Manchester United’s Europa League quarter-final tie against Sevilla took an unfortunate turn as they conceded a late equalizer and witnessed the emotional exit of Lisandro Martinez due to injury.
United had entered the game on a high, coming off two consecutive wins against Everton and Brentford, while Sevilla’s poor performance in the 22/23 season resulted in the dismissal of coach Jorge Sampaoli. The Red Devils made an impressive start to the game, with Marcel Sabitzer scoring twice within the first 21 minutes, putting United ahead by two goals.
Sevilla, however, did not back down and nearly got back in the game just before half-time, only to be denied by a fantastic save from David de Gea. The second half saw United maintaining their lead comfortably until the 83rd minute when Tyrell Malacia’s lapse in defense allowed Jesus Navas to score for Sevilla.
Disaster struck for United as Lisandro Martinez went down with an injury in the 85th minute. The Argentine defender appeared to be in tears as he was helped off the pitch, leading to an outpouring of sympathy from fans on social media. The situation worsened for United when Raphael Varane had to be replaced by Harry Maguire due to another injury.
In a dramatic turn of events, Sevilla managed to equalize in the 93rd minute through Youssef En Nesyri’s header, which was deflected into the net by Harry Maguire. The game ended in a 2-2 draw, leaving United with a challenging second leg in Spain next week.
United’s head coach, Erik ten Hag, will now be sweating over the fitness of his two starting center-backs as they prepare to face Nottingham Forest on Sunday. The extent of Lisandro Martinez’s injury remains uncertain, but fans and teammates alike will be hoping for a speedy recovery for the talented defender.
Despite the setbacks, Manchester United will have to regroup and refocus their efforts on the upcoming matches, with the second leg against Sevilla and the domestic competition in their sights.