Marouane Fellaini scored Man United's lone goal in Thursday's Europa League 1-1 draw v Celta Vigo.


Manchester United 1-1 Celta Vigo (2-1 agg.)

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Manchester United's 1-1 Europa League semi-final second-leg draw with Spanish side Celta Vigo (2-1 agg) at Old Trafford on Thursday sees the titan English side advance to the Europa League Final.

On target for manager Jose Mourinho’s plan, Manchester United is one win away from qualifying for the Champions League. United, who progressed 2-1 on aggregate, were only seconds from being knocked out, but John Guidetti missed an easy chance for Celta Vigo in the final minute of stoppage time, both teams having been reduced to 10 men following red cards for Eric Bailly and Facundo Roncaglia after a late clash.

Bailly's dismissal, for lashing out at Guidetti, means he will miss the final against Ajax in Stockholm, leaving Manchester United without their best defender in a crucial game they must win in order to qualify for next season's Champions League tournament. Marcos Rojo will also miss the final due to a cruciate ligament injury. Bailly's absence will leave a huge hole in the Reds back four. Chris Smalling and Phil Jones, who have both been subjected to stinging criticism from Red boss Jose Mourinho in recent weeks, will compete for the right to partner with Daley Blind.

United will face Ajax in the Europa League final after a narrow win in Spain on Thursday, followed by a hard fought 1-1 draw at Old Trafford. Ajax are weak at the back and have not gotten a win on the road in Europe for six games. The Europa League Final promises to be an exciting night in Stockholm for Manchester United and Ajax fans.

Marouane Fellaini came through as a hero with his crucial header sending his side through. Fellaini has prospered and improved under Mourinho’s wing, and the Belgian midfielder with big hair repaid his manager's faith in him with a crucial first-half goal against Celta Vigo that put United in control of this Europa League semifinal. Fellaini who was sent off for head-butting Manchester City's superstar striker Sergio Aguero last month is becoming a man for the big occasion; today’s goal against Celta was his third in semifinals for United. When Jose Mourinho selects Fellaini, the Reds lose the ability to control the midfield as the former Everton man is often picked ahead of Michael Carrick alongside Ander Herrera. When Mourinho goes with Carrick, United seem to control the passing and tempo of the game better.

Against Ajax in the Europa League final later this month, United will again face a team confident in possession, so Mourinho has a big choice to make – whether to go with Carrick's experience or is Fellaini's goal scoring potential. It is a big call and one that could decide whether United win in Stockholm or come back empty-handed.

The Europa League’s upcoming clash between giant clubs Manchester United and Ajax in the final in Stockholm will boost the competition's apeal. On May 24, Stockholm will see two clubs with 10 major European trophies between them battle it out for glory and silverware in the Friends Arena.

Ajax have already secured Champions League qualification for next season through by winning the Dutch Eredivisie league title this season, so they will travel to Sweden without the added pressure. Ajax are a titan club with a glittering tradition and will go head to head with Man United with the belief and winning mentality that comes from being one of Europe's most successful clubs.

If United win the final against Ajax, they will be back in the Champions League and will join Peter Bosz's Ajax, Bayern Munich, Juventus and Chelsea as the only clubs to win all of UEFA's major trophies: the European Cup, which was replaced by the Champions League; the Cup Winners' Cup, which is now defunct; the Super Cup; and the UEFA Cup, which was replaced by the Europa League.


MAY 24 Europa League Final 2017 Tickets: Ajax v Manchester United Tickets Friends Arena - Solna, Sweden

Marouane Fellaini scored Man United's lone goal in Thursday's Europa League 1-1 draw v Celta Vigo.