Manchester United hosted Sevilla at Old Trafford in the first leg of the Europa League quarter-finals.
Erik ten Haag has reiterated that United are looking to add another feather in the cap after lifting the Carabao Cup earlier this season, and that the Europa League is an achievable goal.
The United boss has named a strong starting XI. David De Gea scored goals from a defensive quartet of Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Raphael Varane, Lisandro Martinez and Tyrell Malacia.
Casemiro has been thrown back into contention within a month of suspension. Marcel Sabitzer and Bruno Fernandes complete United’s midfield three.
Anthony Martial scored on either side of the forwards with Jadon Sancho and Anthony on the flanks. There are three things we learned from Manchester United’s 2-2 draw with Sevilla.
Sabitzer has submitted a permanent request to United
United dominated the first half with two goals from Sabitzer going into the break.
The Austrian scored in the 14th minute from a pass from Fernandes in the Sevilla box. Sabitzer turned United into the lead before firing the ball into the back of the net.
Seven minutes later, Martial found the Bayern Munich loanee with a superb pass. Sabitzer misses the chance to put the ball over Yasine Bunu.
Sabitzer was constantly running into the box late on and it was great that his two efforts paid off big. Formed a solid partnership with Casemiro and Fernandez in the middle of the park.
Sabitzer recently gave an interview to Bild and strongly hinted that his ambition is to stay at Old Trafford after the end of his loan spell.
The 29-year-old has spoken of his love for the Red Devils and the Premier League. “I can say I found my place here,” he said. Now I know the Premier League and I can say that there is nothing better, stronger and harder. Every game is a struggle. It is the best league in the world. “Once you play here, you know it’s unmatched.”
“Obviously my thoughts are on United, especially with the confidence I got from Erik ten Haag – it’s very positive. But I’m not the only one who decides.
Sabitzer is making a strong case for United to sign him permanently, on the evidence of his winning form against Sevilla.
The next few games will be clear as to what direction Saber’s future will take, but at the moment most United fans are not against keeping his services.
Marshall will improve the team a lot and make a big difference
Alongside Saber, Martial was another outstanding performance for United. Martial’s link-up play, technical ability and creativity were on full display when he was on the pitch.
The Frenchman has blended in well with his teammates. He constantly dived in and brought others into play.
Martial didn’t have many clear chances to get his name on the scoresheet but he gave an impressive account of himself.
Ten Hag himself highlighted the striker’s importance to the team. Speaking to reporters about Martial, United’s boss said: “When he is in the team, we play our best football and we get good results as a team.
“I’ll defend him because I can point to the stats and see how he contributes.”
🚨🎙️| Erik ten Haag on Anthony Martial: “When he’s in the team, we play our best football and have our best results as a team. I defend him because I point to the stats and see how he contributes.” pic.twitter.com/UUz9gFg8L5
– central. (@centredevils) April 12, 2023
With Rashford likely to be sidelined for a few games, Martial will need to step up and be a source of goals. Hopefully, he can stay fit and have a strong finish to the season.
Huge hits from Martinez and Varane for Ten Hag and his team.
United fans will be anxiously awaiting the extent of Martin’s injury. The player did not look good when his Argentina teammates Gonzalo Montiel and Marcos Acuna were sent off.
Martinez looked in pain and couldn’t walk. A bed was brought to the World Cup winner who was crying on the field.
Another player the fans are worried about is Varane. Varane, who spent the dying minutes of the first half on the ground, did not come out for the second period.
Varane was replaced by Harry Maguire, who played the entire second half.