Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag was spotted having a deep conversation with the club’s former legendary manager Sir Alex Ferguson in Cibo restaurant in Wilmslow ahead of the red devils’ Europa League clash against Laliga leaders Barcelona on Thursday.
Ferguson has been one of the most successful managers not only in the history of Manchester United but also in the Premier League. The Scottish manager has won 13 Premiere League titles and two Champions League trophies with the club.
Since his departure in 2013, the club have been struggling. ten Hag who was appointed from Ajax last summer seems to have revitalised the club again and seems to take them in the right direction.
After the first leg in Camp Nou, the tie is still all square at 2-2. The former European champions traded leads in a back-and-forth second half of their first-leg game at Camp Nou.
Barcelona struck first in the 50th minute on defender Marcos Alonso’s header from a corner and levelled in the 76th when Raphinha’s cross from the right wing curled into the net untouched. United’s defence was distracted by Robert Lewandowski’s failed attempt to connect.
A BIG night at Old Trafford awaits! 👊💫#MUFC || #UEL pic.twitter.com/XXTBwDOXa4
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) February 21, 2023
In between, Marcus Rashford showed just why Barcelona coach Xavi Hernández described him as one of the most dangerous forwards in Europe.
Rashford beat goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen at his near post with a shot from a tight angle in the 53rd then created United’s go-ahead goal seven minutes later.
Receiving the ball at the touchline from a corner taken short, Rashford dribbled into the penalty area then fired a low cross that was flicked on by Bruno Fernandes and bounced up to ricochet into the net off defender Jules Koundé for an own goal.
The Catalan giants despite keeping the tie alive have lost their key player midfielder Pedri with an injured hamstring. Barcelona’s statement did not say how long Pedri will be out, but Spanish newspaper Diario AS said he could be sidelined for four weeks, ruling him out of the second leg at United as well as a Copa del Rey game against rivals Real Madrid.