Manchester United edged Celta Vigo, with Marouane Fellaini's goal ultimately the difference in sending the Red Devils to the Europa League final.

By SI.com Staff
May 11, 2017

Jose Mourinho has put a lot of eggs in Manchester United's Europa League basket, and he'll get the chance to be rewarded after his side narrowly reached the final.

Marouane Fellaini's first-half goal wound up being the difference, with United and Celta Vigo drawing 1-1 in the second leg of their semifinal, sending United through on a 2-1 aggregate triumph. John Guidetti, who had missed a pair of gilt-edged chances earlier in the game, whiffed on the chance to score at the death, with a second away goal enough to send Celta through had he converted.

Celta brought the pressure at Old Trafford from the start, with Iago Aspas forcing a tremendous flying save from Sergio Romero in the fourth minute.

Manchester United was the one to strike first, and it came through the much maligned Fellaini. Rashford served in a perfect cross for the Belgian, and he headed it home at the near post to give United a 2-0 aggregate advantage and 1-0 edge on the day.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan had a chance to make it 2-0 on the day in the 49th minute, ripping a blast from distance and stinging the palms of Sergio Alvarez, who parried it away to safety.

Fellaini was denied a second in the 69th with a low attempt to the near post turned away by an alert Alvarez.

With Celta looking for a spark, Guidetti nearly provided it, but he wasted a wide open header from six yards, putting his chance well off the mark in the 75th minute.

Celta got the first of two goals it needed through Facundo Roncaglia, with the Argentine heading home in the 85th minute. 

Roncaglia was then sent off in an altercation with Eric Bailly, who was sent off as well. Bailly won't be eligible for the final as a result.

Manchester United advanced to face Ajax in the Europa League final, after the Dutch side outlasted Lyon 5-4 in a thrilling semifinal after nearly blowing a 5-1 aggregate lead. The winner will earn a trip to next season's Champions League, which could be valuable for United given its scrap to finish in the top four in England.

You May Like