Manchester United 1-0 FC Copenhagen: Europa League quarter-final – as it happened

FC Copenhagen go out of the Europa League with honour. Their Swedish keeper Karl-Johan Johnsson made a series of superheroic saves that verged on the comical, but even he couldn’t stop Bruno Fernandes’s vicious extra-time penalty. It was won by Anthony Martial, who came to life around the 80th minute and was thrillingly unplayable either side of full-time. Juan Mata was also excellent after coming on as substitute for extra time.

All the United players run to Bruno Fernandes – not because he scored the winner, but because he’s on the floor in agony. It might just be cramp; United will hope so.

120 min One minute of added time. Scott McTominay comes on to replace the brilliant Anthony Martial.

119 min Copenhagen make a complete mess of the free-kick and Lingard is able to run 70 yards before being challenged by the last man Oviedo.

118 min United are sitting on their 1-0 lead, which is a dangerous tactic at the best of times. Copenhagen have had all of the ball in the last five minutes, and Boving wins a free-kick near the corner flag on the right. It was a needless foul by Matic.

115 min Copenhagen have a sustained spell of possession for the first time in ages, but eventually Bengtsson’s overhit cross drifts out of play.

112 min United bring on Jesse LIngard for Marcus Rashford, who looks pretty unhappy as he walks off the field. I think that’s because of his poor performance rather than any irritation at being substituted.

111 min Replays show that Lindelof miscontrolled the ball onto his arm. I think they changed the law so it’s not handball if you accidentally clodhop the ball onto your own hand, though I couldn’t be sure. Either way it was just outside the area, so wouldn’t have been a penalty.

110 min Both teams look tired, Copenhagen in particular. They have worked so hard defensively. And even now, after talking all that punishment, they only need one chance.

108 min FC Copenhagen appeal for a penalty when Lindelof miscontrols the ball. We haven’t seen a replay but I assume it didn’t hit has hand because play has continued.

107 min “Interesting viewpoints re Martial,” says Phillip Wainwright. “Would you not consider his 1v1 chance immediately prior to the penalty a bad miss rather than a good save? Also his slaloming run in normal time (which was quality) was ended by him not having a left foot to shoot with and wanting the extra touch to bring it back onto his right, thus giving the excellent challenge the time to be made? I’m a huge fan of his, but think you might be being a tad kind regards his profligacy, there.”

Yeah I agree on the first one – he’s normally colder than that. It was still a good save I think, but Martial gave him a chance to make it. It’s more the way he has grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck, which is something he would never have done a year ago. And it’s not the first time since lockdown, either: Southampton is an obvious example and I’m sure there are others. It’s fascinating to watch somebody who used to be so listless turn into a bit of a monster. I think he’s been Solskjaer’s biggest triumph so far.

105+3 min This is turning into one of the great goalkeeping performances. Fernandes’s corner bounces around the area until Mata hits a deflected shot that is saved the legs of Johnsson. He had already dived in the other direction but stretched out a leg to stop the shot. The ball rebounded to Lindelof, who should have scored but dragged the ball into the side netting. In fact it hit the outside of the post.

105+3 min Fernandes’s stinging shot from 20 yards is beaten away by the flying Johnsson. He’s had an incredible game. There’s a VAR check for a penalty just before that after a challenge on Pogba. VAR says no dice.

105 min Two more changes for FC Copenhagen: Bartolec and Mudrazija replace Stage and Varela. And two minutes of added time.

105 min Now Martial is treating Stage, who has cramp. What has happened to the apathetic Anthony Martial we used to know and get exasperated at?

104 min United almost get a second on the counter. Rashford and Fernandes combine to find Mata, who seems to run past the ball and is then taken out in the area. They’re checking for a penalty but I don’t think it was – he’d left the ball behind.

104 min Martial calmly picks out Mata, who lifts a shot over the bar from 12 yards. He was being challenged but still might have done better.

101 min Martial has changed this game. Late in normal time he decided he’d had enough of this nonsense and started slicing through Copenhagen with a series of sublime high-speed runs. His personality change is fascinating.

100 min Rashford is well offside when put through by Martial. Play is allowed to continue, as is the norm these days, and that allows Johnsson to make yet another one-on-one save. The flag then went up against Rashford, which means Johnsson’s save won’t go down in the official statistics, but it’ll always be in my heart.

98 min: Another big save from Johnsson! Martial, who has played with murderous purpose in the last 25 minutes, zig-zagged devastatingly through the defence and through on goal. He kept beating defenders, one after the other like something from an arcade game, as he tried to find the angle for the shot. He couldn’t so instead backheeled the ball to Mata, who beat one defender and hit a shot that was saved by Johnsson.

No hopping and skipping this time – Fernandes jogged on the spot, ran a couple of paces and smashed it to his left. Johnsson went the right way but couldn’t get near it.

94 min: PENALTY TO UNITED! Bjelland has been penalised for fouling Martial, though it’ll be looked at by VAR. A few seconds before that, Johnsson made a vital save after Martial zipped through the defence onto Mata’s pass. Then Mata again found Martial, who turned Bjelland smartly, had his collar felt and went over.

92 min: Johnsson saves again from Martial. It was an instinctive save with his feet when Martial tried to poke the ball past him from a very tight angle. The chance came after a typical bit of interplay between Martial and Rashford. Martial has come alive in the last 20 minutes or so; he’s in beast mode (not to be confused with having a beast).

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/football/live/2020/aug/10/manchester-united-v-fc-copenhagen-europa-league-quarter-final-live

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