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Match report: Manchester United 0 – 1 Real Sociedad

by Zoe Hodges

You could hear a pin drop at Old Trafford tonight as a minute’s silence was held following the sad news that Queen Elizabeth II had died.

The stands weren’t as full as usual and the players wore black armbands as they paid tribute to her majesty.

United’s Europa League campaign got underway and it was Malacia who had their first chance after just two minutes but his long range shot was well blocked.

It was a tight contest, a scrappy game in the opening ten minutes.

A quarter of an hour went by and another chance sprung up for United. Antony played a lovely through ball to Ronaldo, but he was just offside.

Fred was looking like he might just make the breakthrough as he had two attempts to put the hosts ahead in the first half but both shots were blocked.

Meanwhile, Antony, who scored for the Reds on his Premier League debut, also had a great chance but his shot which was heading for the top corner was well saved.

It wasn’t all United though, Real Sociedad had their chances but Mendez shot was blasted wide.

Real Sociedad began growing into the game at the end of the first half but both teams went into the dressing rooms goalless.

Not long after the restart the intensity increased. Sociedad were exploiting United’s weak areas and making good runs into the box.

Martinez hand balled it in the box and it was a penalty to Sociedad. It was a questionable one though as the ball seemed to hit his body and then his hand but VAR took a look and it remained a penalty.

Mendez stepped up and slotted it into the bottom right hand corner.

United had a fight on their hands!

They responded well with chances for Casemiro, Malacia and Ronaldo but Sociedad defended well.

Ten Hag saw it as a chance to see how his youngsters would fare and made several substitutions but they couldn’t be the difference and it ended 1–0.

It’s not how Ten Hag would have liked to have started his Europa League campaign.

Team: De Gea, Lindelof, Maguire, Ronaldo, Malacia (McNeill), Eriksen (Fernandes), Fred, Casemiro, Dalot (Martinez) Antony (Sancho), Elanga (Garnacho)

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