Liverpool’s no. 10, Philipe Coutinho picked up the ball in the middle, made a solo run beating Varela with so much ease before dipping an exquisite lob at the near post over de Gea, thus putting the contest far beyond the reach of United. Liverpool fans don’t call him the magician for nothing.
In the first half, Manchester United did the opposite of what they had done in the first leg of the tie and played with much pace and spirit, creating opportunities. Around the half hour mark, Liverpool’s Nathaniel Clyne brought down Anthony Martial in the box and the Frenchman was awarded a penalty which he converted in the 32nd minute and United had some glimmer of hope.
A European tie is however a 180 minute affair and United simply waited too late to begin to play. They knew that any goal from their opponents might be enough to seal their fate and just before the break, Liverpool’s playmaker made his solo run, providing that vital away strike. United could no longer rouse themselves after that and played the rest of the game like we have seen them for most parts of the season – faithless, lethargic, slow and leggy. It was a game that ended with agony for the United fans with the 3,000 away supporters singing songs of victory.
The rest of the results from the Europa League Round of 16
THURSDAY 17TH MARCH 2016
Valencia 2 – 1 Ath Bilbao* (Agg 2-2) *Athletic Bilbao win on away goals
Man Utd 1 – 1 Liverpool (Agg 1-3)
Tottenham 1 – 2 Bor Dortmd (Agg 1-5)
Bayer Levkn 0 – 0 Villarreal (Agg 0-2)
Lazio 0 -3 Sparta Prague (Agg 1-4)
Anderlecht 0 – 1 Shakt Donsk (Agg 1-4)
Sevilla 3 – 0 Basel (Agg 3-0)
Sporting Braga 4 – 1 Fenerbahçe (Agg 4-2)