11 August 2020
Manchester United and FC Copenhagen are set to face off against each other at the RheinEnergieStadion in their first-ever UEFA knockout-stage encounter, as the two sides battle it out for the UEFA Europa League semi-finals.
The two teams previously met in the 2006/07 Champions League group stage, with both sides winning their home games ‘to nil’ respectively. Yet, the Red Devils have lost only two of their eight European clashes against Danish rivals (W5, D1), with their last showdown against such opponent in the UEFA two-legged tie yielding a 6-3 aggregate success (versus Midtjylland). Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men have been ruthless in the Europa League this term, winning all but two of their matches in the competition (D1, L1), with five of those triumphs producing a clean sheet. As a consequence, Manchester United have now kept a blank sheet in 14 of their last 21 Europa League outings, winning 15 (D5, L1).
Meanwhile, Copenhagen have failed to win against the Premier League sides in nine of ten European meetings (D4, L5), and were winless in eight of 12 matches in the Europa League knockout stage (W4, D2, L6). But, they managed to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit against Istanbul Basaksehir in the previous knockout round, securing a comfortable 3-0 triumph. It was, indeed, the second time this season that Copenhagen scored more than once in the Europa League fixture following a 3-1 away win to Celtic in the return leg of their last-32 tie. Ståle Solbakken has based his side’s historic European success on a rock-solid defense that has restricted their rivals to a maximum of one goal per game in all ten of their Europa League matches this term.
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