Sir Alex Ferguson reacts to Manchester United 1-0 FC Rostov

BBC Sport
Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte argue on the touchline following Ander Herrera’s sending off late in the first half

Manchester United booked their place in the quarterfinals of the Europa League on Thursday, with a 1-0 win at home to Rostov sufficient to ensure a 2-1 aggregate victory.

Last week United had just been pleased to make the long trip back from Russian Federation with an away goal and without any injuries given the terrible state of the Olimp-2 pitch.

Mata broke the deadlock from close range with what proved to be the victor 20 minutes from time after being set up by Ibrahimovic.

United had the first chance of the night within the opening five minutes when Ander Herrera's corner was met by Marcos Rojo's powerful header - forcing a save from Rostov goalkeeper Nikita Medvedev.

Jose Mourinho admits his Man United players were physically spent and were fortunate to not go to extra time with Rostov.

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We assess the talking points ahead of the return leg.

United were far from reaching their most fluid potential against Rostov, but it's suggested that winning while playing badly can also hold its share of positives, and with that, Mourinho can be pleased.

Mourinho still has issues in attack having deemed that Anthony Martial is not ready to feature, despite training on Wednesday, while Wayne Rooney remains sidelined with injury too.

United then lost Paul Pogba courtesy of a hamstring injury early in the second-half. The 23-year-old has been in poor form recently. It was justice for a United side that had completely dominated their opponents. It's difficult to play Monday with 10 men, it's difficult to play now, it's difficult to play 12 o'clock on Sunday. More of the same will see United advance.

Ibrahimovic was involved again 11 minutes later when he latched onto the end of a ball over the top from Mata, but after attempting to round Medvedev, his finish from a tight angle was deflected over the bar by the hand of the Rostov keeper.

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