Football Features

Man Utd make unwanted history – Eight things you may have missed from Europa League matchday two

By Steve Jennings

Published: 22:17, 3 October 2019

There were 24 games on matchday two of the Europa League, so nobody can blame you for missing the majority of the action.

Manchester United played out a bore draw with AZ Alkmaar before Arsenal eased past Standard Liege, while there were contrasting emotions for the Scottish clubs.

Meanwhile, Wolves sealed a much needed victory and Chinese football history was made in Russia.

Read on for every result and eight things you might have missed.

Every result

– F91 Dudelange 0-4 Qarabag
– Sevilla 1-0 Apoel
– Lugano 0-0 Dynamo Kiev
– Malmo FF 1-1 FC Copenhagen
– Krasnador 1-2 Getafe
– Trabzonspor 2-2 Basel
– Rosenborg 1-4 PSV
– Sporting 2-1 Linz ASK
– Celtic 2-0 Cluj
– Lazio 2-1 Rennes
– Vitoria 0-1 Frankfurt
– Arsenal 4-0 Standard Liege
– Feyenoord 2-0 Porto
– Young Boys 2-1  Rangers
– CSKA Moscow 0-2 Espanyol
– Ferencvaros 0-3 Ludogorets
– FC Oleksandria 1-1 AA Gent
– St Etienne 1-1 Wolfsburg
– Istanbul Buyuks 1-1 Monchengladbach
– RZ Pelletts WAC 1-1 Roma
– Besiktas 0-1 Wolves
– Braga 2-2 Slovan
– Astana 1-2 Partizan
– AZ Alkmaar 0-0 Man United

1. Man Utd draw historic blank but debutant impresses

United will probably be quite pleased after leaving the Netherlands with a point against AZ Alkmaar, who were the superior attacking unit on the night. Indeed, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be content with his side’s defensive performance in the goalless draw, especially that of debutant Brandon Williams.

The 18-year-old impressed in his first appearance for the club, giving Solskjaer something to think about when it comes to picking a left-back in the Premier League in Luke Shaw’s absence.

However, there were obvious concerns at the other end of the pitch as United made a bit of unwanted history, failing to land a shot on target Europa League match for the first time ever in their 25th match in the competition.

2. Celtic win as Rangers collapse in Switzerland

Celtic didn’t endure too many problems against Cluj at home, winning 2-0 thanks to goals from Odsonne Edouard and Mohamed Elyounessi, although the visitors did provide a few scares with some dangerous attacks.

In the end, though, it was Celtic’s fiercest rivals who suffered a collapse on Thursday night. Leading in Switzerland against Young Boys, Steven Gerrard’s Rangers threw away their advantage and eventually succumbed to a 93rd minute winner.

It was a mixed night for Scottish football, then, but ultimately both Celtic and Rangers will be confident they can qualify for the knockout stages.

3. Wolves stun Besiktas as IstanBoly strikes late

Wolves secured their first Premier League win of the season against Watford at the weekend and followed it up with their maiden Europa League group stage victory, stunning Besiktas with a stoppage time winner.

It was Willy Boly who grabbed the winner. The centre-back was incidentally man of the match before he found the net following a solid defensive play, but he took his goal like a seasoned striker, taking a touch and steering the ball past the goalkeeper.

It was a special moment for Wolves, who are finally starting to look like their old selves again.

4. Bruno Fernandes keeps up scoring run

Sporting’s talisman Bruno Fernandes kept up his impressive scoring form with his fifth goal in his last five appearances across all competitions.

The midfielder, who was reportedly targeted by Manchester United and Tottenham over the summer, has not allowed transfer speculation to affect his displays, ensuring Sporting are very much a dark horse in this season’s Europa League.

Sporting ran out 2-1 winners against Linz ASK, bouncing back from their matchday one defeat to PSV.

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5. Martinelli makes it four goals in two Arsenal starts

The future certainly looks bright at Arsenal if Gabriel Martinelli is anything to go by. The Brazilian teenager made his second start for the Gunners and bagged another brace, thus becoming the youngest player to score two or more goals in a major European game for Arsenal.

He’s now scored twice in each of his starts for the club after netting a double against Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup last week. And although Forest and Standard Liege aren’t exactly elite opponents, it’s clear Martinelli is pushing for more Premier League game time.

The 18-year-old forward is a slick mover and a clinical finisher, which is exactly what Arsenal need while Alexandre Lacazette is sidelined through injury.

6. Espanyol’s Wu Lei makes history for China

History was made in Espanyol’s win at CSKA Moscow as Wu Lei became the first Chinese player to score in a major European competition. The forward opened the scoring midway through the second half before Espanyol added a late second.

Wu Lei’s goal could be a watershed moment for Chinese players enjoying further success in Europe, although the ever-growing Chinese Super League will probably be aiming to keep their best native players in Asia going forward.

7. Chicharito strikes again in narrow Sevilla win

Sevilla edged past Apoel with a 1-0 victory in Spain thanks to Javier Hernandez’s 17th minute winner.

The former Manchester United and West Ham United striker is yet to score in La Liga, but that’s now two goals in two Europa League appearances for the Mexican since he left London for Seville in the summer. Sevilla top group A with two wins from two.

8. Rosenborg powerless to resist PSV wonderkids

Donyell Malen was at it again for PSV with two goals, taking his tally for the season up to 14 goals in 17 appearances across all competitions. The former Arsenal youngster proved unstoppable in the 4-1 win against Rosenborg.

And he wasn’t the only PSV youngster to impress. Mohamed Ihattaren, still just 17, provided the assist for PSV’s second goal and looks more and more like a future star in every appearance.

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