Gunners take control of Group A with win over Zurich; United stay second in Group E after beating Sociedad 1-0
Arsenal’s Kieran Tierney celebrates his goal v Zurich yesterday. Pic/Getty Images
Manchester United failed to usurp Real Sociedad at the top of Europa League Group E despite a 1-0 win in San Sebastian, as Arsenal did secure their place in the last 16 on Thursday.
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United now face a tricky playoff against one of the sides dropping down to the Europa League from the Champions League in February with Barcelona and Juventus potential opponents.
Man United’s Ronaldo wears a dejected look v Sociedad. Pic/AFP
Alejandro Garnacho scored the only goal of the encounter at the Reale Arena after just 17 minutes to surpass George Best as Manchester United’s youngest ever non-English scorer in Europe at the age of 18. However, the Red Devils were left to rue their defeat to the Spaniards at Old Trafford on Matchday One as they missed out on topping the group on goal difference.
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“You don’t always get what you deserve—that’s football,” said United manager Erik ten Hag. “We win today, but of course we are disappointed that we didn’t score two goals because that is what we needed,” he added.
Arsenal did not make the same mistake as a 1-0 win over FC Zurich was enough to hold off PSV Eindhoven to win Group A. But Mikel Arteta’s men were made to work for the three points after Kieran Tierney’s early strike put them in front. Arteta was forced to turn to his bench in the second half with Bukayo Saka and Thomas Partey risked despite a trip to Chelsea on Sunday for them.
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