Jose Mourinho fears worst over Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Marcos Rojo injuries
- Author: Julie Sanders Apr 22, 2017,
Apr 22, 2017, 20:57
Extra-time was needed to separate the two teams after Sofiane Hanni had cancelled out a Henrikh Mkhitaryan effort to leave the pair level at the end of 180 minutes of the last-eight tie.
Ibrahimovic and Rojo suffered knee problems as United edged into the Europa League semi-finals with a 2-1 extra-time win at home to Anderlecht. With a top four spot via the Premier League looking hard, Jose Mourinho will want to make sure his team are in Europe's elite competition by going on to win the Europa League. Let's say in a derby against Manchester City, [United coach] Nicky Butt doesn't pick him to play that game. United can also qualify for the competition by winning the Europa League.
The England global raced onto a Paul Pogba pass before teeing up Mkhitaryan for United's opener and tested the Anderlecht backline with six shots. Then there was the 89th-minute opening forged by Ibrahimovic which Rashford lashed into the side-netting.
Ibrahimovic was injured just before the whistle for the end of regular time.
But the injuries to Ibrahimovic and Rojo could prove costly, particularly with United having re-energised their push for a top-four finish in the Premier League by brilliantly beating Chelsea.
Only Genk (25) and Roma (24) have scored more goals in the Europa League this season than Anderlecht (23).
United began the night with an away-goals advantage following the 1-1 first-leg draw out in Belgium and, as such, Anderlecht had to score at least once at Old Trafford.
"We played a very good match".
We're accustomed to seeing Marcus Rashford grab the headlines in dramatic fashion - very few footballers announced themselves to the world in the way that the England global did last season - but despite his reputation for heroics, Manchester United fans were left with no doubt about who their saviour was yet again.
Mourinho is now without two other central defenders, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones, and he urged them to make a special effort to return quickly from injury.
United's opponents in the semifinals could be Lyon, Ajax or Celta Vigo.
Anderlecht put on an impressive show here, as did their vocal travelling support - something acknowledged by Mourinho after the final whistle as he went over to applaud them.
Man Utd are unbeaten in their past 26 games in all competitions at Old Trafford (W17 D9); their longest unbeaten run since October 2011 (37 games).