Marcus Rashford was on target for Manchester United once again, as they booked their place in the last-eight of the UEFA Europa League, while keeping dreams of a cup treble very much alive in the process, during a comfortable 1-0 victory over Real Betis.
Manuel Pellegrini made it clear before the second leg that the tie was “not over” and during a first half that saw his Betis side take the game to United, the hosts were unlucky not to have found an opener.
Joaquín, now over the age of 41, clipped the post with a speculative 25-yard strike, before Juanmi saw a goal-bound strike blocked by United outcast Harry Maguire.
At the opposite end, Wout Weghorst, with the goal gaping, was unable to turn home Facundo Pellistri’s mishit strike, meaning, somehow, the game remained goalless at the break despite the open nature of the first half.
While they may have been forced to defend more than they might’ve expected, the visitors entered HT with their three-goal aggregate advantage just about intact.
In the end, it would matter little, as Rashford eventually broke the deadlock midway through the second half.
Further chances came and went for United to add to their lead, but Marcel Sabitzer and Jadon Sancho were unable to show a clinical edge in front of goal.
As for Betis, their European dream ends in rather limp fashion, while their wretched record at home stretches to four defeats from their last six matches.