Manchester United vs Celta Vigo as it happened: Jose Mourinho's men edge into Europa League final

Live Blog

Re-live the Europa League semi-final second leg tie at Old Trafford

Manchester United must negotiate their way past Celta Vigo to reach their first-ever Europa League final, with Marcus Rashford's first-leg goal giving Jose Mourinho's side a crucial 1-0 advantage.

Live Updates

Welcome to The Independent's live coverage of Manchester United's Europa League semi-final second leg against Celta Vigo.
 
Marcus Rashford's delightful free-kick seven days ago gives Jose Mourinho's side a crucial 1-0 advantage heading into tonight's match, but having been taken to extra-time by Anderlecht in the last round, the hosts will be taking nothing for granted.
 
Celta Vigo posed little threat at Balaidos last week but could still spring a surprise here, especially given United's struggles at Old Trafford this season.
 
Stay with us for team news, build-up and analysis from 7.00pm.

Team news
 

Manchester United: Romero, Valencia, Darmian, Bailly, Blind, Herrera, Fellaini, Pogba, Lingard, Mkhitaryan, Rashford.
 
Substitutes: De Gea, Smalling, Jones, Carrick, Mata, Rooney, Martial.
 
Celta Vigo: Alvarez, Mallo, Cabral, Roncaglia, Jonny, Wass, Radoja, Hernandez, Aspas, Guidetti, Sisto.
 
Substitutes: Villar, Fontas, Diaz, Bongonda, Beauvue, Jozabad, Gomez.
Here's United confirming the XI.
 
No changes from last week's 1-0 victory in Spain. No Axel Tuanzebe, who impressed at the Emirates.
 
It's probably as strong as you can get from Jose Mourinho tonight as he well and truly puts all his eggs in one basket. Defeat tonight and it is the end of United's season, having lost to Arsenal last weekend.
Good omen...
It's a strong bench from Mourinho too - plenty of firepower in Martial, Mata and Rooney should he need it. Antonio Valencia takes the armband once more.
Mourinho called on the Old Trafford crowd bring the sort of atmosphere they brought for the 2-0 win over Chelsea in April rather than the noise - or lack of - for the second-leg extra-time win over Anderlecht in the last round.
Only about 40 minutes until kick-off now. Mourinho will be desperate to end this in the 90 minutes rather than have it drag out for 120. Does that mean he will start attacking from the outset to kill the tie? Don't bank on it...
So we can expect goals...?
Kick-off is approaching - Rashford is being built up as the main man in the television coverage but will he be the hero tonight? Or maybe Mkhitaryan again who has thrived in this competition? Or will ex-Liverpool Iago Aspas ruin the night?
Reminder: United only need to avoid defeat tonight to head to the final in Stockholm at the end of the month. They are two games away from next year's Champions League. No pressure then, lads.
Here we go then, the two sides are lining up in the Old Trafford tunnel with kick-off just five minutes away. Will this be another famous European night in Manchester?
The motivation for United tonight should be getting to listen to the Champions League theme when lining up at the start of the game rather than this Europa one.
1 min: And we're off! The biggest night of Jose Mourinho's United career so far!
2 mins: Aspas just made a dangerous run into the United box after a poor clearance from Daley Blind but Romero pounces and smothers the cross.
4 mins: This is a shaky start from United! Darmian steps up inexplicably and Aspas gets in behind and forces a fine stop from Romero. Now they are working on their corner count... 
9 mins: It's all a bit quiet here - not from the crowd though. Vigo are on the attack and are looking more likely to open the scoring here. United can't get hold of them in midfield but Rashford still looks dangerous on the break. 
 
A lovely bit of skill from Pogba in midfield released the Englishman but nothing comes of it.
12 mins: So far Celta Vigo have had 69 per cent of possession. Tells you the story of the game so far really. 
15 mins: United are getting a bit more possession now but aren't pushing the issue too much here. They know a draw is all they need and are looking to regain some control in midfield.
16 mins: GOAL! MANCHESTER UNITED 1 CELTA VIGO 0 (FELLAINI)
 
That's exactly what United needed! Marcus Rashford puts in a fantastic deep cross and Marouane Fellaini in on the end of it to powerfully head it home! But it's all about the ball from Rashford. Celta Vigo still need two goals though so nothing has changed there. It does mean no extra time though.

What time does it start?

The match kicks off at 8.05pm on Thursday 11 May.

Where can I watch it?

It will be televised live on BT Sport 2, with coverage starting at 7.30pm.

Highlights will be shown at 12.00am the same evening.

Preview

United are potentially just 90 minutes from reaching the Europa League final, which would also draw them another step closer to securing Champions League football for next season. Manager Jose Mourinho has conceded that the club’s hopes of doing that by finishing in the top four is now ‘impossible’ and this competition could prove to be a defining moment for United over the next few seasons.

Without getting carried away, however, they only lead opponents Celta Vigo by one goal, and if they concede as they did twice at the weekend against Arsenal, they are back to square one. Although they do lead, it is a slender one, and United could  be made to rue missed chances in the first leg which should have seen them out of sight. Instead, they are at risk of falling foul to the away goals rule, and in Iago Aspas and John Guidetti, Celta Vigo have genuine goal threats.

That said, the Galician club are in terrible form, losing all of their last five games in a run which includes a 3-0 defeat against fellow mid table outfit Malaga in their last fixture. They have next to nothing to play for domestically, so an improved performance in their second leg Europa League semi-final can be expected, but it must be said that they will be low on confidence heading into their trip to the North of England.

United will welcome back a number of players who were rested at the weekend, including Daley Blind, Paul Pogba and Eric Bailly, while Marouane Fellaini is available for selection in European fixtures as his ban for a red card in the Manchester derby only applies domestically. Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard made cameos at Arsenal but were unable to salvage anything from a poor showing, and the pair are expected to return to the line-up against Celta Vigo, as is their decided Europa League goalkeeper Sergio Romero.

The visitors rested a number of key players in their defeat to Malaga at the weekend, including Mallo, Jonny, Aspas and Guidetti - who made a brief substitute appearance - and have no new injury concerns: meaning they are in good shape for what could be a season defining match for both clubs.

It’s a big game for…

Iago Aspas. The Spaniard was anonymous for much for the first leg, and will need an improved performance if he and his teammates are to emerge from their horrendous run of form by reaching the Europa League final. It is simple: Celta Vigo need to score, and with 25 goals this season in his second spell at the club, he represents the Spaniards’ biggest threat.

Best stat

Manchester United have won just 13 of their 49 matches against Spanish opposition, albeit with most of those coming against sides at the top of the Spanish league in the Champions League proper.

Remember when…

The sides met for the first time in their history last week, with a Marcus Rashford free kick all that separates the two sides heading into the second leg.

marcus-rashford.jpg
Marcus Rashford's goal separates the two sides (Getty)

Player to watch

Marcus Rashford. His talents are obvious but it will be interesting to observe how the youngster deals with the added pressure that comes with being Manchester United’s first choice striker in such a high stakes game. It was his audacious free kick which proved the difference in Spain, and having been rested for the trip to London on Sunday, will be relied upon to produce again this week in the absence of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Form

Manchester United: WDDWL

Celta Vigo: LLLLL

Odds

Manchester United win: 11/20

Celta Vigo win: 5/1

Draw: 29/10