UEFA Champions League

Manchester United's hopes in the balance, Arsenal cruise through to last 16

29 Nov 2023
Bruno Fernandes

Reds Devils blow two-goal lead to draw 3-3 at Galatasaray, while Gunners put six past Lens

Related Articles
Ten Hag: We should have won the game External Link
Report: Arsenal 6-0 RC Lens External Link
How Arsenal's change of style strengthens their title credentials

Manchester United hopes of qualifying for the the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League are hanging by a thread after they squandered a two-goal lead once more, as Galatasaray came from behind to draw 3-3 in Istanbul.

Meanwhile, Arsenal made history as they cruised into the last 16 as Group B winners with an emphatic 6-0 victory over Lens at Emirates Stadium.

How Man Utd's match unfolded

Just as they had in their last Champions League match in Copenhagen, Man Utd went 2-0 ahead, with goals inside the opening 20 minutes from Alejandro Garnacho and Bruno Fernandes.

Fresh off the back of his stunning overhead kick at Everton on Sunday, Garnacho emphatically fired into the roof of the net on 11 minutes.

Seven minutes later, Fernandes’ spectacular shot from distance put Man Utd firmly in control and momentarily silenced the home support.

Man Utd Champions League

However, Galatasaray pulled one back just before the half-hour when former Chelsea midfielder Hakim Ziyech’s free-kick wrongfooted Andre Onana.

Mauro Icardi, who scored the winner at Old Trafford in the reverse meeting, thought he had scored the equaliser, but he was marginally offside.

Erik ten Hag’s side would restore their two-goal advantage 10 minutes after the break when Scott McTominay converted a cross from Aaron Wan-Bissaka following a rapid counter-attack.

But an error from Onana gifted Ziyech his second of the night, as the United goalkeeper spilled the Moroccan's free-kick into his net on 62 minutes, before Galatasaray substitute Kerem Akturkoglu rifled brilliantly in to level the scores.

In an end-to-end finale Fernandes almost restored United's lead but his long-range strike hit a post to leave United’s fate elsewhere.

To finish second, they need to beat Bayern Munich at home in their final Group A match on 12 December and hope Copenhagen and Galatasaray draw when they meet in Denmark.

Group A standings
Team Pts GD
Bayern 13 +5
FC Copenhagen 5 -1
Galatasaray 5 -2
Man Utd 4 -2
How Arsenal's match unfolded

Having netted the winner at Brentford on Saturday, Kai Havertz continued his upturn in form with the opener on 13 minutes.

Arsenal then struck three times in the space of six minutes. First Gabriel Jesus cleverly dummied a defender before slotting into the bottom corner, and soon after, a Havertz shot was parried straight into the path of Bukayo Saka, who bundled the ball home.

Gabriel Martinelli collected a pass from Takehiro Tomiyasu and after driving at the Lens defence, cut in and fired a right-footed shot beyond the goalkeeper.

Bukayo Saka celebrates
Martin Odegaard

Captain Martin Odegaard made Arsenal the first English team to score five first-half goals in the competition in stoppage time, volleying in from Tomiyasu's cross. 

Arsenal are also the first side to have five different goalscorers in the first half of a Champions League match. 

After the break, the Gunners' dominant display was completed in the 87th minute, when Jorginho coolly converted his penalty to complete a result which confirms them as Group B winners.

Group B standings
Team Pts GD
Arsenal 12 +12
PSV 8 -2
Lens 5 -6
Sevilla 2 -4
Thursday's matches

In the UEFA Europa League, Brighton & Hove Albion are away to AEK Athens, while West Ham United face Backa Topola, both encounters place at 17:45 GMT.

Liverpool welcome LASK to Anfield at 20:00 GMT.

In the UEFA Europa Conference League, Aston Villa take on Legia Warsaw at 20:00 GMT.

Latest Videos

More Videos