliveira, Baris Yilmaz, Karatas, Bakambu.

MAN UTD XI TO FACE GALATASARAY: Onana, Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw, McTominay, Amrabat, Antony, Bruno Fernandes, Garnacho, Hojlund. Subs: Bayindir, Martial, Reguilon, Varane, Dalot, Heaton, Pellistri, Mainoo, Gore, Mejbri, Hugill.

Referee: Jose Maria Sanchez (Spain)

04:51 PM GMT

Here's the Galatasaray XI

04:44 PM GMT

Manchester United line-up

Starting XI: Onana, Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw, Amrabat, McTominay, Fernandes, Antony, Hojlund, Garnacho

Substitutes: Bayindir, Heaton, Dalot, Varane, Reguilon, Gore, Hannibal, Mainoo, Pellistri, Hugill, Martial

04:41 PM GMT

As it stands...

Uefa are expecting United’s game against Galatasaray to ahead, in a statement the governing body said: “We are closely monitoring the weather forecast and at this stage the match will go ahead as scheduled.”

04:34 PM GMT

Erik ten Hag and United players have arrived

Inspecting the sodden pitch . . .

Erik ten Hag -
Erik ten Hag -

04:30 PM GMT

The scene at Rams Park

Manchester’s United own social media account have given us another look at the wet conditions in Istanbul with around an hour and 15 minutes left until kick-off.

04:22 PM GMT

The Champions League cover has been placed on the pitch

04:18 PM GMT

The weather is causing chaos

04:11 PM GMT

What the Uefa regulations say

Uefa, the governing body for the Champions League, has rules about matches that are called off. Essentially, the expectation is that the match be played the day after, which wouldn’t give United much recovery time before their scheduled Premier League match against Newcastle on Saturday.

The regulations state: ‘If a match cannot start or cannot be played in full, the full or remaining match time is, as a rule, played on the next day, without prejudice to any possible disciplinary measures.

“For that purpose, the home clubs must conclude all the necessary agreements to ensure that the required facilities are available and can be operated.

“If the match cannot be rescheduled the next day, the Uefa administration fixes a new date, during a reserve date or other date. The rescheduling may entail exceptions to the regular match calendar.

“As a rule, a rescheduled match is played at the same venue. If the circumstances require a change of venue, the Uefa administration must approve the alternative venue.”

04:08 PM GMT

The rain continues at Rams Park

04:04 PM GMT

Manchester United Under 19s in action earlier . . .

United suffered an early blow ahead of their Champions League match tonight – with their Under 19 side losing 1-0 to Galatasaray in the Uefa Youth League.

The tournament is an Under 19 competition for the academy series of those in the Champions League –  the players had to encounter tricky conditions caused by torrential rain in Istanbul.

Manchester United
Manchester United
Manchester United
Manchester United
Manchester United
Manchester United

03:42 PM GMT

Clash in doubt after extreme weather

Tonight’s Champions League meeting is under threat of postponement due to heavy downpours in Istanbul.

After persistent rain in the city, pictures have been circulating of the Uefa Youth League meeting between the two clubs at the Recep Tayyip Erdoğan which saw players encounter tricky conditions with standing water on the playing surface.

United are due to take on their Turkish opponents at Rams Park at 5.45pm, in which Erik ten Hag has named a 22-man squad minus the suspended Marcus Rashford.

Uefa officials are continuously checking whether the pitch in Istanbul is fit for the fixture this evening.

Erik ten Hag’s side are looking to save their Champions League status, having already fallen foul of three defeats in their group. They are set to welcome Rasmus Hojlund back into the side after he missed Sunday’s 3-0 win over Everton.

“He has been magnificent”, Ten Hag told reporters, addressing Hojlund’s start to his Champions League campaign. “As a young player, you’re playing your first season in the Champions League, you already score fives time and he’s so eager to score even more.”

Manchester United are currently bottom of Group A, though they are still just a point off second spot thanks to Bayern Munich topping the group. Galatasaray won at Old Trafford earlier this season and now United must make amends in Istanbul.

A win in Turkey would improve their fortunes but they know that the atmosphere in Istanbul is not for the faint of heart as Ten Hag attempts to mastermind what would be a remarkable survival job to reach the knockout stages of the competition.