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Europa League: Man United seal qualification after Partizan Belgrade win

Manchester United, Partizan Belgrade, Europa League
Man United striker Mason Greenwood celebrates his goal

Mason Greenwood’s well-taken opener and a brilliant solo effort from Anthony Martial put United in control at the break, after they scored two first-half goals at home for the first time this season

Marcus Rashford continued his scoring streak when he rifled home his fifth goal in six appearances within four minutes of the restart.

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And, barring the loss of Scott McTominay to injury late on, it was comfortable from there on for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side as they secured their fourth consecutive clean sheet of the campaign to consolidate top spot in Group L and a place in the round-of-32.

Partizan fought fire with fire in a frenetic start at Old Trafford that saw Martial and Umar Sadiq both have efforts ruled out for offside in the opening five minutes, but that was as close as the visitors would get as their strategy backfired and United strode towards the next round.

Rashford wasted two chances to open the scoring inside the opening quarter of an hour, blazing wide and over the target, but made amends on 22 minutes when his through ball reached Greenwood in the area, and the 18-year-old brilliantly switched onto his left foot before firing past the wrong-footed Vladimir Stojkovic in the Partizan goal.

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And, after that classy finish, Greenwood had a hand in United’s second as he charged down a clearance and diverted the ball into the path of Martial, who sensationally slalomed his way past three defenders before finishing off a fine solo effort with a toe-poke into the corner.

United entered the break in front and in control and it took just four minutes for them to assert their authority again as Ashley Young cushioned a long diagonal into the path of Rashford, who added a third with a rasping left-footed drive at the near post.

The Partizan goal was at the mercy of Solskjaer’s side, as Young and Fred went close with free-kicks, and United would have added to their tally had they maintained their level of intensity to the finish.

But with qualification secured, Solskjaer took the opportunity to hand James Garner his first home senior appearance as United withstood the loss of McTominay to close out a morale-boosting night under the lights at Old Trafford.

Source: Sky Sports

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