In Review

Violence as Liverpool knock Man United out of Europe

Fine goal from Coutinho snuffs out hopes of United comeback, and it's too much for some fans

Manchester United 1 Liverpool [Liverpool win 3-1 on aggregate]

Liverpool eased into the last eight of the Europa League thanks to a brilliant individual goal from Philippe Coutinho that snuffed out Manchester United's hopes of a famous comeback.

The goal, just before the break, cancelled out Anthony Martial's earlier penalty and meant United were faced with the task of scoring three goals in the second period to turn the tie on its head. It proved too much for them, however, and they drew a blank as the fans' frustration boiled over towards the end of the game and there were scuffles with Liverpool supporters.

According to BBC Sport "punches were thrown while the police had to form a human wall to protect Liverpool fans in the United section". The Daily Mirror described how rivals fans clashed in the East Stand of Old Trafford with "chairs and missiles being thrown".

The violence could have ramifications, particularly for United as the host club, with Uefa likely to study footage of the incidents to see if security arrangements were adequate. The governing body didn't take any action during the first leg at Anfield, when some United fans sang offensive Hillsborough disaster chants, but it's expected they will come down harder following Thursday night's unsavoury scenes.

In addition, The Guardian reports that United fans were responsible for a banner unfurled from a bridge over the M602 motorway that taunted Liverpool supporters travelling to the game.

But it's events on the field that will be of most concern to United manager Louis van Gaal, as his side failed to overturn the 2-0 deficit from last week's first leg.

Martial had given the hosts hope on 32 minutes when he picked himself from Nathaniel Clyne's foul to slot home the penalty, but Coutinho effectively killed off United with his sweet strike on the stroke of half-time.

"You have to give credit to Coutinho, because it was a fantastic action," reflected Van Gaal, who was then asked if he felt under pressure given the club's poor season. "Manchester United always has pressure, because expectations are very high," he replied. "The pressure for these players is also very high. We know that and we can cope with that."

Liverpool will find out later today which club they will face in next month's quarter-final and manager Jurgen Klopp was asked about the prospect of being paired with Borussia Dortmund, the club he left in October, and who also booked their place with a comfortable win against Tottenham.

"All my friends in Dortmund want to play us - but only in Basel [where the final will be played on May 18]," Klopp told BT Sport. Adding that it was "cool" to be in the quarter-final, Klopp said: "I've not really looked to see who got through, but I'm pretty sure there are no easy games anymore. It's not too important. We have to be prepared and hopefully we are." 

Recommended

An ‘incredible’ Ballon d’Or win for Messi
Lionel Messi receives his seventh Ballon d’Or award in Paris
Profile

An ‘incredible’ Ballon d’Or win for Messi

Solskjær saga and lack of strategy defines the Glazer era
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
View from the terraces

Solskjær saga and lack of strategy defines the Glazer era

Harry Kane: England’s brilliant captain regains his form
Harry Kane scored four in England’s 10-0 win over San Marino
View from the terraces

Harry Kane: England’s brilliant captain regains his form

How West Ham United is stepping up to join the big boys
David Moyes celebrating
In Focus

How West Ham United is stepping up to join the big boys

Popular articles

Are we heading towards World War Three?
Vladimir Putin
In Depth

Are we heading towards World War Three?

Is Bosnia on the brink of war?
Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik
In Depth

Is Bosnia on the brink of war?

Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy

The Week Footer Banner