Man Utd 2-3 Galatasaray: Late Mauro Icardi strike seals victory for visitors

Mauro Icardi celebrates

Manchester United’s woeful season lurched from one damaging loss to another as Galatasaray took advantage of some calamitous defending to record a comeback Champions League win at Old Trafford.

Ten-man United led twice through young striker Rasmus Hojlund, the second a brilliant effort as the 20-year-old took advantage of Davinson Sanchez’s slip to race 50 yards and beat Fernando Muslera with a deft finish.

But the hosts could only hold their advantage for a combined 10 minutes, as first old-boy Wilfried Zaha, then Kerem Akturkoglu levelled.

Then, after Mauro Icardi had failed to convert the penalty that followed a terrible Andre Onana mistake that led to Casemiro’s red card, the Argentine made amends when he sped clear of the hosts’ defence nine minutes from time and found the finish.

It is the first time United have started a Champions League group stage with successive defeats, and piles the pressure on manager Erik ten Hag, whose side are bottom of the table, four points behind their visitors who are second, behind Bayern Munich.

United have now lost two on the trot following Saturday’s Premier League home defeat by Crystal Palace, five of their past seven games and six out of 10 in all competitions this season.

Terrible night for Ten Hag

This was a truly awful night for Ten Hag, who stood in the pouring rain before the final whistle hoping his side could snatch something to give them hope in a campaign that has been as bleak as the weather.

“Our start to the season has not been good enough,” he said in his programme notes. “Although there are reasons, we will not attempt to hide behind excuses. It is up to us now to turn our fortunes around. What happens next is up to us and nobody else.”

The early signs are not good, though Hojlund at least provides something positive to reflect on for United.

Marcus Rashford created the Dane’s first with a lofted cross into the six-yard box, where Hojlund beat Sanchez to thump home a header.

Then, after Rashford had sprinted clear only to mess up a routine square pass that should have presented Bruno Fernandes with a tap-in, Hojlund embarked on his own run from halfway, this time with considerably more success to take his Champions League tally to three in two games.

Defensively though, United were shocking from that point on.

Casemiro failed to track Akturkoglu’s run into the box after Sofyan Amrabat had been turned too easily by the touchline, and the Turkey forward levelled for a second time.

Onana’s £47m price tag came with the assurance he is good with his feet. But when the Cameroon keeper sent a pass from the edge of his six-yard box straight to Dries Mertens, his goal only survived because Casemiro fouled the Belgian and Icardi missed the penalty.

There was no reprieve when Icardi won it four minutes later, and the jubilant celebrations of visiting fans scattered all over Old Trafford only made a bad night worse for United.

Zaha’s Old Trafford redemption

When he reflected on his unfulfilled United career on the eve of the game, Zaha said he had emerged stronger for it.

There are some who argue he had the talent to operate at a higher level than Crystal Palace, and even now could be doing better for himself than the Turkish Super Lig.

Zaha’s complaint about water not being immediately to hand when he approached the dugout during a break in play suggests the same attention to detail does not exist in Turkey as the Premier League.

Nevertheless, Galatasaray provide Zaha with the Champions League platform he craved, and almost a decade after making his United debut on this ground, he scored his first goal in the competition.

There was not much finesse about it. A long ball launched out of the visitors’ half, which created the tussle on the edge of the area that Zaha was simply too strong for Diogo Dalot in.

His volley bounced into the ground, but was enough to send the ball looping over Onana. Unlike in September 2020, when he scored twice in a Palace win at Old Trafford but no fans were present to see it, this time Zaha was able to milk the celebrations, although they were nothing compared with those that followed the final whistle.

Player of the match

ZahaWilfried Zaha

with an average of 7.94

Manchester United

  1. Squad number11Player nameHøjlund
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  2. Squad number14Player nameEriksen
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  3. Squad number4Player nameS Amrabat
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  4. Squad number17Player nameGarnacho
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  5. Squad number18Player nameCasemiro
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  6. Squad number10Player nameRashford
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  7. Squad number46Player nameMejbri
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  8. Squad number7Player nameMount
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  9. Squad number19Player nameVarane
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  10. Squad number8Player nameBruno Fernandes
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  11. Squad number2Player nameLindelöf
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  12. Squad number20Player nameDiogo Dalot
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  13. Squad number24Player nameOnana
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  14. Squad number9Player nameMartial
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  15. Squad number21Player nameAntony
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  1. Squad number14Player nameZaha

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  2. Squad number91Player nameNdombélé

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  3. Squad number10Player nameMertens

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  4. Squad number25Player nameNelsson

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  5. Squad number9Player nameIcardi

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  6. Squad number6Player nameD Sánchez

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  7. Squad number53Player nameYilmaz

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  8. Squad number27Player nameSérgio Oliveira

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  9. Squad number20Player nameTetê

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  10. Squad number34Player nameTorreira

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  11. Squad number7Player nameAktürkoglu

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  12. Squad number3Player nameAngelino

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  13. Squad number23Player nameAyhan

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  14. Squad number42Player nameBardakci

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  15. Squad number93Player nameBoey

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  16. Squad number1Player nameMuslera

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Man Utd

Formation 4-3-3

  • 24Onana
  • 20DalotBooked at 38mins
  • 19Varane
  • 2Lindelöf
  • 4S AmrabatSubstituted forMartialat 89′minutes
  • 46MejbriSubstituted forEriksenat 45′minutes
  • 18CasemiroBooked at 77mins
  • 7MountSubstituted forAntonyat 85′minutes
  • 8Bruno Fernandes
  • 11Højlund
  • 10RashfordSubstituted forGarnachoat 68′minutes


  • 1Bayindir
  • 5Maguire
  • 9Martial
  • 14Eriksen
  • 17Garnacho
  • 21Antony
  • 28Pellistri
  • 35Evans
  • 39McTominay
  • 40Vítek


Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Muslera
  • 93BoeyBooked at 61mins
  • 6D Sánchez
  • 42Bardakci
  • 3AngelinoSubstituted forNdombéléat 84′minutes
  • 23AyhanSubstituted forNelssonat 84′minutes
  • 34TorreiraBooked at 31minsSubstituted forOliveiraat 61′minutesBooked at 85mins
  • 20TetêSubstituted forYilmazat 61′minutes
  • 7Aktürkoglu
  • 14ZahaSubstituted forMertensat 72′minutes
  • 9Icardi


  • 8Demirbay
  • 10Mertens
  • 19Güvenç
  • 25Nelsson
  • 27Oliveira
  • 53Yilmaz
  • 91Ndombélé
  • 94Bakambu

Ivan Kruzliak

Match Stats

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Match ends, Manchester United 2, Galatasaray 3.

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