Manchester United have been pressured to dig deep to achieve the Europa League semi-finals as Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes transformed a 95th-minute penalty to safe a 1-Zero win over a cussed FC Copenhagen aspect after additional time on Monday. United, who received Europe’s second-tier competitors in 2017, will meet Sevilla or Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday for a berth within the ultimate after grinding down the Danes and their impressed goalkeeper Karl-Johan Johnsson in an entertaining sport.
Sevilla, who’ve lifted the Europa League trophy a document 5 occasions, face Wolves in Duisburg on Tuesday whereas 2009 winners Shakhtar Donetsk tackle FC Basel in Gelsenkirchen.
Inter Milan additionally booked a semi-final berth by beating Bayer Leverkusen 2-1 in Monday’s different tie because the mini-tournament performed throughout Germany on a one-off knockout foundation obtained underway.
Copenhagen dominated the opening half and missed a number of probabilities, with United’s defence wanting all at sea within the opening 20 minutes as they made a number of determined clearances to disclaim Mohamed Daramy and Jonas Wind.
United thought they’d taken the lead on the stroke of halftime however Mason Greenwood’s exact shot into the far nook was appropriately dominated out for offside after a VAR examine.
Being on the again foot within the opening half spurred United into motion although they usually created a flurry of probabilities after the break, though Wind additionally got here shut on the different finish.
Fernandes and Greenwood hit the woodwork and Marcus Rashford had an effort dominated out for offside whereas Copenhagen’s Johnsson produced a string of excellent saves to power additional time.
Fernandes settled the competition when he drilled his spot-kick previous Johnsson after Anthony Martial, who noticed a number of sitters thwarted by the keeper, was fouled by Andreas Bjelland.
Johnsson then pulled off a number of beautiful stops to maintain out pictures by Martial and Mata, racking up a complete of 13 saves, probably the most by a keeper in a single Europa League sport since 2009.
Copenhagen pushed ahead looking for an equaliser within the final 15 minutes of additional time however United’s defence held out because the Outdated Trafford aspect booked their third semi-final spot this season after shedding out within the League Cup and FA Cup.
Spanish playmaker Mata acknowledged that United have been exhausted by a demanding season extended by the COVID-19 pandemic however was assured they might end on a excessive notice.
“The crew is sort of drained bodily,” he instructed BT Sport.
“At this stage of this season you will need to win video games like right now and we undergo. We keep in Germany for fairly a while and hopefully we will win (the trophy).
“We scored one purpose, after all we’re happier after we rating extra however now it’s time to get better and wait and discover out who we get within the subsequent spherical.”