Manchester United – København: Martial Sparks Manchester United’s Extra-time Victory (1-0)
København managed to impose themselves on their illustrious opponents. Not only defensively, using their high press and deep compactness, but also offensively, through both their direct play and a possession-based approach. But as time passed by, København were worn down by Manchester United’s incessant attacks which were mainly facilitated via their wide buildup. A magical Martial proved the difference as he won the penalty that was put away to ensure progression.
Tactical analysis and match report by Julian Chingoma.
Manchester United met København on neutral ground for this one-legged Europa League quarter-final. United had disposed of Austrian outfit LASK to earn their place in this clash. Ole Gunnar Solskjær set up Manchester United in their familiar 4-2-3-1 formation. Sergio Romero maintained his Europa League place while Eric Bailly joined the more usual backline members: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Harry Maguire and Brandon Williams. The double pivot was formed by Fred and Paul Pogba. Bruno Fernandes had the advanced midfield role in support of Mason Greenwood, Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford.
Ståle Solbakken‘s København bested Turkish champions İstanbul Başakşehir to reach the quarter-final stage. København lined up in a 4-4-2 formation. Karl-Johan Johnsson was in goal, behind a defensive line of Guillermo Varela, Victor Nelsson, Andreas Bjelland and Nicolai Boilesen. The midfield four were Pep Biel, Jens Stage, Zeca and Rasmus Falk. The latter’s positioning would make the team’s shape sometimes appear as a 4-3-3 shape. Jonas Wind and Mohamed Daramy were København’s front pair.
United’s attacking variety
United immediately looked to stretch the København shape. They played the long ball . . .