https://www.sportinglife.com-Bruno Fernandes celebrates
Bruno Fernandes scored twice as Manchester United beat Istanbul Basaksehir 4-1 to stay top of Champions League Group H with two games to play.
Fernandes rifled in on seven minutes, pounced on a goalkeeping error not long after, and looked set for the chance to complete a first-half hat-trick when Marcus Rashford won a penalty, only to pass over duties to the England striker, who slotted home.
A raft of second-half substitutions saw the game peter out before Deniz Turuc scored a late consolation, delivering on Tom Carnduff’s tip to back Basaksehir to find the net, and Daniel James added a fourth in injury time.
United now need just one point from matches at home to PSG and away to RB Leipzig to reach the last 16.
Edinson Cavani, making his first United start, and Donny van de Beek impressed while Rashford, deployed on the right of Solskjaer’s front three, quickly made his presence felt.
The England forward displayed brilliant footwork and persistence inside the opening two minutes to make space for a shot that he could not follow up after an initial save.
Anthony Martial showed similar skill when twisting former United full-back Rafael’s blood before seeing his cutback thwarted.
The home side’s intent would soon translate into an early opener. Alex Telles’ corner from the left was only cleared as far as Fernandes on the edge of the box and the midfielder unleashed a stunning strike that flew into the top right corner.
Visiting skipper Edin Visca was looking the Turkish champions’ biggest threat but United were keeping them at arm’s length, with Basaksehir’s hopes of getting anything out of this match extinguished in the 35th minute.
Victor Lindelof’s ball out from the back sent Rashford scampering through, only for Boli Bolingoli to barge him over in the box. Rashford stepped up for the penalty rather than two-goal Fernandes, sending Gunok the wrong way after a lengthy VAR review.
The visitors pulled one back in the 75th minute, as David de Gea pushed away Turuc’s left-footed free-kick but referee Ovidiu Hategan pointed to his watch to indicate the ball had crossed the line.
United’s goalkeeper bellowed at his team to “wake up” after Visca rattled the woodwork soon after but there were to be no more scares.
Instead, the hosts added a fourth as Mason Greenwood crossed for fellow substitute James to coolly turn home at the end of a stoppage-time counter attack.
Champions League round-up
Barcelona put their domestic struggles to one side with a 4-0 victory over Dynamo Kyiv that sealed their progress through to the Champions League knockout stages.
Barca are three points ahead of Juventus, who left it late to clinch a 2-1 victory over Ferencvaros and are also into the last 16.
Victories for Chelsea and Sevilla put both teams through to the knockout stages from Group E.
The two teams have an identical record of three wins and one draw from four matches, and there was symmetry about their results on Tuesday, with both leaving it late to secure 2-1 wins, over Rennes and Krasnodar respectively.
Erling Haaland was on the scoresheet yet again for Borussia Dortmund, this time with a brace in a 3-0 victory over Club Brugge. The Norwegian’s goals sandwiched a fine free-kick from Jadon Sancho.
Dortmund lead Group F by one point from Lazio, who were 3-1 winners over Zenit St Petersburg in Rome.
Manchester United, who suffered a shock loss at Istanbul Basaksehir last time out, got their revenge with a 4-1 victory over the Turkish side at Old Trafford in Group H.
In the group’s other game, Paris St Germain secured a much-needed 1-0 victory over RB Leipzig with Neymar’s 11th-minute penalty the only goal.