Real Sociedad defeats Manchester United after controversial penalty

(Football news) Manchester United’s four game winning run finally came to an end after Real Sociedad defeated the Red Devils 1-0 at Old Trafford in the Europa League. Both sets of players wore black armbands and the match began after a minute’s silence following the death of Queen Elizabeth II earlier this evening. The only goal that was scored was controversial to say the least as Lisandro Martinez was found guilty of handling the ball when he blocked a close range shot by David Silva, even though the shot clearly deflected off the defender’s thigh first. 

Referee Marco Di Bello pointed to the spot and the decision stood following a VAR check. Brais Mendez’s low and powerful shot was more than enough to beat David de Gea in what was the only goal of the match. In team news, Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag made six changes to his side with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Casemiro, Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Fred and Anthony Elanga starting the match. The result meant that the Red Devils are currently third in Group E in what was the club’s first defeat in the Europa League in 18 matches. Manchester United will face Sheriff Tiraspol in Moldova in their second Group Stage match on 15 September. 

It was quite an uneventful first half for both the teams with the best opportunity from the hosts coming when Antony charged in the Real Sociedad half but was blocked by Takefusa Kubo. In the second half, Christian Eriksen provided a pass to Anthony Elanga on the left and then a chip to Ronaldo who failed to connect. The Danish midfielder was by far the team’s only source of any creativity for the hosts in the first half but was replaced by Bruno Fernandes in the second. Ten Hag introduced Alejandro Garnacho and Jadon Sancho in the closing stages of the match but it was not enough for the Red Devils who looked fragmented and wasteful.

Also read: Chelsea appoint Graham Potter as head coach following Tuchel sacking


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