Wissam Ben Yedder sends dire Manchester United crashing out of Champions League

Soccer Football – Champions League Round of 16 Second Leg – Manchester United vs Sevilla – Old Trafford, Manchester, Britain – March 13, 2018 Sevilla’s Wissam Ben Yedder celebrates scoring a goal Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff
Soccer Football – Champions League Round of 16 Second Leg – Manchester United vs Sevilla – Old Trafford, Manchester, Britain – March 13, 2018 Sevilla’s Wissam Ben Yedder celebrates scoring a goal Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff

A drab Manchester United were sent crashing out of the Champions League with a 2-1 defeat to Sevilla thanks to super-sub Wissam Ben Yedder’s late double.

The Red Devils were plodding to a goalless draw – and extra-time – before Vincenzo Montella’s second-half move to bring the Frenchman on paid dividends.

Ben Yedder slotted home moments after entering the Old Trafford pitch, before heading in at the far post just four minutes later.

Romelu Lukaku’s late reply proved scant consolation as the LaLiga side reached their first ever Champions League quarter-final.

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Lukaku threatened inside 70 seconds when he linked up well with Jesse Lingard only to fire wide. The Belgium international was then unfortunate not to open the scoring from close range when Clement Lenglet’s sublime last-ditch block prevented Lukaku turning home from six yards.

But in an opening half which flattered to deceive, neither side could manufacture a serious threat to the opposition goal, despite Joaquin Correa heading narrowly over the bar from Ever Banega’s corner.

Colombia international Luis Muriel – denied by David de Gea’s wonder save in Sevilla – continued his profligate form by firing a clear chance over from 20 yards, before dragging an effort wide of De Gea’s post after a wonderfully slick counter-attack.

It was Marouane Fellaini, though, who should have put the hosts in front when he played a fine one-two with Alexis Sanchez, only to see his ferocious left-footed drive kept out by Sergio Rico in the visiting goal.

The visitors could – and should – have led when Correa was picked out clean through on goal two minutes after the break, but before the Argentine could fire an effort on goal Eric Bailly made a brilliant recovery tackle.

The second half proved to have a brief ebb and flow, with Lenglet finding himself at full stretch to keep out a prodded effort from Sanchez, before Vincenzo Montella’s men forced Bailly to make a phenomenal block from six yards.

But United continued to disappoint in the latter stages, with Paul Pogba’s left-footed drive from 30 yards proving to be the hosts first semblance of a goal threat for quite some time, after 71 minutes.

And they were duly punished for their collapse into mediocrity. On as a substitute just minutes earlier, Ben Yedder was played into space by Pablo Sarabia and bent an effort into the bottom corner.

Four minutes later, lightning struck twice as Correa’s near-post flick found the imposing centre-forward at the far post, whose looping header found its way into the net despite De Gea’s best efforts.

Lukaku, with eight goals in his previous 12 games, was then kept out by Lenglet up the other end as the Belgian slotted over the bar from close range. The £75 million-man did net with eight minutes remaining however, forcing the ball home from a corner.

That goal temporarily transformed the mutinous mood at Old Trafford into a cauldron-like roar, before Sarabia set up Ben Yedder once more – but his volley lacked emphasis.

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And United almost carved an equaliser out with five minutes remaining, Lukaku picking out Anthony Martial, only for his ball into the six-yard box to be cleared.

Rashford was next to try his luck, heading wide as the United onslaught continued, before Ben Yedder wasted the clearest chance to secure a hat-trick when he hit a shot straight at De Gea when clean through.

But United were left with nothing but sour defeat, leaving Mourinho pondering the failure of his overly-defensive tactics.

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