Manchester United

Manchester United favorites to add to Carabao Cup win with UEFA Europa League glory

UEFA Europa League

Off the back of a convincing 2-0 victory over first-time finalists, Newcastle United at Wembley last weekend, Manchester United have been backed into odds on favorites to add to their Carabao Cup success, in the form of a second UEFA Europa League triumph.

Returning to Wembley Stadium last Sunday, Erik ten Hag struck his first silverware under the tenure of Manchester United since his arrival from Ajax last summer – guiding the Old Trafford side to Carabao Cup success.

Battling with the Eddie Howe-led Newcastle in the capital last weekend, United smelled blood early in London, netting inside the opening half an hour with Brazilian midfield revelation, Casemiro convering a Luke Shaw corner with a bullet header. 

Just minutes later, red-hot forward, Marcus Rashford forced the issue – and forced a Sven Botman own goal, with the striker’s left footed shot deflecting off the Dutch center half past replacement goalkeeper, Lloris Karius. 

Seeing out the remainer of the half as well as a second half resurgence from Newcastle United, the Red Devils return to Old Trafford tonight to continue their FA Cup escapades against West Ham United. 

Utilizing his midfield to great aplomb throughout last weekend’s final against Newcastle, it felt as if Dutch tactician, ten Hag was using something close to Fortnite hacks and cheats during United’s second leg with FC Barcelona last Thursday – turning around a 1-0 score at half time with goals from Brazilian duo, Fred, and Antony guiding the Old Trafford side through. 

And off the back of a pair of stunning performances against the Xavi-led Catalan club, United have been installed as short as 5/2 favorites to win the UEFA Europa League for the second time in the club’s history. 

Drawing another Spanish club in the last 16 of the tournament, United will first host Real Betis in the opening week of March – before then travelling to Spain for a second leg clash. 

Ahead of the last 16 clash, United will have to first traverse past West Ham United tonight at home, before travelling to Anfield to take on the struggling and faltering, Liverpool this Sunday in a pivotal Premier League clash. 

Despite their jam-packed schedule, United still sit as outstanding favorites to clinch the UEFA Europa League – placed ahead of league leaders, Arsenal, struggling Italian giants, Juventus who are third favorites – whilst German side Union Berlin, Sevilla Roma, and Bayer Leverkusen sit currently as distant tournament victors. 

Along with their exploits in the FA Cup and the UEFA Europa League, despite somewhat of an outside chance, United have been included prolifically in talk of a title race for a Premier League crown – including first placed, Arsenal, and defending league champions, Manchester City. 

At the time of publication, United sit just six points behind Manchester City in second, and seven points behind league leaders, Arsenal – although ten Hag’s side have a game in hand against their cross-city rivals. A league victory – which would come as an immense achievement from former Ajax coach, ten Hag, would return the Premier League title to the red side of Manchester for the first time since 2012. 

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