Manchester United follow up their 2-0 win in Spain by beating Granada 2-0 at Old Trafford. Edinson Cavani’s early volley set the Premier League side on their way, but they had to wait until the final minute for the second when Jesus Vallejo put through his own net.
If there were any doubt about the outcome of the tie, it was surely settled early on when Edinson Cavani struck from a Paul Pogba assist after just six minutes. A late on goal added to Granada’s misery.
Man Utd thereafter were in cruise control, with the Spaniards unable to lay a glove on them – as had been the case for much of the first leg.
As the clock strikes ninety minutes, United grab their second of the night through Jesus Vallejo’s own-goal.
The Spanish defender is unable to get himself out of the way once Juan Mata fails to connect with an attempted header, and unintentionally deflects Alex Telles’ cross into the bottom of his own net.
It came after an extraordinary spell of play in which David De Gea brilliantly saved from Yangel Herrera at point blank range, and Amad Diallo was denied a free-kick having been brought down when through on goal.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer now prepares for his fifth semi-final in two years hoping to go one better than he managed in his previous four, and Roma will provide a much stiffer test than the side eighth in La Liga, whose adventure in the Europa League was all but ended on home soil.
In the absence of the suspended Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw and Scott McTominay, Solskjaer fielded a strong side as he looked to ensure there would be no upset in the second leg, and Cavani waited little time in ending the contest.
He provided United with the dream start, as Pogba flicked on an Alex Telles cross to the 34-year-old, who volleyed into the bottom corner from inside the box.
It was the 413th goal for club and country in Cavani’s illustrious career and further evidence towards extending his stay beyond the end of the season.
This was Granada’s first visit to England, and their head coach Diego Martinez will have been encouraged by his team’s response to the early set-back.
Yangel Herrera missed two presentable opportunities in quick succession, glancing his header wide from an immediate set-play before doing likewise midway through the second period when unmarked.
They face Roma in the semi-finals.