Sevilla pulled off the shock result of the round as they stunned Manchester United in a 2-1 win at Old Trafford to reach the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time.
Wissam Ben Yedder’s two goals off the bench knocked United out after Sevilla had struggled in the first half.
Here’s how their players fared in this historic result.
Sergio Rico 6 – Would’ve expected to be busier on a trip to Old Trafford. Instead, had little to do, a symbol of how toothless United were.
Gabriel Mercado 5 – United didn’t exploit Mercado’s flank enough – he looked shaky enough the few times they put him under pressure.
Simon Kjaer 7 – The 28-year-old was immense at the back, helping contain United’s attack alongside Lenglet.
Clement Lenglet 8 – The young defender was an absolute beast, sticking to Lukaku as best as he could and absorbing United’s attacks.
Sergio Escudero 6 – Escudero was wasteful when he joined the attack, but solid enough – and untested – in the rearguard.
Ever Banega 5 – After his performance in the first leg, this was a surprisingly quiet display from the Argentine.
Steven N’Zonzi 8 – A superb display from the French midfielder. Always in the right place, helped his defence with Lukaku, and commanded his midfield.
Pablo Sarabia 5 – Wasteful in possession, doing little with the many opportunities in attack that he had.
Franco Vazquez 5 – Picked as Sevilla’s main attacking midfielder, but didn’t carve out many chances when on the ball.
Joaquin Correa 5 – Time and again, Correa found himself in good position at the edge of the United box, only to waste it.
Luis Muriel 4 – Even if Ben Yedder hadn’t come on and scored, Muriel was awful enough to show the Frenchman should haev started.
Wissam Ben Yedder 9 – Two questions: how did he not start? And how did he not score a hat-trick? A stunning cameo from the Frenchman.
Guido Pizarro 6 – Came on as a time-eating substitute at the end. Helped Sevilla withstand United’s late charge.
Johannes Geis 5 – Another late substitute sent on to kill time, as well as absorb the United pressure at the end.
Manchester United crashed out of the Champions League after a shock 2-1 loss at home to Sevilla in the second leg of their Round of 16 tie.
It was a limp display from Jose Mourinho’s side, who fell prey to two quick strikes from substitute Wissam Ben Yedder in the second half, with Romelu Lukaku’s goal proving mere consolation.
Here’s how United’s players fared overall.
David de Gea 6 – Couldn’t do much about the first and nearly pulled off an astonishing save for the second. Denied Ben Yedder a hat-trick.
Antonio Valencia 5 – An off-colour day for the captain. Solid at the back but offered little going forward, on a day United needed it.
Eric Bailly 5 – Shook off an early error to produce a strong display, but the introduction of Ben Yedder caused the Ivorian problems.
Chris Smalling 6 – It’s not often Smalling will outplay Bailly – although both were culpable for Sevilla’s goals.
Ashley Young 4 – Completely lost Ben Yedder for Sevilla’s second, and failed to add attacking impetus from left-back.
Marouane Fellaini 5 – Solid enough in midfield, but contributed to a plodding display from an attacking sense, offering zero inventiveness.
Nemanja Matic 5 – The creative burden fell on Matic with no Pogba next to him, and he failed to deliver.
Marcus Rashford 6 – Was one of the few sparks for United but his final ball was lacking. Disappointing after his display against Liverpool.
Jesse Lingard 5 – Was picked ahead of Juan Mata ostensibly to provide a greater threat on the counter-attack, but ultimately had no impact at all.
Alexis Sanchez 4 – Misplaced passes, lacking confidence to take on a scoring chance first-time – a display typical of his time at United.
Romelu Lukaku 7 – Was United’s best player on the night, holding up the ball well. Missed one clear-cut chance but scored another with aplomb.
Paul Pogba 5 – Offered no impact after coming on. Didn’t look fully fit, and couldn’t provide the running United needed in midfield.
Juan Mata 6 – Hard to see why he didn’t start. Had an instant impact after coming on, creating a chance that Lukaku should’ve finished.
Anthony Martial 5 – Couldn’t provide his usual trickery on the wing, although in fairness he had little time to make an impact.
Following a goalless draw in Spain, it was 74 minutes until the away side’s substitute Wissam Ben Yedder scored the opener to rock United before flooring them with a headed second four minutes later.
Romelu Lukaku pulled one back but it was too little, too late for the hosts whose manager Jose Mourinho was well beaten in the dugout by Sevilla’s Vincenzo Montella.
Goals – 1
Shots – 16
Possession – 52%
Tackles – 24
Dribbles – 15
Goals – 2
Shots – 20
Possession – 48%
Tackles – 22
Dribbles – 8
The United boss set his side up with in a 4-2-3-1 formation but while the back four was a rigid one, the double pivot in midfield of Marouane Fellaini and Nemanja Matic wasn’t at all orthodox with the Belgian given the licence to join the attack.
His ploy didn’t work though and had to resort to desperate measures in the closing stages as his side chased the game and left themselves wide open at the back.
The Italian also set up in a 4-2-3-1 formation and was understandably cautious to start with as a score draw would’ve been enough to see them through. As such, he chose to start Joaquin Correa on the left flank and opted for Luis Muriel ahead of Ben Yedder who started on the bench.
Montella timed his switch in approach perfectly as the visitors struck with United lacking time to muster enough of a response.
TACTICAL TALKING POINTS
FELLAINI PLAN FLAWED
With the way Mourinho operates, sometimes the ends can justify the means. This wasn’t one of those times as his strategy of using Fellaini – instructed to take up spaces in the box during every United advance – failed miserably.
The ploy lacked imagination and there was no variation to the attack as aerial balls into Fellaini or Romelu Lukaku – who was kept on a short leash by Clement Lenglet – were forced when there were others in space. Paul Pogba immediately looked a better option when he was introduced.
BENCHED BEN YEDDER STRIKES
Ben Yedder will grab the headlines but it was a notable and timely switch in approach from the manager that gave Sevilla the edge. Up until Montella put Ben Yedder on, the teams resembled two boxers circling the ring, afraid to throw a punch at the risk of exposing themselves.
United had to be braver at home, but it Sevilla were the ones to put some punch into their attack. A positive ball was fizzed into the feet of the fleet-footed French forward who did the rest and it was all Sevilla’s from there.
Mourinho’s tactics against Liverpool were warranted and calculated, but this time they were plain cowardly. Never took the fight to the visitors until there was no choice. The perils of nullifying your opponent instead of playing to your strengths.
Rating – 4/10
Conservative for the most part. His defence, although hardly tested, stood firm with Lenglet in particular impressing. Cleverly chose to bide his time and it paid off. Fine substitutions, though his players were wasteful at the death.
Rating – 8/10