Manchester United are at the verge of attaining the Champions League knockout phases for the primary time in 4 years after beating Benfica.
The Red Devils, who earned their position via successful remaining season’s Europa League, have claimed 4 victories from their 4 Group A video games and wish only a level from their final two video games to development.
Anthony Martial, who supplied a risk from the left along with his trickery and tempo, earned a penalty when he was once tripped via Douglas, however the Frenchman had his spot-kick stored out via Mile Svilar.
Belgian goalkeeper Svilar additionally two times stored smartly from fellow countryman Romelu Lukaku, however a mistake on his debut within the festival within the earlier recreation contributed to United’s slim victory and he gave the hosts a serving to hand once more.
Ex-Benfica midfielder Nemanja Matic’s robust shot struck the foot of the publish, however ricocheted off the unlucky Svilar – who had dived to avoid wasting the shot – and into the web. Full-back Daley Blind added a 2nd from the penalty spot.
The Portuguese champions have been a lot progressed from the opposite recreation and introduced extra of an attacking risk, forcing David de Gea into two superb saves in each and every part.
The house goalkeeper denied ahead Diogo Goncalves’ curling effort in opposition to the highest nook and occasional shot throughout function, whilst he additionally accumulated Raul Jimenez’s lengthy-vary force.
Mexican Jimenez intercepted Eric Bailly’s lazy move-box go deep inside of his personal part, however his shot cannoned off the publish.
A story of 2 keepers
The evening was once going relatively smartly for Benfica and goalkeeper Svilar when he dived low to his proper to palm away Martial’s penalty after 15 mins to develop into the youngest goalkeeper to avoid wasting a place-kick in a Champions League fit.
He additionally thwarted Lukaku via stretching to his close to publish and status tall when the striker closed in a single-on-one – the previous Everton guy has now prolonged his goalless run to 6 video games in all competitions after netting 11 in his first 10 for the membership.
But Svilar’s unfortunate second on 45 mins method he additionally become the youngest participant to attain an personal function within the festival.
At the opposite finish, Benfica may just no longer be able previous Spaniard De Gea, who has now stored 11 blank sheets in 15 video games this season.
United’s primary made a complete of 5 saves within the fit, the most productive of which got here from Goncalves’ emerging strike within the first part, springing top to his left to tip the ball to protection.
More to apply.